How Does a Laminating Machine Work?

by Tara Dooley; Updated September 26, 2017

Large Laminator

There are a couple different types of laminating machines out there to choose from. The hot laminating machine comes in two types, the large film type and the pouch type. The large hot laminator is meant for laminating big items or many items all at once. The machine is turned on to heat up and the items are placed on the bottom sheet of clear laminate. A roller near the heating mechanism holds the top layer of laminate. When the machine is turned on the rollers pull the bottom layer forward as the top layer is rolled out simultaneously. The heating mechanism seals the two layers together whereever they touch, sealing the item inside.

Pouch Laminator

The hot pouch laminator machine is similar in that it heats the laminate and seals the two sides together. But the laminate itself is not attached to the machine. It comes in convenient letter or smaller sizes. The user places the item to be laminated inside the laminate pouch and turns the machine on to heat up. Once ready, the pouch is placed in the machine and rollers pull the pouch through the heat as it goes. In both cases of hot laminate machines, the two layers consist of an adhesive resin and a polyester-based layer. When the two touch and are heated, the resin melts to create the hard surface as it bonds with the polyester layer.

Cold Laminant

The other type of laminate is cold. It is used for items that might be sensitive to heat, such as carbon copies and even some ink jet print. In this case, the laminate is activated through pressure instead of heat. It is sent through a machine that rolls the two layers together and presses them in place.

About the Author

Tara Dooley has written for various websites since 2008. She has worked as an accountant, after-school director and retail manager in various locations. Dooley holds a Bachelor of Science in business management and finance.