How to Get Tree Sap Off a Couch

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Tree sap naturally occurs, creating a sticky substance that drips from trees.
Tree sap naturally occurs, creating a sticky substance that drips from trees. (Image: Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Spending time outdoors amidst nature is often the culprit of stains brought inside. How tree sap is transferred from the outdoors to your couch might be a mystery, but removing the sticky substance doesn't have to be a mysterious undertaking. You must use caution and timeliness in removing tree sap from upholstery to ensure it doesn't end up elsewhere. When you isolate the stain and treat it with effective cleaning supplies found around the home, you can get tree sap off your couch and leave no sticky residue behind.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic bag
  • Ice cubes
  • Table knife
  • Glycerin
  • Clean cloths
  • Talcum powder
  • Bucket
  • 1 tablespoon dishwashing detergent

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Fill a small plastic bag with ice cubes. Lay the bag of ice directly on the tree sap stains on your couch. Leave it there for at least 30 minutes to freeze the sap.

Ice hardens tree sap so you can peel it off.
Ice hardens tree sap so you can peel it off. (Image: Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Remove the ice bag from the couch and set it aside in case you need to freeze the sap again. Insert the dull side of a table knife under the edge of the hardened tree sap. Gently lift the sap up and pull it away from the upholstery with your fingers. Repeat this to remove as much tree sap as possible.

Smooth glycerin onto the remaining tree sap residue. Allow the glycerin to sit on the sticky sap for two minutes to help break down the stickiness. Blot the glycerin off with a clean cloth.

Cover the tree sap with talcum powder to absorb the grease from the glycerin. Leave the powder on the upholstery for 10 minutes before brushing it off.

Pour 2 cups of cool water into a bucket. Add 1 tablespoon of dishwashing detergent.

Dishwashing detergent effectively cuts through tree sap stickiness.
Dishwashing detergent effectively cuts through tree sap stickiness. (Image: George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Dampen a clean cloth with the diluted detergent. Sponge the remaining tree sap stain to moisten it. Cover the stain with a dry cloth and press down to absorb the detergent solution and remove the stain. Repeat this step until the tree sap residue is gone.

Blot your couch upholstery with a damp cloth to rinse the detergent solution off. Aid the drying process by pressing dry cloths into the couch upholstery to remove moisture. Let the surface air-dry completely.

Tips & Warnings

  • Substitute dry cleaning solvent for the detergent solution.
  • Use these steps to remove tree sap from fabric, suede or leather upholstery.
  • Avoid scrubbing the tree sap stain as it's likely to smear further into the upholstery.

References

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