Removing LIQUID NAILS Construction Adhesives

Occasionally you may wish to separate two objects bonded with LIQUID NAILS Adhesive, such as two boards, two bricks, or in some cases, two of your fingers! Here are some tips for getting out of the stickiest situations. (Remember, LIQUID NAILS Adhesive is designed for durable bonding — this isn't supposed to be easy!)

How To Remove LIQUID NAILS Construction Adhesive from Skin

First, check to see if the adhesive is solvent or latex-based.

For Solvent-Based LIQUID NAILS Adhesive:

Gently rub petroleum jelly, vegetable or mineral oil onto the skin. Repeat applications may be needed.

Remove any contaminated clothing and be sure to wash it before wearing it again.

For Latex-Based LIQUID NAILS Adhesive:

Soap and water may be used as adhesive remover. Wash thoroughly.

How To Remove LIQUID NAILS Adhesive Products from Building Materials

In general, LIQUID NAILS construction adhesive and caulk products can be scraped off when they are softened either by:

  • Heating above 140°F with an electric heat gun or blow dryer
  • Coating the adhesive with petroleum jelly or mineral spirits for several hours to several days (NOTE: Mineral spirits are not recommended for tub surrounds, whether vinyl, plastic, painted or varnished.)

If building materials are bonded, you must separate the items as explained below before removing the construction adhesive.

What you'll need:

  • Windshield cut-out wire (also called music wire), available at most automotive parts stores
  • Safety gloves and/or handles for the wire to keep hands from being cut
  • Safety goggles or a face shield
  • Two screwdrivers to prop parts into an open position
  • Wire cutters

What you'll do:

  • Cut a length of wire about two or three feet longer than the width of the part to be removed.
  • Starting at one corner, work the middle of the wire under the edge of the part.
  • If using handles, connect them to the wire. If not, be sure to wear heavy safety gloves to protect your hands.
  • Saw back and forth with the wire, using moderate pressure. This should start to cut the construction adhesive. After a few inches have been cut, use the screwdrivers to prop open the gap. This helps prevent thermoplastic adhesives from re-adhering, which can happen as friction causes significant warming of the adhesive.
  • Continue sawing, moving the screwdrivers as you go. Continue until the part is loose and can be removed.
  • Scrape away residual construction adhesive. If the adhesive is too hard to scrape, apply a light layer of baby oil, wait an hour, then scrape. Repeat if necessary. NOTE: Do not use baby oil or any other softening material if painting of the surface is planned, as it will stain.

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