How to Remove Sticky Glue From Formica Countertops

Formica is a name brand laminate used for countertops and floors. It's commonly used for ease-of-care and durability, but it must be cared for properly to avoid damage. Sticky glue from tape or other adhesives can cause a buildup of stain material, if left unattended on your Formica countertop surface. Using the right adhesive removal techniques and supplies safe for Formica help you to remove the glue without harming the surface.

Formica was a popular tabletop surface in the 1950s.
  1. Dampen a clean cloth with Formica adhesive solvent. Wipe the solvent over the sticky glue to dissolve and loosen the glue.
  2. Scrape up softened glue with a plastic scraper. Wipe the glue on a paper towel and continue to scrape up the glue residue.
  3. Pour a quarter-sized amount of denatured alcohol on a clean cloth. Scrub the remaining sticky glue residue. Add more alcohol, if necessary, until the rest of the glue is wiped away.
  4. Wet a clean cloth with warm water. Put a drop of dishwashing detergent on the wet cloth before squeezing out excess moisture. Clean your Formica countertop surface to make sure there's no adhesive solvent or alcohol residue left.
  5. Rinse the countertop with a damp cloth, then dry the countertop surface.

Things You Will Need

  • Clean cloths
  • Formica adhesive solvent
  • Plastic scraper
  • Paper towel
  • Denatured alcohol
  • Dishwashing detergent


  • Use solvents and alcohols sparingly on Formica surfaces to avoid damaging the surface.
  • Clean your Formica countertops regularly with mild, soapy water. Use a nylon dish scrubber to remove stubborn stains.
  • Lay a piece of aluminum foil on the countertop to catch any glue spills that might occur so sticky glue doesn't end up on the counter.

About the Author

Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.

Photo Credits

  • Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images