Asked on Jan 22, 2017

How can I safely remove a photo that's stuck to the glass in a frame?

Occasionally I've had the problem of photos sticking to the glass inside frames. First, I'm not sure what's even causing it. I don't use any moisture when dusting them. I have a couple of pictures I want to remove from frames, but the bottom portion (about 1/3 of the photo) of both are stuck hard to the glass. Is there any possible way to remove them without damaging the photo?
  13 answers
  • Hillela G. Hillela G. on Jan 23, 2017
    Try dabbing a bit of WD40 on a tissue or cotton swab and wipe the edges to lubricate it.

  • Dorothy Collett Dorothy Collett on Jan 23, 2017
    Before you do anything copy those photos still attached to the glass! Get it by an expert if you have trouble with glare from the glass.

  • Ellen DeVilbiss Ellen DeVilbiss on Jan 23, 2017
    Do you live in a humid area? Or have the photo located near a moist area in your home like a kitchen or bath? Moisture doesn't have to be in liquid form to cause sticking. Definitely copy it as is, because the chances of damaging it are high whatever you do. I'd try gentle heat to loosen it by drying out all moisture, visible or not. Say a hair dryer on low or a heating pad.

    • See 2 previous
    • To Work With My Hands To Work With My Hands on Jan 23, 2017
      Great tip. Thank you!

  • Sus14002759 Sus14002759 on Jan 25, 2017
    Alternatively, if heating it doesn't help, try putting it in the freezer for a little while.

  • Jay Oldridge Jay Oldridge on Jan 25, 2017
    I simple put a thick bar towel down on my ironing board, then the picture, glass side up, then another thick bar towel. Set the iron at a lower heat and warm up the towel covered glass. Usually this loosens the stuck areas so that I can remove it in one try, but sometimes two or more tries are need to get it completely off and safe. If you are afraid of using an iron like this, blow dry the glass and watch as the picture slides off gradually. Patience is required for this method, though!

  • Pat Pat on Jan 25, 2017
    I have heard the freezer for envelopes that become "sealed" so would think it would work for your picture.

  • Birdz of a Feather Birdz of a Feather on Jan 27, 2017
    Put it into a ziplock plastic bag, seal it and then pop it into the freezer for a few hours. It should release when you take it out.

  • DeLaine Workman Land DeLaine Workman Land on Jul 12, 2018
    I tried an hour in the freezer and it didnt work. I’m afraid to do heat as its my wedding picture. Any other ideas?

  • Put it in the freezer for an hour. Take it out, and gently lift a corner. It should pull away.

  • Mogie Mogie on Jan 01, 2023

    Using the low heat setting, take a hairdryer and blow warm air about 4-5 inches away from the back of the print. This heats up the area between the photo and glass and loosened the hold on the photo.

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Mar 07, 2023

    Never had any luck with the freezer method.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Apr 03, 2023

    Maybe the glass was very slightly damp when photo was but into frame!

  • Deb K Deb K 3 days ago

    Hello, hope this helps you out.

    This is the easiest method and will work on most photographs. First, fill a bowl with warm water. Next, soak the photograph and glass in the water, making sure they're completely submerged. As they soak, the adhesive should loosen and the picture should separate easily.