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How to remove silicone from surfaces in your home

Read on to discover how to remove silicone from tiles and glass with our simple guides.


Reading Time: 2 minutes

a hand in a pink glove wiping bathroom tiles with a blue cloth

Key Steps

  • Always wear protective gloves and glasses.

  • Keep the area well ventilated.

  • Take silicone off glass in layers using a utility knife.

  • Remove silicone from tiles by sliding a utility knife down each side of the bead.

  • Peel the silicone from the tile like a banana skin.

Silicone can be very useful, especially for those who carry out DIY projects around the home; but it’s important to know how to remove silicone from surfaces to deal with potential accidents! This article will show the best way to remove silicone from glass and tiles.

As it contains acetic acid, silicone can be softened with white vinegar. This will make it much easier for you to remove it from any surface including glass and tiles.

How to remove silicone from glass: a step-by-step method

Read below for 6 simple steps to remove silicone from glass.

What you need:

  • Gloves

  • Eye protection

  • Utility knife

  • Silicone remover

  • Putty knife

  • Warm water

  • Washing-up liquid.

Steps to remove silicone from glass:

  1. Always wear protective gloves and eyewear.

  2. Open nearby doors and windows to keep the room well ventilated.

  3. Place the utility knife parallel to the glass, sliding it beneath the layer of silicone; staying close to the glass. Remove as much as you can using this method, one layer at a time.

  4. Apply silicone remover to any silicone you have been unable to shift. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the label for removing the silicone.

  5. Using a putty knife, remove the remaining silicone residue.

  6. se warm water mixed with a few drops of washing-up liquid to clean off the surface of the glass. Finish by rinsing with clean, warm water.

How to remove silicone from tiles: a simple guide

Use these steps for removing silicone from tiles.

What you need:

  • Tile cleaner

  • Utility knife

  • Putty knife

  • Scouring pad

  • Rubbing alcohol.

Steps to remove silicone from tiles:

  1. Clear the area around the tiles you want to remove silicone from.

  2. Wash down the area using a tile cleaner.

  3. Slide the utility knife down the length of the silicone bead, taking care to hold the blade so it doesn’t cut into the wall.

  4. Do the same on the opposite side of the silicone bead.

  5. Once the silicone is loose, you should be able to peel it away from the tiles. It should be as simple as peeling a banana.

  6. Use the putty knife to remove any parts of the silicone that remain stubborn.

  7. Dig out any remaining silicone with the putty knife, always taking care to keep it at an angle so as not to damage the wall beneath.

  8. Dip the scouring pad into rubbing alcohol.

  9. Scrub the tiles to clean away any remaining residue.

Does vinegar dissolve silicone?

Did you know silicone contains acetic acid? This is the same acid you find in vinegars such as white vinegar. This means white vinegar is a great way to soften silicone and make it easier to remove.

With this simple guide, we’ve now shown you everything you need to know about how to remove silicone from surfaces such as glass and tiles.

Removing Silicone from Walls: Step-by-Step Guide

Silicone can be tricky to remove from walls, but with the right approach, it's manageable. Here's how:

  1. Gather supplies: You'll need a utility knife, rubbing alcohol, cotton balls, and a cleaning cloth.

  2. Cut excess silicone: Use the utility knife to carefully cut away any large chunks of silicone.

  3. Soak with alcohol: Soak a cotton ball in rubbing alcohol and dab it onto the silicone residue.

  4. Wait and wipe: Let the alcohol sit for a few minutes, then wipe off the softened silicone with the cleaning cloth.

  5. Repeat if needed: For stubborn spots, repeat the process until the silicone is entirely removed.

  6. Clean and dry: Finish by cleaning the wall and ensuring it's completely dry before reapplying anything.

Frequently asked questions on removing silicone

Can I use vinegar to remove silicone?

No, vinegar is not effective for removing silicone from surfaces. In fact, vinegar can actually damage some surfaces, like granite or marble. It's best to use a silicone remover or rubbing alcohol instead.

What if the silicone is stuck in a hard-to-reach area, like a corner or crevice?

If the silicone is stuck in a hard-to-reach area, you can try using a toothbrush or a small brush to apply the silicone remover or rubbing alcohol. Be sure to wear gloves and protective eyewear to avoid getting the remover or alcohol on your skin or in your eyes.

Can I use a heat gun to remove silicone?

Yes, a heat gun can be effective for softening and removing silicone from surfaces. Simply use the heat gun to warm up the silicone, then use a scraper or silicone remover to remove the softened silicone. Be sure to follow all safety precautions when using a heat gun, and avoid overheating the surface or the silicone.

Originally published