How to Remove Old Stickers

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It is frustrating trying to remove old stickers and their residue from various surfaces and items. Whether you find stickers on your walls, price tags on dinnerware or labels on your windows, you likely want them gone. Even if the stickers have been on these surfaces for years, they can still be removed. It is important to not only remove the paper part of the sticker, but the residue as well.

Things You'll Need

  • Butter knife
  • Blow dryer
  • Cotton balls
  • Rubbing alcohol or household lubricating spray
  • Rags
  • Dish soap
  • Peel off as much of the paper sticker as possible using your fingernails and a blunt object such as a butter knife. Do this carefully so you do not scratch or damage the surface you are working on.

  • Soften the sticker residue with heat from a blow dryer. Hold the dryer about 6 inches from the surface and apply the heat for several minutes until the sticker residue has softened. Scrape away the softened residue with your fingernails and/or a butter knife.

  • Moisten a cotton ball with rubbing alcohol or household lubricating spray. Both products are effective at removing stickers.

  • Scrub the sticky area of the surface with the cotton ball and solvent. Apply more of the solvent and continue scrubbing until the sticker and residue is gone.

  • Wipe down the area with a rag and warm, soapy water. Go over the surface with a dry cloth to remove moisture.

Tips & Warnings

  • Acetone nail polish remover, plain white toothpaste and peanut butter are other products that will remove old stickers from various surfaces. Rubber cement thinner and lacquer thinner are other products that will remove even the most stubborn old stickers.
  • Always test the product you are using on a small area of the surface first to make sure it will not cause damage.

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