Removing Sellotape Residue from Wood Surfaces
Remember: the longer the tape has been on the wood, the more difficult it’s going to be to pull off. It’s not impossible, however – you just need to be more patient.
- First, you will need to warm the sellotape with a heat gun or blow dryer. Keep the setting on low or medium. Do not exceed 120 degrees F, or place the blow dryer directly onto the tape – keep it a few inches away.
- Keep aiming toward the sellotape strip for approximately 45 seconds. At this point, the tape should begin to peel away from the wood. If it does not, point the heating tool over it for another 45 seconds.
- When the tape begins to pull away, aim the hair dryer over one of the corners. This will make the strip or sticker easier to pull off. Use a thin object with a flat surface, such as a credit card or knife blade to gently peel the sellotape off. Hold the object at a shallow angle to the wood; the idea is to work with the grain, not across.
- Go very slowly. If you are using a blade, try to keep it at a 4 degree angle to the wood so that it doesn’t begin to carve into the wood. Don’t focus all on one side; stop and begin working from the other direction. Remember to always keep with the grain of the wood.
- For any sticky residue that may still be on the wood, use a bit of WD-40, soap, or Goo-Gone to moisten it. Spray or dab the liquid onto the residue and let it set for about ten minutes. When the residue dissolves, wipe it off with a terry cloth towel. Sometimes it will take a few applications of the lubricant to get the residue soft enough that it can be wiped off. Even if you don’t see any more residue, the surface might still be a bit sticky. Keep cleaning until the stickiness is completely gone.
Warning: do NOT apply WD-40 to an unfinished wood surface; the oil will seep into the pores and cause staining.
Before applying any residue remover onto a surface, test a small amount of it on an unnoticeable area first to ensure that there is no damage.