The effect of heat treatment on microstructure and mechanical behaviours of direct metal laser sintered Ti–6Al–4V samples have been studied. Rectangular parts were built in two different directions; vertical and horizontal and subjected to two different heat treatment cycles: above β transus and below β transus with air cooling. Surface characteristics, microstructural examination and mechanical properties have been investigated. Below β transus treatment creates a modification in the surface morphology with a fine dimple network. Above β transus treatment leads to extensive grain growth at the middle section of the vertically build component thereby increasing its microhardness. Both the selected heat treatment cycles significantly reduces the tensile strength and improves the elongation when compared to as-sintered material. However, below transus temperature treated vertical built specimen results in optimum combination of tensile strength (1124 MPa) and elongation (20%). Higher coefficient of friction has been recorded for specimens after heat treatment. © 2017, The Indian Institute of Metals - IIM.