How to remove hot glue from plastic

Hot glue can be a great way to temporarily keep things together, but it can also be notoriously troublesome when it comes to removing it. In this article, we will show you how to remove hot glue from plastic without damaging the surface.

Hot glue is a strong adhesive that can hold many pieces of plastic together. Sometimes, when you want to remove the hot glue from a plastic surface, it can be difficult and sometimes impossible to do so without damaging the plastic.

In this article, we will show you two methods for removing hot glue from plastic without damage. First, we will use heat to soften the adhesive, and then we will use a water-and-gel solution to attack the hard glue where it is most vulnerable. If you follow these steps, you should be able to remove hot glue from most plastics without any problems.

remove hot glue from plastic

Hot glue can adhere strongly to plastic surfaces, making it difficult to remove. However, with the right approach and tools, you can safely and effectively remove hot glue without damaging the plastic. Below, we will discuss four effective methods to remove hot glue from plastic.

Method 1: Rubbing Alcohol or Acetone

One of the most commonly used methods to remove hot glue from plastic is by using rubbing alcohol or acetone. Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Allow the hot glue to cool and dry completely.
  2. Take a cotton swab and apply some rubbing alcohol or acetone onto it.
  3. Gently rub the edge of the hot glue with the cotton swab.
  4. Give it a few moments, and eventually, the glue should start to peel off easily.
  5. Continue rubbing until all the hot glue is removed from the plastic surface.

Method 2: Nitromethane Component

Another effective option for removing hot glue from plastic is using a nitromethane component. The nitromethane component is milder than acetone but stronger than soapy water. Follow these steps:

  1. Obtain a nitromethane component, also known as a de-glue solution, from a hobby store.
  2. Allow the hot glue to cool and dry completely.
  3. Apply the nitromethane component onto the hot glue using a cotton swab or a cloth.
  4. Let it sit for a few minutes to soften the glue.
  5. Gently rub the softened glue with the cloth or a plastic scraper.
  6. The hot glue should start to loosen and come off the plastic surface.
  7. Continue until all the glue is removed.

Method 3: Vinegar

Vinegar is another household item that can help remove hot glue from plastic surfaces. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Soak a cloth in vinegar and place it over the hot glue.
  2. Allow the vinegar to penetrate the glue for a few minutes.
  3. Use a scraper or a butter knife to gently lift and remove the softened hot glue.
  4. If necessary, repeat the process until all the glue is gone.
  5. Clean the plastic surface with water and dry it thoroughly.

Method 4: Heat

Applying heat to the hot glue can help soften it, making it easier to remove from plastic surfaces. Follow these steps:

  1. Use a hairdryer on its lowest setting to gently heat the hot glue.
  2. Keep the hairdryer at a safe distance to avoid melting or damaging the plastic.
  3. Once the glue starts to melt slightly, use a hot cloth to quickly wipe away the softened glue.
  4. After removing the glue, wipe down the plastic surface with water and dry it thoroughly.

Testing the Method on a Hidden Area

Before applying any of the above methods to remove hot glue, it’s important to test the chosen method on a small, hidden area of the plastic surface. This will help ensure that the method doesn’t cause any damage or discoloration to the plastic. If the test area remains unaffected, you can proceed with confidence to remove the hot glue from the rest of the surface.


Removing hot glue from plastic surfaces may seem daunting, but with the right techniques, it can be done effectively. Whether you choose to use rubbing alcohol, acetone, a nitromethane component, vinegar, or heat, always exercise caution and test on a small area first. By following the methods outlined in this article, you can successfully remove hot glue from your plastic surfaces and restore them to their original condition.


Q1: Can I use nail polish remover instead of acetone? A: Yes, nail polish remover often contains acetone and can be used as a substitute. However, make sure to check the ingredients of the nail polish remover to ensure it contains acetone.

Q2: Are these methods safe to use on all types of plastic? A: These methods are generally safe for most types of plastic. However, it is recommended to test on a small, hidden area first to ensure compatibility and avoid any potential damage.

Q3: Can I use a scraper or knife to remove hot glue without any solvents? A: While a scraper or knife can be used to lift the hot glue, using solvents like rubbing alcohol or acetone can make the process easier and more effective.

Q4: Are there any other alternatives to remove hot glue from plastic? A: Yes, there are other alternatives such as using citrus-based solvents, baby oil, or WD-40. However, it’s important to test these alternatives on a small area first and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Q5: How long does it take for the hot glue to dry completely? A: The drying time of hot glue can vary depending on the temperature and humidity. It is recommended to wait at least 30 minutes to ensure the glue is fully dry before attempting to remove it.

Sharing Is Caring:

Camilo Kawas is a seasoned entrepreneur and expert in the field of commercial cleaning, with a specific focus on clothes, carpet cleaning and floor care. With a profound understanding of the importance of selecting the right products for effective stain removal from clothes, Camilo has established himself as a trusted authority in the industry.

Leave a Comment