Heating Gun Vs Hair Dryer | What’s the Difference?

Heating gun vs Hair dryer has been a hot topic for quite some time and in this article, we will find out which one’s better and what’s the fundamental difference between a heating gun and a hair dryer. 

If you have ever owned either one of these tools or both, then you might have pondered into the thought of whether the heat gun and the hair dryer are interchangeable.  

To answer this question, we must first understand what each of these tools are. And what these tools are meant for.  

Heating Gun/Heat Gun – Overview 

Heating gun vs Hair dryer - A typical heat gun

Heating guns are an essential part of every professional’s tool kit. If you are a painter, welder, mechanic or any craftsman or builder in general. Then a heating gun is definitely a must have for you.  

It is a tool that blows out hot air, just like the hair dryer, which we will talk about in great detail in the later sections of the article about heating gun vs hair dryer.  

What do heating guns do?  

Heating guns are essentially devices that blow out hot streams of air. And it’s not warm air we are talking about, these guns can emit heat anywhere between a 100 °C(200 °F) all the way up to 760 °C(1400 °F).  

It has a blower at the front resembling a barrel and a trigger, hence the name heat gun.  

Anyway, heating guns need to be handled with care and should be kept away from children (Due to obvious reasons).  

What are heating guns used for?  

Heating guns are used for a wide variety of applications in many different industries. Some of the most popular of these applications can be in the commercial space, where they are used on a regular basis.  

  • Stripping paint 
  • Shrinkwrap packaging 
  • Welding plastic 
  • Thawing frozen pipes  
  • Desoldering circuit board components  

and much more…  

That was a general overview on what heating guns or heat guns are and what they do. 

Moving on to the hair dryer.  

Hair Dryer – Overview

traditional hair dryer

While hair dryers are functionally also similar to heating guns, they are traditionally used for drying damp hair quickly. It is an essential tool for those who don’t have time to dry their hair naturally. 

Just like heat guns, hair dryers also resemble a similar shape and how they are operated is also quite similar. Thus, the debate on heating gun vs hair dryer started from there. 

We already know what hair dryers are and what they do so let’s move on with the comparison, i. e heating gun vs hair dryer. 

What is the difference between a heating gun and hair dryer? 

So we have established what both of these devices are, now to compare them lets look at some of their differences and similarities. 

Usually, hair dryers are used for drying damp hair and are generally used after showers. Heating guns, on the other hand, are used for more commercial purposes like stripping paint and shrink wrap packaging as discussed earlier. 

Heating guns have many industrial and educational uses. While, hair dryers are meant for personal use and of course, they are commercially used in salons and parlors. 

Can we use heating gun as a hair dryer?  

No, heatings guns operate in a very high temperature range of around 200 to 1400 °F. Which can easily burn your air and leave you with potentially life threatening injuries. 

It is highly dangerous and you should never try it under any circumstance. Also, you are strictly advised not to touch the nozzle of a heat gun when it’s in use as it can damage and burn your skin as well.  

Can we use hair dryer as a heat gun?  

A hair dryer can work as a heat gun but it’s not going to replace it. Normal hair dryers operate in moderately low temperatures. And even at their best, can only reach around 200 degrees max.  

So even if you do use it, it won’t work as desired.  

But still, if you don’t have a heat gun at home and wondering if you can do certain tasks with your hair dryer instead then a few of them include: 

  • Dry semi-wet clothes 
  • Defrost food 
  • Peel off stickers 
  • Melt wax 
  • Melt ice 
  • Can be used for vinyl wraps 

Heating Gun Vs Hair Dryer Comparison Table  

CriteriaHeating gunHair Dryer
Maximum Temperature 760° C (1400 °F)  150° C (302 °F) 
Power UsageA heat gun can draw 1500 to 1800 watts of energy on average. A hair dryer can draw anywhere from 800 to 1800 watts of energy.  
Cost The average cost of a heat gun is around $20-$50 An average hairdryer can cost anywhere between $20 to $100.
Usage  Heat guns have varied usage in laboratories, engineering workshops, welding, paint jobs, packaging, etc.A hair dryer is usually used as a home appliance, meant for personal use. Other than that, it is used in hair salons commercially, but the main application is the same i.e drying damp hair.
*Comparison table stating the differences between a heat gun and a hair dryer


As we can conclude from this comparison table, a heating gun and a hair dryer are both very different when it comes to their applications. They also have a large gap between them when it comes to operating temperatures. The only similarities between them are their energy usage and their relative costs.  

Other than that, if you are thinking about using a hair dryer instead of a heat gun for your new enterprise or a task at hand then think again. You are better off spending a few bucks on one of these heat guns which can do a proper job instead.  

And if your hair dryer died recently. And you are wondering if your old heat gun can replace it, then you are really for it. Don’t ever use a heat gun as a hair dryer.

Get yourself one of these hair dryers instead and keep yourself and your hair safe.  


To summarize the heating guns vs hair dryer debate, both of these devices are similar in how they work. Yet in terms of application, they are quite different. Both of these tools are meant for their respective roles and it is not a good idea to interchange them.  

Also do note that while heating guns are used for commercial purposes, hair dryers are used for more personal use. As such, you can minimize your power consumption while using a hair dryer. Just by not being too dependent on them, you save yourself a couple bucks every year. 

You can also read these articles: Best lightweight window air conditioners, Best office chairs rated over 300 lbs.

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