Will common adhesive products give cancer in a few years or other hideous maladies?

I have no idea what all the chemicals are in adhesives that are available.

I am building my van and try to use natural stuff like cork and rockwool but then I have to stick a lot of it with adhesive.


I also am probably going to want to buy a contact adhesive soon for some other sections where I want to glue cork to metal so not wood to wood as I had been doing for most of it. Again no clue what all those chemicals will be in them.

Ones like gorrilla glue or sticks like !!!!!!.

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  • Mutton_Geoff
    Mutton_Geoff Posts: 3,794
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    I used this to fix wooden battens to GRP .. https://www.screwfix.com/p/soudal-fix-all-high-tack-adhesive-sealant-white-290ml/64585

    CT1 is also very good.
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  • Bigphil1474
    Bigphil1474 Posts: 2,292
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    OP, I wouldn't worry tbh. You do realise they will have used all sorts of chemicals making the van in the first place. Unless you are using industrial strength adhesives, the chemicals are not going to cause cancer simply from doing what they do. Most products have to be assessed for safety so any carcinogenic products will either be well labelled, or more likely, not available anyway.
  • Section62
    Section62 Posts: 7,508
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    I have no idea what all the chemicals are in adhesives that are available.

    I am building my van and try to use natural stuff like cork and rockwool but then I have to stick a lot of it with adhesive.


    I also am probably going to want to buy a contact adhesive soon for some other sections where I want to glue cork to metal so not wood to wood as I had been doing for most of it. Again no clue what all those chemicals will be in them.

    Ones like gorrilla glue or sticks like !!!!!!.

    Products - even those sold to retail consumers - will have a Safety Data Sheet somewhere (see also "COSHH") telling you what the known safety risks are.

    The D4 wood glue you linked to has a SDS here (the "Technical Specification" section of the Toolstation page has a link) -

    The known hazardous ingredients will be listed in the SDS - for example (in this case) the product includes "BUTYL DIGLYCOL ACETATE".

    You can then DYOR whether you are happy with exposure to that product.
  • Andy_L
    Andy_L Posts: 12,744
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    Common adhesive products have, by definition, been in common use for long enough such that we would know if if they will "give cancer in a few years"
  • ThisIsWeird
    ThisIsWeird Posts: 4,458
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    Hi GL.
    I presume you are concerned about these products giving off volatiles and vapours, that you would be breathing in over extended time?
    As said by others, your van will already be filled with these, either from plastic components (did I read that the haze appearing on the inside of your screen is largely caused by volatiles released from the plastics such as your dashboard?) or adhesives, which are used pretty extensively in modern car builds.
    You have the data sheets should you wish some bedtime reading, but I personally wouldn't have any concerns at all about adhesives like PVA, water-based and pretty inert when dry. Of course, that's only suitable for wood-to-woodish adhering.
    The polyurethane-type adhesives such as CT1 and StixAll are, again, seemingly low volatiles, certainly low odour, and you would be unlikely to be using copious amounts in any case. These will stick pretty much anything to anything...
    But, if you are wishing to fix down areas of fabrics and suchlike, then you may require largeish amounts of contact adhesive, and obviously most of these are solvent-based, very smelly, and will be releasing significant amounts of petroleum-type vapours for a good while. Even then, the smell disappears surprisingly quickly if well ventilated. A quick Google reveals there are a number of water-based 'contact' adhesives now available, which obviously sounds like a good idea, but they would still beg their COSHH info to be read.
    I, personally, would have few concerns - other than the initial smell. But then, I like to live close to the edge. The time to have concerns would be when the van is subsequently gutted - any cutting, sawing or grinding of the glued products would be when to have concerns, and suitable masks should be worn.
  • FreeBear
    FreeBear Posts: 14,262
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    The fuel & oil you use in the engine should give you more than enough health concerns. If they don't, look up the dangers from your leisure batteries.
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  • Pu glue is quite nasty and actually has a “may cause cancer” warning on the label which is concerning I’ve been using it for years!
     You should always read the COSHH before using any product.
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  • TELLIT01
    TELLIT01 Posts: 16,256
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    Wear a mask when applying the adhesives and you will probably be OK.  If you are that concerned maybe you need to get somebody else to do the work.  The warnings seen on some packaging will often be because one person has made a claim and the company is now trying to protect themselves.  Much like 'the contents are hot' on takeaway coffee.
  • theoretica
    theoretica Posts: 12,230
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    Glues can take a while to cure, but if properly used (for a van at this time of year check the temperature advised) they become much more inert once cured.  Like paints which stink for a while, then stops.  Can you give a while between doing the gluing and using it?
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  • Lorian
    Lorian Posts: 5,685
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    Rockwool will not be at all robust glued to one face. Consider mechanical fixing behind thin ply or something. 
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