Asked on Jun 18, 2016

How to get rid of tacky plastic residue from a finished wood surface?

by Marielle

I placed one of those plastic shelf protector sheets under my TV set to protect the finish of my tall boy dresser. Well, that was a big mistake. I now have an imprint of the sheet and a sticky surface on the dresser which I have been unable to remove. Any suggestions?

This is the shelf protector sheet
This pic shows the top of my dresser. You can see the imprint on the wood. The entire surface is tacky.
  15 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Jun 20, 2016
    Try rubbing mayo,peanut butter or oil in to the wood. Use a micro fiber towel in a circular motion.
  • Susan Susan on Jun 20, 2016
    Call the manufacturer if Janet's ideas - all good - don't do the trick. You may be stuck with refinishing the top, especially if the finish is compromised.
  • William William on Jun 20, 2016
  • Roseann8628 Roseann8628 on Jun 20, 2016
    I have had luck removing sticky residue with rubbing alcohol, hand sanitizer (which is mostly alcohol) and spray laundry stain remover. Good luck! :)
  • Amy Riches Amy Riches on Jun 20, 2016
    Goof Off - Very aromatic though. or A cotton damp towel and a warm iron. please Let us know how you are doing.
  • Marielle Marielle on Jun 20, 2016
    Thank you for your suggestions. I will keep trying until I find what works. I will let you know what worked best.
  • Bernadette Staal Bernadette Staal on Jun 20, 2016
    you may end up needing to give the top of your cabinet a very light sand down and a re-polish / varnish but I find Mr Muscle window cleaner cleans an amazing variety of problems - I even clean my garden tools with it. So if I was to try anything that would be my first choice.
  • Gigi Gigi on Jun 21, 2016
    Olive oil
  • Pgl Pgl on Jun 21, 2016
    Warm sticky residue with a hair dryer , use dry terry cloth to rub a cross to remove any left over goo , spread peanut butter on and wipe
  • Sara Corbin Sara Corbin on Jun 21, 2016
    Goof off or Goo Gone, or GENTLE use of a Mr Clean Magic Eraser (not too much pressure or you'll start removing paint/finish) should remove the sticky residue, but to get rid of the imprint you're probably going to have to do a little sanding.
  • Marielle Marielle on Jun 25, 2016
    Tried various suggested products, Mineral Oil worked best. Thank you to all who made suggestions.
  • Eleanor Driscoll Eleanor Driscoll on Jul 30, 2016
    There is a product (in Canada) called "Goof Off" adhesive remover, that removes adhesives, old dried paint drips and marker and crayon that may work if you are going to refinish the dresser top anyways. Ive never tried it on what you need it for but it does seem to melt off many adhesives. Its available at hardware stores, Home depot etc.
  • Deb K Deb K on Oct 11, 2022

    Hi Marielle, hope this helps you out, Rub vegetable oil into the sticky residue and leave it to soak for around 2 hours. Use a warm hair dryer to loosen the residue with heat before wiping clean with warm soapy water. Another method uses furniture polish. Use a clean cloth to rub the area gently with furniture polish.

  • Mogie Mogie on Oct 12, 2022

    Agree with Susan call the manufacturer and ask them most likely they have dealth with this problem in the past.

  • Amir Hyman Amir Hyman on Jan 03, 2023

    To remove tacky plastic residue from a finished wood surface, you can try the following steps:

    1. First, try using a dry cloth or a paper towel to blot the residue and absorb as much of it as possible.
    2. If the residue is still visible, you can try using a small amount of rubbing alcohol or white vinegar to help lift it. Dampen a cloth or a cotton swab with alcohol or vinegar and gently rub the residue until it is removed.
    3. If the alcohol or vinegar does not work, you may need to use a stronger cleaning solution, such as grease-cutting dish soap or a commercial wood cleaner. Dampen a cloth or a cotton swab with the cleaning solution and gently rub the residue until it is removed.
    4. Once the residue is removed, rinse the area with a damp cloth and dry it thoroughly to remove any remaining cleaning solution or residue.

    I hope this helps! Let me know if you have any other questions.