Why is my HTV not sticking to my shirt?

Why is my HTV not sticking to my shirt?  This is a common question throughout the vinyl industry.  The main issues are: Time, Temperature, Pressure.

There is not a "one size fits all" when it comes to this.  You have to look up what the specific manufacturer recommends.

*You also need to check to see if the specific vinyl/color of vinyl may be a cold peel, instead of warm/hot peel as some vinyl is very specific about this for its usage*

Time-You need to look for the specific time for the specific HTV vinyl you are using.  For this blog we are using Siser Easyweed HTV.    Siser Easyweed HTV is 10-15 Seconds.  Using to much time or not enough time can cause the HTV to not adhere to the shirt.

Temperature-Again, you have to look at what the manufacturer recommends for the specific HTV vinyl.  Siser Easyweed HTV is 305°F.  Using to high of a temperature or to low of a temperature can cause the HTV to not adhere.

Pressure-Again, you must see what the specific manufacturer recommends.  Siser Easyweed HTV is a medium pressure.  With a heat press it is suggested that you put a piece of paper in the press (make sure the press is off) and close the press on your garment.  You should not be able to pull the piece of paper out.  If your pressure is to loose it can cause the HTV to not adhere.  The pressure will need to be adjusted for the different thicknesses of fabric.  If you a press a sweatshirt and then a tshirt without adjusting the pressure, the vinyl will not be adhered to the tshirt as well as the sweatshirt.

These are Siser instructions for a heat press and iron:

Application Instructions (heat press)

• Cut in reverse• Weed excess material

• Preheat garment for 2-3 seconds

• Cover design with Teflon cover sheet

• Apply design at 305°

• Use medium pressure for 10-15 seconds

• Peel carrier hot or cold

Application instructions (home iron)

• Set iron dial between Cotton and Linen

• Cover design with Teflon cover sheet

• Place on flat, hard surface (ironing board not recommended)

• Press iron with medium/firm pressure (do not slide iron)

• Press each section of design for 10-15 seconds

• If areas of design lift after application, replace cover sheet and re-press for 5-10 seconds

• Peel carrier hot or cold

Now for other reasons it may not be sticking

Did the shirt get washed with fabric softener?

Did you pre press to take out the moisture?

Is you heat press distributing heat evenly? Use a laser thermometer and point it at different spots on the heat platen and see what it is reading. (Yes, this is known to happen no matter how new your heat press is.  It is due to the heating coils not heating evenly)

Is the shirt made from a material the Siser Easyweed HTV is not meant to adhere to? (Like nylon or spandex material)

Is there a collar, hoodie, zipper, etc. in the way of getting a good press?  This will cause some issues with baby one piece suits, toddler shirts, any hood that could be not allowing for the pressure to be on the HTV, etc .  A pressing pillow will help this as it would go under the part of the shirt that is not getting enough pressure and lift it up.


Helpful tip-Specialty Materials recommends if your T shirt or material your are putting this HTV on says "dry fit", "Moisture Wicking", or is Gildan Ultra Cotton (Other Gildan brand t shirts we have seen with coated polyester as well), use a spray bottle of rubbing alcohol and squirt the material where you are putting the design. Then rub it in a bit with a cloth and dry or even heat press it to dry then press the design. This is due to the material being a coated material, instead of an un coated material.

We have been working with these products for over 10 years, and out of the thousands upon thousands of feet we have personally used, we have only had one 10yd roll of glitter HTV not adhere to the carrier sheet very well, but it still stuck to the shirts.  All other problems we have seen and experienced ourselves, have all been user error.   We have tested customers "Bad Vinyl" and it tested just fine.  We have also went as far as to send the customers "Bad Vinyl" back to the manufacturer for further testing and they find nothing wrong with it.   There is a learning curve when learning to use new products.  It is common to waist some material, and mess up some materials in the learning process. We have wasted our fair share of materials in the beginning also, learning cut settings, heat time, temp, pressure, computer issues, not mirroring etc. All of our products come direct from the manufacturer, or authorized distributors. We have NEVER seen HTV not stick due to a defect from the manufacturers. 



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