How to Unglue Elmer's Wood Glue


Elmer's Wood Glue is an effective adhesive that creates a lasting bond for woodworking projects that require a sturdy hold. For this reason, it can be quite a challenge to unglue. Care must be taken so that strong chemicals and abrasive materials don't damage the wood when you are attempting to remove the glue. An adhesive solvent can help you safely complete the task of ungluing Elmer's Wood Glue.

Things You'll Need

  • Hair dryer or heat gun
  • Adhesive solvent
  • Plastic scraper
  • Cloth or rag
  • Use hot air from a blow-dryer or heat gun to heat the surface of the wood held by the glue. This will soften the bond and provide leverage when attempting to pry the woodwork from the glue.

  • Prepare to shave down or cut into the wood, depending on its thickness. If the glue cannot be reached simply by loosening the woodwork, make sure to exercise extreme caution on valued furniture or personal effects.

  • Read the directions on the product label of the adhesive solvent for proper application once the wood glue is exposed. The solvent may be poured directly onto the wood glue, or it may need to be poured onto a cloth first.

  • Wait the instructed period of time for the glue to soften once the solvent has been applied. This can take anywhere from a few seconds to a minute.

  • Wipe the affected area with a rag to check if the glue has softened. Loosen as much glue as much as you can before using the plastic scraper for leverage.

  • Apply more of the adhesive solvent until the Elmer's Wood Glue is cleanly removed from the surface. Carefully heat the glue as needed to aid with removal as well.

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