How to Remove Melted Plastic from a Clothes Iron

woman ironing
  • 1-2 hours
  • Beginner
  • 0-30
What You'll Need
Metal spatula
Small pan
2 Old cloths
Wax paper

If you discover that there is something stuck on your clothes iron, melted plastic might be the culprit. Don't stress - all is not lost! No need to toss out the iron and buy a new one. Follow the simple steps below to effectively remove the plastic from your iron.

Step 1 - Set the Iron to the Correct Setting

The first thing you will do is set your iron to the warm setting. Let it sit for a minute to get up to temperature. Keep an eye on the plastic. Once you see it become sticky and soft, It is ready to start the removal process.

Step 2 - Scrape Off the Plastic

Use your metal spatula to gently scrape off the plastic. You will want to take care not to scratch your iron. Just remove all you can without using force to scape. You are trying to remove the bulk of the plastic at this point. After you have removed large pieces, you can begin to work on the smaller debris.

Step 3 - Remove Particles and Debris

Unplug your iron. Place ice cubes and water in a shallow pan. Give the temperature some time to lower and get ice cold. Sit the iron in the pan, making sure that only the base of the iron with the debris of melted plastic is sitting in the water. Let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes to allow the remaining plastic to freeze. Remove from the water and scrape again with the spatula to remove the rest of the debris.

When completely dry, plug in again on a medium setting and allow it to come up to temperature.

Step 4 - Removing the Film

Even though the plastic is gone, there may still be a thin film that can ruin your clothes. Run the iron over an old cloth to remove the film. If you see that nothing is coming off of the iron, it has all been removed. If not, wet the cloth and keep ironing on the old cloth, turning it over to iron the other side to be sure it is all gone. Your iron will be good as new. You will just need to take care to check for stuck on debris from this point to be sure you don't ruin any clothing.

Step 5 - Maintenance

An easy way to be sure that you don't have anything like this happen again with your clothes iron is to keep wax paper and an old cloth by your ironing board at all times. Before you put the iron to fabric, run the iron over the piece of wax paper, and then over an old cloth. Anything stuck on your iron, no matter how small, will be removed before you ever run the risk of ruining your clothes. And of course, always remember to clean your iron to avoid regular dust and salt build-up.