How to Remove Old Silicone Caulk

silicone caulk
  • 1-3 hours
  • Beginner
  • 0-30
What You'll Need
Knife or flat object

Silicone caulking is used in most bathrooms to keep the water from creeping through the shower, tiles, and walls, which destroys the tiles in no time at all. This is the reason why it is very important that you remove leaky caulk and address the problem immediately. Although repairing bathroom caulk is difficult, applying silicone caulking is still easy if you have a guide that will teach you how to do silicone caulking properly.

Step 1 - Remove the Excess Caulk Using a Flat Object

If you pry open loose tiles, you will notice that the tiles have a lot of adhesive that remains on its surface. To remove the adhesive, get a sharp knife or any flat tool that will allow you to remove the rubbery and soft pure silicone caulk. If you do not have a knife, you can always use a single-edged razor to completely remove the silicone caulking properly.

Complete this step carefully. To protect your hands and fingers, wear thick work gloves. Another way to soften the adhesive is to use heat. Using a blower, apply the heat on to the surface and work your way until all of the larger adhesive patches are completely removed.

Step 2 - Use Water and Soap Solution to Soften the Hard Adhesive

Use a bathroom surface cleaner and soap scum remover mixed with water to remove the rest of the silicone caulking. Use a cloth to apply the soapy solution to the surface. Leave it for 20 minutes to soften the hard adhesive. After the indicated time, use a soft scrub with a little scouring powder and start scrubbing the entire surface to remove the adhesive.

Step 3 - Use Alcohol to Dissolve the Remaining Adhesive

You may be successful in removing the old silicone caulking from the surface of your shower, but this does not mean that the surface of your shower free of the adhesive. To remove the last traces of the silicone caulking, it is important that you use alcohol and other solvent in order to dissolve the rest of the adhesive from the surface. Use a small cloth to apply the solvent. Rub the cloth to the surface briskly. Using another clean cloth, remove the rest of the adhesive from the surface.

Step 4 - Apply Mildew Killer in Order to Disinfect the Surface

Once the adhesive has been removed, apply the mildew killer. This process is extremely important; if not removed properly, the mildew will cause damage to the new silicone caulk.