(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Results 1 to 12 of 12

Thread: Trouble removing excess silicone from sink

  1. #1

    Default Trouble removing excess silicone from sink

    Hi,

    I installed a new pop up assembly (Peerless) in this sink, and made a bit of a mess of it, I guess by not getting the excess silicone all cleaned off quickly enough. Still, I figured I would be able to get it removed, got to be a fairly common problem, I would think. But this stuff just doesn't seem to want to come off... that spot at the 7 o'clock position especially. I suppose the best route is to disassemble, scrub it, and redo, being a little more careful. But I'm concerned I still won't be able to get those marks off. I am wondering if there is something I could clean it with that would get it off? Lacking that, it is possible to find a slightly larger flange that I could replace the current one with to cover up any discoloring I can't get off? Thanks!
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  2. #2
    DIY scratch-pad engineer leejosepho's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    200 miles south of Little Rock
    Posts
    2,474

    Default

    Try something like a sharpened (chisel-ended) popsickle stick so you can scrape hard without damaging the surface of the sink.
    "Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events and small minds discuss people." --Eleanor Roosevelt

  3. #3
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    3,681

    Default

    Plumbers putty is what should have been used there. Common methods of removal are mechanically scraping such as with a razor but there are chemical removals on the market.

    http://www.rpm-technology.com/Digesil/FAQs-Digesil.htm

  4. #4
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Posts
    25,653

    Default

    Try alcohol, but it may not work now that the silicone has set. That is one of the the reasons few plumbers use silicone.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  5. #5

    Default

    Thanks, all. You're right... I should have used putty, but I wasn't thinking. Instructions said silicone, I used silicone.

  6. #6
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    9,001

    Default

    There are some well-known colleagues on the internet that use silicone exclusively. In my experience, the secret with silicone is cleanup before it sets. You need to treat it just like you do dap.....smoothing the bead if there is one, and totally wiping the excess. The caveat is that of course you can't do this with a wet finger or damp rag. You must use solvent. Two that work well are denatured alcohol ( not rubbing alcohol ) and mineral spirits.

    For your situation, you should be able to carefully scrape with something very sharp. That can be a carefully split popsicle stick, a new plastic putty knife, or even a sinlge edge razor blade. Held at a low angle, that will not damage the porcelain.

    LEARN SOMETHING EVERY DAY: Found this on a GE Silicone website:

    • Isopropyl Alcohol (IPA) is a commonly-used solvent and has proven useful for most non-porous substrates encountered in architectural construction applications. Xylene and Toluene have also been found useful on many substrates. When handling solvents, refer to manufacturer’s MSDS for inform

    Isopropyl is rubbing alcohol, and I had always used denatured methanol, because I thought it was 'better' !!! It is cheaper.
    Last edited by jimbo; 12-15-2011 at 11:29 AM. Reason: ADD INFO

  7. #7

    Default

    I dissembled the popup to better get at the staining. Tried razor blade, Goof-Off, etc. but nothing worked. Then I tried a pumice "scour stick" and it worked great... took a little elbow grease but it's all nice and clean now. Going to use putty when I reassemble...

  8. #8
    DIYer, not in the trades LLigetfa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    3,681

    Default

    I spent a lot of years in rental units where the landlord or handyman lathered way too much silicone everywhere, sometimes leaving handmark smudges all over that later harbored mold. I vowed never to use silicone except where necessary and to carefully mask off the area to not get it all over.

    Glad you got it cleaned off and hopefully you won't discover other smudges after mold sets in.

  9. #9
    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    northfork, california
    Posts
    3,261

    Default

    The only absolute solvent for not dry silicone is or was MEK methyl ethyl ketone, but may be banned now.

  10. #10
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    9,001

    Default

    I knew some MEK huffers....it fries your brain.

  11. #11
    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    northfork, california
    Posts
    3,261

    Default

    I know a few PVC cement huffers that get pretty goofy in old age - mostly plumbers. Be careful.

  12. #12
    Consultant cwhyu2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Cincinnati OH
    Posts
    1,330

    Default

    We used to use zippo lighter fluid it contains napatha and worked great tooling and cleaning uncured silicone.

Similar Threads

  1. Exactly how much does "all" mean when removing old silicone
    By watson524 in forum Shower & bathtub Forum & Blog
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 02-07-2011, 05:16 PM
  2. trouble removing metal rimmed kitchen sink
    By Noahsoak in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 02-01-2010, 07:17 AM
  3. Removing silicone screw up.
    By Billy in forum Shower & bathtub Forum & Blog
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 11-15-2008, 02:00 PM
  4. trouble removing old faucet - no room for basin wrench
    By grundy in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 07-28-2008, 06:09 AM
  5. Cast Iron Sink Excess Enamel
    By plumb confused in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 04-25-2008, 09:49 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •