Command Strips have changed the way we decorate. Their powerful adhesives let us confidently hang our pictures on the wall without any lasting damage such as nail holes, cracked plaster, or sticky residue. But do they stick to walls made of brick?
Command Strips don’t work on brick as they can only adhere to flat and solid surfaces. These strips are not designed for rough textures as they bond poorly to such surfaces. That said, it’s best to avoid using Command Strips on surfaces like popcorn ceilings, concrete, or wood.
This article will go into detail about how Command Strips work and why they’re not recommended for bricks and other rough textures. I’ll also discuss what may happen if you try to use the strips on such surfaces. Keep reading.
Mechanical Adhesion Helps Command Strips to Work
Command Strips are the leader when it comes to their patented damage-free adhesive.
They have a specially formulated adhesive that bonds securely to most surfaces. Despite their super adhesive power, their patented design allows the strips to be removed easily without leaving behind a sticky residue. But what actually makes them stick?
Being a trademarked brand with patented formulas, it isn’t any wonder that you’d be hard-pressed to find any information that breaks down what makes Command Strips bond so strongly to most surfaces. However, considering how glues and adhesives work, it has something to do with mechanical adhesion.
Mechanical Adhesion Happens After a Curing Process
Mechanical adhesion occurs as a result of an adhesive’s drying or curing process. For adhesion to take place, the adhesive has to be applied in a liquid or semi-liquid adhesive form. In this form, it is able to soak into the pores of the surface on which the adhesive has been applied. When it begins to dry and becomes solid, the bond between the strip and the surface is created.
The bond between the strip and the surface is comparable to Velcro. It involves the two holding on to each other. In the Command Strips, the cured adhesive clings to the pores of the surface on which it has been applied. This will help you understand why Command Strips cannot work on brick.
Reasons Command Strips Won’t Work on Brick
As has been discussed, mechanical adhesion is responsible for the Command Strip’s adhesive power. For adhesion to occur, the adhesive has to get into the pores of a surface. Rough textured surfaces such as brick impair the adhesive’s ability to create a bond.
Other rough surfaces that Command Strips won’t work on are:
- Felted walls
- Popcorn ceilings
- Unpolished wood
Now, let’s explore why using the strip on brick simply doesn’t work.
You Cannot Flatten the Strip on Rough Surfaces
The instructions for using Command Strips include pressing each strip for 30 seconds after an application. This pressing motion helps flatten the strip onto the surface so that it covers as much surface area as possible. Doing this also enables the adhesive to get into the pores of the surface to create the bond.
With rough surfaces, you cannot flatten the strip. That means the adhesive is in contact with less surface area, weakening any bond that may be formed. Poor contact with the surface means air and dust can come into contact with the adhesive side of the strip. This weakens its adhesive quality and may affect its ability to bear the weight.
Adhesion Cannot Build on Surfaces With Which the Strip Has Poor Contact
Another instruction for using Command Strips states that you have to wait one hour before hanging the frame to let the adhesion “build”. Adhesion cannot build on a surface with which the adhesive has poor contact.
For this reason, using Command Strips on your brick wall puts your pictures frames at risk of ending up in shards and splinters on the floor.
So what surfaces can Command Strips be actually applied to? The following surfaces will work with the strips:
- Painted wallboard
- Painted cinder block
- Stained orvarnished wood
While the temptation may arise to use Command Strips on bricks, it’s strongly recommended that you don’t attempt it. That’s because the strips won’t work on brick. But you may use them for tile, metal, glass, or varnished wood surfaces.
Avoid Command Strips on brick, especially if you’re looking to hang something irreplaceable, expensive, fragile (like a mirror), or with sentimental value. If you’re anxious to get your brick wall decorated but aren’t sure how to get it done, it’s best to enlist the services of a professional.