How to Fix Broken Glass Vases

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

Things You'll Need

  • Cloth

  • Holder

  • Two-part epoxy

  • Scrap cardboard

  • Toothpick

  • Hot-melt glue gun and glue stick

  • Razor blade

Tip

While it's possible to glue multiple pieces together at the same time, it's often easier to less messy to glue one at a time, waiting for the glue to set before gluing the next one.

Work on a clean table under good lighting.

Warning

Handle glass with care; it has sharp edges that can cut your fingers.

If your hand slips while you're dusting, and your favorite glass vase falls to the floor and breaks, you may be able to repair the vase well enough to once again hold water, but it's never going to be the same. Short of reheating the glass to fuse it, virtually no process will eliminate the hairline cracks left over after gluing the pieces back together, even if you minimize the cracks by carefully aligning the pieces. You need waterproof glue, and although it takes more time to harden than cyanoacrylate, two-part epoxy resin is the best adhesive for the job.

Advertisement

Step 1

Collect all the pieces of the broken vase. The repair probably isn't worth doing if the vase has broken into several small pieces, or some pieces are chipped. The repair is most likely to be successful if the vase has broken into two or three large pieces, or if one small section, such as the lip around the opening, broke off.

Advertisement

Step 2

Clean dirt off the pieces you are going to glue with a rag and dry them thoroughly with a clean cloth. Pay special attention to the edges that you're going to glue together.

Step 3

Support the vase in a holder if it doesn't stand by itself. Test-fit the pieces you are going to glue so that you know the best way to put them together to minimize visible crack lines.

Advertisement

Step 4

Mix clear two-part epoxy glue with the hardener that comes with it on a piece of scrap cardboard. To get the strongest repair, use a product that takes longer than 5 minutes to set -- it will be less brittle than one that sets quickly. Mix only what you need for the repair -- you'll have to discard what you don't use.

Advertisement

Step 5

Spread the epoxy on the edges of one of the pieces of glass you need to glue, using a toothpick. You don't need to apply the glue to both surfaces of a joint, as long as you spread it evenly. Try not to leave voids, but don't use too much glue, or you may have trouble cleaning the glass after the glue sets.

Advertisement

Step 6

Fit the pieces together and keep holding while you dab hot-melt glue on one or two places along the joint to keep the pieces together. You can scrape off the glue after the epoxy sets.

Step 7

Wait for the epoxy to stiffen; before it hardens, scrape off any that has oozed out the cracks, using a razor blade. After the recommended setting time for the glue you're using has elapsed, scrape off the hot-melt glue with the razor blade.

Advertisement

references

Chris Deziel is a contractor, builder and general fix-it pro who has been active in the construction trades for 40 years. He has degrees in science and humanities and years of teaching experience. An avid craftsman and musician, Deziel began writing on home improvement topics in 2010. He worked as an expert consultant with eHow Now and Pro Referral -- a Home Depot site. A DIYer by nature, Deziel regularly shares tips and tricks for a better home and garden at Hunker.com.

View Work