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EPOXY RESIN: PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS – THE 12 MOST COMMON PROBLEMS

EPOXY RESIN: PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS – THE 12 MOST COMMON PROBLEMS

1. RESIN HAS NOT HARDENED AFTER THE INDICATED TIME

If resin has not hardened after the indicated time has elapsed, there may be several causes. Here are
the most common ones:

  • Double-check the usage ratio indicated in the instructions. An incorrect or approximate combination may affect the catalysation of the product. It is very important that you never add a greater amount of hardener than the specified one.
  • Never cast the second layer without ascertaining first that the previous one has completely hardened. Pouring another layer over a surface that has not catalysed may cause overheating and compromise your work.
  • If you work in an environment where the temperature is relatively low, the curing time of the resin will increase significantly. For example, if you go from 25° [77 F] to 15° [59 F], the curing time will double. Use an external heat source (stove, radiator, etc.) to increase the ambient temperature or apply a hardener suitable for working at low temperatures.
  • Most of the problems concerning the failure to harden of the resins can be traced back to
    incorrect mixing. Make sure to carefully mix your product for at least two minutes,
    meticulously scraping the bottom and the walls of the container used. Never be inattentive in this very important stage.
  • Add the additives (pigments, dyes, etc.) only after mixing resin and catalyst.
  • Use the catalyst you find packed together with the resin you are going to work with. The use of “unrelated” catalysts may vary the final result.

 

2. RESIN DOES NOT STICK WELL

  • If you want to use resin as a bonding agent or to create River Tables, you may run into some problems related to the stickiness of the product.
  • If you are working on a very porous surface, this will absorb the product very easily, making a second layer of resin necessary particularly on the edges of the material you are going to glue.
  • If you work on wood, make sure to clean and smooth the surface. A rough cleaning may nullify the adherence of the resin.
  • Another problem might relate to the width of your worktop. A large surface of resin alone
    may in fact not guarantee a perfect seal. To deal with this problem, all you need to do is add material to reduce the workload of the resin.
  • Make sure that the resin is evenly distributed over the entire surface.

 

3. RESIN LOST ITS SHINE

If your resin has taken on an opaque and unpolished colour, the causes are most likely due to climatic conditions of your working environment.
Many times the opacification may be caused even just by a normal change of season.
Use an external heat source to remove moisture and to foster polymerization.

 

EPOXY RESIN: PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS. THE 12 MOST COMMON PROBLEMS.

 

4. A STICKY FILM HAS FORMED ON THE SURFACE

Once the resin has hardened, a sticky film may form on the surface. This problem can be easily reduced by wiping a sponge soaked in hot water on your surface.
However, if you want to avoid film formation, employ the following precautions:

  • Always try to work in an indoor environment, preventing sudden changes in the room temperature.
  • Avoid working with too small quantities, since the smaller the mix dosages, the more you risk to enhance the formation of impurities in the compound.
  • Remember that film formation does not depend only on moisture but also on the
    presence of CO2, thus limit the use of thermal guns during the catalysis process.
  • Remember that using a container limits the interaction of the resin with the air molecules.
    Try to keep your product as isolated as possible.

EPOXY RESIN: PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS. THE 12 MOST COMMON PROBLEMS.

 

5. AFTER YEARS OF STORAGE, THE HARDENER HAS TAKEN ON A REDDISH COLOR

It is quite normal that, after a few years, the hardener takes on a reddish colour and loses its transparency.
This colour variation does not in any way affect the quality of the resin, which can still be safely used unless a completely colourless product is required.

 

6. THE RESIN SURFACE HAS AN “ORANGE PEEL” EFFECT

If the resin surface features bulges or an “orange peel” effect after hardening, this is probably due to the temperature of your working environment as well.
There are a few solutions that you can try to reduce this problem:

EPOXY RESIN: PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS. THE 12 MOST COMMON PROBLEMS.

  • If the product has not yet completely hardened, use a roller to “smooth” the surface, this procedure will remove the several bulges on the resin surface.
  • If the resin has not yet completely catalysed, you can try a repair casting of maximum 2 mm [0,07”].

EPOXY RESIN: PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS. THE 12 MOST COMMON PROBLEMS.

  • If the resin has completely catalysed, sand it with a sheet of 100 grit abrasive paper and finish it with a layer of glossy polyurethane spray paint.

 

7. THE APPLIED VARNISH DOES NOT STICK TO THE RESIN

If the varnish you have chosen to finish the resin does not stick well to the product, you may have made some mistakes in the preparatory stage:

  • The resin may not yet be fully cured. Let the product dry for another 24 hours before applying the varnish
  • Make sure that the varnish you are using is compatible with the resin. Do not use varnishes that are not compatible with your products.
  • Verify that no sticky film has formed on your resin surface. If so, remove it as described in step 4.

EPOXY RESIN: PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS. THE 12 MOST COMMON PROBLEMS.

 

8. RESIN CURES TOO QUICKLY

Besides the hardening problems, you may also experience issues related to a too fast polymerization of your product.
Again, the reasons are linked to the temperature of your working environment: if it is too high, the product may catalyse too quickly and compromise your work.
It is therefore advisable to keep the temperature at around 20°-25° [68-77 F] and not to mix excessive doses of product.

 

9. AIR BUBBLES HAVE APPEARED ON THE SURFACE OF THE RESIN

The appearance of air bubbles is one of the most common problems when working with resin.
To avoid this process, make sure to mix the product carefully and slowly, in order to prevent air admission into the compound.
If, during the curing process, the resin features small bubbles on the surface, these can be easily removed with the use of a heat gun that you will have to move quickly over the surface at 10-minute intervals.
Remember that once the product has hardened, bubbles can no longer be removed unless you decide to make a further casting by using colouring agents.

 

10. RESIN, COMBINED WITH FIBREGLASS, FEATURES MICRO-HOLES

It may happen that, by using resin and fibreglass, some micro-holes can appear. In this case, the solution is very simple: fill these holes with resin using a spatula, let it dry and put down a second coat of resin.

 

11. RESIN IS NOT COMPLETELY CLEAN

If resin is not completely clean, the reasons may be certainly related to the cleanliness of the environment.
You must be very careful when cleaning the work tools, the container you are going to use (remove any oil or grease from the inside of the wall) and the room you are going to work in.
An extreme cleaning will minimize the risk of contamination of the resin by external agents.

 

12. WHAT IS AN EPOXY RESIN?

An epoxy resin is a particular type of resin that catalyses thanks to a specific hardener and without requiring any particular climatic condition.
This kind of product has excellent adhesive and mechanical properties, it is completely non-toxic and it can be used to create a wide range of artifacts.

Copyright © Resin Pro Srl.

18 comments

  1. I warm the epoxy first to make it a pourable consistency, then slowly stir it and the curing agent for at least 3 minutes. Without seeing bubbles, I pour and cover my canvass with the resin, periodically using my heat gun. However, as time goes by, tiny little bubbles continue to surface now unfazed by the heat gun. I start removing them with a pointed stick, but after awhile these bubbles can’t be popped, and the resin has solidified enough that I am stuck..and very frustrated..even after a couple sandings and new pours, it can still occur. Ideas?

    1. Hello ,thank you for your comment.
      you should ckeck 2 points
      1) the support you are pouring on: should be 100% sealed. if you use wood or canva it may release bubbles by itself. Please make sure it’s is 100% selaed
      2) apply heat gun every 10 minutes to avoid bubble on surface.

      for any additional help, please write us on info@resinpro.eu

  2. On projects that have large cavities like river tables I am having an issue. After a year or two of sitting around I noticed that the resin looks like it’s swelling. No matter how big the cavity it always seems to happen. Is this the resin swelling or the wood around it shrinking? Is their a solution for this issue?

    1. Hallo! Sure you might use our Transparent epoxy Resina

  3. Michaela

    Hi. I was given incorrect instructions (it appears the sale lady got confused and was provided a manual later today via email). I accidentally did a 2 :1 ratio but 2 for hardener and 1 in resin. Is there any chance it will actually dry? It’s been about 4 hours and it’s looking sticky, but it’s hardened just a bit. I’m hoping the warmth of the morning will help it harden. What can I do to not lose that resin? Should I add heat nearby? Thank you for any help¡¡

    1. Hello!
      Thanks for your question.
      To be honest, the right ration is one of the most important thing in working with epoxy-resin.
      So, there is the only one decision – to make your project again with proper ratio.
      With best wishes!

  4. Hi I’m ha big a real problem. No matter what I do I end up with a bendy resin. I mix really well, the room temp is good, I measure out perfectly yet it never fully cures. It’s not sticky it’s just curing like rubber. Could it be the moulds I’m using? They were relatively cheap… it’s cost me so much already and I’ve had to put all my customer orders on hold. Please help!

    1. Hello! Please, send a detailed description of the problem + a couple photos at info@resinpro.eu? Our colleagues will help!

  5. Can you reheat resin after it has hardened and dried properly? The plate/coaster has hardened and now does not sit flat to the surface as it should. Is there anything I do? Thank you

    1. Hello!
      To be honest, after the full curing, you can only sand it down, beacuse, the reaction is alredy done.

  6. My coasters are still bendy after cure time can I just add another layer of resin so it’ll fully harden?

    1. Hello!
      Yes, sure. It should help.

  7. Hi doing a deep table top layer by layer each layer seems to cure with what looks like a water stain effect (no water around) the next layer seems to cover it but then I’m left with the top layer marked and it also has these small ‘puckering’ marks – what can I do to get a clear smooth finish please ?

    1. Hello! Our laboratory said it is the result of bad mixing, the hardener was left unmixed and poured on the top.
      You have to mix in one cup and after to pour into another one and after doubled mixing you can pour at your art-work.
      In this case you need just make a thin layer of a clear epoxy 1-2mm, and the surface will be fine!

  8. Swati Mehra

    Hey

    I actually bought resin and hardner 3-4months back and it’s packed in a box. Now the resin liquid has jammed in bottle at one side what should i do to bring it back to liquid

    1. There is can be the only one problem:
      the resin suddenly becomes a cloudy white hue, and in some cases – in it and does not form white inclusions-clots.

      Don’t worry, it’s all the fault of the cold. Resin that has stood at a temperature below 17-20 degrees even for a short period of time is at risk of becoming cloudy.
      This is a normal process that does not affect the quality of the product and is similar to, for example, the transition between water and ice.
      It will be enough to heat such a resin to reverse the process.
      It is enough to heat the resin to 50-70 ° C.

      We recommend putting tightly closed bottles of resin in a container with warm and hot water for 20-30 minutes until the turbid color disappears. In the case of large volumes (for example, resin in a canister), this process may take 1-1. 5 hours. We recommend that from time to time the container should be shone through to monitor the transparency of the resin.

      Attention: the result will only be if the resin is brought to 50 ° C. lower temperatures, unfortunately, do not bring the desired effect.

  9. Hi, what do I use to prevent the cured key rings/tags/ jewelry from melting in your pocket/during summer? I read about varnish, but is it a specific one? I had a few thin pieces left out from a project, I kept them in a box, it got hot for a few days and they melted.. Please advise, thank you.

    1. Hello! Thanks for your comment. Could you tell, what is the type of epoxy did you use for that?

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