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Need Help Finding Proper Solvent
Old 07-12-2007, 01:38 PM   #1
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Need Help Finding Proper Solvent

I have some old steel cabinets in my kitchen. I need to remove old vinyl contact paper because the glue is deteriorating and it stinks.

I need help figuring out what to try as to solvents. I guess either paint thinner, acetone or alcohol might work. Any idea as to what to try first? Or other suggestions?

I can peel off the sheets, I just need something to remove the old glue from the steel shelves.

Ha
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:01 PM   #2
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Heat it with a hair dryer and peel it off. Should work for most of it.

If theres any adhesive left, you might be able to remove it with WD40, or a regular adhesive remover that you can get at the hardware store. I'd recommend one of the 'natural' ones instead of solvent based ones. I think the natural ones use citrus oils.
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:19 PM   #3
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After the hair-dryer task try a little "Goof-Off" in an obscure area. It works miracles on latex paint and kids stickers. The knock-off brands are not as effective as Goof-Off.
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:19 PM   #4
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WD-40 + lots of time

soak it and let it sit to give the solvent time to work.
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:28 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by saluki9 View Post
WD-40 + lots of time

soak it and let it sit to give the solvent time to work.
Yep, WD-40 removes the sticky. Oh, and make sure you have plenty of ventilation!!! The fumes from WD-40 aren't too strong, but they can give you a headache (or worse) after a while.

Also, whether WD-40, or some other solvent, or solvent-based based cleaner.....make sure you don't use them around appliances with pilot lights (stoves, water heaters, furnaces, etc.). The fumes reaching the pilot light can cause a flash fire in your house. NOT a good thing!!! My friend's neighbor had about half of his house gutted by fire while trying to remove some tile adhesive, the solvent fumes were ignited by a pilot light in another part of the house.
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:39 PM   #6
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Laquer thinner with no ventalation = more fun.





(just kidding)
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Old 07-12-2007, 02:41 PM   #7
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WD-40 or a citrus-based cleaner called "Goo Gone".
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Ahhh, the good old days!
Old 07-12-2007, 03:26 PM   #8
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Ahhh, the good old days!

In the days of my youth, we used solvents like carbon-tetrachloride and model glues and paints containing now-banned solvents in our bedrooms for making models of the 50s and 60s cars. Carbon-tet is now known to cause cancers and most other solvents mentioned above are not recommended without gloves and very good ventilation.

Good old Rubbing Alcohol (aka Isopropyl Alcohol) is about the only cleaner that I would even use in the house any more, and is recognized as a safe cleaner. I still use some of the older solvents if I am working outside and expect to do little other than give a short spurt of cleaner and rubbing for a few minutes.

HA, this job sounds like a long, inside the house job - I'd get a supply of Isopropyl Alcohol from the nearest Walgreens and safely clean that contact film. Your health is important.

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Old 07-12-2007, 05:09 PM   #9
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I go through the different options to find the best match, and usually find that nail polish remover is the best.
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Old 07-12-2007, 08:08 PM   #10
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I have a fairly standard order I'll try on projects like this.
- Water
- Ammonia
- Isopropyl Alcohol
- WD-40
- Paint thinner
- Gasoline
- Acetone (aka nail polish remover)


I have used Listerine successfully to remove stuff that isopropyl alcohol wouldn't remove.

We've got some Goo-Gone around the house somewhere, but I can never find it when I need it.

A pair of nitrile gloves will be your friend, as will good ventilation and an absence of ignition sources (to include motor brushes, etc).

If all else fails, consider applying new contact paper of your liking over the old residue. Or, have a fire (which you might have anyway).
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Old 07-13-2007, 03:11 AM   #11
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Goo-Gone is amazing!
They also have a spray version that is slightly more gelatinous than the oily original.
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Old 07-13-2007, 01:23 PM   #12
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Thanks for all the help.

I tried some isopropyl alcohol.

Remember now, this is the stuff you rub on your feet after a shower on a warm day.

It not only took off the old glue, it also took off the old paint!

Next try Goo-Gone. Or I might just figure I am going to be stuck with a repainting job.

Ha
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Old 07-13-2007, 07:56 PM   #13
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Oh its PAINTED metal?

Yeah, you're going to be repainting it.
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Old 07-14-2007, 01:29 PM   #14
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Ha.. now you know it is latex paint.

Here is a partial guide of what will dissolve what in terms of paint:
Solvents, Thinners and Strippers Buying Guide
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Old 07-14-2007, 04:46 PM   #15
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You'd get his attention a lot faster if you sent him something simply labeled "Strippers Guide"...
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Old 07-14-2007, 05:08 PM   #16
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You'd get his attention a lot faster if you sent him something simply labeled "Strippers Guide"...
Hey, don't knock it- an old man needs to get his stimulation wherever he finds it.

BTW, I finally found a sandy Bikini beach, right here in Seattle. An easy 25 cent busride for a senior like me.

Ha
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Old 07-14-2007, 05:12 PM   #17
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sandy Bikini
Sounds painful... I prefer them without sand...
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Old 07-14-2007, 05:37 PM   #18
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Ha's just hoping they'll take 'em off to shake the sand out.

25c strippers. Up until now I'd have said thats a seriously false economy.
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