The purpose of this study was to evaluate the influence of the application mode of three universal adhesive systems on interfacial physical properties of indirect composite restorations adhesively cemented to dentin cavities. Seventy-eight bovine lower incisors were selected and a slice of dentin (thickness: 2 mm) between the buccal surface and pulp chamber was obtained for each tooth. Conical cavities were made on this surface. The internal walls of the cavities were then coated with a hydrophilic gel, filled with composite resin and photopolymerized. The dentin/cone sets were divided into 6 groups (n=10) according to type of universal adhesive (TETRI: Tetric N Bond, FUT: Futura Bond U, SBU: Single Bond Universal) and acid etching on dentin (A: with acid etching; WA: without acid etching). The acid etching and the adhesive systems were applied to the surface of the dentin. All composite resin cones were sandblasted (Al2O3, 20 s) and silanized. After surface treatment, the cones were cemented (RelyX Ultimate) into the dentin cavity and photopolymerized. After thermocycling (10,000 cycles), samples were submitted to marginal adaptation analysis (using caries detector dye), push-out test (0.5 mm/min), and failure mode analysis. Additional samples were prepared for nanoleakage analysis (SEM). The data (MPa) were analyzed by two-way ANOVA and Tukey's post-test (5%). The groups in which the dentin was acid etched showed significantly lower bond strength values in the push-out test (p<0.01). Dentin acid etching significantly reduced the bond strength between universal adhesive systems and dentin in indirect restorative procedures.