Hot Glue on Wood: 5 Useful Tips To Help You Craft

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Written By Brenda Carrol

Passionate Craft Lover - Helping the world with her research in all things sticky!

We all know that hot glue is a great tool for arts and crafts projects. It can be used on a variety of materials and has probably created a new genre of crafting.

But can we use hot glue on wood? Hot glue is a great adhesive option for wood projects because it dries quickly and creates a strong bond. However, it’s important to note that hot glue may not be the best choice for projects that will be exposed to high heat or moisture.

In this blog post, we’ll explore tips, pros, and cons of using hot glue on wood, so you can decide if it’s the right adhesive for your next project.

5 Tips for Using Hot Glue on Wood

To ensure a strong bond between the wood pieces, it is important to follow some essential tips for using hot glue on wood.

Infographics Explaining Several Tips for Using Hot Glue on Wood

1. Choose the Right Hot Glue

The first step to ensure a strong bond between wood pieces is to choose the right hot glue. There are different types of hot glue available in the market, and not all of them are suitable for wood.

When selecting a hot glue for wood, make sure that it is compatible with wood and is suitable for the specific type of wood you are using. For example, some hot glue types are better suited for hardwood, while others work well on softwood.

Additionally, it is essential to select a hot glue that is suitable for the project you are working on. For example, if you are bonding small wooden pieces, a low-temperature hot glue may work well. However, if you are bonding large wood pieces, a high-temperature hot glue may be required.

2. Prepare Wood Surface

To ensure a strong bond between wood pieces, it is crucial to prepare the wood surface properly. The wood surface should be clean, dry, and free of any dirt, debris, or dust. This can be done by wiping the wood surface with a clean cloth or using a brush to remove any dirt or debris.

Moreover, if the wood surface is painted or varnished, it is recommended to remove the paint or varnish layer before bonding the wood pieces. This can be done by sanding the wood surface or using a chemical paint remover. Removing the paint or varnish layer will ensure that the hot glue bonds directly to the wood surface and not the paint or varnish layer.

3. Apply the Hot Glue Correctly

The next essential tip for using hot glue on wood is to apply the hot glue correctly. To do this, apply a small amount of hot glue on one of the wood surfaces you want to bond. Then, quickly press the two wood surfaces together, applying pressure for a few seconds to ensure a strong bond.

It is important to work quickly when using hot glue since it sets quickly. Additionally, make sure to apply the hot glue in a thin, even layer, to avoid any lumps or bumps that can affect the strength of the bond. Applying too much hot glue can also cause it to seep out from the edges, making it difficult to achieve a clean and neat finish.

4. Clamp the Wood Pieces Together

To ensure a strong bond between the wood pieces, it is recommended to clamp them together until the hot glue cools and hardens. Clamping the wood pieces together ensures that the bond is tight and prevents the wood pieces from moving or shifting during the bonding process.

Clamping is particularly important for larger wood pieces that require a stronger bond. You can use a range of clamping tools, including C-clamps, bar clamps, or spring clamps. Make sure to position the clamps strategically to apply even pressure across the entire surface of the wood pieces.

5. Use Hot Glue for Temporary Bonds

While hot glue can create a strong bond between wood pieces, it is not suitable for permanent bonds. Hot glue bonds tend to break down over time due to exposure to heat, moisture, or air. Therefore, it is recommended to use hot glue for temporary or semi-permanent bonds.

If you are looking for a more permanent bond between wood pieces, consider using wood glue or other adhesives that are designed specifically for wood bonding.

The Pros of Using Hot Glue on Wood

Hot glue is an excellent material to use when working on wood. Here are some key reasons why:

  1. Hot glue is incredibly simple and easy to use. All you need is a hot glue gun and some hot glue sticks, and you’re good to go. It’s a great option for beginners and experts alike.
  2. Hot glue provides strength and a secure hold on whatever you’re working with. It creates a bond that is difficult to break, making it perfect for use in repairs and crafts.
  3. It sets quickly, so once you apply it, you can get back to your project in a jiffy. This can be especially useful when working on time-sensitive projects.
  4. It does not leave behind any stains or odors, so you end up with neat results that look like new. This makes it an excellent option for use in visible areas of your project.
  5. Hot gluing is a cost-friendly method, as hot glue sticks are relatively cheap compared to other materials, and they can be used multiple times before buying a new one.

Overall, hot glue is a versatile and convenient material for bonding wood pieces together.

The Cons of Using Hot Glue on Wood

While hot glue is a popular adhesive choice for working with wood, there are some important factors to consider before using it. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  1. It doesn’t hold as securely as other adhesives. This is because of its relatively low melting temperature, which can lead to the bond weakening over time.
  2. Hot glue is not ideal for projects that will be exposed to heat or moisture, as these factors can cause the bond to break down and weaken. This can lead to damage or parts falling off entirely, making it a poor choice for projects like outdoor furniture.
  3. The bond between hot glue and wood weakens over time. This can lead to the unsightly loosening of components and a less professional-looking end result

For projects that require a stronger and more secure bond, it may be best to consider a different type of adhesive that is more suitable for the intended use and environment.

An Infographic Explaining How to Use Hot Glue on Wood Safely and Effectively

How to Use Hot Glue on Wood Safely and Effectively?

When using hot glue on wood, it’s important to prioritize safety and take the following precautions:

  1. Wear protective eyewear and gloves: Hot glue can cause burns and other injuries, so it’s important to always wear protective eyewear and gloves when working with it.
  2. Work in a well-ventilated area: Hot glue emits fumes that can be hazardous when inhaled in a closed environment. Make sure your work area is well-ventilated to minimize any potential risks.
  3. Apply hot glue consistently: When applying hot glue to wood, it’s important to create a consistent layer along the point of attachment. This will help ensure a strong and secure bond.
  4. Hold pieces together for 30 seconds: After applying hot glue, hold the pieces of wood together for at least 30 seconds. This will allow the hot glue to fully adhere to the wood and create a strong bond.

By following these simple tips, you can safely and effectively use hot glue on wood. It’s a great option for quick repairs and small projects, but for larger and more demanding jobs, other adhesives like wood glue or epoxy may be a better choice.


In conclusion, hot glue can be a fantastic material to use on wood for various projects, ranging from small repairs to crafting to larger woodworking projects.

However, it’s important to choose the right adhesive for the task at hand and to take the necessary safety precautions, including protective eyewear and gloves, proper ventilation, and careful handling of the hot glue gun.

By following the tips and guidelines discussed above, you can ensure a strong and secure bond between your pieces of wood while creating beautiful and functional projects that will last for years to come.

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