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How to Remove Silicone Caulk

Silicone caulk is a favorite among homeowners and home improvement experts because it’s flexible, shrink-proof, crack-proof, and fully waterproof; it’s a great solution for areas like bathrooms and kitchens. However, if your old caulk needs to be replaced, you’ll have to learn how to remove silicone caulk before applying a fresh bead. Here, our DIY experts explain how to do it:

How to Remove Silicone Caulk

  1. In order to remove your silicone caulk more easily, you’ll want to cut it. Use your utility knife to carefully slice along each side of the caulk bead. (You may want to wear protective gloves to avoid cutting yourself.)
  2. Pull out as much of the caulk as you can using your pliers.
  3. Next, use your putty knife or glass scraper to remove any remaining caulk. (Be careful not to scratch or damage the surrounding tile, porcelain, or other adjacent materials.)
  4. Because silicone caulk is so effective at forming a barrier, there will likely be some pieces of caulk leftover in the crevices. Hold an abrasive pad soaked in mineral spirits against the residue.
  5. Once the residue is softened, you can use your putty knife or glass scraper to repeat the removal process.
  6. Finally, use cleaning supplies to clean the entire area before applying new caulk. Remember to wait until the area is completely dry, otherwise the new caulk won’t stick.

Tools & Materials

  • Utility Knife
  • Pliers
  • Abrasive Pad
  • Cleaning Supplies
  • Putty Knife or Glass Scraper
  • Mineral Spirits

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