Best Caulking Guns (April 2019): Editor’s Top Picks And Reviews
The best caulking gun is always necessary tool for every homeowner. Everything in your house will be depreciating over time, thus, you need a tool to seal the cracks or gaps on them. Usually, the items we need to seal are a sink, tub, window, damaged wall, basements and other appliance that need to be sealed. The purpose of sealing those objects is to keep the water out.
Buying a cheap caulking gun should not be considered as an option since it tires your hands quickly, wastes your caulk, and usually, leaves a mess. A higher end tool will allow you to squeeze evenly, providing more control for the amount of caulk used.
It also has ergonomic grip so you won’t tire your hands quickly. More importantly, it drips less than the cheap one, so you don’t waste your caulk and create a mess.
Buying a good caulking gun is not easy; the quality depends on the control of the caulking gun, and the dripless feature which requires user experience to evaluate. In other words, you need to buy and use the product yourself in order to evaluate it.
That’s why we create the list of the best caulking gun which is evaluated based on our experience, so you can rely on this information to make decisions.
Best Caulking Gun (Feb 2019): Top 6 Picks & Reviews
We've picked the top 6 caulking guns which are based on quality, price, and feedback across the internet. Please check the table for more details about the caulking guns included on the list.
A Cheap Dripless Caulking Gun
A Lightweight, Sturdy and Dripless Caulking Gun for Low Viscosity Materials
A Plastic Made Caulking Gun with A Revolving Frame for Low Viscosity Materials
A Caulking Gun with Toggle Dripless Mode for High Viscosity Materials
High Viscosity Caulking Gun with Revolving Frame
High-end Caulking Gun
Why Are These Tools Included?
We divided the caulking guns into two different categories, low viscosity for small projects and large viscosity for a big project.
For low viscosity materials
Newborn 930-GTD – An all-steel welded caulking gun yet lightweight and easy to control. The caulking gun also has dripless feature, which is important for saving caulk and time. With the thrust ratio of 10:1, you can use this caulking gun for latex material.
Dripless ETS2000 – Dripless ETS2000 is a plastic made caulking gun with the revolving frame for caulking around the corners. The thrust ratio of this tool is 12:1, which is slightly higher than the others. It works well with materials such as latex, acrylic, and silicone.
COX Wexford II – This caulking gun only weighs nearly half as much as Newborn 930-GTD and Dripless ETS2000. It’s made of plastic and has a dripless feature like Newborn 930-GTD.
Nevertheless, the caulking gun’s thrust ratio is only 7:1 which is much lower than the others. Consequently, it can only perform well with very low viscosity materials.
For high viscosity materials
Newborn 250 – This is a smooth pressure hex rod caulking gun operating smoothly and quietly. Moreover, the thrust ratio of 18:1 allows the caulk to extrude easily with low pressure, and works with all types of materials.
For added durability, the caulking gun also has zinc alloy handle and trigger to resist corrosion. More notably, it has a revolving frame for caulking around the corners.
Dripless Industrial Ergonomic – A rugged plastic made a caulking gun with high thrust ratio (18:1). Above all, it has the togglable dripless mode enabling you to turn the dripless mode on and off whenever you want. In addition, it has a rotating barrel for caulking the corners.
Tajima CNV-100SP – It’s a high-end caulking gun with similar features to other caulking guns such as rotating barrel, steel welded and ergonomic grip. More importantly, this caulking gun is dripless, once you release the trigger, the caulk will stop dripping out.
Equally, it has extended barrel to fit the extra-long tubes. Like other high viscosity caulking guns, its thrust ratio is 18:1.
Newborn 930- GTD
Newborn Brothers founded in 1974, is experienced in making caulking gun. The manufacturer offers a dripless hex rod caulking gun for a more satisfying user experience.
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- Easily dispense and Quiet – You don’t have to use your full strength to dispense the caulk anymore since the smooth pressure hex rod and the 10:1 thrust ratio require less force to squeeze. In addition, the smooth pressure hex rod is quieter than the conventional ratchet-style rod.
- Ergonomic grip – Padded handle and trigger provide a satisfying thermoplastic grip that allows your hands to be in a balance position for more hands stamina.
- Sturdy and Lightweight – Even though it is an all-steel, welded construction, the manufacturer still manages to minimize the weight to the minimum, which is only 1 pound. You don’t need much strength to hold this tool for long hours.
- Easy control – The smooth control mechanism provides more control to the amount of caulk used, enabling you to squeeze the caulk evenly on the surface at ease. The job will be done with high accurateness.
- Drip-free feature – After each pull of the trigger, the rod retracts and removes pressure in order to prevent the tube from dripping out. This is called the ratchet control feature that stops the dripping after the trigger is released; such feature cannot be found on lower model caulking gun; it makes a big difference in both application and cleans up.
- Large cartridge capacity – For the large projects such as windows, doors, and other spaces, you’ll need a caulking gun whose capacity is large enough for a big caulk to fit in. The Newborn 930-GTD is able to hold the larger caulk capacity of 1/10 gallon cartridge.
- Built-in spout cutter and seal puncture – Sometimes when you already climbed on the rooftop and realized that you forget to get a needle and knife to puncture the sealant, which is frustrating. You don’t need to bring a needle and a knife for sealing job anymore since the caulking gun has already included both of them.
- Blunt spout cutter - It’s not as sharp as a razor, the cut might not be as precise as you wanted to. If the cutter cannot fulfill your need, bring the knife and problem solved.
- Does not fit long tubes – The caulking gun can only fit 8.5 inches tubes, which might be too short if you use a sealant such as Wet-Stick. You can put the front end in the vise and bend it, might be a little annoying but work well anyway.
- Hard to clean – The metal material alone is hard to clean. The hex rod cannot be rotated, if the caulk oozes out at the back or the plunger end, cleaning it should be time-consuming.
Even though Newborn 930-GTD is considered as a high-end caulking gun, the price is quite affordable. The caulking gun is sturdy and easy to control. The most important factor is that the caulking gun does not drip at all, which could save you a lot of caulk as well as the time you spend to clean up the mess.
The blunt cutter and the short frame problems can always be fixed with just a little effort. You might need to clean up the tool after each use since you don’t want the mess to accumulate over time. Overall, this is a great tool, we rate Newborn 930-GTD as the best caulking gun on our list.
A caulking gun with similar quality to Newborn 930-GTD but different features, this tool will offer you another high-quality experience with its revolving frame and large thrust ratio.
Review on Newborn caulk guns via Classic Work
- 18:1 thrust ratio – Unlike Newborn 930-GTD, this caulking gun can be applied with higher viscosity materials such as acrylic, adhesives, asphalt, butyl, and cement.
These heavy viscosity materials can only be dispensed at ease with the thrust ratio of 18:1.
- High cartridge capacity – The cartridge capacity can hold up to 1/10 gallon cartridge, suitable for large projects such as window, door, and other large spaces.
- Revolving frame – Such frame is designed for caulking around the corners. The revolving frame allows the barrel to rotate to keep the same bead direction while caulking the corners.
More conveniently, since the barrel can be rotated, allowing the tube to be rotated as well; it’s handy when you need to cut the spout at the desired angle. The revolving frame also makes the plunger end of the caulking gun easy to clean.
- Easily dispense and Quiet – This caulking gun uses the same smooth pressure hex rod like Newborn 930-GTD, which requires less force and is quieter than the conventional ratchet-style rod.
- Corrosion resistance – The trigger and handle are covered with high-quality zinc alloy preventing corrosion. Zinc alloy offers high strength for strong designs such as bending, crimping, and riveting operations. It provides higher impact resistance than that of cast aluminum, plastic, and grey cast iron.
- Built-in spout cutter and seal puncture – Another similar feature to the Newborn 930-GTD. However, the spout cutter is sharper than that of the Newborn 930-GTD.
- Durable – The zinc alloy combines with the steel construction provide enough strength and toughness for the caulking gun to last for years.
- Dripping – The dripping problem happens due to the working mechanism of the caulking gun itself. The caulk does not stop coming out when you release the trigger, you have to release another separate thumb-release tab near the handle.
This disadvantage has prevented the caulking gun to be applied for anything other than caulking sidewalk isolation joints, fire caulking, and other similar tasks.
The caulking gun is well designed overall. The improving factors compared to of this gun compared to Newborn 930-GTD are the revolving frame corrosion resistance.
However, the caulking gun is not dripless, which is a big downside. But the amount of caulk dripping out is not that much since the caulking gun is not dripping constantly.
Moreover, the dripping problem also depends on many other factors such as pressure applied, trapped air in the tube, and the temperature.
As for this reason, the dripping problem might happen for some people but not for the others so we cannot immediately put the blame on the caulking gun itself.
If you want a caulking gun with a similar feature to the Newborn 930-GTD but with higher thrust ratio to work with high viscosity materials, you can consider this caulking gun as an option.
Dripless Inc. ETS2000
Founded in 1992, Dripless is much younger than Newborn, yet can still produce a high-quality product to prove its worthiness as a competitor.
Tool Talk : What to Look For in a Caulking Gun via TheMuskokaPainter
- Light-weight yet Sturdy – The rugged composite construction makes the caulking gun weighs 40 percent less than the others. The item only weighs 1.1 pounds which are equivalent to 0.5 kilograms.
Despite the fact that it is made of plastic, it’s still sturdy and durable. Because the material is not just ordinary plastic, it is tough molded (rugged) plastic which contributes to both the light weight and the durability of the caulking gun.
- Easily dispense – With a little bit higher ratio than Newborn 930-GTD, which is 12:1, Dripless ETS 2000 can easily extrude the caulk with very little effort. We recommend using it with latex, acrylic, and silicone.
- Revolving frame – Similar to Newborn 250, Dripless ETS 200 also has a revolving frame allowing more control for caulking around the corners and for easy clean up.
- Built-in spout cutter and seal puncture – Like the other two caulking guns from Newborn, on the side of this caulking gun, is a hole to cut off the spout. On top of that, it has a viewing port so you can check the angle. The seal puncture is also long enough to penetrate through the nozzle seal without gouging a hole that is larger than you expected.
- Ironic grip – This grip provides a naturally comfortable position so the wrist can rest easily on it. Your hands will get less tired with this feature.
- Easy load/unload – No spring release button or anything complicated. All you need to do is pull back the plunger to remove the cartridge.
- Dripping – As unfortunate as Newborn 250, Dripless ETS 2000 also drips. It can be used just fine with an almost empty tube, but drip heavily with a new tube.
This model design is a little bit similar to Newborn 930-GTD with a little bit higher thrust ratio. But in compensation, it drips more than the Newborn 930-GTD. However, thanks to the plastic material and the revolving frame, it is easier to clean than the metal material. If you don’t mind a little bit dripping, you can buy this caulking gun.
COX 21001 Wexford II
Cox is a well-known manufacturer of the caulking gun and epoxy applicator. COX Wexford II is a cheap but very effective caulking gun for small projects.
- Non-drip feature – The caulking gun incorporates with drip-free technology, allowing you to save caulk and time from cleaning up the mess.
- Extreme Lightweight and Sturdy – It only weighs 0.4 pounds, which is about half as much as the other guns, meaning that you only need half the amount of the physical effort. Even though the weight is super light, the material is not made of just plastic; the caulking gun has a quality steel rod for added durability.
- Powerful trigger – Despite the low thrust ratio, you can squeeze out the caulk with just a slight press on the trigger, saving more hands stamina to keep on working.
- Easy to clean – As mentioned before, it is mostly plastic made thus easier to clean than metal.
- Built-in seal puncture – Like other brands, it has a seal puncture to gouge a hole in a nozzle seal.
- No spout cutter – It’s not a big deal as long as you have a knife. You won’t be satisfied if the spout cutter is blunt anyway, so cutting the spout with a knife might be better off.
- Low thrust ratio – It has the lowest thrust ratio in this list, thus, it can only be used for small projects. However, the trigger is so powerful that the thrust ratio should not be a big problem.
This is the cheapest product in this list, nonetheless, it works wonder. It solves the problem that most of the caulking guns have, the dripping problem. With only 7:1 thrust ratio, we recommend using it for the low viscosity materials and small projects.
Dripless 10oz Industrial Ergonomic Composite
Another caulking gun for industrial application, it’s a similar caulking gun to Dripless ETS2000 but with higher thrust ratio.
- Composite construction - Industrial heavy duty ergo composite caulking gun weighs less than 40 percent compared to other models. The caulking gun is also sturdier due to the rugged plastic (not the ordinary plastic). On top of that, it is easy to clean.
- Drip and No-drip modes – The special thing about this product is that you can choose when to drip or when not. The feature is called Ergo-Tech’s Dripless, it works well even with the most viscous material such as silicone. Once you release the trigger, everything is stopped.
You can also turn off the dripless mode whenever you want because some tasks might be accomplished faster and easier with the dripless mode off.
- High thrust ratio (18:1) – it’s designed for industrial heavy duty sealing, therefore it needs a ratio that works well with all types of high viscosity materials.
- Ergonomic grip – Like other caulking guns from Dripless, this tool is equipped with an ergonomic grip, providing more comfort and stamina for extra hours of work.
- Rotating barrel – Rotating barrel for sealing corners and allows easy clean up.
- Built-in seal puncture and spout cutter – It’s a basic need for every caulking gun, you can puncture a hole in a nozzle seal without a knife or a needle.
- The dripless mode might not work well – The drip and no-drip switching button does not snap into its position firmly enough, thus, you might get stuck in a middle between the two settings. Push the button carefully and you won’t have this problem anymore.
- Blunt spout cutter – The razor included in the caulking gun is not sharp enough, hence, you better get a knife to do the job.
As you can see, the Ergo’s Tech Dripless mode works very well (with just some toggle problem), it solves the most annoying problem of the caulking job. In addition, the composite construction makes the caulking gun sturdier than ever. It’s basically a similar caulking gun to Dripless ETS2000 but with higher thrust ratio. You can consider this option for working with high viscosity materials.
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Tajima is the oldest Japanese manufacturer (founded in 1909) of professional-grade tools. Tajima CNV-100SP is one of the high-quality products of Tajima manufacturer.
- Twin thrust plates – Twin thrust plates with auto-flow control provides more precision when dispensing the caulk.
- Extended barrel – The long tubes won’t be a problem anymore since the barrel is long enough to fit all types of long tubes.
- Powerful mechanism and Large Cartridge Capacity – The high thrust ratio (18:1) combined with the powerful trigger make the caulk squeeze out easily with little effort.
- Revolving and Welded Frame – It supports corners sealing thanks to the rotating barrel. The frame is also welded with steel for added durability.
- Strong and Ergonomic – Aluminum material not only creates a comfortable grip but also makes the caulking gun sturdier.
- Hassle-free tube loading – Load and unload the tube easily by just twisting off the barrel, making it handy to change to the tube.
- Built-in seal puncture (no spout cutter) – A common feature like other caulking guns to help you penetrate the nozzle seal.
- No-drip – The manufacturer makes the product so well that it is dripless, the caulk stops coming out immediately after you release the trigger.
- Might be too heavy – The total weight of the caulking gun is 4.7 pounds (2.1 kilograms) which are 4 times heavier than a regular caulking gun.
- High price – The price might be a turn-off to some people, it costs $20 which is the relatively high price. Nonetheless, the quality is so good that it makes it worth what you pay for.
By and large, this product deserves to be called a high-end caulking gun. It performs well in every feature included, except that it is too heavy for some people with fairly weak hands. If you have to caulk frequently, you should purchase this caulking gun because it not only helps you save time but also last longer than other caulking guns.
More video on how to use caulk guns
Testing dripless caulking gun video via ABN Painting
How to use a drip-free caulk gun via NewbornCaulkGuns
To summarize things up, choosing right caulking guns might not be easy. The most important feature you need to consider is whether the caulking gun is dripping or not, because you don’t want to waste your caulk and your time to clean up the mess.
In addition, you should be alert of the material of the caulking gun as well, especially when you work on the rooftop. The reason is simple, if you are working at such high altitude, there is a risk that the caulking gun might fall off, therefore, you need some tough material to withstand it. Obviously, if it is broken, you don’t want to climb down the rooftop just to buy a new one right?
Those are the two most important factors in selecting the right caulking gun. Besides those factors, you should also be careful about the length of the barrel, the grip and the trigger mechanism of the caulking gun too.
Overall, we rate Newborn 930-GTD as the best caulking gun on this list. We hope the provided information will help you choosing the right caulking gun for yourself.