Quick and Easy Ways To Remove Residue Left From Rim tapes

The residue left from rim tapes is quite common and usually, it’s left behind because of the cheap products or rim tapes alternative used like duct tapes and gorilla tapes.

But luckily there are solutions available for this problem and I will go over each and every one of them and rate them based on efficiency as well.

now there are 2 ways one is the products way that I use and the other one is the conventional way if you have already tried the products that I have listed you can take a look at conventional methods.

Removing residue left from the rim tapes with cleaning agents and other products :

Now there are a number of products that you can use but here are some that I have experience with that work well some of them you might have on you some of them you don’t but you can also look at conventional methods as well if you don’t have the products that i listed here or you have already tried them.

  1. Isopropyl alcohol or products based on it
  2. acetone or acetone-based products
  3. WD40
  4. Brackleen
  5. Goof Off
  6. goo gone

You might have noticed I listed almost all of the products that are petroleum-based products that act as mostly cleaning agents the reason for that is petroleum-based products evaporate quickly and that is advantageous in this case because you can quickly apply rim tape over it.

Moving on with the products themselves I will briefly go over each product what they are based on and the differences and similarities in them so you can quickly run through them if one type of product is not working maybe use another that has a different formula or better results.

If you just want the results on which one’s could be the best ones to use you can just jump right to the section where are rank them according to their efficiency for this particular problem that is removing the rim tape residue.

Isopropyl alcohol :

isopropyl alcohol is basically an antibacterial and it acts as a solvent for grease and substances like that alcohols are Amphiphilic and they react with polar and nonpolar molecules, adhesives, grease, and oils are polar substances and they are hydrophobic.

Keep in mind that isopropyl alcohl has C=OH bonds, you will see i asked you to keep that in mind

So water can do nothing to them they repel the water but alcohols, on the other hand, react with the polar molecules present in adhesives, grease, and oil making them good cleaning agents but the problem with them is that they evaporate quickly so you can some of that residue left from the rim tape of but in most cases, it won’t completely work against them.

The best way to go about it would be 99% pure isopropyl alcohol and it should get the job done but if you don’t have it on hand then here are some products that you cant try that may have and see if they produce any results.

Daily use products that might have isopropyl alcohol :

  • paint thinners
  • general cleaning agents
  • disinfectants
  • windshield cleaners

So if you have anything like that lying around your house you can read how much isopropyl alcohol they have the more the merrier.

if you have nothing like that present there are plenty more that might be near you.

Acetone or acetone-based products :

Acetone much like isopropyl alcohol is used as a cleaning agent as well but it’s a better solvent than the previous because it has a C-OH bond and it reacts better with the plastic than isopropyl alcohol and you will find it more in the paint thinners than the isopropyl alcohol.

Daily use products that might have isopropyl alcohol :

  • ink remover
  • grease removers
  • oil removers
  • paint removers
  • permanent marker removers
  • nail polish remover

if you have any kind of these products present at home give it a try it should solve the problems if not try another one.

WD40 for removing rim tape residue :

WD40 is a heavily petroleum-based product and it would work just the same as acetone or even better than it.

Other products like Goof of, Goo gone against residue left from rim tapes :

All of these products are based on alcohols as well and they are more powerful than isopropyl or acetone these should get the work done, if not I wouldn’t check the market for other types of cleaner because there are some that can be toxic.

They have a variety of pure alcoholic compounds such as.






Aliphatic ether alcohol

But they have all these ingredients in high concentration that’s what makes them so powerful.

Rankings of what works the fastest and best :

  1. Goo gone
  2. Goof of
  3. Wd 40
  4. acetone
  5. isopropyl alcohol

Now the numbers mean nothing if you are a little bit patient and let these products do their part Goo gone and goof of are listed on top just because they have a variety of alcohol-based solvents that would work great against the adhesives.

and on the other note try from what you have present near you all of them should work its all about the time and patience.

The best way to use these products :

All of these products are alcohol based meaning they will evaporate fast but not fast enough that they will dry up as soon as you apply them and that’s the key here.

If you apply any kind of goo remover or adhesive remover give it some time to settle down and then start cleaning it, here’s a detailed step-by-step guide.

Always remember to wear gloves or other necessary required equipments when using these products because you can never be too sure!

Spray the cleaner and let it set :

No matter what kind of cleaner you are using spray it and let it set for a while about half an hour to an hour at least let it loosen all the adhesives this is important because if you started cleaning it right after the effects will be very minimal.

Use a rag or even better a scotch Brite or a rough material :

Using a rougher material would be the best way to go about it if it’s not available just use a normal rag and it should work out as well.

Rinse and repeat :

You will probably not get it all of in the first try so doing it in time intervals is the key here the alcohol will make its way in the second or third round of doing so don’t try to overblow it you will be yourself out with picking grains and not making any progress at all be patient and keep repeating the process.

If you are in a hurry and want to get rid of it as quickly as possible you can see the conventional methods that I have talked about below.

Will the cleaning agents mess up your rim paint :

A lot of the rims are painted and some are anodized there can be a certain amount of damage to the rim’s paint but the anodized painted rims might have more damage depending on the cleaner that you use.

But in most cases and in my personal experience I haven’t experienced anything like it but just to be clear it may happen and scotch Brite or a rough material may do more damage than a rag if you are worried just use a rag.

Products that you should not use :

These products should get the job done if not I wouldn’t go as far as using some other products these are all based on alcohol as well but they can be toxic and if you use them to make sure you are well protected some of these products are based on general alcohols as.

  • N-Propyl Bromide
  • Trichloroethylene
  • Perchloroethylene

Examples of these products would be.

  • Brakleen
  • brake cleaner

All of these products are toxic and they are used on industrial bases you may have break cleaner or brackleen at home for your cars but I won’t advise using them because they are toxic.

Acetone can be toxic as well in large amounts and other cleaning agents as well but they don’t compare to what I have listed so be careful don’t go “all gung hoo!” and make it an impossible thing there are tons of other ways to get around these problems as I have listed below.

Traditional ways to remove residue left from the rim tapes :

if you don’t have the dedicated products available to you or if those products failed here are some ways that you can try and hopefully, these will get the job done if those didn’t.

Petrol on a rag :

The first one is a very simple but very effective method and that is to put some petrol on the rag and just put it on the smaller parts or if you had like wrap it around the whole rim and let it sit for half an hour and try rubbing it with a rag.

Dryer or a heat blower :

If you are still having trouble removing the residue and the sucker doesn’t want to come off just use a dyer or a heat blower to soften it and pick it off with a rag.

Don’t melt the whole thing it will become a pain to remove and the residue and rim will become too hot to touch.

Picking up the residue with the tape :

If you had any of these things by now I think you have made some progress to pick up the last bits of the residue if any are left you can use a tape like a sellotape or any tape and just go patch by patch and pick up the residue.

Boiling water and rag :

If you don’t have any of the stuff then as a last resort use boiling water to soften it don’t pour the whole thing on it go the same way as you did with the petrol put a rag around a patch of the rim pout some boiling water on it let it sit for a moment remove the rag and try to pick up the tape mess with a rag, or even use scotch brite that could give a little better results.

What to do next :

Once you are done if you used some product then leave it be the rim should already be clean if you used some other methods then use a little isopropyl alcohol if it’s not there then use anything to complete wipe off the rim completely and apply new tape.

I have done a complete article on Rim tape alternatives | Good and bad alternatives Explained

if you want to know more you can comb read through that article as well.

Some other things that people usually have questions about.

Can you use rim tape over the residue left from the rim tape :

The quick answer to that would be.

Yes, you can use rim tape over the residue left from the rim tape but the new tape might slip on the old residue and not work properly and it can make the problem worse as well so I wouldn’t recommend it but you can certainly use it.

Using a new rim tape over the old rim tape :

And the quick answer to that as well would be.

Yes, you can but then again the new rim tape will not sit well on the old one and the residue left from the old one might become a pain later on when you try to get it off so avoid it as much as you can.

Conclusion :

There’s no magic bullet to get things done quickly and use whatever you have at hand it would take time but you can certainly do it and if you have the money to spare you can do that as well all of the methods are listed here and I think there are enough for anybody to find a good solution.

Scroll to top