How to Clean Up Melted Plastic and Wax

Опубликовал Admin
31-01-2017, 11:30
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Whether it’s caused by a cookware mishap in the oven or a dripping candle on the bedroom floor, melted plastic or wax causes an unsightly 3D stain that can be a huge hassle to remove. Once the substance has hardened on the ill-fated surface, it may seem like it’s there to stay. However, there are a few resourceful tips that have been proven to remove even the trickiest and most stubborn of stains.

Removing from Hard Surfaces with Heat

  1. Heat up the plastic or wax. Be careful while doing this step, because overheating the stain can make it worse. The trick is to make the mess malleable, because it won’t budge while it is hardened.
    • If the mess is in the oven, preheat the oven at the very lowest heat setting. Stay by the oven to make sure the stain doesn’t overheat and start smoking.
    • If the stain is on another hard surface like a table or wood floor, try using a hair dryer to warm the substance.
  2. Chip away at the substance with a putty knife or something similar. The plastic or wax should have softened with the heat, and you can begin scraping it off with a flat, sharp edge. This will require some elbow grease, but be careful not to scratch or chip the surface you are cleaning.
    • If you do not have a putty knife, you can use a butter knife or a razor blade.
  3. Clean up the area where the plastic or wax had been. If there isn’t much of a mess left, this can be achieved with mild soap and a damp rag. In the case of more persistent stains, you may want to use a more heavy-duty surface cleaner and a rough sponge or scrubber.

Removing from Hard Surfaces with Chemicals

  1. Remove as much of the plastic or wax as you can. This can be done by lightly heating the mess until it is soft enough to scrape off. By getting as much of the mess off as you can manually, you’ll allow the cleaners to work best. After you’ve chipped away at the mess as best you can, allow it to cool.
  2. Apply acetone to the melted mess. Plastic is soluble in acetone, so this can be effective in removing the nasty stain.Acetone is found in most nail polish removers, which can be found at your local pharmacy.
    • Be careful, acetone can stain certain surfaces. If you think acetone is your best option for removing the melted plastic or wax, try testing it out a small- and preferably hidden- spot first. This could be the underside of the table you're working with, or a part of the floor that is usually covered with furniture. See how the acetone reacts before dousing your stain with it.
    • Make sure that there is absolutely no acetone left on the surface. Acetone is highly flammable, and if there is acetone left over on your surface, especially if that surface is a stovetop or oven, you could have a larger problem on your hands than a little melted plastic.
  3. Scrape away the melted plastic or wax using your putty or butter knife. Once the acetone has soaked into the melted remains, it should be pretty pliable. With a little bit of force from your knife, it should come right off.
  4. Dab the spot with WD-40. This is only necessary if there is still remaining plastic or wax. WD-40 is a lubricating & penetrating spray product that can be used to remove the leftover gunk by dissolving its bond with the hard surface.Like you did with the acetone, test the WD-40 on a smaller, out-of-the-way spot before applying it to the stain.

Removing Fabrics or Carpet with an Iron

  1. Grab your iron and plug it into an outlet near the stain. Set it to the highest heat setting. If it has a steam setting, turn this off. A dry heat is best for removing the melted plastic or wax.
  2. Cover the stain with a paper bag. An alternative for the brown paper bag is wax paper. Be careful not to use thin paper, as it can overheat the plastic or wax and cause a worse mess. Avoid paper with any writing on it, because the heat can cause the ink to transfer onto the fabric or carpet.
  3. Gently iron over the paper. Don’t push down too hard or stay on one section too long, because you do not want the substance to melt farther into the carpet or fabric. The goal is to get the plastic or wax to stick to the bag.
  4. Gently peel the paper bag off the fabric or carpet. This should be done while the paper is still warm from the iron. The plastic or wax should stick to the paper, leaving the surface clean.
  5. Repeat as necessary. If there are still bits stuck to the carpet afterwards, try gently scrubbing the area with a carpet or fabric cleaner. The remaining pieces may budge with a little bit of friction.


  • If you do not want to use a strong chemical like acetone on your surface, you can whip up a quick cleaner with more natural ingredients. Rubbing a paste made of baking soda and vinegar into the melted plastic stain can sometimes do the trick as well.


  • Trying to clean a hot stove or oven is dangerous. Use caution to avoid burning yourself.
  • Burning plastic causes a terrible smell, and sometimes even adverse effects on your health. Open windows to create ventilation in the area and/or wear a mask if dealing with melted plastic.
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