How to Keep your Caulk from Drying out.

It drives me crazy when I pick up my caulk gun that I know has caulk in it, and nothing will come out because, despite the “Miracle Cap” I purchased and put on it, the caulk has dried out in the nozzle!

how to keep caulk from drying out

A few times, I’ve tried to force it to come out but instead of pushing the dried caulk out of the nozzle, it squishes out the other end making a huge mess of my gun.  (Like I need any help in that area.)  So I have to go digging around to find a nail long enough or a tiny screwdriver that will fit in the hole without mucking it up so the caulk doesn’t flow out smoothly.

Does this sound familiar or is it just me?

The plug-caps tend not to work properly with the slanted cut nozzle, in my experience.

Doesn’t everyone cut their caulk tube nozzle off at a slant?  That’s “Caulking 101″– basic stuff…  Oh well, this is easier, less messy and cheeper anyway!

When you’re done caulking your project, squeeze a little more caulk out of your gun and don’t wipe it off.

A little extra usually always comes out anyway, even after you release the pressure…so use that.

Then smoosh it into a ball-ish shape, completely covering the hole in the nozzle.

Now let it dry!  When you’re ready to use your caulk gun again, just pull that ball-ishy ball off the end and you’re ready to go!

how to keep caulk from drying out

Simple tips that make work easier are what make my world go ’round!


  1. Neccia Mayhew says:

    Two Great tips to keep caulk from drying out.
    Glad Press and Seal this is great.
    The best I think is Twist on Wire Connectors, inexpensive different colors mean different sizes, used to secure electrical wires

  2. I read a tip in one of my woodworking magazines that explains using a wax ring for toilet installation. You push the tip of your caulk container into the wax and then remove the wax plug next time you use the caulk. It has been working for me.

  3. I live in Colorado, too, and do the caulk trick. It works really well. I go through caulk pretty quickly so maybe it doesn’t have time to dry out!

  4. super smart tip!

  5. great tip Sandra…thank u…going to try this next time!

  6. Now that is a tip I can use!

  7. Great tips–yours and all the ones in the comments!! I find I have better control with the smaller tubes of caulk that don’t need the gun. It’s more expensive, but it’s less frustrating.

  8. You do know that there is a long metal “stick” on the caulking gun to do that very job, right? I see it in your photo. Even so, I still do what you do and leave a little spooge hangin’ out to dry.

    • Bwha! That’s too funny! I see it but didn’t know it was there. I’ve never looked at my caulk guns before. Thanks for the heads up…always learning something.

  9. It is so dry here in Colorado, that everything dries out. I’ll buy glue and if I don’t use it, bang, it’s dead. Even Gorilla Glue and nothing usually gets to that stuff. I’ll try that on everything now. Otherwise, I stuff it in a plastic bag and seal.

  10. Dacia @ Lemon Drop Life says:

    Great tip!

  11. great tip! Thanks :)

  12. The nail trick can be hit or miss, because I’ve used old nails in the past and they rust, which doesn’t make for a clean white line the next time I use caulk :)

    I’ve had a lot of success with Dap brand caps (they have a deep well for the tip so angled cuts are fine). They aren’t the cheapest, but they work.

    Surprisingly, simple plastic wrap works well, too!

    • Plastic wrap is so handy I should carry it in my tool belt. I just hate having to run around trying to find something – anything to cap that hole. Using the caulk itself solves that problem. :-D

  13. Hmmm…interesting. I will try this next time I caulk – which will be never if it is up to me. I hate caulking. We do the nail/screw thing, but sometimes I can’t find one right off the bat, and so this would come in real handy.

  14. That’s a great tip, I’m going to try that. I’ve got about 6 bottles of caulk with that problem. Sometimes it dries out much farther back than just the tip, and usually I can’t find anything long enough to dig it out.

  15. I use a 3 inch screw right in the end. Works every time:)

  16. We always just stick a long nail with a large head in the hole. The nail seals it and when you want to use it next, just pull out the nail and you are good to go. Works every time!

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