Best Caulk

The best caulk will come from a reputable company and offer the different types that various projects call for. The reputation of a certain brand is very important in determining the quality of the product. Our pick, DAP INC Acrylic Latex Caulk , is the kind of great quality product we are referring to. It is mildew and moisture resistant making it a good choice for taking care of caulking around doors and windows. It provides superior adhesion to many different surfaces including ceramic, wood, glass, metal, stone, and more.

Introduction to the Caulks

Caulk has many uses around the house, from sealing around your tub to keeping cold wind out by sealing around windows and doors. A good quality caulk can prevent problems like mold and rot from developing inside the walls and it can help reduce your power bills too. Another benefit to caulk is that it can make your home look finished and extend the life of paint jobs as well.

Caulk is used by professionals as well as DIY-ers to fill in cracks and spaces around windows and doors, along the baseboards or your home, and to fill in ceiling trim before the room is painted. It provides you with a very clean, professional look to any areas you have used it on providing you have taken the time to do the job properly and carefully.

There are a few different things that you want to look at when you are searching for the right caulk for the jobs and projects you have at home or in the workplace. This guide will help you learn what these considerations are and how to sort through the different types and brands of caulk on the market and choose the one that is perfect for your needs.

Top Ranked Caulks

DAP INC Acrylic Latex Caulk

This high quality caulk from DAP is the perfect choice for all your caulking projects. It can be used for indoor as well as outdoor projects and provides the user with exceptional adhesion to a multitude of surfaces including ceramic, glass, wood, and many others.

DAP acrylic latex caulk is mildew and moisture resistant making it the perfect choice for any bathroom or kitchen caulking or anywhere else where you are dealing with a high moisture area.

There are 11 ounces of caulk in this tube that goes on white and dries white as well. The caulk is very durable and flexible as well. It cleans up easily with water and can be painted over.

DAP acrylic latex caulk exceeds ASTM specification C, so users can be assured they are purchasing a quality product. It comes with a 35 year durability guarantee.

Lexel Weatherproofing Caulk

If you’re looking for a high quality, strong, long lasting caulk for your repairs and caulking needs, look no further than Lexel weatherproofing caulk.

Lexel has been referred to as the duct tape of all caulks due to its exceptional adhesion, and super elasticity.  It is paintable and will not yellow or cloud up.

Lexel caulk can be used to caulk around counter tops, sinks. Door frames, window frames. Shower stalls, tubs and much more.  It is resistant to routine cleaning and scrubbing even with abrasive cleansers.

This product will adhere to many different surfaces including steel, silver, vinyl, Plexiglas, polycarbonate, PVC, aluminum, fiberglass and much more.

One of the best features of this product is that you don’t have to wait once it has been applied. If you are caulking around your shower you can use the shower right away after caulking and it will still remain intact and strong.  It will not tear, crack or pull away and provides a permanent, lasting seal on anything you use it for.

General Electric Kitchen and Bath Silicone Caulk

GE provides this quality caulk that is permanently waterproof.  It doesn’t crack, crumble, or shrink like acrylic can.  It meets all federal specifications making it a great choice for professional applications as well.

GE silicone caulk is made from 100% silicone which is chemically cured once it is applied and provides a permanent solution to whatever projects you use it for.

It is the perfect product to use when caulking kitchens, bathrooms and other plumbing jobs and will keep water out of where it doesn’t belong.

No worries about mold or mildew problems when you use this caulk. It is very flexible, won’t freeze and doesn’t pull away after application even when exposed to extreme heat or the sun’s UV rays.

Professionals and DIY –ers will love the quality and permanence of this product when they are caulking various surfaces to prevent water from getting in. It out performs acrylic caulk in almost every way. Buyers will get two tubes of this exceptional caulk to use for sealing up a multitude of areas.

Caulks Summary

There are many sealing jobs that require a good quality caulk. Using substandard caulking can result in mold and mildew growth if water gets into the area you have caulked (such as around the tub or shower) and it can cause heat to be lost around windows and doors. These are just a few of the things that a bad caulk job can cause.

Because a good seal is so important, you need to use a high quality caulk that will get the job and more importantly KEEP the job done. The three choices we have reviewed above are known for their superior quality and longevity. You won’t have to be redoing those sealing jobs once you have used any one of these caulks.

There are many different types of caulk on the market to choose from. Some are better suited to certain projects than others. In this buyer’s guide we will help you understand what caulks are better suited to which projects so you can narrow your choices down to exactly what you need.

Many DIY-ers have a few different types of caulk on hand for various jobs, but there are many that will work for a multitude of tasks, making purchasing several kinds unnecessary. Once you have read this guide you will be ready to choose the perfect caulk for your needs.

Caulk Comparison


DAP
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Lexel
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GE
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Sashco
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Kwik Seal
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Loctite
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GE II
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Red Devil
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GE Supreme
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Dow Corning
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Quantity
(oz)
10.10 5.00 2.80 10.50 5.50 5.50 10.10 10.10 10.10 10.10
Color Multi
Color
Clear
/ White
Clear White White White
/ Almond
Clear
/ White
Multi
Color
White Clear
Durability
(Years)
40 5 10 20 5 6 50 12 10 9
Material Silicone Polymer Silicone Acrylic
latex
Polymer Polymer Polymer Acrylic
latex
Wax Silicone,
Rubber
Package 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
Coverage
Area
(sq ft)
25 12 7 26 14 14 25 25 25 25
Finish Gloss Gloss Matte Satin Gloss Gloss Matte Satin Matte Gloss
Cure Time
(Hours)
168 24 – 48 24 24 – 48 24 24 – 48 24 72 24 24

 

Caulk Buyers Guide

Factors to Consider

There are several factors that you will be looking at to determine what kind of caulk you need. It may vary from job to job, but overall if you ask yourself these questions regarding your project before you buy, you will not purchase the wrong kind of caulk.

  • What materials are you caulking? – Some caulks will adhere better to some surfaces than others so make sure you take that into consideration when you are looking at different caulks.
  • Moisture – Are you caulking an area that is wet or moist more than it is dry such as around a rub or sink?   Make sure you get a caulk that is waterproof and highly resistant to mildew, mold and water.
  • Temperature – Are you caulking an area that is exposed to extreme heat or cold? Look for caulk that is able to be used in all temperatures, especially if you are caulking something that is outside and exposed to changing and extreme temperatures.
  • Location – Where you will be caulking is also an important factor to consider.  If you are caulking outdoors, choose a caulk that can hold up to the elements and handle movement in the joints of whatever it is you have caulked.
  • Paintable – Some caulks cannot be painted over so if you need the caulk to be paintable, make sure you have determined this before purchase. Most caulks can be painted over but it is always best to check ahead of time.
  • Application/ Ease of Use – Some caulks can be cleaned up easily with water but there are others that will require the use of chemical solvents.  You also want to take into consideration what kind of odor the caulk has while curing.  Some may release noxious fumes and require that no one be in the area while it is curing. All these things are important to look at when choosing a caulk.  Knowing as much about your project and needs as you can before you purchase will prevent you from wasting money on caulk that you can’t use or that won’t be appropriate to the job you are doing.

Selecting the Right Caulk

Knowing the kind of caulk you need for the job you are doing saves money, time and improves the results.  There are several different kinds of caulks available to choose from. We have listed the different types of caulk below along with the kind of jobs that they are best suited to. We have also provided some information about the characteristics and benefits of the different caulks as well.

  • Latex – Latex caulk also goes by the name of vinyl sealant, vinyl caulk and acrylic caulk.  This water based caulk is the least expensive of the different caulks available and is the easiest to use as well.  It can handle the largest range of applications and doesn’t contain any volatile chemicals.

    This means that you can get it on your hands and clean up with soap and water without any problems. Latex caulk can be painted and they are also available in a variety of pre-tinted varieties as well.  There are two sub categories that latex caulk falls into: inexpensive acrylic caulk and siliconized latex.

    If you are working on an area that won’t be exposed to a lot of temperature changes or high moisture levels, this is the caulk that will work fine for the job. This could include sealing interior trim, doors and windows. Siliconized latex has a small amount of silicone based product in it to improve the adhesion rate.  It is not the same as pure silicone caulk and doesn’t perform as well either.

  • Silicone – Silicone caulks remain flexible regardless of what the temperature does and they are 100% waterproof as well. They are highly resistant to mildew growth and bond well to almost every surface imaginable.  Because of their resistance to mold and mildew growth, silicone caulks are most often used in kitchens, bathrooms and other high moisture areas.

    There are two types of silicone caulks: acid cure and neutral cure.  If you are working with nonporous surfaces like glazed tile or glass, you would want to choose an acid cure silicone caulk.  You do need to watch it though because acid cured caulks can corrode metal and leave etchings in some plastic surfaces.

    If you are working with metal and wood, neutral cure silicone caulk is a good choice. Silicone caulks are very strong but they are not without some drawbacks.  They will not hold paint with a couple of exceptions and if you don’t do a good job the first time and need to re-caulk, the old residue is nearly impossible to remove.  They are also not the easiest to smooth.

  • Polyurethane – This type of caulk is best suited to outdoor projects. Benefits to polyurethane caulk are that it is tear resistant, will stick to almost any surface, and are non-corrosive as well. This is a good choice for sealing joints of two different materials together such as metal to concrete or wood to concrete. Poly caulk is not resistant to UV rays so be sure to paint or protect exterior joints where it has been used. 

    Tooling the joints is easier with poly caulk than it is with silicone but it does not beat the ease of use that latex caulk affords. Polyurethane caulk is the most expensive of all the different caulks.  Wherever you need superior strength, weatherproofing and durability is where you should use this type of caulk.

Specialty Caulks

There are many different specialty caulks available for specific jobs in addition to the regular latex and silicone caulks.  All purpose caulk works well for most situations, but if you are doing a specific project, you may want to invest in a caulk that has been designed with that particular project in mind.  This will always reap the best results. Some examples of specialty caulks may include:

  • Blacktop asphalt sealant
  • Caulk specifically for windows and doors
  • Mortar caulk that is designed to handle high heat
  • Kitchen and bath caulk that contains mildew and mold fighting properties
  • Roof sealant to stop gaps that is highly waterproof
  • Caulk that contains a special additive that has the rating that it can block fire

Conclusion

Caulk is not a difficult product to purchase when you understand a little bit about how it works and what the differences are. There are many jobs that can come up that require the use of caulk, so knowing how to purchase the right product will save you money and headache in the future.

The information in this buyer’s guide was designed to help you understand the different types of caulk and how to choose which one you want to purchase for your caulking projects. It is always better to take the extra time to research and not end up with a product you are unhappy with.

Being prepared with the right information that will help you take care of the different caulking jobs around your home will make the whole purchase much easier. You will know exactly what to look for.

Resources

  1. DAP INC – http://www.dap.com/
  2. Lexel – http://www.sashco.com/