Buy America, Buy American: What’s The Difference?

Thursday November 30, 2023

At Ideal Tape, we are proud to provide your mechanical insulation tape needs. We are also proud to say that our products are manufactured right here in the U.S.A.! At our facility in Lowell, Massachusetts, we handle everything from the adhesive coating process to cutting our tape rolls to size. We even shrink-wrap, label, and package our products all under the same roof.


Buy America, Buy American: What’s The Difference?


Proudly American made.

Along with being American-made, our products are also manufactured with American-sourced components, making them Buy America compliant! Buy America was passed as part of the larger Surface Transportation Assistance Act (STAA) in 1982. It establishes that transportation infrastructure projects built with iron, steel, and manufactured products must purchase materials manufactured in the United States made with components of U.S. origin.


Depending on which transportation agency is funding the project, the requirements for Buy America can vary. Some may only require just 50% of the components to be made in the U.S., while others require 100% of components to be American made.


This shouldn’t be confused with the similarly titled Buy American Act, which was passed in 1933.

Even our labels are red, white, and blue!

This act has a more general purpose: requiring all agencies of the federal government, not just transportation, to prefer U.S.-made products in their purchases of goods valued over a certain amount.


Non-compliance with these requirements can lead to severe penalties, including having to rip out non-conforming material, unless waivers are granted. For this reason, it’s very important for contractors to know the difference between the requirements put forward by Buy America and the Buy American Act.


Since our products are 100% made in the USA with U.S.-sourced components, we are happy to say our goods qualify under both acts, making the following Ideal products an ideal fit for projects of either nature.


Ideal: Made In America


Our products hard at work

Our American-made products include a line of plain foil tapes, which are used to create a sealed system on board and blanket insulation. With three options

to choose from, Ideal has a foil tape for every application and budget.  All provide a zero-perm permanent bond and can also conform well to irregular surfaces. 


We also produce reinforced insulation tapes including FSK (Foil/Scrim/Kraft), ASJ (All Service Jacket), next-generation ASJ, and PSK (Polypropylene/Scrim/Kraft) tapes.


Be sure to protect your insulation installation with the Ideal Shield® line of self-adhesive jacketing, available in embossed, flat, and gloss finishes. Ideal Shield is your all-weather warrior, providing easy-to-install protection for insulation on rooftop duct work, piping, and equipment. Ideal Shield provides a zero-perm vapor barrier and can also be used as a heavy-duty patch and repair and strapping tape.


Here at Ideal, we are proud to be able to say that all these products are Buy America and Buy American compliant. Additionally, we also strive to meet a rigorous standard of quality for our customers and are thrilled to say our HVAC and insulation products meet the mark.

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