If there’s one jack-of-all-trades tool that contractors, auto body repairmen, hobbyists and homeowners can all benefit from, it’s the heat gun. These handheld devices can complete a plethora of tasks, both at home and at work.
Let’s explore five popular applications for the mighty heat gun:
1. Paint removal
Dried paint can be difficult to remove. It often requires chemicals and tools to get the job done. Heat, however, can speed up the process. Hot air works to soften and slightly melt the paint, allowing users to quickly and easily clear it away from a given surface.
Heat guns are especially helpful on large paint removal jobs, such as removing paint from an entire wall. They’re also great for cleaning up drips of paint off the floor after a project. When painting a room or building, it’s common for a few drops to land on the floor, even when measures are taken to protect the surfaces. A heat gun can take care of the problem.
2. Applying heat shrink
Heat shrink comes in many varieties and has a wide range of uses. This handy material comes in tube or wrap form, and is commonly used for the following:
- Creating wire harnesses.
- Insulating wires.
- Gift wrapping packages.
- Securing and protecting merchandise for shipment.
As beneficial as heat shrink is, it’s useless without the application of heat. A good heat gun can be adjusted to emit the appropriate temperature for the heat shrink material and application.
They say a watched pot never boils, but waiting for a block of ice to melt will take even longer. In some cases, you simply can’t wait for something frozen to thaw on its own. Take, for example, a frozen pipe; acting quickly to remove the ice and let water to flow again can prevent damage to the rest of the infrastructure and flooding.
In other cases, a frozen pipe may have already burst, allowing water to pour onto the floor or even into the walls. Ice makes it difficult to remove the broken pieces. A heat gun can help thaw the pipe and get the repair process underway.
Other items that may need thawing include:
- Deep freezers: Remove the ice buildup on the walls.
- Gutter systems: Prevent ice dams from damaging the side of a building.
- Frozen car or truck doors: Thaw the ice that’s sealing your door shut.
Heat guns can be used to prepare substances that need to be softened before they’re shaped, such as plastics or composites. These types of materials are found everywhere, from direct-to-consumer shops to industrial applications to hobby shops. A few examples include:
- Auto body repair: Smooth out scratched interior plastics and reshape bent bumpers.
- Composites: Heat, mold and cure composite materials of all kinds.
- Do-it-yourself hobbies: Craft small pieces for drone construction or other hobbies that require small plastic parts.
- Contracting: Heat and shape PVC pipe to tailor it to a specific job.
5. Removing adhesives
Adhesives are designed to be pliable for a short period of time, then dry to create a strong hold. This is ideal for the period of time when the adhesive needs to secure two items together, but when those components need to be separated, the strength of the adhesive can create a real obstacle. Many adhesives soften under heat, making a heat gun an easy way to complete this job and many others:
- Removing tile from a floor.
- Taking off old stickers or labels.
- Softening and scraping caulking around a window, bathtub or other fixture.
These five types of applications are far from a complete list of heat gun uses. The truth is, these tools are incredibly versatile. With a little bit of ingenuity, you can come up with many more beneficial ways to utilize a Master Appliance heat gun.