Gorilla Glue is a fully waterproof, incredibly strong, and versatile adhesive. Perfect for indoor or outdoor projects, it bonds to practically any material and is a must-have around the house.
Let’s take a look at this beloved American glue that started the whole Gorilla brand and find out what makes it so popular.
Manufactured right here in the USA, the recognizable Gorilla brand is famous worldwide. Gorilla has a number of adhesive products in their lineup, but their most famous and well-known is undoubtedly their original Gorilla Glue.
Original Gorilla Glue is a Water-activated Polyurethane based glue, which comes with some upsides and downsides.
It works on almost anything, it’s extremely versatile, it’s durable and incredibly strong, it can withstand extreme temperatures, but it needs to be clamped for a couple of hours to allow the glue to cure, so it’s not as convenient as Super Glue for some small repairs.
Pros and Cons:
- Very Strong
- Works on almost anything
- Clear Drying version available
- 100% Waterproof
- Temperature resistant (hot & cold)
- Can be used indoors and outdoors
- Large bottles are pretty cheap
- Dries an amber color
- Does not bond certain plastics
- Clamp time of 1-2 hours
- Expands as it cures
There are many Polyurethane glues on the market, but Gorilla is one of the most well-known. It’s easy to use, strong, and extremely versatile, and works on almost any material indoors or outdoors.
It’ a must-have for general DIY and home repairs.
Gorilla is well known for its industrial strength holding power, even on unconventional surfaces like stone or glass.
This is made possible because Gorilla Glue is a polyurethane glue, which expands once it’s applied, allowing it to force its way into the surface material, filling any fissures, pores, and uneven surfaces, creating an extremely strong bond.
Chemically, Gorilla is similar to many two-part epoxies, but without the fuss of mixing separate chemicals.
Versatile – useful for many projects
Gorilla Glue is similar to two-part epoxies, in that it can bond to a variety of surfaces, and can be used for a variety of purposes.
Gorilla works on almost any surface imaginable, including wood, stone, plastic, glass, ceramic, brick, and metal.
It cures faster than most epoxy-type adhesives, yet can be sanded, drilled, painted, and stained (unlike most two-part epoxies).
Waterproof and Temperature Resistant
Gorilla Glue is completely waterproof and can withstand temperatures of between -40 °F and +200 °F. (-40 °C to +90 °C)
Gorilla Glue is unaffected by any weather and outdoor elements, being resistant to rain, snow, freezing temperatures, or scorching sunlight, making it perfect for exterior projects, or for use as a construction adhesive.
Available in White, Clear, or Amber color
Gorilla Glue dries a light tan/light amber color once it’s dry. Depending on the project, you may prefer the cured glue to be clear/colorless.
Thankfully, Gorilla has also created a clear version, which has all the same bonding strength and versatility as regular Gorilla Glue but dries completely clear.
How to use Gorilla Glue (Instructions)
Gorilla Super Glue Gel is just like any other CA glue, but the gel formula means you have to give the bottle a good shake before you use it.
1: Prepare the surface you are going to bond
Make sure the surface is clean and free from any dust, oil, or grease as this may prevent the glue from forming a strong bond.
2: Dampen the surface before you apply any glue
This step is required for non-porous materials like Glass, Metal, and Plastic.
Gorilla Glue is activated by water. In porous materials like wood, there is usually enough moisture in the material itself for the glue to work, but in non-porous materials like metal, plastic and glass you have to add a little bit of moisture to the surface to ensure the glue is activated.
The best way to do this is with a mister/spray bottle, but you can use a damp cloth or sponge if you don’t have one available.
3: Apply the glue sparingly to one surface
Apply the glue to one surface, using only a small amount.
Gorilla Glue expands up to 3x volume as it dries, so make sure not to use too much, especially on fragile materials which may be damaged as the glue expands.
4: Press the parts together and clamp for 1-2 hours
Since Gorilla Glue expands, it’s necessary to clamp your two surfaces together to ensure the surfaces don’t get forced apart by the expansion of the glue.
Gorilla Glue takes up to 24 hours to fully cure, however, it can be unclamped in between 1-2 hours, depending on the surface material, humidity and temperature of your working environment, and the volume of glue you used.
5: Clean up and store correctly for reuse
Gorilla Glue can be wiped up with a dry cloth while it’s still wet.
Make sure to clean up any excess from the nozzle and cap before you replace it, so it doesn’t get sealed shut when you store it.
Ensure the glue is stored somewhere dry, as even a tiny amount of water can cause the glue to harden inside the bottle.
What Materials does Gorilla Glue work on?
Gorilla glue is one of the most versatile glues in existence.
It will bond to just about any material, indoors or outdoors – with the exception of some specific types of plastic and synthetic materials like Teflon.
Here’s a list of the materials that Gorilla Glue works well for, and the few materials it’s not good for.
I recommend you check out the reviews on Amazon for more information, there are thousands of customers there sharing their experiences with this glue in various situations.
Gorilla Glue is good for
- PVC Plastics
- Polystyrene & Styrofoam
It’s not great for
- HDPE/LDPE Polyethylene
- PTFE (Teflon)
- Polypropylene Plastics
Can I use Gorilla Glue on Acrylic?
Yes! Gorilla glue works on most plastics including acrylic. If you’re building something critical, consider using an acrylic cement, which will chemically bond the acrylic together, creating a stronger seal.
Gorilla Glue Drying Time (& Curing Time)
Gorilla Glue will be dry to the touch in 1-2 hours if it’s allowed to dry at room temperature.
For the first 2 hours, Gorilla Glue has to be clamped, since the glue expands as it cures.
After two hours is up, the bond will be at around 80% strength and will continue to harden and cure for up to 24 hours after the first application.
The recommended cure time is 24 hours, although this may be shorter or longer depending on the amount of glue used, the surface material, and the temperature and humidity of your working environment.
Can Gorilla Glue be used as a Caulk?
For most situations, Original Gorilla Glue is not useful as a caulking material because it expands as it cures, and is not as flexible as a standard silicone caulk.
Gorilla actually sells a caulking silicone sealant too, is more flexible and better suited for caulking.
Is Gorilla Glue Dishwasher Safe?
Gorilla Glue is completely waterproof, can resist high temperatures, and is non-toxic once it’s fully cured.
How to stop Gorilla Glue from Drying Out
Gorilla Glue is a polyurethane glue, which is activated by moisture. Even the moisture in the air is enough to turn Gorilla Glue hard, so there are a few steps you can take to ensure your glue remains liquid and ready to use while in storage.
- Squeeze any excess air from the bottle before putting the cap back on
- Make sure there is no glue around the nozzle before putting the cap on
- Store in a cool dry place away from any moisture
- Consider storing it with some silica gel to keep the air dry
Gorilla Glue for Wood
Original Gorilla Glue does work on wood, however, if you are bonding wood to wood you would be far better off using wood glue.
If you like Gorilla products, Gorilla makes their own wood glue, but you can use any PVA wood glue, they are all pretty similar.
There are also waterproof and weatherproof wood glues available from most manufacturers for essential outdoors repairs.
I’ve written a guide to several wood glues on this site, you are welcome to take a look and figure out which is best for you!
- Gorilla Wood Glue – Review & Guide
- Titebond Wood Glue – Review & Guide
- Elmer’s Carpenters Glue – Review & Guide
Any of these options are going to work better than Gorilla Original on wood, but are not recommended if you are bonding another material to wood, like metal to wood.
Gorilla Glue for Plastic?
Original Gorilla Glue works on most types of plastic, but there are a few exceptions.
The exceptions are:
- Polyethylene plastics (sometimes called HDPE or LDPE)
- Polypropylene plastics (Often abbreviated as PP)
- PTFE (Also known as TEFLON)
If you need to bond one of these plastics, consider a plastic cement instead.
Does Gorilla Glue work for Shoes?
Gorilla Glue is certainly waterproof and tough enough for shoe repairs, but it’s not very flexible once it’s cured, so it may not last long on a flexible surface like a shoe sole.
For almost all shoe repairs, a better option is to use a silicone-based adhesive product like Shoe Goo, which can bend, twist and flex with your shoes while also remaining completely waterproof and durable.
Gorilla Glue Ingredients
Gorilla glue is made from Polyurethane. Polyurethane glue was first brought to the US by Gorilla, so it’s often called Gorilla Glue even if it’s not the Gorilla brand.
Gorilla Glue on Leather?
Gorilla Glue is a great option for Leather. Because Gorilla is a Polyurethane glue, it expands as it cures, forcing its way into the microscopic pores of the leather, ensuring a very strong bond.
Make sure to follow the instructions and clamp the leather pieces together while the glue cures.
How to remove Gorilla Glue from Skin, Clothes and Surfaces
How to remove Gorilla Glue from your skin:
- Soak your hands in warm, soapy water for five minutes.
- After five minutes soaking, gently remove any glue from your hands.
- Be kind to your skin, Polyurethane forms a strong bond so the name of the game here is patience, not brute force.
- If there is any stubborn glue, you can use a little acetone (commonly found in nail polish remover) to break down the bond.
How to remove Gorilla Glue from Surfaces:
- The best way to remove Gorilla Glue from a porous surface is with a solvent like Isopropyl Alcohol or Acetone.
- Make sure to test the solvent on the surface first to make sure it won’t damage the finish.
- For plastic surfaces, try the soapy water method first, since Acetone may dissolve some plastics.
- For hard surfaces like Glass and Ceramic, you may be able to scrape the glue off with a knife or paint scraper.
How to remove Gorilla Glue from Clothes:
- If you get some Gorilla Glue on your clothes, don’t panic!
- Gorilla can be removed from clothes with Acetone or Isopropyl Alcohol.
- If possible, try to remove it while it’s still wet.
- Apply some acetone to the affected area, and scrub with a toothbrush.
- You may need to do this several times to get rid of it all.
Is Gorilla Glue Waterproof?
Yes, Gorilla Glue Original is 100% completely waterproof. It’s suitable for outdoor and indoor use.
Gorilla Glue White – Is there a white version?
There is a white version and also a clear version available, in case the amber/tan color of Gorilla Glue original doesn’t suit your project.
They both work exactly the same as regular Gorilla Glue, same clamp time, same strength, work on the same materials, the only difference is the color once dry.
Gorilla Glue SDS – Safety Data Sheets
If you need the MSDS / Safety Data Sheet for Gorilla Glue Original, here is a link to it directly from the manufacturer:
Is Gorilla Glue Toxic or Non-Toxic?
Gorilla Glue is safe and non-toxic, but only once it’s fully cured.
While it’s wet, it gives off a musty smell and can cause skin irritation.
Although Gorilla Glue is non-toxic once cured, it’s not been certified as food-safe.
Does Gorilla Glue work Underwater?
Gorilla Glue is 100% waterproof and resistant to extreme temperatures.
Although it won’t cure if you try to make the repair underwater, if you allow it to cure and then place your repair underwater, it will remain waterproof.
It’s often used for corals in aquariums for this reason.