How to Remove Old Carpet Glue

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Things You'll Need

  • Mineral spirits

  • Sponge

  • Heat gun

  • Plastic putty knife

  • Floor scraper

  • Metal putty knife

  • Adhesive solvent

Remove the carpet glue after removing old carpet.

Whether you have a concrete, hardwood or wooden sub-floor under your carpet, you will need to remove the old carpet glue to replace the flooring or use your hardwood floors. Skipping this step can cause problems when applying new carpet adhesive, refinishing your hardwood or laying a new flooring choice such as tile or linoleum. You can do this at home on your own without the help of professionals, which can save you some money in your renovation.


Removing Glue From Wood

Step 1

Inspect the color of the adhesive to determine the best process for removing it. If it is brown in color, it has a tar base. If it is yellow, it is standard carpet glue.

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Step 2

Turn off all flame sources in the room--such as lit candles, pilot lights and gas stoves--if the glue is tar based.


Step 3

Apply mineral spirits over the glue with a sponge, if it is tar based. This will soften it and make it easier to remove. Apply a small amount of mineral spirits to the corner of your floor to make sure it will not discolor your flooring before you start.

Step 4

Apply heat to standard carpet glue with a heat gun, or a a hairdryer if you do not have a heat gun. This will melt and soften the glue for removal.


Step 5

Scrape the glue once it has softened with a plastic putty knife. Metal putty knives are effective as well, but they could damage your floors.

Step 6

Scrub any leftover particles, that could not be scraped, with a scouring pad.


Removing Glue From Concrete

Step 1

Scrape the large spots of glue off of the concrete with a floor scraper. If you are doing it by hand you can also use a metal putty knife.

Step 2

Apply an adhesive removal solvent to the floor, according to the product directions, with a sponge mop.


Step 3

Rinse the mop out with plain water and mop over the floor with water to rinse the solvent and dissolved glue from the floor. Allow the floor to air dry.



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