- Posted by Direct Sealants in Sealants
- November 28, 2017
- No Comments
Learning how to remove silicone sealant isn’t easy but is something worth knowing how to do.
It’s a versatile substance that you can use for a range of jobs but even then you sometimes need to know how to remove silicone sealant.
Silicone sealants are handy for protecting your bathroom and for sealing your windows, among a variety of other tasks.
However, it doesn’t last forever, though.
Sometimes you might need to remove silicone sealant, so you can replace it.
Some people can struggle to remove silicone sealant from certain surfaces.
Either because of its positioning or because it stubbornly sticks to the material.
How to remove silicone sealant
Fortunately, having to remove silicone sealants is often easier than you might think.
Whether you’re tackling plastic, metal, glass, wood or fiberglass, you can remove it quickly and efficiently so that you’re left with a clean surface.
Before you start trying to remove silicone sealant from anywhere, take a look at this guide to find out the best methods you can use.
How to remove silicone sealant from plastic
Removing silicone sealant from some surfaces is easier than others.
For example, you might find it easy to peel away from smooth tiles.
How to remove silicone sealant from plastic can be a little trickier.
Removing silicone sealant without damaging the plastic is sometimes an issue because the sealant likes to cling on.
You might get the majority of it off, but it could still leave small bits behind.
To remove silicone from plastic could risk scratching the plastic, so you need to be careful.
Simple approach to removing silicone sealant from plastic
If you want a simple way to approach the issue, a silicone sealant remover offers you one option.
Silicone sealant remover breaks down the sealant to help you get rid of any stubborn bits.
First, remove as much sealant as you can with a remover tool.
Then check that your silicone sealant remover is suitable for the type of plastic you want to apply it to.
You can use a tube of sealant or a cartridge and cartridge gun.
- Just apply the remover product.
- Leave it for a few hours
- When you return it will have swollen
- It is now easier to gently scrape off.
- Now you can wipe everything clean to ensure it’s all neat and tidy
Try to avoid using any strong cleaning products to remove silicone sealant from plastic.
Plastic can be damaged easily, especially by harsh cleaning products.
It’s best to steer away from things like potassium hydroxide.
Multiple uses of strong compounds should particularly be avoided when you’re removing silicone from plastic.
How to remove silicone sealant from metal
When you face the task of removing silicone sealant from metal, you might not have to be so gentle as with plastic.
It might be used on various metal items, such as sinks and tubs in your bathroom.
Again, you could use a silicone sealant remover product if you want to try something that could make it easier to remove.
They’re usually fine to use on metal so you won’t have to worry about any damage.
However, if you decide not to use any special products, a good amount of elbow grease might be your best bet.
Use a sharp tool to get rid of as much of the sealant as you can, being careful not to damage the metal (or yourself!).
Use a bristle brush or nylon scrubber to get rid of yet more sealant, but avoid using wire wool.
You might also want to make a cleaner using an abrasive cleaning powder mixed with water.
Just be careful it doesn’t touch other surfaces as it should be fine on plain metal but could damage other materials.
Removing window sealant from glass
Silicone sealant is often used around window panes for caulking, to make sure there are no air leaks.
It’s also used for glass shower cubicles and screens in the bathroom.
But it can get worn away or might have been poorly applied the first time, so you need to remove it.
Obviously, you don’t want to use anything too abrasive on glass, or you will end up with scratches.
As with other materials, it’s safe to use a razor blade or scraper to remove any excess sealant, as long as you’re careful.
Applying heat can help you to remove sealant without damaging the glass.
A hairdryer is probably the easiest way to do it if you have one already.
Rubbing alcohol provides a gentle way of getting rid of any small bits that might be left behind without damaging the glass.
You can wipe the glass with a sponge dampened with alcohol or try rubbing with alcohol and a cloth.
Just remember to take a gentle approach when removing window sealant from any glass surfaces.
How to remove silicone sealant from wood
You might find silicone sealant like Adiseal Adhesive and Sealant, on wood.
Particularly around wooden windows or door frames.
It’s also used in various other areas around the home.
If you need to replace the wood sealant, or remove it completely, you’ll need to consider the best way to do it without damaging the wood.
If you’re going to use a silicone sealant remover it is likely to be suitable for wood.
But you might want to perform a spot test first, just to make sure.
Some sealant removers say not to use them on untreated wood.
When you remove silicone from wood you can follow many of the same steps as you would for other materials.
Use a scrap to remove what you can, then use heat, a sealant removing product, or a damp cloth to help get off any residue.
However, with wood, you need to be careful that you don’t make things too wet.
Too much moisture might damage the wood.
You can use a wood cleaner to help you clean the wood properly without damaging it.
Another point to consider is that wood is often painted or stained.
You might need to be extra careful if you want to avoid damaging the finish.
Alternatively, have some paint or stain ready for touch ups once you’ve finished.
How to remove silicone sealant from shower cubicles
Silicone sealant in shower cubicles keeps water out of places where it shouldn’t be.
However, it might need replacing if it wasn’t applied well the first time or if it has started to deteriorate or become moldy.
If you’re removing silicone sealant from a shower cubicle, you should be dealing with a number of materials, from plastic and glass to tiles.
Knowing what material you’re dealing with is a good start.
First, try to make sure everything is dry to make the sealant easier to pull away and so that you don’t get wet.
Once you’ve removed the silicone, you’ll need to dry everything thoroughly again before you apply any new sealant.
Again, you can use a scraper or blade to get rid of the majority of the silicone sealant.
But you’ll still have a few stubborn bits that are left behind and not so easy to remove.
Since you might be dealing with two materials at once, like plastic and tile, make sure any cleaning products or solutions you use are suitable for both.
If in doubt, using heat from a hairdryer or heat gun can help to make sealant easier to remove.
Simple steps to removing bath sealants
Baths are another place where silicone sealant is often used to join two different materials together.
Often, you’ll be dealing with a plastic bath and tiled walls. But baths can also be made from metal, fibreglass, and even enamelled with porcelain.
Your bathroom wall might also not be tiled.
It could be painted, or you might even use waterproofing.
It’s a good idea to know what your bath is made from first so that you can take the best approach to removing silicone sealant.
Whatever material you’re removing the silicone from, it’s a good idea to test any products on a small, preferably hidden area just to make sure you’re not going to do any damage.
One product that can serve well to remove bath sealant is a PVCu solvent cleaner.
It can help to weaken the bonds in the sealant, so it’s easier to remove.
You can apply it and leave it for a while before attempting to get rid of all the silicone around your bath.
As with your shower, you’ll need to make sure everything is completely dry before you apply any new silicone sealant.
How to remove silicone sealant from fibreglass
Some shower stalls and baths are made from or coated in fibreglass.
Your fibreglass is probably nice and glossy, and you don’t want to risk ruining it.
Be very careful when you’re deciding while solvents are appropriate for use on fibreglass.
You can check a small patch to see what effect any chemicals have on it before you go ahead and do anything more.
Start by scraping away what you can with a blade or scraper so you can get rid of the majority of the sealant.
Don’t go too quickly or you could end up slipping and scratching something.
Silicone sealant remover solutions might not be suitable for use on fibreglass, so check the instructions or label before you use it.
Now you know how to remove silicone sealant
If you’re not sure about using any strong products, try using alcohol or mineral spirits.
It might take a bit more elbow grease to remove the sealant, but it can help you protect the fibreglass.
It can be tough to remove every trace of silicone sealant.
If you want to get rid of it completely, make sure you know how to tackle different surfaces.