Typically, wood glue can take anything from 20 minutes to several hours to dry. How long you have to wait for the glue to dry depends on various factors, from the actual glue type you use to the wood type and prevailing conditions.
Factors That Affect Glue Drying Time
Humidity is the amount of moisture in the air and is among the main determinants of a glue’s drying time. The higher the humidity level, the longer wood glue takes to dry. Therefore, wood glue requires more time to dry in the winter than in the rainy seasons.
For those that live in areas with high humidity levels, most wood glue types take at least one hour to dry, and curing time is typically upwards of 24 hours.
Hence, before you start gluing your wood pieces, it is essential to check the predicted humidity levels in your area from the local weather reports or even measure it with a hygrometer.
The prevailing temperatures in your working space also affect how long the wood glue takes to dry. Typically, glue dries much faster in cool or at least room temperature environments than in hot ones.
However, different glue types have varying temperature requirements. Therefore, to ensure you do not end up waiting for ages as your glue dries, it is good to check the temperature it works best in and regulate your air conditioner to maintain it.
If your workshop does not have any air conditioning you can use to regulate the temperature, you should try to make sure the workpiece stays in a cool space as the glue dries.
3. Types of Glue
The wood glue type you are using is perhaps the most significant determinant of the drying time. Hence, if you want to speed up the process, you have to choose something with the shortest drying time. Here are the most common wood glue types and their drying times.
Super Glue: Super glue or cyanoacrylate glue is one of the fastest curing glue types, and it should be dry enough in under an hour, while permanents curing takes around 15 hours. But, while it is possible to join two pieces of wood with super glue, it is typically used as a temporary bond before further fastening.
Polyvinyl Glue: If you are looking for an odor and color-free wood glue, polyvinyl glue is perfect. It is one of the most popular wood glues as it adheres well to almost any wood type. On average, it takes around 1 hour to dry and cures in 24 hours.
Epoxy Glue: Epoxies are a special glue type that will include a hardener and resin. These glue types require you to mix the two components thoroughly and apply the mixture immediately for the best results. This glue works well for projects that require waterproofing, and depending on the specific time, the dry time can be as fast as 30 minutes or take a few hours, but it cures completely in around 72 hours.
Polyurethane Glue: This glue creates a super-strong bond, given it will expand when drying. Also, the adhesive is waterproof, which makes the glue ideal for use on outdoor furniture. Polyurethane glue takes around 40 minutes to dry, and the average cure time is about 20 hours.
Hide Glue: The unique thing about the hide glue is it comes from animal hide. It is quite a strong glue, but its major shortcoming is not being water-resistant, meaning it is ideal for indoor use only. The adhesive comes in hot hide and bottled types, but both have an average dry time of 4 to 6 hours and cure in 12 to 24 hours.
4. Types of Wood
The wood type you are working with also affects the dry time, so you need to make sure you know the specific wood you will be dealing with before choosing your glue.
Wood glue dries faster in hardwoods, given they are denser. The porous nature of softwoods, on the other hand, can increase the glue’s drying time considerably.
Additionally, when working with wet wood, the glue takes longer to dry because of the extra moisture.
If you plan to use wood glue for your projects, it is essential to note that you should be ready to wait for anything from a few minutes to several hours as the glue dries.
The actual drying time of wood glue depends on factors like the overall humidity levels and temperature, glue type, and the wood you are using. But, regardless of the dry time, the crucial thing is always to ensure you end up with secure and durable bonds.