So you have completed your experiment with epoxy resin and want to clean up the mess but do not know how to? Well, we have got you covered!
There are numerous methods one can undertake to clean the stubborn epoxy resin that may be left behind, starting with a basic tissue paper to acetone that will completely wipe it clean.
However, you need to be certain about the physical state of the epoxy resin before proceeding to remove the resin, as the approach differs according to the state of the resin.
Once you figure out the condition of the epoxy resin, it becomes a fairly easy task to go on about cleaning the epoxy resin cup.
Therefore, you need thorough knowledge about your resin before you proceed, so let us look at what epoxy resin is.
What is epoxy resin –
Epoxy resins are adhesive products that are used for DIY projects and repairings. Their strong holding properties increase their scope of use.
They harden quickly and completely cure within 72 hours, making them a desirable epoxy resin quality. However, this feature has a downside as it becomes a difficult task to clean after.
The epoxy resin vigorously reacts with the hardener and cures quickly, making it difficult to remove the excess resin that may be left in the cup.
Since it cures quickly, the epoxy resin may stick to the cup used for mixing the epoxy resin and hardener.
This article explains everything you need to know about cleaning epoxy resin cups. But before that, let us look at why we should the epoxy resin cups.
Why should you clean epoxy resin cups –
Cleaning your epoxy resin cups quickly and effectively is one way to keep your cups intact and long-lasting. The longer you wait before cleaning, the harder it gets, increasing the chance of leaving residue behind.
Look at the following points to find out why you need to clean those uncleaned resin cups immediately.
1. Epoxy resin gets cured easily – once it is activated, it quickly reacts and hardens, so once the resin is cured inside the cup, there is no bringing it back.
2. Reuse – since plastic cups are usually preferred for mixing epoxy resin, it is an eco-friendly practice to reuse these cups used to mix.
3. Leftover residue might mix with epoxy resin the next time you use it. This may create undesired texture and may also result in faulty results.
Now that we know why we need to clean off that epoxy resin residue, let us look at how we can remove epoxy resin from resin cups.
What do you need to clean epoxy resin cups –
Before we remove the epoxy resin from the cup, let us look at what we need for it.
1. Tissue paper – to wipe off the wet resin that can be removed easily with paper.
2. Rubbing alcohol – or acetone are solvents that have the property to break the residue resin, which will help to remove the resin easily.
3. Sticky tape removes any particle of resin that may stick out using the tape.
4. Hot water – to dilute the residue resin in the cup.
5. Dish soap
All these materials are locally available and accessible to put together to use. So roll up your sleeves and get down to work now!
Steps to be followed to clean epoxy resin cups –
TIP: Keep all the necessary materials ready before you start the process.
There are many ways you can proceed to clean epoxy resin cups. Let us take a look at some of the effective ways to clean resin cups.
Method #1 –
1. Keep the cup upright and wipe the resin that is still wet and in liquid form using a paper towel. Wipe any resin that could be removed by wiping it with a paper towel.
This step is essential as any resin particle in the cup will make it difficult to clean it properly.
2. Once the resin is wiped clean using a paper towel, scrape off any hard particles sticking to the cup.
3. Take a paper towel and soak it in acetone or alcohol. Use this towel to wipe the inside of the cup properly. Make sure to clean the edges of the cup thoroughly.
4. Take a clean towel and wipe it to remove the resin that has reacted with the acetone to break the bond.
5. Add hot water and dish soap to the cup to clean it thoroughly. Leave the solution in the cup for a while and wipe it clean.
6. If resin remains in the cup, proceed to wipe it again with acetone until the cup is clean.
Method #2 –
The following process involves you being cautious while using the resin itself. You must leave a stick in the resin while it’s still wet.
1. Once the resin is dried entirely with the stick, take a paper towel and wipe it clean to remove any liquid resin that may be in the cup.
2. Once the container is cleaned with a paper towel, slowly pull on the stick.
3. You will notice that the resin will also peel off the cup. One good thing is that it is incredibly satisfying when you get the resin out in one pull.
4. After pulling out the stick, use acetone or rubbing alcohol to wipe the residue resin from the cup.
5. Pour hot water and dish soap into the cup and leave it in it for a while before wiping it clean.
6. Your cup is ready for the next round of epoxy resin mixing.
Method #3 –
The next step is time taking and requires patience, so proceed only if you have the willpower to wait long, but trust me, the result is extremely satisfying.
1. Keep the mixing cup upside down overnight and leave it undisturbed.
2. After at least 12 hours, turn the cup’s correct side up and try to find edges that may have formed.
3. Pull on the edges – the resin will peel off in a single run, leaving no residue.
4. If there is residue, proceed to clean it with acetone or rub alcohol with a paper towel.
5. Pour hot water and dish soap into the cup and clean it thoroughly.
Tips to keep in mind while cleaning epoxy resin cups –
1. Make sure you wipe off any running resin from the cup before you start cleaning the cup. This is done to ensure that any part that can be removed easily is done before proceeding to use acetone or other methods to clean
2. There are a chance resins may be harmful to the skin; though they are not toxic, make sure you always use gloves while dealing with epoxy resins.
3. Never drain the resin through the sink because the liquid resin may cure along the pipe, causing it to clog. Therefore, always make sure to dispose of resin waste properly.
4. Make sure you do not leave resin in the container for too long if you plan to reuse the cup again as it cures, and then it becomes difficult to clean the epoxy resin cup.
What kind of cup should I use to mix epoxy resin?
I prefer using silicone or a plastic cup to mix your resin as they do not react with epoxy resin or hardener. It is also easy to remove the cured resin from the cup.
What kind of cups should I avoid using to mix epoxy resin?
Avoid using glass cups or foam cups to mix resin as they violently react with each other to let out exothermic heat.
Also, Don’t opt for short cups with an uneven bottom, as they do not allow the epoxy resin to be appropriately mixed along the edges.
How much time should I wait before I clean epoxy resin cups?
Try to clean the cups as soon as possible. However, in case of delay, ensure you get on with the cleaning process soon. Remember to leave a stick in the cup while the resin is wet, making cleaning much more hassle-free.
Epoxy resins are one of the most user-friendly and easy to use and handle. However, cleaning the cups after use can be a little tricky.
I hope this article helps you next time you experiment with epoxy resin and are struggling to clean the epoxy resin from the cup.