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4 Factors to Help You Decide between Cold & Hot Laminators

Posted by ericasanders in Business on June 8th, 2018

There are many different factors to consider when purchasing a laminator. Different laminator styles are required for different projects, and for this reason, available laminators on the market can vary in their abilities. Generally, people choose between cold or hot laminator types. Both kinds of laminators are beneficial, but the type you choose will usually depend on which kind of paper you’re working with and how much you have to spend.

When choosing between cold and hot laminator styles, here are some of the factors you should keep in mind while visiting suppliers or scrolling through online stores.

The Differences

Cold laminator styles are newer on the laminating scene. They use adhesive pressure to laminate, rather than thermal processing or heat. On the current market, cold laminators are the only kind that can offer complete water-tightness, making them a suitable choice for water-based prints and ink. They don’t require a power source and are a safe option.

Hot laminator types are different in that they work by heating adhesive materials to bind the paper with. They’re durable and currently one of the most popular purchase choices for offices. However, they pose some disadvantages in that they take time to heat up and can be a hazard in the workplace.

 The Cost

Your budget is probably the most influential factor when searching for a laminator, as cold and hot laminator types vary greatly in price. Cold laminators are generally considered to be the cheaper of the two types to initially buy. However, the refills and materials that a cold laminator requires are substantially more costly than a hot laminator.

The variety of laminators available means they’re available at many price points, but it’s important to remember that inexpensive seldom means quality. A cold laminator could ultimately end up being a more expensive option in the long run, so it’s recommended that spaces like offices or corporate workspaces that intend to use laminators frequently opt for a hot laminator.


The kinds of paper products you intend to use with the laminator can also influence which type you should purchase. Some materials shouldn’t be laminated through a hot laminator machine. In particular, water-based prints like photographs or other document types don’t work well with hot laminators, as the exposure to heat in the thermal processing can damage them.

Cold laminator types should be used when working with more sensitive paper products that contain ink that could lighten or smudge. The size of your paper products is also important, as cold laminators are recommended for bigger sized projects.


Hot laminators are considered to be slower than cold laminators. The time in which they take to warm up can slow down your laminating session, with some hot laminator devices taking up to an hour to warm up. This can be a big inconvenience or drawback if you’re working in situations with tight deadlines. However, hot laminators can be advantageous in the sense that once they’re warmed up, they’re quick and easy to use. Hot laminators work best when warmed up in advance, while cold laminator devices are a good choice for last-minute laminating.


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