How to Remove Mastic Glue

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Mastic glue helps keep these bathroom tiles from cracking.
Mastic glue helps keep these bathroom tiles from cracking. (Image: ceramic tile image by Karin Lau from Fotolia.com)

Mastic glue or sealant is a waterproof paste commonly used in construction to bind ceiling, wall and floor tiles, concrete and asphalt. Because it is waterproof, it protects structures from rain and flooding, and therefore is very resistant to water and other substances. This is ideal for shower and bathroom tiles, as well as kitchen tiles where water and liquids are commonly used. Removing mastic glue can be a challenge, because it is designed to be well-sealed, but with the right tools it is possible.

Things You'll Need

  • Utility knife
  • Cotton rag
  • White spirit
  • Cloth

Put on construction gloves that are cotton with a nylon grip to ensure safety when using the tools. This application applies to the removal of mastic glue on all surfaces.

Scrape away the mastic glue with a utility knife. This will take some effort to do. It will help if you position the blade so that the flat end is against the seal; this will allow you to peel away strips of glue.

Discard the strips of mastic glue into the garbage.

Pour white spirit onto a cotton rag and scrub the area where the mastic glue was removed. White spirit is distilled liquid petroleum that is commonly used as paint thinner. It will help remove adhesive material.

Wipe the area down with a dry, clean cloth to remove any remnants of glue.

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