How to Remove Silicone Caulk From Fiberglass Shower Stall

This blog post will show you how to remove silicone caulk from the fiberglass shower stall. The best method for removing this type of caulk is with a razor blade scraper and some acetone, which can be found at your local hardware store. While it may seem daunting, the process is fairly straightforward.

All you need to do is remove any molding that has been caulked with silicone, then use the razor blade scraper to scrape away all the remaining residue from the stall itself. Once scraping up as much of it as possible, pour some acetone on top of what’s left behind and let it set for about twenty minutes before wiping it down. Read on to know more information.

How to Remove Silicone Caulk From Fiberglass Shower Stall

Why Should You Remove Silicone Caulk From Fiberglass Shower Stall?

1. Removing the caulking is easier than reglazing.

2. Removing the old caulk will eliminate the possibility of mildew growing behind the new caulk.

3. It is easier to remove old caulk than reglazing because the caulking has not yet bonded to the surface.

4. Removing the remaining caulk gives you a good surface for applying the new caulking.

5. Many people peel off and discard the caulk and then clean and reglaze when they want to reglaze. This is very wasteful of caulk.

6. Removing the excess caulk is quick and easy with a razor blade, knife or chisel if necessary. Then, simply clean with acetone, apply the new caulk, and you are good to go!

7. Any rust stains will be removed when you remove old silicone caulking from the fiberglass shower stall or tub.

8. If the caulking is not removed, the caulk may shrink after installation and expose itself to water which will cause it to curl up and peel off.

9. Removing old caulk makes reglazing easier because there are no gaps in the existing caulk or other flaws to fill in.

10. Removing the old caulk is better for the environment because you are not throwing away valuable materials.

You Can Check It Out to Remove Caulk Residue From Fiberglass Shower

How to Remove Silicone Caulk From Fiberglass Shower Stall: 10 Household Items to Use

10 Household Items to Use to Remove Silicone Caulk From Fiberglass Shower Stall

1. Acetone

Acetone is a chemical found in nail polish remover and other household items. It can dissolve silicone caulk, but it may also damage the materials around the caulk. To remove silicone from fiberglass with acetone, you must first cover all surfaces around the caulking area with masking tape.

You can then use a metal scraper or razor blade as a tool to remove the silicone from the fiberglass panels. Though this method will work well, it is not recommended if you have other materials around your bathroom that may be affected by acetone.

2. Baking Soda

One of the best ways to remove silicone caulk from fiberglass is by using baking soda. Baking soda contains sodium bicarbonate, which mixes with vinegar to form an acidic reaction that quickly breaks down the silicone and helps dissolve it.

To use this method, you first must apply your favorite dish soap on top of the caulked area and let it sit for a few minutes. After this, you should apply baking soda to the dish soap and start scrubbing with a toothbrush or scrub brush. You can also use vinegar as an alternative to dish soap.

3. Razor Blade

With a razor blade, carefully start scraping off the caulking from the fiberglass panel. Be careful when doing this since you don’t want to cut yourself or damage your panels. You can continue scraping until all of the silicone is gone from the surface, though it may take a bit of time depending on how much silicone there was to begin with.

4. Boiling water

Boiling water will be one of the best ways how to remove silicone caulk from fiberglass shower stalls. To do this, you need to quickly wet a cloth with boiling hot water and place it on top of the caulked area for about 10 minutes. After heating up the surface, start scraping off any remnants of caulk with a metal scraper or razor blade.

5. Hairspray

Another common household product that can be used to remove silicone caulk is hair spray. This method will require less effort than other methods, but you should proceed cautiously since hairspray contains flammable chemicals. Spray the areas surrounding the caulked area with hairspray and wait for a few minutes. After a while, you should be able to easily scrape off the caulk with a metal scraper or razor blade without damaging your fiberglass panels.

6. Acetone and Lighter Fluid

To remove silicone from fiberglass using this method, you first combine acetone and lighter fluid in a bowl. Make sure that the two chemicals are mixed well, though be careful since acetone can cause a fire when combined with other chemicals. After this, you are now ready to apply the mixture on top of the caulked area. Wait for a few minutes, then scrape off any leftovers with a metal scraper or razor blade.

7. Mineral Spirits

Mineral spirits are another common household item that can be used to remove silicone caulk from fiberglass surfaces. It will dissolve the caulk and help remove any grime that may have been left behind. Make sure to apply a generous amount of mineral spirits on top of the caulked area and let it sit for about 10 minutes.

After this, you should be able to easily scrape off the caulk with a metal scraper or razor blade. Though it is possible to use mineral spirits with other chemicals, you should avoid using them together simultaneously since they may react violently.

8. WD-40

One of the most common ways how to remove silicone caulk from fiberglass shower stalls is by using WD-40. You should apply this product in the same fashion as using mineral spirits, though remember that it is flammable, so avoid getting it on your skin or clothing.

9. Paint Thinner

Paint thinner contains a chemical called xylene, which can easily break down silicone and help dissolve it. To use this method how to remove silicone caulk from the fiberglass shower stall, apply the paint thinner onto the caulked areas with a toothbrush. Wait for twenty minutes, and then use your metal scraper or razor blade to scrape off the caulk.

10. Dishwasher Cleaner

One of the best products you can use how to remove silicone from fiberglass is dishwasher cleaner. It will be able to quickly dissolve any leftover silicone, though this method may take a bit longer than others since it requires that you wait for the dish soap to sit on the caulked area.

Once you have waited for about 10 minutes, use your metal scraper or razor blade to scrape off any remnants of caulk. If there are still some leftovers that won’t come off, simply repeat this method and clean it with mineral spirits afterward.

Precautions and Safety Measures:

Precautions to Remove Silicone Caulk From Fiberglass Shower Stall

1. Acetone or Acetonitrile is an oil-free solvent that will dissolve most silicone materials without causing damage to the glass fiber. Fiberglass supply companies recommend it.

2. Petroleum Distillate (mineral spirits) dissolves most silicone materials without causing damage to the glass fiber. Still, it does tend to leave a greasy film on the surface that must be removed with dishwashing soap or cleanser. Nevertheless, it is recommended by fiberglass supply companies.

3. Do not use gasoline, kerosene, or any petroleum-based solvent. These are highly flammable solvents that may not be suitable for use near an open flame.

4. Do not mix solvents to create a blend. Some silicone removers contain more than one type of chemical. By mixing solvents, you may be making an even more effective solvent that could cause damage to the glass fiber.

5. Use a silicone remover sparingly as it breaks down the mold release agents used for manufacturing and will require the use of new mold release before applying any type of paint or adhesive to treated surfaces.

6. Be sure to wear protective gloves, old clothes, and eye protection. Silicone can be difficult to remove if it is allowed to dry on the surface.

7. Always test a small, hidden area first to verify that the silicone remover will not affect the non-porous finish on the glass fiber surface.

Conclusion:

Silicone-based caulks can be challenging to remove from fiberglass shower stalls. Therefore, fiberglass shower stalls and the surrounding area should be cleaned with a degreasing agent, such as TSP or laundry detergent, before attempting to remove any remaining residue of silicone sealant that was not removed during installation.

This will help loosen up the adhesive so that it is easier to scrape off when you get around to doing this project down the road! If you read this blog post, hopefully, you will have a better understanding of how to remove silicone caulk from fiberglass shower stalls. We hope these tips will save you the time and frustration we experienced while trying to remove it ourselves! 

Jennifer Branett
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