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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

How to Remove Sticky Residue

By the RestorationSOS Educational Staff

It seems like the longer an item sits on a store shelf, the more often there may be price stickers or advertisements or specials or other various and sundry graphics stuck on it. Ideally, the item will be under a wrap or other protective coating, but many times, these stickers get placed directly on the piece itself. This of course presents a problem, since simply placing the sticker there mars the surface of the item and removing the sticker may leave behind unsightly residue that is extremely difficult to clean off, at least not without causing more damage to the unit.

When you try to remove a sticker, you have a fifty-fifty shot of it actually removing without leaving some residue behind that you have to scrape, pull, and pick at in order to try and get at least some of it off.

So what is the best way to remove this stuff? You can keep scratching at it, picking off little pieces at a time in hopes of getting enough removed that it will not be noticed. You can wash the area down and keep trying, but that tends to make things messy as opposed to improving them.

What Products Remove Residue?

The easiest solution is to use a spray solution such as WD-40. WD-40 spray breaks down the sticky residue safely in many cases. It may leave an oily residue behind, but that is easily cleaned up using basic soap and water. You can also use nail polish remover; however, you should be aware that many of the solvents in this material can be harmful when applied to certain surfaces. Removing the residue does little good if the item ends up permanently marred.

If the sticky residue is on something fibrous such as clothes, you may need to use dry cleaning fluid. This is usually found in the laundry section of department stores or your local janitorial supply store. Simply using soap and water or detergent may not break down the sticky residue sufficiently. In many cases involving clothing, it is usually best to have them professionally treated. It is the only way to be sure to clean the item thoroughly.

If the stickers are on glass windows, by all means refrain from using rough abrasives such as steel wool or an SOS pad. These elements will mark up your glass, and once done, it's done. Here is where the flat razor comes into play; you spray water on the affected surface and then use the flat razor to scrape the sticky residue away. Be advised that the handle may get slippery, so use extreme caution. Water or glass cleaner may be used to soften up the material and keep the razor from gumming up the process. This means that you can work longer before a replacement blade becomes necessary.

One of the worst offenders is the picture with the sticker placed squarely on the glass front. You can't clean the glass without having to remove the picture first, which can be a headache. Often allowing a cleaning cloth with warm water to sit on the glass for awhile will do the trick, but make sure the water doesn't get under the glass as this could ruin the photo.

Recommended Reading
How to Remove Price Tag Stickers

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