Whether you spray painting your window, or mirror frame, or designing your car, there is a high chance that you will spill some paint on the glass.
It could also be that you accidentally spray graffiti on any glassy surface in your house.
This is no reason to worry as removing spray paint is very easy.
However, ensuring not to damage the glass underneath is where the issue is.
This is why in the guide; you will learn over 10 different alternatives to follow when you are removing paint from a glass surface without damaging the glass surface.
Before You Begin
There are some facts to note before you attempt to get rid of spray paint from a glass surface.
- It is easier to remove the paint when it is still fresh. What I mean is that, if you are there when the paint gets spilled, take action as quickly as possible.
This is because the longer the paint stays on the glass, the harder it is to remove and you know that spray paint dries faster than regular paint.
Just get a microfiber cloth or a clean wet rag and wipe it off.
- Identify the type of spray paint: This is equally important, knowing the type of paint will help to decide on the method and or solvent to use to remove the paint.
Plus, while the traditional soap and water solution may remove acrylic spray paint, it will take a strong solvent to remove an enamel spray paint.
- Identify the type of glass: The type of glass you want to remove spray paint from also dictates the method you will also apply to remove the paint.
For instance, while it’s okay to use acetone on plexiglass (regular glass), the same cannot be said when working on fiberglass.
After you have considered these facts, the next step is your safety.
- Wear overalls, gloves, and safety goggles:
You are dealing with paint and cleaning agents, and for this reason, you must prevent exposure to your skin.
Wearing overalls and gloves will help protect your skin and fingernails from the paint. Safety goggles will also help to keep your eyes safe.
Do this especially when you are using solvents.
- Wear a mask and stay in a well-ventilated area:
If you are dealing with oil-based paint and solvents like alcohol, then it is safe to wear a mask to prevent lung irritation.
Also make sure you are in a well-ventilated area, consider opening the windows or putting on fans while you are removing the paint.
This ensures that you don’t directly inhale the paint fumes.
- Use plastic drop cloths or tarps:
Using plastic drop cloths or tarps is also necessary to protect the floor from stains and agents you want to use. (Not using a tarp may give you another stressful job after you are done with your work).
How to Get Spray Paint Off Glass
Removing spray paint from glass is not exactly a hassle, because you can always use household equipment.
If you don’t have some of the materials, you can easily get one at a local paint store near you.
Here are some options to choose from when stripping off paint from a glass.
|Alcohol||Very efficient, especially denatured alcohol.|
|Acetone||Equally efficient, removes paint easily but not suitable for fiberglass.|
|Paint Scraper||Although efficient, but requires extreme prudence so as not to damage the glass.|
|Steel wool||The metal strands make it very easy to remove spray paint.|
|Turpentine||When recommended, is very efficient because it loosens the paint bond easily.|
|Magic Eraser||Effective for removing grease and also for removing paints too.|
|WD-40||Contains melamine foam that makes it easy to remove spray.|
|Spirit Vinegar||The acetic acid it contains serves as a solvent that makes it remove paint easily.|
|Baking Soda||It has to be boiled though, but it serves well when removing spray paint.|
|Oven Cleaners||Used to clean ovens and is equally effective for removing paint from glass.|
How to Get Spray Paint off Glass Using Alcohol
Alcohol is a very potent solvent for removing spray paint from glass.
You can either use rubbing alcohol (preferably 90% Isopropyl) or denatured alcohol.
The former should be used when the paint is still dry, while the latter should be used for stronger spray paints.
- Warm water.
- Dish soap.
- Microfiber cloths or cotton balls.
- Alcohol. (The amount will vary depending on how big the paint stain is.)
- Soak the microfiber cleaning rag in the rubbing alcohol and place it on the paint stain.
- Leave it there for about 5-10 minutes, this will dissolve the paint.
- Scrub the paint off vigorously with the rag, but be gentle not to damage the glass surface.
- Once the paint comes off, dip a dry cloth in warm soapy water to clean the glass. You can as well use a glass cleaner.
- Lastly, clean the glass with a paper towel.
Alcohol can also be used to remove spray paint from other surfaces.
How to Get Spray Paint off Glass with Acetone
Just like alcohol, acetone is equally suitable for removing spray paint from glass.
- Acetone product (nail polish remover or lacquer thinner)
- Clean rag.
- Warm soapy water.
- Microfiber cleaning rag.
- Glass cleaner.
- Soak the clean rag in the acetone and place it on the paint for a few minutes.
The acetone will loosen the paint.
- Once the paint is loosened, rub it off with the rag.
- Put the microfiber cleaning rag in warm water to wipe the acetone residue on the glass.
- Use the glass cleaner to clean the glass and dry it with a rag.
Ensure you are putting on the safety gear I listed above before you use acetone.
Acetone can cause skin and lung irritation.
Safely Get Spray Paint off Glass Using a Scraper
If you intend to go down this route, do ensure that the paint is wet before using a scraper or blade.
You also need to be extra careful so you won’t damage the glass surface.
- A bowl.
- Abrasive soap.
- Bucket of water.
- A microfiber cloth or a wet rag.
- A new paint scraper or blade.
- Wet the paint stain area with warm soapy water.
- Keep the scraper at a 45-degree angle and only go one stroke at a time.
You may have to do this as often as possible until you have removed all the paint.
Also, try to use a new and sharp blade, an old paint may scratch the glass.
Gently clean the blade when you are done.
Tip: Do not go back and forth, this will scratch the glass surface.
- After that, use a glass cleaner to clean the glass and dry it with a microfiber cleaning rag.
Using a scraper is not always the best option, this is because there is a high risk of damaging the glass surface.
However, it becomes a necessity when other methods fail.
Remove Spray Paint from A Glass Surface with Steel Wool
To get rid of spray paint on a glass surface using steel wool, ensure that you wet the glass surface first.
Most glass surfaces are made with tempered glass and they can’t easily get scratched.
- First use soapy water to wet the glass, then gently scrub the paint off with the fine steel wool.
The paint will come off easily, and paint chips may fall on your tarp.
- Clean the glass with a microfiber rag and you are done.
Using steel wool is quite easy, but you have to be careful not to be too aggressive in order not to damage the glass surface.
Remove Spray Paint Using Turpentine
Turpentine or Mineral spirits, popularly known as white spirits, are petroleum distillates.
Most painters use turpentine to thin paint because it is cheap and has a less-offensive odor.
More often than not, most spray paint guidelines contain the type of solvent that will be effective to remove them.
Turpentine could be the option listed on the spray paint can you are working with.
If so, then follow these instructions.
- Dip fluffy cotton or clean rag into the turpentine and place it on the paint stain for a few minutes.
This will loosen the paint bond.
- Rub the surface energetically with the rag to make sure you remove the paint completely.
- Get a microfiber cleaning rag and soak it in soapy water to clean the turpentine off the glass.
- Lastly, dry the glass with a clean towel.
How to Get Spray Paint off Glass with WD-40
WD-40 otherwise known as water displacement 40 is a degreasing agent.
This makes it good for removing spray paint from glass.
- Put a clean rag in the WD-40 and place it on the paint spot for about 10-15 minutes.
Then gently scrub off the paint.
- Rinse the WD-40 from the glass when the paint is off.
- Use a microfiber cleaning rag to dry off the glass.
Remove Spray Paint Using a Magic Eraser
Magic erasers are typically a type of sponge that contains melamine foam.
Wikipedia defines melamine foam as a foam-like material consisting of melamine-formaldehyde condensate.
This is what makes magic erasers so abrasive and as such perfect for removing paint from the glass.
- Dampen the magic eraser.
The treads of the sponge are sharp; this is why you need to soak it in water.
- Using a circular motion, remove the spray paint.
Be firm but gentle in your approach.
If you are too aggressive, you may scratch the glass surface.
- Once you have done that, rinse the glass surface and clean the water with a rag.
Remove Spray Paint Using Spirit Vinegar
Spirit vinegar or white vinegar offers excellent results when used to remove spray paint. It contains 5 to 20 percent acetic acid.
When using spirit vinegar, you need to follow the safety guidelines I listed above.
- Warm water.
- Dish soap.
- Spirit vinegar.
- A bucket.
- Oven mitts.
- A clean rag.
The quantity of these items depends on how much paint stain you are removing.
- Boil the spirit vinegar in a microwave or on a stove.
Put on gloves when you are removing the spirit vinegar from the microwave or stove.
- Soak the rag into the boiled spirit vinegar and place it on the paint spot to loosen the paint bond.
The paint will slowly but surely come off.
- After that, put another clean rag in soapy water to clean off the vinegar from the glass.
- Then use a microfiber cleaning rag to wipe the glass until it is dry.
How to Get Spray Paint off Glass with Baking Soda
Baking soda is a cheap alternative and it’s effective when removing spray paint. Its abrasiveness and availability make it a common DIY option for removing spray paint.
- Boiled water.
- ¼ of baking soda.
- A pair of gloves.
- Clean microfiber rags.
- Boil water on a stove or burner, but keep it on a low boil.
- Pour ¼ of baking soda into the boiling water.
Do not stir the baking soda, let it settle down at the bottom of the water.
- While wearing gloves, dip the clean rags in the boiling baking soda and place them on the paint stain.
- Scrub the paint stain until it completely comes off.
- Rinse the baking soda off with clean water and dry the glass with clean rags.
Remove Spray Paint from Glass with Oven Cleaner
Oven cleaner is a chemical substance used to tackle stubborn residue. It is a very nice option for removing spray paint from glass.
Oven cleaners contain Sodium Hydroxide also known as caustic soda. This is a chemical compound that is used as a cleaning agent.
Be very cautious when using oven cleaners, they are caustic and they can cause skin and lung irritation. For this reason, the safety gear listed above should be used.
- Disposable cleaning rags.
- A bowl.
- Oven cleaner.
- Clean Water.
- Dampen a clean rag in the oven cleaner, then place it on the paint spots for about 10-20 minutes.
The paint will slowly come off.
- Wipe off the oven cleaner with another rag, once the paint is off.
Dispose of the rags when you are done.
- Soak a microfiber cleaning rag in clean water to clean the glass.
With the potency of oven cleaners, the paint will come off easily and you won’t have to repeat the process.
So far, we have done through 10 different options you can choose from when removing spray paint from your glass.
Now we will discuss how to get spray paint off different kinds of glass.
How to Remove Spray Paint from a Fiberglass
In your attempt to remove paint from fiberglass, stay away from acetone-based solvents. Otherwise, the glass will get damaged and that is exactly what we want to avoid.
Other natural paint removers like stripping gel or baking soda are better alternatives.
I have already shown you how to use baking soda to remove spray paint earlier on.
If you have a gel stripper, then simply follow these instructions.
- Apply the paint stripper onto the paint stain with a brush.
Let it stay on it for up to 10 minutes.
The paint should begin to come off then.
- Once the paint is removed, wash off the gel stripper with warm water.
- Use microfiber cleaning rags to clean the fiberglass.
How to Remove Spray Paint from Plexiglass
The best method for removing spray paint from plexiglass is using a scraper.
If after using the scraper, some specks of paint are still there, just pick a solvent of your choice to do the rest of the job.
Avoid lacquer thinner solvents totally, they are harmful to the plexiglass surface and they will cause the paint to smear.
How to Remove Spray Paint from a Mirror
While you are trying to repaint your mirror frame, you may accidentally spill paint on the mirror glass.
Do not fret, with the steps I will show you now, you will safely remove paint from your mirror without damaging the mirror frame.
- Cover the paint frame with newspaper and carefully use paper tape to hold down the newspaper.
This is to make sure that you don’t remove the spray paint from the mirror frame.
- Use any solvent from the ones I listed above because mirrors are made with tempered glass and they can withstand any type of solvent.
- Rinse whichever solvent you used and dry the mirror with a rag.
- Dip another rag into the glass cleaner and apply it to the spot where the paint was.
- Lastly, use another rag to wipe off the glass cleaner and dispose of the rags when you are done.
Get Rid of Spray Paint on a Window
A window pane is not a place you want spray paint on.
Oftentimes you need a combination of solvents and a pressure washer (only if the paint doesn’t come off), to get the job done.
Follow the instructions I will give you now carefully so you can safely get spray paint off your window.
- Cotton rags.
- Nail polish remover (with acetone).
- Pressure washer.
- A gallon of water.
- Put a cotton rag in the nail polish remover and apply it to the paint.
Let it sit for about 5-7 minutes.
- Scrub the paint off the window pane with the dampened rag to remove the paint.
That should do the trick, but if it doesn’t then proceed to the next step.
- Set your pressure washer at a low water pressure so you won’t accidentally break the window pane or frame.
Test run the water pressure to see if you have to adjust the spray nozzle.
Spray the water at a 40-45- degree angle to the glass and move the hose back and forth as needed until the spray paint comes off completely.
- Dry the window pane with another cotton rag.
Safely Remove Graffiti from Glass
Be it on your window or car mirror or even your design, a need to remove graffiti can arise.
- Methylene Chloride, also known as Graffiti remover.
- Paper towels.
- Cleaning rags.
- A bucket.
- Warm water.
- Spray the graffiti remover on the paint stain and let it sit on it for about 2-3 minutes.
Graffiti removers are very strong solvents, ensure you are wearing gloves and masks when using them.
According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, if your skin gets exposed to methylene chloride for a long time, It can cause chemical burns.
- Using a paper towel, clean off the graffiti and it will come right off.
- Dampen the cleaning rag in warm water to remove the graffiti remover.
Graffiti removers are also incredibly potent for removing graffiti on metals and wood.
Remove Spray Paint From A Glass Cup
Although rare, there is a possibility that this may happen.
It could be that you spray paint your glass cup and you want to remove the paint because you changed your mind.
Just simply follow these instructions;
- Wet the glass cup with running water, it’s safer if you do this on your dishwasher.
- In a circular motion, use a sponge and soap to wash off the paint.
Do this as often as possible till the paint is off the glass cup.
It should take you about 3 to 5 minutes.
Is It Possible to Remove Dried Paint from a Glass
Yes, you can remove hard paint from a glass.
The only downside is that it will take more time for the paint to come off compared to removing fresh paint.
Additionally, stronger solvents like acetone may be necessary.
How to Prevent Paint Spray from Spilling On Your Glass
Asides from graffiti, which is usually unavoidable, it is possible to prevent spray paint from spilling on your mirror or window.
- For your windows, while painting the frame simply cover the window pane with newspaper and use paper tape to hold down the newspaper.
- You can do the same for your mirror if the mirror cannot be removed from the hanger.
However, the safest option is to remove the mirror while you are spray painting.
The question that you may have now is which method is the best way to remove spray paint.
Be it graffiti, or removing spray paint from other glass surfaces.
My answer to this is that you start with the natural and less toxic options like using the scraper or just soap and water when needed.
However, if these options don’t completely do the job then proceed to use the solvents I gave you but do ensure that you follow the safety measures.