How to Remove Foam Stuck on a Wood Table

Wood tables add a warm and natural glow to any room, but caring for them can be a problem.
Even the most careful housekeeper sometimes ends up with an inexplicable stain, like foam stuck on wood. It’s not hard to remove stuck foam, depending on what kind. Removing sticky foam without harming the table’s finish can take a little creativity. If you are patient and stay calm, you can clean off foam so that no one will ever know it was there.

Step 1

Clean dried-on cappuccino foam off of your wood table by softening it with a paper towel soaked in hot water. Wring it out until it is barely damp. Put a dot of mild dish soap on the paper towel, and rub at the foam until it all comes up.

Step 2

Remove foam backing that lifted from a tablecloth by dipping a cotton swab into de-natured alcohol and testing it on a hidden part of the table. If it does not damage the finish, use de-natured alcohol poured onto a soft, lint-free cloth to remove the rest of the foam.

Step 3

Try petroleum jelly, baby oil or lemon oil on mystery foam. It will often neutralize whatever is making the foam adhere to the table. Apply a little to a soft, lint-free cloth, and rub it into the foam. A little mild dish soap will remove the petroleum jelly or baby oil residue once the stain is gone. Lemon oil can be buffed into the table.

Step 4

Use a blow dryer on a low setting to soften foam residue. Scrape the loosened foam off with a hard plastic scraper, and use lemon oil to remove the rest.

Step 5

Scrape expanding foam used for insulation off of your table the second you notice it. Use a piece of scrap cardboard, and dispose of the cardboard immediately. Pour acetone onto an old rag, and scrub up any remaining foam. If it has already hardened, there is nothing you can do but sand it off.

Things You Will Need

  • Paper towels
  • Hot water
  • Dish soap
  • De-natured alcohol
  • Cotton swab
  • Soft, lint-free cloths
  • Petroleum jelly, baby oil or lemon oil
  • Blow dryer
  • Cardboard
  • Acetone
  • Old rag
  • Sandpaper
  • Plastic cake scraper (optional)

Tip

  • Use the gentlest and least invasive method of stain removal first.

Warning

  • Never use an abrasive cleanser on wood tables.

About the Author

Emmy-award nominated screenwriter Brynne Chandler is a single mother of three who divides her time between professional research and varied cooking, fitness and home & gardening enterprises. A running enthusiast who regularly participates in San Francisco's Bay to Breakers run, Chandler works as an independent caterer, preparing healthy, nutritious meals for Phoenix area residents.