Merely perceiving objects usually grasped with a power or a precision grip (e.g., an apple vs. a cherry) potentiate power-grip and precision-grip responses, respectively. According to the size-coding account, this potentiation effect is due to the compatibility between size codes associated with both stimuli and responses, rather than to the simulation of motor information stored at a conceptual level (i.e., the embodied account). At the stimulus level, size-coding would occur, because objects associated with a power grip are usually presented in a larger visual size than objects associated with a precision grip. However, this explanation is challenged by results, showing that reading nouns of objects associated with power or precision grip also leads to potentiation effects, even though the visual size of the displayed object is no longer perceived. Therefore, we designed three experiments to better understand this word-based potentiation effect and to investigate whether it relies on size codes. Our results showed a word-based potentiation effect only when the object nouns were interleaved with pictures depicting the objects in their typical visual size. We discuss the contributions of these results for both the size-coding account and the embodied account of the potentiation effect of grasping behaviors.