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Hydrocarbon vs. Alkyd Thermoplastic Paint

This entry was posted on Wednesday, June 23rd, 2021.

Hydrocarbon vs. Alkyd Thermoplastic Paint

Road striping is a task that roadway managers must keep up every few years, depending on the road conditions, to ensure adequate road safety. When applying road striping for road safety, one must consider which type of road paint to use. While various types are on the market, thermoplastic ranks the highest in durability and longevity. Even so, one must choose between hydrocarbon vs. alkyd thermoplastic paint. Below is a brief explanation of what to expect.

The Basics of Thermoplastic Road Paint

Thermoplastic road paint comes in a granular or solid form that becomes liquid when heated and fuses with the asphalt pavement when applied. The most basic ingredients of thermoplastic paint are as follows:

  • Pigments: Yellow, white, blue, green, etc. and their opacity
  • Glass beads: Tiny glass beads are added to the paint to make the roads reflective at night or in poor weather conditions
  • Fillers: Fillers can include sand, resins, and other fibers that give the paint more substance
  • Binder: A mixture of plastics and resins that give thermoplastic paint its strength and flexibility while holding all the other components together


Hydrocarbon vs. alkyd thermoplastic paint focuses on the binder differences. As for hydrocarbon, it is a petroleum-based resin. Its strongest suit is that it is easier to control when the paint melts and is applied to the asphalt. 

On the other hand, it is also more likely to break down due to fluid and oil leaks from parked or passing vehicles. Therefore, it is better to use hydrocarbon thermoplastic for long, skip, and edge lines as opposed to high traffic areas with parked vehicles such as bus stops, crosswalks, street corners with turn arrows, etc.


Alkyd binder is wood-based resin, resistant to petroleum. Alkyd thermoplastic might not have a predictable heating and application quality, but it is the winner for durability and longevity. It also features higher retroreflectivity and imperviousness to oil and other vehicle fluids. As a result, it is popular for high traffic and inner-city road markings where vehicle leaks tend to occur.

Which One for Your Project?

If you are not sure which thermoplastic paint is better for your project, Teniseal/Parking Striping Corporation can give you the expert advice you need. Plus, they can be your go-to provider for asphalt and road striping services! For more information, contact them today!

Contact Teniseal/Parking Striping Corporation for Asphalt Road and Parking Lot Services!

Teniseal Corporation specializes in the application, restoration and maintenance of all types of asphalt surfaces. It makes sense to trust your asphalt job to experts with the experience and technical know-how to do your project right from the start to provide a long-lasting result. Teniseal offers services for Baltimore, Anne Arundel, Howard, Prince George’s, Harford, Carroll, and Montgomery counties in Maryland. For more information, email them at [email protected], or call them at 410-485-5660 or 410-485-0717. Keep in touch on social media through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn!