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Can You Use Caulk as an Adhesive?

Decorators caulk is great for filling in gaps in trim and skirting board, but what about using it as an adhesive? Can you use caulk as an adhesive? There is only one way to find out, test it!

Testing Caulk as an Adhesive

I’m guessing the only reason to do this would be in an emergency or as a cost-saving measure. You need something sticking and just have caulk, maybe you don’t have the time to go out and get some adhesive or maybe you just want to save the money if possible.

Either way, you just want to use caulk as an adhesive, Let’s find out if it is possible.

The bead of caulk i will be using as an adhesive

The bead of caulk I will be using as an adhesive

So I start with putting a generous amount of caulk down onto this piece of wood. This is the caulk I will be using as an adhesive.

Sticking down a plastic lid

Sticking down a plastic lid

I’m am going to use this plastic lid as a test. it is very textured so it is a good thing to stick. This would be easy for any adhesive, it is light and very textured, the perfect sticky object.

Stuck down lets see if it holds

Stuck down let’s see if it holds

So here we have the lid stuck down. I’m going to leave this now for 24 hours to give it plenty of time to fully cure and hopefully glue the lid down to the wood.

Has it worked?

Lifting the wood up via the lid

Lifting the wood up via the lid

So you can see me holding the piece of wood up just via the lid I stuck down with decorators caulk. So it has worked so far, what we need to find out though is how strong this is actually stuck.

Peels straight off

Peels straight off

As soon as I applied a bit of sideways force the whole thing just peeled straight off. So while it was stuck down, it was not strong at all and really took very little effort for the whole thing to just peel off.

So can you use caulk as an adhesive?

Caulk will work to stick very light objects in an area where they are under no strain at all. As soon as there is some strain or force applied the bond will break.

So yes and no, technically it does work as an adhesive, just a very poor one. I wouldn’t recommend using it as an adhesive at all but in a pinch, it might work for something very light, that isn’t under any strain.