An Ultimate Guide On How To Use A Caulk Gun
Do you have leaks and gaps in your home? Are you not sure how to fix them? Well, the easiest and inexpensive way to go about this is to use a caulking gun. This tool is a requisite for any homeowner. But, do you know how to use a caulk gun?
Having gaps in the siding, or a leak around your tub can be very annoying and daunting. Nevertheless, you do not have to worry; this tutorial will teach you how to use a caulk gun in the easiest way possible. After this tutorial, you will not look at it as a big scary tool anymore and will master the technique of using a caulk gun.
I realized that although this tool is easily available in the market, not many homeowners actually get down to using it. Such tools often seem intimidating and we end up spending a lot of money on getting someone to do these jobs.
So, I decided why not put together a tutorial that can easily solve this problem. The benefits of knowing how to use a caulk gun are seamless. Once you master this technique, you can fix your leaking toilets and sinks, fill up cracks in your house and even weatherproof it.
Things You Will Need To Follow This Tutorial
- A Tube of Caulk
- A Caulking Gun
- An Old Latex Gloves To Protect Your Finger
This is a tube of a sealing agent. The caulking gun will disperse this in order to seal the gaps or crack.
This device will disperse the sealing agent into the cracks and gaps.
This is optional. If you want to protect the finger that applies pressure on the trigger, you can use an old latex glove.
Choosing A Caulking Gun
Many types of caulking guns are available in the market today. While you might be tempted to choose the cheapest one in the store, it is not always the best option. The better the caulking gun, the easier your job will be. Therefore, choose the gun carefully depending on how much effort you want to put in.
Make sure your gun has few basic features like a smooth plunger rod, a built-in cutter for the tube, pressure releaser and a built-in wire to clear any clogs in the tube:
- A caulking gun with a smooth plunger rod will make your gun easy to handle and control.
- Most guns today also come with the feature to release pressure when you release the trigger. This feature makes sure that the gun disperses the caulk only as per requirement and there is no wastage. In the guns that do not have this feature, the caulk tends to flow out a little even after you have stopped pressing the trigger.
- A built-in cutter will ensure you make an even and desired sized cut on the tube.
- Finally, a wire will help you get rid of any clogs immediately rather than looking for a screw or nail to poke it.
These basic features will make the caulking experience easy and smooth.
Choosing The Caulk
Many varieties of caulk are also available today. For example:
- Water-based caulks work extremely well on most building materials.
- Silicone-based caulk works great on glass, metal, and extremely cold weather.
- Butyl caulks are the most water resistant. If you need to seal your tub or bathroom tile, you can use this type of caulk.
- Synthetic rubber caulk works best on exterior joints.
Therefore, read the label of the caulk tube and choose one based on your requirement.
Tutorial On How To Use A Caulk Gun
Learning how to, actually, use a caulk gun is very simple. Just follow the steps in the order mentioned below and you are sorted.
Step 1: Preparing The Caulking Tube
Firstly, you have to prepare the caulking tube before you can insert it into the caulking gun.
Cut the tip of the caulking tube using a pair of scissors or a utility knife. Some caulking guns have a hole for this purpose. In this case, you can insert the tip of the caulking gun into this hole and squeeze the trigger of the gun. Make sure to match the opening hole to that of the gun. Therefore, start at the tip of the caulking tube. You can widen the hole if needed later.
Break the seal of the tube. For this, you can either use a long screw or nail to puncture the seal or you can use the stick attached to the caulking gun for this purpose (if your gun has it).
Step 2: Insert The Tube Into The Gun
The next step is to insert the caulking tube into the gun. You will see a plunger at the back of the gun. Now pull the plunger as far as it will go and place the tube into the barrel of the caulking gun.
Make sure that the nozzle of the tube faces the front of the gun. If the plunger on the caulking gun has notches on it, turn the rod to make sure the notches face upward and pull the trigger. If you have, a friction operated caulking gun, then press the pressure-relief lever and pull it back in order to insert the tube.
Once you have inserted the tube, press the trigger on the gun a couple of times in order to make the plunger exposed to the membrane inside the tube. Now press the trigger a few times more to fill the tip of the gun with the caulk.
Step 3: Operating The Gun
Keep the pressure on the trigger steady in order to create a uniform stream of caulk from the tip of the gun. Place the tip of the gun about half an inch away from where you want to fill or line the caulk.
Once the stream of caulk starts flowing into the desired spot, keep pressing the trigger and releasing it in steady motions. Move the gun along the line or area where you want to fill the caulk.
After finished with sealing, it is important to release the pressure in order to stop the caulk from flowing any longer. If your caulk gun has a notched rod, then pivot the rod and release the pressure. If it is a friction operated one, then press the pressure-relief lever. This lever will ideally be located next to the trigger.
Smooth the caulk out with your finger or a small piece of plastic if required.
Did you enjoy the tutorial? Now that you know how to operate a caulking gun, you can easily fix any leaks and cracks in your home. All you need to do is cut the nozzle, load the caulk and start filling away. Caulk guns can be a very handy tool around the house. You can complete many chores easily without needing any external help. Now go ahead, seal away your house, and save energy and costs.
Let me know what you think of the tutorial in the comment section below. Do not forget to share the tutorial with your friends and family.