Acrylic does not dissolve in water. Hence an acrylic emulsion is generally used with water-based acrylic paint to bind pigment. When this paint is used, an adherent acrylic paint film forms as the water in the paint begins to evaporate. The acrylic paint film is no longer water soluble and cannot be removed easily. A cleaner is required in order to remove the dried acrylic paint from a nonporous or porous surface. However, one must be careful when using cleaners as some solvents and cleaners will not suit some materials and surfaces.
Here are five ways to remove acrylic paint
- Ammonia Solution: This is an effective way of removing dry and semi-dry acrylic paint from surfaces such as plastics, glass, and metal. Ammonia raises the pH level of the paint in order to stabilize acrylic emulsions. It is best to use the sudsy variety as it holds detergent that will make for rinsing the loosened particles easily. When using ammonia, one should be careful as it might have intense fumes and might cause an allergic reaction.
- Denatured Alcohol: This alcohol is stronger than rubbing alcohol but is safe to use on plastics. This is because it is made of methyl and ethyl alcohol and does not contain water. The only thing to look out for is that it contains methanol which is a strong poison and is also flammable. Hence fire prevention and ventilation are essential when you are using this cleaner.
- Lacquer Thinner: This is used to remove acrylics from metal and glass. The dangerous part is that contains methanol and toluene which are considered to be toxic. In fact, the latter is also capable of causing long-term health issues. This thinner should be used outdoors. Recently a greener form of the lacquer thinner has come into the market which replaces the dangerous toluene with ethyl acetate which is considerably low in toxicity and also has a fruity, pleasant odor.
- Acetone: A stronger agent to use to remove acrylic paint would be acetone. This cannot be used on synthetic fabrics or plastics. This agent is used in areas that are hard to reach and can be used on metal and glass. It is low in toxicity but is extremely flammable. Acetone is generally carried in a metal tin in paint store, hardware stores, and home improvement centers. It is also commonly used as a solvent with fiberglass resins.
- Isopropyl Alcohol: This is also known as rubbing alcohol and is used to remove dried acrylic from clothes and non-porous surfaces. This cleaning solution is readily available and is also considerably cheap. The use of this cleaner has a solvent action on the acrylic binder. When using it on clothes, it helps remove stains.
Remove acrylic paint is not an easy task and will require the use of proper equipment when using the cleaners. However, if used in the right proportion, it will help remove the paint without causing any harmful effects.
Also read About : Acrylic Painting Tips For Newbies