Ceramics can and do of course look very nice, whether a ceramic vase, a plate, a decorative item, or even ceramic flooring. However, although ceramic looks nice and can be fairly durable, it can crack, split and just break in general.
That said, when ceramics break, you don’t necessarily have to throw them out, but what you do need is the best glue for ceramic.
Today we want to help you find the best glue for ceramic repair by going over a comprehensive buyer’s guide, answering your most pressing questions, and by reviewing some of the top options out there too.
- Clear drying for a nice look
- Gives you a few minutes to work with it
- Ideal for repairs
- Resists water and most solvents
- Strong bond strength
- Can be used for many materials
- High resistance to heat
- Ideal for repairs
- Stays in place
- Bonds very fast
- Extremely strong band
- Fast setting
- Fairly easy application
- Dries clear
- Ultra strong bond
- Great for cups and mug
- Works for most materials
- Bonds extremely fast
- Insta-set for instant setting
- Very strong bond
- Very fast setting
- Precise delivery
- Food safe
- Dishwasher safe
Our Overall #1 Rated Pick
If you are looking for the best glue for ceramic, it is important to note that the best type is epoxy glue. Epoxies are so called thermoset plastics which are created by the reaction of two or more chemical compounds. When the chemicals react, they heat up and form a strong plastic resin with great tensile strength, durability, and a resistance to chemicals, water, and more.
Our number one choice for the best epoxy glue for ceramics is Gorilla 2 Part Epoxy. This particular glue comes with many key features.
- Dries clear
- 5 minute setting time
- Easy to use
Gorilla 2 Part Epoxy comes contained inside of a syringe applicator with two separate components.
It is very easy to use thanks to the fact that both components of the epoxy can be dispensed at once. Of course, some mixing is still required.
This glue forms a very strong bond with high tensile strength. It can be used for many different types of materials, things like ceramics, plastics, rubber, and more.
It’s perfect for doing all sorts of repairs, particularly on ceramics.
This glue sets in about 5 minutes, thus allowing for plenty of time to work with it before it sets. Once this glue is cured, it is resistant to a variety of chemicals, solvents, heat, and it’s waterproof too.
Types of Glue for Ceramic
One thing to note is that there are a couple different types of glue that can be used for ceramic, for instance, for ceramic mug repair. The two options at your disposal are epoxies and super glue.
As we touched on above, epoxies are your best bet to go with here. They generally contain two or more compounds, which when they come into contact, form a heat based chemical reaction, which causes the components to form into a strong plastic resin.
This type of glue tends to set and cure quite quickly, although it may take a few hours to totally cure. The reason why epoxy is such a great choice for ceramic repairs and other related applications is due to its very high resistance towards chemicals, solvents, heat, and water.
This makes it rather perfect to use for ceramic repair, especially for things like dishware that will be eaten off of and washed with hot water and soap. Just remember that if you are using epoxy for dishware repair, make sure that it is non toxic ceramic glue.
The other option that you have at your disposal is what is commonly referred to as super glue. Super glue is technically known as cyanoacrylate, and there are various types of it. These are often known as instant or power glues due to the fact that they usually set and cure very quickly, often within a matter of minutes or even mere seconds.
Super glue does form quite a strong bond strength, and if you find the right one, it can also be used as high temp ceramic glue, as it is often quite resistant to heat. Moreover, most varieties are also waterproof. However, what needs to be noted is that super glue tends to have a low sheer strength, and it also doesn’t usually work too well to bond smooth surfaces.
Care does need to be taken when using either epoxies or super glues, so let’s quickly go over some important safety precautions.
- Always use disposable safety gloves when using super glue or epoxy, particularly if you are using a very fast setting variety. Super glue will bond to human skin, so keep it off of your fingers.
- Always wear safety glasses when working with epoxy, as it can be extremely damaging to the eyes.
- Some industrial glues may also require you to wear a face mask or respirator. At any rate, working in a well ventilated environment is important. Some glues can release strong fumes.
- If you are using glue for repairing ceramic dishware, ensure that it is non-toxic, waterproof, and heat resistant.
Glue for Ceramic – Buying Guide
Are you short on time or just want a quick answer?
Check out our list below for a summary of our results.
- Gorilla 2 Part Epoxy
- Loctite Heavy Duty Epoxy
- Dap 00688 All-Purpose Adhesive Sealant
- Bob Smith Industries Gap Filling Super Glue
- Gorilla 7700104 Super Glue Gel
- Elmer's E1012 China and Glass Cement – For Ceramic Mug
- Bob Smith Industries BSI-157H Maxi-Cure/Insta-Set Combo Pack – for Ceramic Tile
- Loctite Epoxy Five Minute Instant – for Porcelain
- Devcon Waterproof Glue – Food Safe Epoxy
Let’s take a closer look at epoxy for ceramics, what the best glue for ceramics is, and help you figure out what the point of this stuff is in the first place. How to repair broken pottery is probably something you’d like to know all about.
Choosing the Right Glue for Ceramic Repair
Before you go out and buy just any glue for ceramic repair jobs, there are some important purchasing factors to consider.
Toxicity & Food Safety
One thing to ensure when buying glue for ceramic repairs, when using it for dishes and plates, it needs to be food safe ceramic glue. Some ceramic glue may be slightly toxic, which might be OK for projects that do not include any kind of dishware, but for cooking dishes and other similar ceramics, it absolutely needs to be food safe.
Something else which ceramic adhesive should be, especially when it comes to oven dishes and other similar items, is heat resistant. Heat resistant glue for ceramic can be used on oven dishes and other similar items. If you plan on repairing ceramic cookware, it needs to be heat resistant and oven safe ceramic glue.
Something else which epoxy for ceramics should be is waterproof. Under no circumstances should ceramic glue be weakened by water in any way. This may be especially important for pottery glue, seeing as vases need to be able to contain water without leaking.
The strongest glue for ceramics will feature a bond strength as strong as the ceramic itself, if not much stronger. Epoxy, such as floor tiles glue, needs to be extremely strong, resistant to impact, pressure, and vibration. This can be especially important for floors which experience lots of foot traffic.
Dry Time & Clamping
Most ceramics should not need clamping, as delicate ceramics really cannot handle much pressure. However, ceramic glue should dry relatively quickly to form a strong bond. It should not dry so fast that it cannot be applied without it drying halfway through application, but besides that, it should dry quickly.
Resistance to Solvents
The best ceramic glue should be highly resistant to solvents. Various ingredients you might cook with or clean with, even just water, should not be able to degrade or destroy the bond created by ceramic glue.
Finally, ceramic glue should be paintable. Ceramics often feature very nice designs, so in order to keep that great look once ceramics have been repaired, the glue should allow you to paint over it.
How Does Glue for Ceramic Work?
Something that is important to note about ceramic adhesive is that for the most part, it’s specially designed to bond porous materials together.
When ceramic breaks, the edges and cracks are going to be very porous and rough, not smooth and flat, which means that whatever epoxy for ceramics you get, it needs to be able to bond porous materials together. Any type of glue designed for smooth materials will most likely not work for ceramic repairs.
How to Fix Broken Ceramic
If you are planning on using pottery glue to repair pottery, especially for something like Terra Cotta, you will need to heat the ceramic items up first, up to around 140 degrees. The added heat will allow the epoxy to take hold and bond much better.
For other more general ceramics, fixing them involves a process of stabilizing the broken pieces so they cannot move, applying a thin layer of glue, attaching the pieces together, and then using a special type of clay to hold them together.
Remember that for ceramics, due to their delicate nature, under no circumstances can you clamp them together, or else they will shatter into pieces.
How to Glue Ceramic
Let’s go through a simple step by step process on how to glue ceramic and how to fix broken ceramic.
- Get a large bucket or container and fill it with PVC pebbles, plastic pebbles, rice, or sand. This will create an ideal base for the pieces of ceramic to sit on and sink into while the glue is being applied and while it dries. You need something to keep the pieces in place.
- Use some rubbing alcohol to clean all ceramic pieces, specifically where the glue is going to be applied. If there is dirt or dust in the way, it will prevent the glue from bonding and holding properly.
- Take the ceramic epoxy which you have chosen and use a dabber tool or something thin to apply a thin layer to the broken piece of ceramic. Remember that you only need to apply it to one side, and then stick them together. Be sure to work quickly because most products will start to set within about a minute, so there’s not too much room for error.
- In order for the glue to cure properly, the temperature should be at least 75 degrees.
- Gravity should be enough to hold the pieces together (if you planned it out right), but if not, use some pottery clay to hold the various pieces together while the glue sets.
The Best Glue for Ceramic
Here we have nine of the best glue and epoxies to use for ceramic repair, so let’s take a look at each right now.
The top best product [hide]
What is also nice is how this glue dries clear, making it perfect for ceramic repairs where you don’t want to be able to see that any repairs were made. It can even be sanded down afterwards. To ensure a long lasting bond, this glue is highly resistant to water, chemicals, solvents, and more.
- Dual compartment syringe
- Clear drying
- High tensile strength
That said, this glue does have very high tensile and impact strength. It can be sanded, drilled, and more, all without cracking or breaking. The bond strength created by this glue is very strong, plus it’s also water resistant. It should be resistant to most solvents as well.
- 5 minute set
- Water resistant
- High impact resistance
- Heat resistant
How to Stay Safe when Using Ceramic Glue
There are a couple of things to keep in mind when it comes to gluing pottery back together, or when using any sort of glue for ceramics for that matter.
- If you plan on gluing ceramics that are going in the oven, such as for oven dishes, be sure to use food safe ceramic glue and heat resistant glue for ceramic.
- If you are planning to glue together cookware and dishes, it has to be food safe glue so that you don’t end up poisoning somebody.
- Be sure to wear gloves when using any sort of glue like this because most of these products will stick to fingers really bad and may glue together your fingers. Ripping dried super glue or ceramic glue off your hands will be painful.
- It is a wise idea to wear goggles while using ceramic glue, because sometimes it can release fumes that irritates the eyes. At the very least, this will help prevent getting glue in your eyes.
The Benefits of Glue for Ceramic
The main benefit of using glue for ceramics is of course that you can actually repair ceramic pieces. Simply put, besides glue, there is no other good way of repairing anything made of ceramic. In other words, you don’t have to throw out a ceramic piece just because it’s cracked or broken.
What Properties Should Ceramic Epoxy Have?
Just to reiterate, when buying epoxy for ceramics, it should dry clear, and you should be able to paint over it.
Also, it should be thick enough to stay in place but thin enough to spread easily, it needs to dry fast enough to create a solid bond quickly, but not so fast that you can’t easily work with it, and it should be waterproof, heat resistant, solvent resistant, and you may also need it to be food safe and oven safe.
That being said, finding epoxy for ceramic which has all of these features can be difficult, so you may have to pick glue for the specific task at hand.
Glue for Ceramic Repair: FAQ
Can ceramic glue be waterproof, food safe, oven safe, and chemical resistant all in one?
Is glue for ceramics oven safe?
What is the best glue for ceramic tile?
Can super glue be painted over?
The most important thing to remember here is to choose a type of glue that works for the specific application. Glue for ceramics comes in many types, with some being ideal for tile flooring, some for figurines, some which is food safe, and some which is dishwasher safe too.
However, most options will not come with all of these features, so you do have to pick and choose a bit. Generally speaking, the food safe options won’t be quite as resistant to various elements and chemicals, but are of course safe to use for dishes.