August 14, 2021

How to Remove Stickers from Wood

Removing stickers from wood can put you in something of a catch22 situation. On one hand, you want to preserve your beautiful piece of wood. On the other hand, having stickers on it does the opposite. There are several methods that you can use. I have compiled some of my favorite ones to give you options.

I encourage you to consider the potential risks to the wood with any of the methods. Some methods are much riskier than others. The best ones are those that preserve the wood and do not put you in harm’s way. You must be patient. It doesn’t matter as much if the wood in question is not as valuable. Let’s look at the tips.

Apply Heat

Most stickers are bound to the surface using glue. That is why they may be difficult to remove once the glue has settled. The solution is to reverse the drying process. You can do this by heating the dry glue. Once it is heated up, the sticker will be easier to pull off the surface.

You can apply heat with a heat gun or use a household hairdryer. The heat gun tends to be more effective because it is more targeted.

Slowly and Carefully Remove the Sticker

Be careful not to get overexcited about peeling the sticker off when the glue is heated up. You want to approach this step with gentle care. There is still a danger of damaging the wood surface.

Apply a Solvent

You can apply a solvent to minimize friction as you remove the sticker. That is critical if you are dealing with pricey wood. You will use the solvent to dissolve the glue from the back of the sticker.

First, apply a solvent directly on the sticker and then start peeling. The solvent is most effective when it comes in contact with removing stickers from wood immediately after it is applied.

Use WD40

WD40 can remove stickers from anything and everything. It softens them up so they come off easily when you rub at them with a rag.

Scrape off any remaining residue

In most cases, you will not be able to get rid of all of the glue in one go. There will likely be some residue left. Start by attempting to wipe it off the surface. If that works, you are in luck. If the residue has a thick texture to it, you will need to scrape it off. Again, please be gentle with the scrapping. That is how you avoid damaging the wood.

Use household items to remove the sticker

If you don’t have a range of tools to turn to use, that’s okay. There are some household items that you can use to remove a sticker from wood. For heat, I would recommend using boiling water, iron, or a hairdryer. Seeing as these items are not designed for this purpose, I encourage caution.

Use a screw

This trick will work if you are not concerned about the piece of wood. You are likely to damage it. The underlying idea is to let the threads do the work for you. As you tighten them, they pull the sticker onto them.

Use a razor blade

A razor blade is for the more daring ones. It gives you a large degree of precision. The downside is the higher risk that comes with using a razor on such a fiddly surface. You can mitigate this risk by using protective gloves.

Use a putty knife

Our final option is the putty knife. You can remove stickers by scrapping them with the flat side of it. Indeed, you can go over them in multiple directions. The downside is that you cannot get as close to edges or corners with this method.


There is no point in leaving how stickers on a beautiful piece of wood. Not only are they going to deteriorate faster due to exposure but also become an eyesore. It does take dedication and patience to how to remove stickers from wood properly.

To this end, follow the guides above to get your intended results. If you have some ingenious methods we haven’t included on the list, don’t hesitate to share them with others in the comment section.

David D. Hughes
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