Household Tips

How to Get Rid of Stickers

If you attempt to scrape a sticker off, you will likely remove only the top layer, the design layer. The layer that holds the adhesive will remain attached to the surface. Even with sharp scraping materials, it will take you a long time to completely remove a single sticker.

Through the years, many people have discovered a slew of unconventional remedies that can make the removal of stickers a whole lot easier. You should no further than your home’s supply of carpentry materials and simple household items for those remedies. The funny thing is that every item that you need has been right under your nose all along.

Paint Thinner: The Adhesive Eater

Paint is an item that is just as hard to remove as stickers. With its built-in adhesive and protective solution, removing paint is a common issue for renovations and other carpentry projects. Carpenters rely on a special solvent that is formulated to penetrate the protective coating of paint and loosen paint’s sticky grip. That solvent is called the paint thinner.

Surprisingly, paint thinner is also effective on stickers. The active ingredients of the thinner eat through a sticker’s adhesive until you can remove the sticker with a few easy scrapes.

Materials Used:

Before you start removing stickers, make sure you wear gloves. Thinners with potent formulations are known skin irritants. You can also wear safety goggles if you are a rather clumsy person.

When you are ready, apply generous amounts of paint thinner to a piece of cloth. The cloth must be slightly soaked for the thinner to penetrate the adhesive layer of the sticker. Rub the damp cloth over the sticker as you use your spatula to pry the sticker away from the surface. Eventually, the sticker’s adhesive will give way.

If the sticker refuses to budge, you can splash a generous amount of thinner onto the sticker. When the sticker is soaked, use the cloth and spatula to displace the sticker.

Penetrating Oil: The Gap Creator

Penetrating oil works just like a paint thinner, but instead of eating through a sticker’s adhesive, the penetrating oil slips between the surface and the adhesive. The oil evaporates rather quickly though, so you have to move fast if you plan to use penetrating oil to remove stickers.

Penetrating oil is pretty abundant since it has a wide array of uses. You can purchase penetrating oil in hardware centers and home improvement stores. You can also check the internet for the most effective brand of penetrating so you will readily know what to buy when you get to a hardware center or a home improvement store.

The application of penetrating oil on stickers is similar to the paint thinner’s. You have to douse the sticker with generous amounts of oil and pry the stubborn thing off with a piece of cloth and a metal spatula. Since the penetrating oil is formulated to dislodge extremely sticky items like paint and chewing gum, you shouldn’t have too many problems removing stickers.

Heat Gun: Licensed to Dry

The heat gun works just like a blow dryer. You simply have to plug the heat gun to an electrical outlet then you can use the device to heat or thaw items. Of course, you can also use the gun to dry off the adhesive of stickers.

Just like all the other sticker-removing remedies, the heat gun is either readily available or can be purchased in a hardware store. Investing in such a power tool is not a bad idea since you can also the heat gun to weld plastic, thaw objects, and soften various types of adhesives.

Materials Used:

  • Heat gun
  • metal spatula
  • gloves

First, wear protective gloves so that you hands will not be charred by the extremely warm emissions of the heat gun. Make sure that the thermostat of the gun is set to zero then plug it to a power source. Then, set the temperature to 100 degrees Celsius or slightly higher. Point the heat gun to a sticker for a couple of minutes then try scraping the sticker with a metal spatula.

If the sticker does not budge, increase the temperature setting of the heat gun and point it to the sticker for a minute. Try to remove the sticker once again with your spatula. If the sticker still remains stuck, you can just repeat the process of increasing the temperature setting of the gun until you find the amount of temperature that can dry adhesive of your stickers. From that point on, you can easily scrape off all the stickers that you want to remove since you have the correct temperature setting.

The Lowdown

Among the three remedies, the heat gun appears to be the most effective but it is also the most expensive. You can just use the two previous methods if you do not have a large amount of stickers to worry about. The penetrating oil and the paint thinner are both tagged at the market at about $15, which is dramatically cheaper than the heat gun. Just purchase the heat gun if you will use it in a lot of endeavors other than removing stickers.

Stickers are pretty little adornments that can amaze every kid. Consequentially, stickers are also some of the peskiest items to remove, especially if they get in the way of your room remodeling plans. Thanks to the efforts of the world’s modern MacGyvers, stickers are easily displaced by rather unconventional remedies.

Click here for more information on how to get rid of stickers.

About the author

Nicole Harding

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