Objectives: To evaluate the effect of acid etching and application of a hydrophobic resin coat on the enamel/dentin bond strengths and degree of conversion (DC) within the hybrid layer of a universal adhesive system (G-Bond Plus [GB]). Methods: A total of 60 extracted third molars were divided into four groups for bond-strength testing, according to the adhesive strategy: GB applied as a one-step self-etch adhesive (1-stepSE); GB applied as in 1-stepSE followed by one coat of the hydrophobic resin Heliobond (2-stepSE); GB applied as a two-step etch-and-rinse adhesive (2-stepER); GB applied as in 2-stepER followed by one coat of the hydrophobic resin Heliobond (3-stepER). There were 40 teeth used for enamel microshear bond strength (μSBS) and DC; and 20 teeth used for dentin microtensile bond strength (μTBS) and DC. After restorations were constructed, specimens were stored in water (37°C/24 h) and then tested at 0.5 mm/min (μTBS) or 1.0 mm/min (μSBS). Enamel-resin and dentin-resin interfaces from each group were evaluated for DC using micro-Raman spectroscopy. Data were analyzed with two-way analysis of variance for each substrate and the Tukey test (α=0.05). Results: For enamel, the use of a hydrophobic resin coat resulted in statistically significant higher mean enamel μSBS only for the ER strategy (3-stepER vs 2-stepER, p<0.0002). DC was significantly improved for the SE strategy (p<0.00002). For dentin, the use of a hydrophobic resin coat resulted in significantly higher dentin mean μTBS only for the SE strategy (2-stepSE vs 1-stepSE, p<0.0007). DC was significantly improved in groups 2-stepSE and 3-stepER when compared with 1-stepSE and 2-stepER, respectively (p<0.0009). Conclusions: The use of a hydrophobic resin coat may be beneficial for the selective enamel etching technique, because it improves bond strengths to enamel when applied with the ER strategy and to dentin when used with the SE adhesion strategy. The application of a hydrophobic resin coat may improve DC in resin-dentin interfaces formed with either the SE or the ER strategy. On enamel, DC may benefit from the application of a hydrophobic resin coat over 1-stepSE adhesives.