How to Clean Spray Adhesives

Item # X-HT-300013

Spray adhesives are great for installing headliner, gluing batting to foam, basting sailcloth, crafting and much more. We love how handy these adhesives are, but they also can be really messy. Today we’re going to share our tips for keeping the can nozzles clean and your home or boat clear of sticky overspray.

Managing the Overspray

3M General Purspose Adhesive Cleaner.

When possible, lay out newspaper or kraft paper underneath the area you will be spraying. This will help keep the overspray off your surfaces. In the Sailrite Loft we have a table with walls on three sides that’s lined with kraft paper to protect our main table from sticky residue.

If you are working on a project that doesn’t allow you to paper off your area, like if you’re adding headliner to your boat’s cabin for example, you can easily clean off any overspray with 3M General Purpose Adhesive Cleaner. Use the cleaner on a rag and wipe down any surfaces that might have excess glue on them. This cleaner is safe to use on dried paint, vinyl and fabric.

Keeping the Nozzle Clear

Spray McLube Sailkote Through the spray nozzle to clean.

It’s easy for excess adhesive to dry and block the nozzle on the can of spray adhesives. To get the most use out of your can, you’ll want to keep your nozzle clean. To start, when you are done using the spray adhesive hold the can upside down and spray until just air comes out of the can. This helps spray out any excess glue that may clog your spray nozzle.

If you already have a clog, don’t worry! Pull the spray tip off of the can and soak it in a small pool of 3M General Purpose Adhesive Cleaner or Goo Gone for up to an hour. These solutions should work off the glue residue. Then you can rinse off the tip and add it back to your spray adhesive can.

Another trick for this is to remove the nozzle and spray McLube Sailkote through the bottom of the nozzle, like in the photo above. McLube Sailkote is really a dry lubrication, but we’ve found that it’s surprisingly good at removing adhesive from fabric and hard surfaces.

Hopefully these quick tips will help you feel more confident using spray adhesives.