Spray glue holds for you

Spray adhesive: all you need to know about this versatile glue

Spray adhesive is the go-to product for many applications. Get the facts and details for using it effectively on all your DIY projects.

What is spray adhesive?

Spray adhesive is simply a low viscosity glue dispensed from an aerosol can. There are many types of spray-on glue for a variety of applications. The advantage of spray glue is that it can cover a large area quickly and evenly with little drying time. Most adhesive sprays are high tack but won’t be absorbed into cardboard, paper, or fabric, making them perfect for many repairs, arts and crafts projects, and even certain construction uses.

What is spray-on adhesive used for?

There are many types of spray adhesives designed for specific uses. Some spray-on glues are much like contact cement where both surfaces are sprayed, allowed to dry, then bonded permanently. Others are designed to allow for repositioning and work best for photo collages, fabric layouts and sample boards.

There are spray glue adhesives designed specifically for certain materials or applications. These materials include fabric, rubber, photos, timber and metal applications such as crafting, leather repair, automotive trim or headliners.

Spray adhesive can also be used in the construction industry. Certain types of plasterboard, and plaster corner beads and trim pieces are fastened with spray adhesive prior to being plastered or attached with other fasteners. The initial bond makes it easier to line the pieces up correctly and position them before being permanently affixed.

How to use adhesive spray

Follow these guidelines when using spray-on glue for your projects:

  • Always ensure the work area is well-ventilated and that you wear appropriate safety gear to avoid breathing the fumes.
  • Mask off adjoining areas to minimize clean up. Cover anything you don’t want the spray glue to hit.
  • Get familiar with any safety features on the spray can. Some have safety tips that must be turned to line up with a marking for the spray to work.
  • Shake the can vigorously then apply the spray glue from about 20–25cm. Try to keep the can upright and moving to ensure an even coat.
  • Follow directions on the can about how long to wait before joining the pieces and full curing time. Hold the pieces in position until the glue sets.
  • Clean up by turning the can upside down and giving it a quick spray. This clears and cleans the nozzle. Clean up any overspray or residue with mineral spirits.

Recommended safety gear when using spray glue include: a mask or respirator as protection from fumes, safety glasses, and latex or nitrile gloves. Nylon or cotton gloves are not recommended.

What spray adhesive is best for headliners?

Sagging or torn headliners can spoil the look of an otherwise nice car. For the DIYer repairing headliners is easy if you choose a high-quality adhesive and follow these easy steps.

  • Cover up the seats, doors, and any areas that might get overspray on them.
  • Peel back the loose liner and scrub the area you want to glue to remove the particles of old glue.
  • Apply an even coat of headliner spray to the foam material in the roof and the inside of the liner. For most products you will need to let the glue get tacky before sticking the parts together.
  • Reattach the headliner. Spread the headliner back into place evenly if it is fabric. You may want to use a roller or even a credit card to remove air bubbles from under the surface.
  • Allow the headliner to fully dry.

When repairing an auto headliner, always choose a spray-on adhesive specifically designed for that purpose and follow the directions closely. These spray glues are designed to bond fabric to the materials above without showing through the fabric and dry quickly to prevent sagging.

If there is only a small tear or two in the headliner or vinyl seat, there’s no need for spray glue, instead try: Loctite Vinyl, Fabric & Plastic Flexible Adhesive. This clear liquid adhesive is designed for mending flexible plastics, vinyl seats, cushions and even clothing items. It’s waterproof and can be used for interior and exterior applications. It bonds firmly to paper, glass, leather, wood, fabric, rubber, and other materials, remains flexible, and won’t yellow with age.