How Do You Remove Old Caulk?


To remove old caulk, apply caulk remover. Next, pry the caulk loose using a caulk removal tool, and scrape away any loose caulk and debris with a toothbrush or putty knife. Finally, clean the surface using alcohol.

  1. Apply caulk remover

    Apply caulk remover onto the old caulk, and let it sit for as long as is indicated in the manufacturer’s directions. Silicone caulk remover gel is effective for this purpose. Wait overnight for multiple layers, hardened or very old caulk.

  2. Remove the caulk

    Pry the caulk loose using a caulk removal tool. Alternatively, use a utility blade or knife. Ensure that your hands are steady when using a utility blade to avoid damaging the wall and surrounding areas. Use tweezers or needle-nose pliers to pull out difficult pieces.

  3. Scrape remaining caulk loose

    Remove any remaining bits of caulk using a toothbrush or a putty knife. Be patient, and work on each area carefully until all the caulk has been removed.

  4. Clean the surface

    Clean the surface using alcohol to get rid of any remaining dust and debris. Mix a gallon of water and 1/3 cup bleach, and wipe down the area to kill any mildew or mold. Allow the area to completely air dry before applying new caulk.