How to Get Contact Paper Off Metal Cabinets

Things You'll Need

  • Hair dryer
  • Plastic scraper
  • Wallpaper scoring tool
  • Adhesive remover / WD-40
  • Warm soapy water
  • Clean cloth

Contact paper is an economical way to renovate dated surfaces such as old metal cabinets. It is applied much like a large sticker. A paper backing is peeled back to reveal a large adhesive surface. The adhesive creates a strong bond that keeps dirt and moisture from seeping under the surface. However, when it comes time to remove contact paper, this same adhesive backing can create quite a challenge. Removing old contact paper from surfaces, such a metal cabinets, is not always an easy task, but with the right tools, it can be eliminated without a trace.

Hold a hair dryer about 3 inches from the surface of the cabinet. Put the hair dryer on the highest heat setting and move back and forth across the surface to warm the glue.

Pull up a corner of the contact paper. Hold it firmly and slowly peel the paper off the cabinet. Use a plastic scraper to remove as much of it as possible.

Etch the surface of the remaining contact paper with a wallpaper scoring tool.

Spray an adhesive remover, such as Goo Gone or WD-40, onto the contact paper.

Allow the adhesive remover to sit on the surface of the contact paper for about 30 minutes.

Use a plastic scraper to peel the contact paper off the metal surface.

Continue with Steps 4 through 6 until all paper and adhesive is removed from the metal.

Wash the adhesive remover from the door using warm soapy water and a clean cloth.

About the Author

Shelly Schumacher has a diverse writing background that includes work in print as well as electronic publications. She has been writing for over 18 years and enjoys working with a variety of different clients on both writing projects and as a marketing and public relations consultant. Schumacher holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism from the University of Wisconsin.