7 Best Heat Guns for Auto Applications
Heat guns are useful for a high number of tasks in the garage. Whether you need a quick way to vinyl-wrap a vehicle, remove paint or carpets and underflooring, heat up shrink tubes, a heat gun is just what you need.
In the ever-growing sea of great tools available, finding one that fits your needs and budget is not always easy. To help you with that, we tested and reviewed some of the best heat guns we could find and created a list to help you pick one that is perfect for you.
The Best Heat Gun with Reviews
DEWALT D26960K Heavy Duty Heat Gun with LCD Display
- Rating: 4.7 / 5
- Brand: DEWALT
Dewalt is probably the most trusted brand name in the construction industry. Every tool they come up with is created with efficiency and durability in mind. The Dewalt D26960K is no exception.
A convenient LCD display located on top of the heat gun lets you adjust the temperature from 150 to 1100ºF, in 50 degrees increments. Depending on how you intend to use your heat gun, this can be a pro or a con.
It will do just fine for most jobs but if you work on small electronics (like replacing an iPhone screen), you may need a heat gun. They allow for a more precise temperature setting than that. Simply be aware of that when you shop or you risk melting important components inside the electronic unit.
Be advised, the DEWALT D26960K is kinda bulky, though. Being one of the most robust and powerful on the list, such a thing is to be expected. But, thanks to the kickstand enclosed in the handle, the size is not a real drawback.
When in use, the kickstand keeps the heat gun’s nozzle in an upright position. This allows you to use both hands to hold whatever you are trying to heat up. This function is especially useful when you are trying to mold multiple plastic parts at the same time or to heat up paint while scrapping with both hands.
Worth mentioning, this heat gun comes in a kit including 2 scrapers. A standard one and one with replaceable attachments, 7 heat gun nozzles, everything neatly stored inside a PVC case.
No matter if you are a weekend handyman or a professional high-end electronic tech, if you want a heat gun offering more than the usual, this is the one. The price tag is a little more expensive than most but you get what you pay for. A really good heat gun ready to tackle anything you throw at it.
PORTER-CABLE PC1500HG Heat Gun
- Rating: 4.6 / 5
- Brand: PORTER-CABLE
For a heat gun featuring a variable temperature setting to work with small electronics, look for the Porter-Cable PC1500HG. A convenient temperature control dial located on the side of the gun paired with a dual fan speed selector lets you select virtually any heat setting you’d like.
There’s no temperature display or gauge or marks of any kind on the dial so if your job requires you to reach and hold an exact temperature, you’ll have to use an infrared thermometer and a lot of trial and error.
The Porter-Cable PC1500HG also features a 1500 watt motor but it isn’t as powerful as the DEWALT model mentioned above, blowing only 10CFM max. Even the temperature range is a little lower. At low fan speed, it will go from 120 to 900ºF and from 130 to 1100ºF at high speed.
Once again, this may or may not be a good thing depending on the kind of work you do. Not all jobs require a huge air output and high-temperature settings. Always use the right tool for the right job or the results could be deceiving.
The only real drawback with this one is the length of the power cord. At only 6 feet long, I find it a little short but you can always connect it to a longer extension cord and the problem is gone. I personally connect all my electrical tools to a 25 feet power cord reel when I work.
Genesis GHG1500A Dual Temperature Heat Gun Kit
- Rating: 4.6 / 5
- Brand: Genesis
A heat gun equipped with a 12.5A motor outputting 1500W like the Genesis GHG1550A is perfect to easily perform standard tasks like stripping paint, removing stickers and decals, and thawing frozen pipes. At a higher temperature setting, you can even use it to loosen rusted nuts and bolts. You can even safely light your charcoal grill without zip-fuel!
The Genesis model comes with a deflector nozzle for safe use near glasses and other flammable materials, a reflector nozzle to evenly heat around pipes and wires, and a reducer nozzle for more concentrated airflow.
If this is still not enough for you, more nozzles and specialty attachments can be bought and installed for your convenience. You can even buy accessories built for other heat guns on the market since the output is standard in size. They will fit pretty much all standard nozzle accessories out there.
Overall, this Genesis heat gun is perfect for DIYers and everybody on a tight budget.
Wagner 0503038 HT400 Heat Gun
- Rating: 4.6 / 5
- Brand: Wagner
The compact pencil-like design of the Wagner HT400 truly sets it apart from all the common pistol-type heat guns. Weighing only 13 oz., it’s perfect for all craftwork and other small projects. With only one temperature setting of 650ºF allowing it to be used to apply embossing powders and applique without the risk of burning everything up.
The innovative kickstand located on the side of the gun is designed in such a way that the gun sits and blows air horizontally instead of sitting straight up and blowing air vertically like most other models. I find this to be better since you don’t end up getting the hot air directly in the face while you work. Simply power it up, flip the kickstand, and voila!
DEWALT D26950 Heat Gun
- Rating: 4.5 / 5
- Brand: DEWALT
The DEWALT D26950 is basically a smaller, cheaper version of the DEWALT D26960K described earlier. As opposed to its bigger brother, it doesn’t come with an LCD display but a variable temperature control. It’s not as fancy but it doesn’t have that potentially problematic 50ºF increment limitation.
Other than that, it has pretty much all the same specifications as the bigger model. It also comes with a reliable and efficient 13A/1550 W motor outputting 16 CFM and a maximum temperature of 1100ºF.
Worth mentioning, this one only comes with the most essential nozzle attachments. The wider deflector nozzle is perfect to soften and strip paint. The reducer nozzle makes it easy to concentrate the air flow on a smaller area, preventing any unwanted burns around it.
If you are looking for a heat gun giving you the best bang for your buck, the DEWALT D26950 is the one for you. You don’t have to pay for all the fancy add-ons of more expensive models to enjoy the reliability and sturdiness of a world-renowned brand model. What’s not to like?
BLACK+DECKER HG1300 Dual Temperature Heat Gun
- Rating: 4.5 / 5
- Brand: BLACK+DECKER
For another high-quality heat gun that will last a lifetime, look for the Black & Decker HG1300 model. Two temperature settings are pre-programmed and can be selected using a trigger switch. Be warned that the lowest setting can’t really go below 750ºF. So, if you plan to use it for craft making and delicate work, it may not be the heat gun for you.
Because the HG1300 only weighs 1.7 pounds, it’s very easy to use and handle in any situation. Aside from that, it has pretty much the same features as any other heat guns. Those features include a kickstand for hands-free operation and to help with the cooldown, an ergonomic handle, and a 1350w motor powerful enough to loosen rusted nuts and bolts.
One interesting thing with this particular heat gun is that Black & Decker actually sell compatible replacement parts on their website. This could come in handy in the future if for some reason the motor stops working and it’s not covered by the 2 years warranty anymore. That is generous as most manufacturers don’t usually sell parts separately. And finding aftermarket parts for heat guns can be very difficult.
Wagner 0503008 HT1000 Heat Gun
- Rating: 4.2 / 5
- Brand: Wagner
The Wagner HT100 has an interesting retro look. Most Wagner tools, in fact, either look really futuristic or kinda retro. It’s really a matter of taste here. Some like it, some don’t. But aside from the look, they make really outstanding tools. Well-built and well-designed, they usually last for years.
In terms of performance, it does what it has to do. The HT1000 is powered by a 1200w motor and two temperature settings can be selected for your convenience. Based only on the numbers, it doesn’t look like much but the 4100 Btu output can easily remove multiple layers of paint without any effort.
Selecting the absolute best heat gun is not an easy task at all. All of the heat guns on the list are good options. They are all reliable and should last you a long time, especially if you don’t use them every day. But the DEWALT D26960K is simply a better option. It has an LCD screen. It’s also built by one of the most trusted home improvement tool brands. Plus, it’s also one of the most powerful models. Other heat guns just can’t stand the comparison.