A heat gun is a tool that blows out warm air. The warm air can burn off paint, making paint removal a lot easier. But with a heat gun you can also perform other activities such as drying glue or other materials. A heat gun is often also called a paint burner or heat gun.
What to look for with a heat gun?
The maximum temperature a heat gun can produce varies by type in soldering accessories. The maximum temperature is often related to the power of a heat gun, the higher the power, the higher the maximum achievable temperature. Most heat guns have a maximum temperature between 600°C and 700°C. In addition, the number of temperature settings is also important. For example, one heat gun has two temperature settings, but another, for example, has twelve.
If you want to easily see the temperature at which your digital heat gun is set, choose a heat gun with a digital display. You can also read the airflow settings on most displays.
Many heat guns are supplied with accessories. These are often different types of mouthpieces, such as a glass protection mouthpiece or a reduction mouthpiece with which you can perform specific work even more accurately. Sometimes a scraper is also included with which you can scrape off paint.
You can do all this with a heat gun
A heat gun is one of the most versatile pieces of equipment in your toolbox. To give you an idea where it can all come in handy, we have listed a number of applications here.
Burning off old layers of paint. By far the most common function of the heat gun. By heating the paint or varnish, you can easily remove it with a paint scraper. Use an angled nozzle to spread the airflow.
Strip and bundle cables. With the reflector nozzle you can easily remove cable insulation and bundle cables.
Glue. Hot melt adhesive loses its bonding strength as it cools. If you want to glue larger surfaces with this commonly used type of glue, you can keep it liquid with heat.
Remove glue. A heat gun also comes in handy for the reverse. All possible glue connections can be loosened with heat. Think, for example, of carpeting, decorative foil or veneer edges. Mount the angled nozzle for a wide spread of airflow.
Bend anything and everything. PVC pipes, copper pipes, wood… various materials can be bent into the desired shape when heated. Use the reflector nozzle to heat the workpiece evenly all around. Tip: first make wood thoroughly wet before you put the heat gun on it.
Loosen solder connections. Soldered copper pipes can be loosened at 600°C. Use the reducing nozzle for a concentrated heat jet. For detaching electronic components on printed circuit boards, it is better not to go higher than 400°C, because higher temperatures are disastrous for semiconductors. By the way, we have also devoted an instructive article to soldering: Soldering for beginners.
Welding pond liner. Use the angled nozzle to heat the overlapping sheets of foil and press them down with a pressure roller.
Light a barbecue. This job is also done in no time with a heat gun. This also applies to the fireplace. And about the barbecue: you can effortlessly wipe off those caked-on residues on the grid after you have put the heat gun on it for a while.
Defrost refrigerator. Another original application of heat. Do this on a low temperature setting so as not to deform the plastic material of the inner lining.
Remove weeds. Those difficult to remove weeds between the patio tiles don’t stand a chance against a concentrated treatment from the reducing nozzle of a heat gun.
To clean. Paint and glue on your tools, sticker residue, dirty stove windows… all kinds of stubborn contaminants can be easily removed after heating.
disinfect. At 500°C most germs and bacteria die. For example, you can use a heat gun for environmentally friendly disinfection of potting soil, dog houses, or aviaries.
Fix starting problems. Lawnmowers and chainsaws, for example, sometimes start badly if you haven’t used them for a long time. Warming up a little bit with the heat gun on a low-temperature setting can sometimes help.
Working safely with a heat gun
The airflow from a heat gun is hot enough to start a fire, so be especially careful when working with or near easily flammable materials. Never touch copper pipes with bare hands when you work them with a heat gun, they get really hot very quickly. This also applies to most metals. If you use work gloves, it is better to use good quality leather gloves instead of plastic ones. And of course, you already understood that it is not a brilliant i