How to glue wood together?

Whether you’re into crafts or you have small children who are always in for some DIY projects using wood, you might be interested in .

How to glue wood together

This article will help you figure out which glue is best for wood. It is better not to use fasteners when working with wood, they can spoil the appearance, quality characteristics of wooden structures.

To connect parts, fragments, compositions made of wood, it is better to use glue.

Wood is a fairly simple material, which nevertheless requires skill. And selecting among various wood glues is also a skill.

Where Do We Start?

When gluing wooden surfaces, there is no need for their preliminary degreasing. It is enough to choose the right wood glue. In this case, possible errors will be minimized. Modern manufacturers offer an impressive range of products for gluing wood.

There are many adhesive compounds for working with this type of material. To know which glue is best for gluing wood, you should carefully study the available range. It is also important to know the characteristics of adhesives.

How to glue wood together

First, you should find out exactly what you need to successfully glue wood together.

Some essentials before you get started:

  • clean cloth
  • rubbing alcohol
  • scrubbing brush
  • putty knife

Clean off any dirt or dust, using rubbing alcohol or simply a piece of damp rag. Remove any excess old glue residue, this is very important.

On a production scale, before gluing wood, the parts are processed, this is done not only to clean the surface, but also allows you to open the wood pores. When applied, the adhesive composition can penetrate wood fibers and when solidified, the glue creates multitude of the thinnest threads (cobwebs) that reliably “seam” the workpieces together.

The strength of a correctly made seam exceeds the strength of the wood itself, when testing for fracture, the part breaks not at the place of gluing, but along the whole wood piece.

What Is The Best Wood Glue?

PVA glue (polyvinyl acetate)

The simplest and most familiar option is PVA wood glue. Its price is low, while working with it is quite simple. A non-toxic substance is able to fasten pieces of wood to each other. The substance sets in just 15-25 minutes. The maximum adhesion rate is reached after a day. PVA glue has a D3 water resistance class.

How to glue wood together

The product is optimally suited for bonding wooden components to each other. One-component PVA glue does not require mixing with a hardener. It can be used even in direct contact with water, including furniture in bathrooms and kitchens. It can be used for gluing hulls, structural components made of soft and hard woods.

The universal properties of the material make it possible to fasten with it any type of wood, veneer, wood-shaving products.

Polyurethane glue

The obvious advantages of this type of product is resistance to moisture, mechanical stress.

A polyurethane glue is often used in construction, when performing various repairs. It is easy to work with as it quickly seizes, it holds the strength of the seam for a long time.

How to glue wood together


  • Provides a strong, long-term connection
  • Guarantees high adhesion
  • Resistant to excess moisture and temperature extremes
  • Immune to aggressive environments

When working with the product, it is recommended to take into account its high flammability.



  1. Includes resin and hardener.
  2. Resistant to moisture, chemicals, oils.
  3. Suitable for wood surfaces.
  4. It has the ability to fill cavities and smooth out existing irregularities.
  5. It is often used for restoration work.
  6. It freezes almost instantly, so you should have time to correct the elements before hardening.
How to glue wood together

When applied to wood, such glue can fill gaps, and all the bumps and cracks (that is, it plays the role of putty for wood), and when hardened, it creates a dense and durable mass. Along with this, epoxy wood glue has a number of other advantages:

  • Resistance to water, oils and solvents at the same time is an obvious advantage over PVA glue or polyurethane glue.
  • Epoxy adhesive does not shrink when dry.
  • When connecting the parts to be glued, the material does not require large clamping forces, that is, no significant efforts are required, as is the case when working with polyurethane adhesives.
  • When completely dry, it can be polished and drilled.

Carpenter’s glue (Yellow PVA glue)


  1. Carpenter’s glue is very good for outdoor furniture. It is waterproof and holds moisture well.
  2. It is enough to smear only one surface.
  3. It becomes transparent when dry (no dirty effect on new products).
  4. After 15 minutes, carpenter’s glue dries, but it is better to leave it for a day until it is completely hardened.
How to glue wood together

It is also called Yellow PVA Glue, it is suitable for furniture repair or any outdoor projects that feature wood, as it is highly water resistant.

Hide Glue

If you want more natural glue adhesion, look at your local hardware stores for hide glue. Hide glue is harmless to the environment, as it contains animal collagen. There is a liquid hide glue and in solid forms. Liquid hide glue would be a smarter choice, easier to work with, and great for antique furniture.

How to glue wood together

For a faster drying time, go with the solid, crystallized version of hide glue, which is melted in hot water and starts to cool as soon as it’s applied

Super Glue

If you need to quickly fix something small, like a small piece of furniture, you can safely choose super glue. It will help you achieve your goals, if they are not too ambitious. This glue is not the most powerful, especially compared to adhesives designed specifically for gluing wood. Don’t overdo it with this glue otherwise glued joint parts may break again afterwards.

You can see the drying time of the glue here.

What Is the Correct Way To Glue Wood?

Glue adhesives are applied in a thin layer on both surfaces to be joined. The only exception is the technology of gluing wood with polyurethane glue: in this case, the material is applied to one of the surfaces, and the second is moistened (slightly with water).

Applying excess glue does not improve the quality of gluing in any way, but only leads to waste of material and smearing of surfaces with squeezed out excesses.

How To Glue Wood Together?



Remove any remaining old adhesive. Wipe off dust and dirt from the material you want to glue. Use putty knife to remove old glue.



Lubricate the first surface with glue, then the second. Evenly, in a thin layer, use a clean brush. Connect both parts together and squeeze lightly.



We connect the wooden parts, for high-quality gluing of the seam, rub it with parts – against each other, squeeze it tightly, fix it in a clamp or under a press (at home, the press is replaced with a piece of plywood with a load).



Let the glue dry for 30-60 minutes, remove the residue. Do not use a wet sponge for this, excess moisture may damage the integrity of the glued part. It is better to use any tool with flat edges for this and gently remove the residue.
Check the packaging of your new glue to see how long it takes to dry.



Then remove the weight and the glue will hold firmly.

When choosing a polyurethane adhesive:

  • the composition is evenly distributed in a thin layer over one half of the surface to be glued
  • the second wooden surface is slightly moistened with water (it is an activator)
  • parts are tightly connected and fixed with a clamp or pressed with a load.

What is the best way to apply glue

It is necessary to evenly distribute it over the wood piece. To spread the mixture over the surface, it is better to use a stiff bristled brush. You can try using a regular toothbrush. It not only evenly, but also gently distributes the adhesive.

Does the surface need to be degreased?

When gluing wooden parts, there is no need for degreasing. For degreasing, you can use rubbing alcohol.

How long does it take for the adhesive to dry

The working properties of glue mixtures are different. It should be noted that high temperature and low air humidity contribute to rapid drying, and high humidity of the external environment and the wood itself delay the drying process.

How hard to press

There is no need to apply force. It must be understood that the bonding strength largely depends on the quality of cleaning, fitting, and smearing of surfaces. A small amount of the incoming mixture at the joints indicates a sufficient pressure.

How to quickly remove excess glue

The easiest way is to remove the glue residue immediately, before it begins to dry out. Otherwise, you must wait until it is completely dry. It is most convenient to cut off the hardened excess with a chisel or clean it by hand grinding. Stripping must be carried out along the fibers.

Let the glue dry and set

After gluing the wooden parts, do not touch the product until it grabs, even if you really want to remove excess wood glue, this will not lead to anything good. Let the product dry for half an hour and carefully remove excess glue with a putty knife.

Some Useful Tips

How to glue wood together
  1. To glue large panels of wood use rubber roller, it’ll help you spread the adhesive evenly over the pieces of wood.
  2. Too much glue would only ruin the process, apply wood glue evenly in a thin layer.
  3. Do not apply pressure, if done correctly the process will be successful without extra force.
  4. Wear gloves to prevent accidents and in order to not glue up your fingers.
  5. If you are finishing wooden parts, seal the pieces of wood that will be glued with masking tape, this will help to create stronger grip once the glue dries.
  6. Remove old glue from the pieces of wood, so the glue joint would turn out strong and firm.

What is the best wood glue?

There are plenty of wood glues out there. The most common wood glue is polyvinyl acetate PVA glue, it is effective for sticking wood together, repairing furniture etc. Although, it is not the most water resistant, so for outdoor use we would recommend carpenter’s glue or yellow exterior glue.

What can I use to glue wood together?

For wooden craft projects you can use the so-called white glue. White glue is kind of like all-purpose glue. You can use white glue for a large scale of materials, it is child-friendly as it has non-toxic properties.

Dried glue is clear so you are free to improvise and color it or add some glitter. You can find it at your local hardware store or any home improvement store.

Can you join wood with just glue?

Yes, you can, apply glue in an even layer and make sure that the surfaces are clear and dry before starting. Choose the right glue for the work you are aiming to perform.

How do you stick wood to wood?

When gluing wooden surfaces, the adhesive is applied to both parts in an even layer with a rubber roller or a stiff bristled brush, depends on the size. The thickness of the layer depends on the type of glue, its consistency and the type of surfaces to be glued – the thinner the wood, the thinner the layer.

The wood glue should moisten the part, but not excessively. Dried excess wood glue greatly ruins the appearance of parts and complicates their further processing.

How to make DIY wood glue

We need:

1. A tile of solid glue
2. Heat-resistant container
3. Water bath
4. Something to stir


. Before making it, the tile of solid wood glue is broken and its fragments are placed in a prepared container and filled with cold water. Next, you need to wait until the tile fragments get wet. This may take 10-11 hours.

. After the formation of a gelatinous mass, the container is placed in a water bath, the contents must be constantly stirred. If you need a thin glue, add a small amount of hot water to the container.

. The mass cannot be brought to a boil. The contents are infused, constantly stir until all the lumps are completely dissolved. The absence of lumps indicates that the adhesive is ready for use.

. When preparing the mixture, you can use different additives. They will improve the characteristics of the mixture, expand the scope of its application. For example, adding linseed oil or drying oil to the composition can increase the water resistance of the adhesive.

For the sake of your own safety, do not forget to read the instructions to the glue beforehand!


It is easy to get lost in this abundance, the question arises – what is the best way to glue wood to wood firmly. All presented adhesives are designed for wooden surfaces. However, when choosing, one must take into account their main characteristics – penetrating abilities.

The speed of setting and hardening, the possibility of obtaining an even, inconspicuous seam at the end of the work. Only after familiarizing yourself with the composition, you can decide how to glue a wood piece better in one case or another.

If you follow all the precautions and read the instructions, sticking wood together should not be difficult.

Scrape off old glue from the wooden joints using a putty knife.

Choose the wood glue carefully, and remember that extra wood glue and too much force applied in the process will not lead to good results.

Feel free to leave comments down below and share your experience or any questions you have with us!

Leave a Comment