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Which Household Chemicals Remove Adhesive Glue From Vinyl?

Kaye Wagner

Glue on vinyl can be difficult to remove depending on which type of glue you've dropped on the vinyl. You can easily remove weak adhesive glue such as white glue, but it may be harder to remove tough adhesive glues such as instant glue or epoxy glue from the vinyl. Choose a method depending on the type of glue you need to remove.

Liquid Dish Soap

Remove glue from vinyl as soon as possible.

Liquid dish soap is a gentle adhesive solvent that will remove weak glues such as white glue. Add a few drops of liquid dish soap to lukewarm water. Mix until the water is sudsy and gently brush the mixture into the glue residue with a toothbrush or clean cloth. This method may not remove all of the glue residue, but it will likely lessen the size of it.


Vinegar is a common household cleaning product that you can also use to remove adhesive glue residue. Mix 1 cup distilled white vinegar with 2 cups water. Apply the vinegar solution to the residue with a brush or with a clean cloth until you've removed it. This method is most effective on weak glues such as white glue.


Ammonia is a strong solvent that can remove vegetable-based glue. Ammonia can change the color of certain types of carpet or upholstery. Test the cleaning method on a small and inconspicuous area first. Mix 1 tbsp. ammonia with 1 cup water. Brush the solvent directly onto the adhesive glue residue.


Acetone is one of the toughest solvents that you can use to remove adhesive glue. Found in many nail polish removers, this chemical is convenient for removing instant glue or epoxy glue. Soak a clean cloth in acetone so that it is wet but not dripping. Lay the cloth over the adhesive glue on the vinyl. Let it sit to soak into the adhesive glue residue for an hour or two. Remove the cloth and wipe up the glue residue. You may need to use a brush to remove the glue. If this method doesn't work, you will need to use sandpaper to grind away the adhesive residue on the vinyl.