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Primaloc Answers: Do You Need a Heat Gun for Epoxy Resin?

When it comes to sealants for valuable surfaces such as table tops, countertops, and bar tops, epoxy resin stands out as an exceptional choice. Initially applied as a liquid, this steadfast substance hardens into an ultra-strong, transparent seal.

Achieving a flawless cure, though, involves a series of deliberate steps that involve careful performance and a little attention to detail. Typically, a project begins with the measuring phase, where you must accurately combine the epoxy's components in the correct ratio. Following that are the mixing and pouring stages, where you blend then administer the resin onto your chosen surface or material. Each of these phases is vital to ensure the epoxy cures correctly, yielding a high-quality, durable finish.

For the pouring phase, though, there's one small step just at the end, after the batch has been applied—the air bubble removal step.

Air Bubble Removal: A Major Step Toward Achieving a Pristine Finish

After pouring an epoxy batch, the next you'll want to let it settle for a bit, then focus on eliminating air bubbles. During this part of the process, the user removes tiny air bubbles that have become suspended within the resin finish. This is essential to ensuring your finish remains pristine and flawless, preventing air and similar imperfections from becoming locked into the cured epoxy product.

The most common method for this is through the use of a heat gun, a device that emits a steady flow of warm air. When directed at the freshly applied epoxy, the heat effectively pops any surface or near-surface bubbles, releasing the trapped air and allowing the resin to cure smoothly and uniformly.

Still, how necessary is a heat gun in the resin crafting process, and are there viable alternatives? Below, we'll consider why heat guns are so good at removing air bubbles. We'll then explain a viable alternative and cover why some similar tools are not suitable.

Do You Need a Heat Gun for Epoxy Resin?

No, not necessarily. We primarily like heat guns because they're easy for newcomers to understand, hold, and use.

Though heat guns do a great job at providing the heat needed to properly clear away air bubbles, there are other tools that are also suitable for this task.

Blowtorches, an Alternative to Heat Guns

For many users, a blowtorch can be a more versatile tool than a heat gun. In fact, it's not uncommon to have a blowtorch and no heat gun.

Blowtorches, available in various types like butane and propane models, offer an alternative method for eliminating air bubbles in epoxy. They're excellent at this role due to their precision and controlled heat output, which can target and eliminate bubbles without introducing additional air into the resin.

However, using a blowtorch requires more care than a heat gun. It's essential to keep the flame from direct contact with the epoxy to prevent scorching or other heat-induced damage during its vulnerable curing phase.

The technique for using a blowtorch resembles that of a heat gun: you should sweep the tool evenly across the epoxy's surface, maintaining a safe distance to avoid overheating any area. Just like with a heat gun, it's important to move consistently and not to dwell too long on any spot to prevent heat accumulation.

After completing a pass with the blowtorch, it's advisable to inspect the surface to ensure all bubbles have been addressed, repeating the process if necessary while being careful not to burn the epoxy.

A heat gun being used to remove air bubbles from a piece of resin art.

Step-By-Step Guide to Removing Air Bubbles

Actually removing the air bubbles after pouring is easy. You'll need a heat gun or blowtorch, and you'll want to begin soon after pouring; the epoxy should be fluid still, not cured at all.

The Heat Gun Method
  • Turn on your heat gun and set it to a low or medium setting.
  • Hold the heat gun a few inches above the surface and move it slowly and steadily over the area.
  • The heat will cause the air bubbles to rise to the surface and burst.
The Blowtorch Method
  • If using a blowtorch, ignite it while ensuring the flame is not too large or hot.
  • Like the heat gun, move the blowtorch slowly over the surface, maintaining a safe distance to avoid direct contact with the epoxy.
  • The heat will pop the bubbles without damaging the resin.

Additional Tips

Make Smooth, Consistent Movements: Whether using a heat gun or blowtorch, keep the tool moving in a consistent pattern to avoid overheating any area. Do not linger in one spot, as this may cause heat damage to the resin.

Inspect and Repeat: After you've passed over the entire surface, inspect the epoxy for any remaining bubbles. If you find more, repeat the process until the surface is clear.

Let it Cure: Once all bubbles are removed, allow the epoxy to cure undisturbed in a dust-free environment, following the manufacturer's recommended curing time.

A clock resting against a blue surface

What's Next After Removing the Air Bubbles?

After successfully eliminating air bubbles using a heat gun or torch, the next and final step is to allow the epoxy to cure properly. Assuming you've used a high-quality epoxy and adhered to the application instructions, the curing process should proceed without any hitches.

If you plan to apply multiple layers of epoxy, ensure that the epoxy has at least 4 hours to partially cure before proceeding. However, if this is your final layer, the epoxy needs sufficient time to completely harden, which typically takes around 72 hours for standard table top or countertop epoxy projects.

Click here to discover the answers to common questions about curing.

Heat Removal FAQs

FAQ #1: Can you use a hair dryer to remove heat bubbles?

No. A hair dryer doesn't reach the ideal heat for this, and it emits too much force.

It's more likely to add more bubbles than to remove those already present, and it can distort the resin finish.

FAQ #2: Does the heat gun or blowtorch method work after epoxy has started curing or fully cured?

Unfortunately, no. Attempting either of these methods after the epoxy has cured into a solid or semi-solid state is likely to just damage it.

Once the epoxy begins hardening, it's much trickier to remove air bubbles, though entirely possible.

For information on removing air bubbles and similar blemishes from cured epoxy, take a look at our guide here.

FAQ #3: What about applying a seal coat before the epoxy pour? Will that prevent the air bubbles entirely?

Applying a seal coat of epoxy onto your substrate before the main flood coat is highly recommended to reduce the amount of air bubbles that show up. However, it's unlikely to fully prevent air bubbles from manifesting.

What the seal coat does do is massively reduce the number of air bubbles that show up after a flood coat. This not only makes it easier to remove the few that do remain, but also allows some of the air to escape on its own, further lessening the effort needed to get that iconic finish.

For seal coat applications, our Primaloc Bar & Table Top Epoxy is a perfect choice.

At Primaloc, we employ both methods in our projects, beginning with the seal coat, then applying the flood coat and using heat to remove any air bubbles present. This is the best way to ensure a crystal-clear finish for your epoxy.

A wooden epoxy bar top.

Primaloc Epoxy: Premium Epoxy for Premium Results

When it comes to epoxy resin, Primaloc Epoxy gets the job done. Our epoxy resin is premium-grade, with high performance in every category, including:

  • Unmatched Strength: A Primaloc finish won't buckle, even under high pressure.
  • Long-Lasting Resilience: Primaloc epoxy lasts for many years with minimal care, and can endure high-traffic environments with ease.
  • A Crystal-Clear Coating: With its pristine, transparent appearance, looking at a cured Primaloc coating is like peering through a window.

Epoxy resin can be beautiful, strong, and long-lasting—which is why you shouldn't compromise on quality. With Primaloc Epoxy Resin, you get the ultimate finish in durability and visual appeal.

Protect your surfaces by giving them a rock-solid epoxy finish. Choose strong. Choose reliable. Choose Primaloc.


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