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November 24, 2022  |  Tools

3 ways you can use a heat gun

A top-notch heat gun in the hands of an expert is a versatile way to fulfill your needs across the board. Whether putting the final touches on a delicious creme brulee or smoothing 3D printing, a quality heat gun and beginner's understanding of its function brings crafting, cooking and home improvement skills to another level. 

In this article: DeWalt 20-Volt Max Cordless Heat GunPrulde Mini Heat Gun and Wagner Spraytech Heat Gun.

Safety First 

Understanding the most common safety concerns, such as those found in this guide from Princeton University, help kick bad habits before they form:

  • Do not use near flammable objects.
  • Do not touch the nozzle on your clothes or skin after using, and let it cool before it reaches storage. 
  • Aim it away from yourself and others at all times.
  • Make sure the airflow remains unobstructed.
  • Factor in your environment (weather, wind, etc.).

On top of this, use safety gear, such as gloves or masks, whenever you feel unsure. Safety is the No. 1 concern when using a heat gun.

Use it around the house

A high-quality heat gun adjusts to the project at hand. It's good to use big guns for big projects and a small gun for small ones. Big guns cover more surface area in less time, while small ones offer precision. 

Consumers looking to purchase a heat gun for projects around the house will want one with a wide temperature range, several nozzles for different projects and the proper power for your work environment. For instance, if you're working close to a plug, you'll likely get more power. However, those working out in the field, during a power outage or in tight spaces will want cordless heat guns with spare batteries. 

A heat gun fulfills a wide range of home improvement needs: stripping paint, bending polyvinyl chloride, shrink-wrapping, etc. However, different guns require different amounts of power. For instance, oil-based paints require high heat to properly strip, while shrink-wrapping requires far less. Know your tasks and prepare. 

Use it as a kitchen tool

When you think about a heat gun in the kitchen, you likely picture small blowtorches you see on TV cooking shows like "Chopped." These cooking blowtorches are convenient to have on hand, but heat guns can do many of the same things without adding butane flavor.

An ideal heat gun for your kitchen has a small nozzle you can control; exactly how small is up to your preference. It's good to have a full range of control with one hand, but be careful where you put the other one.

Heat guns can be used to finish off casseroles to a golden brown finish, caramelize your delicious creme brulee and shrink-wrap food before it goes in the freezer. Research proper methods before you try something new, as some ingredients are not built to withstand the heat. 

Use it for art projects

Heat guns cast a wide net for sculpting, melting, peeling, cooking and creatively (and safely) burning your creative works. It's a match made in heaven. Before you start, however, make sure the materials you're working with are made to withstand flames. 

A good heat gun also helps bake clay, cure a wide range of materials and add a rugged twist to your latest mixed-media project. The ideal crafting gun is either cordless or easy to control despite the cord. 

Heat is a 3D print artist's best friend, and heat guns help them sculpt in fine details, detach the part they're working on or smooth a rough purpose. This will work with 3D printing projects as well as 3D pen creations. 

Best heat guns for arts and crafts

Prulde Mini Heat Gun

This mini heat gun reaches up to 850 degrees — much higher than similar products. This makes it an invaluable tool for tiny details and touch-up work on your 3D printing projects. The small design works exceptionally well for epoxy resin curing. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Wagner Spraytech Heat Gun

Wagner's different take on a heat gun offers the size of more powerful models with the precision of its miniature competitors. This is an ergonomic heat gun that may not get as hot as others but makes up for it with absolute control. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Best heat guns for house projects

DeWalt 20-Volt Max Cordless Heat Gun 

This one blasts 990 degrees of heat at your project and keeps a 42-minute charge. While it might not work for long projects away from an electrical source, it's ideal for small projects.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Seekone Heavy Duty Heat Gun 

This corded heat gun is ready to go within moments of plugging it in. Its secure anti-break cable protector keeps it plugged in and sturdy while letting you maneuver to the task. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Best heat guns for cooking

Seekone Mini Heat Gun 

This reaches up to 662 degrees with a pen-like design for easy control. It packs enough heat to caramelize your creme brulee, finish off your au gratin potatoes or smooth out your latest 3D creation. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Cubeway Mini Heat Gun

This has a 78-foot cable that's great for outdoor cookouts and large kitchens. It's ideal for searing off a steak or finishing off your barbecue chicken.  It works well for small projects around the house and in your studio.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Bradley Geiser writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.