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  1. #1
    Bal's Avatar
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    Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    I had a bunch of adhesive residue from wheel weights on every wheel of my 2002 Porsche 911. Why do I care? Well some of them were really long strips and close enough to the face of the wheel to be clearly visible when the wheels are mounted on the car. No matter how much wheel cleaner I used, these areas would just not get clean. I read on the Internet (so it must be true) that brake cleaner works for removing this stuff. I had some Goof Off Pro Strength and also obtained some 3M Adhesive Remover (the one that has Auto Advanced on the can). I used some plastic razor blades as scrapers.

    The contenders:


    The wheel:


    Initially, I only had the brake cleaner and Goof Off available. Later, I went out and bought the 3M. My method was to apply the chemicals to each patch of adhesive and let it soak for 5 minutes. This turned out to have basically no effect whatsoever (below):


    I then reapplied the chemicals to each patch and immediately started to scrape with the plastic razor. I found that the patch treated with the Goof Off was easier to remove. To be fair, the brake cleaner did OK but the Goof Off did a much better job when the adhesive patch appeared to have been removed but there was still tackiness on the wheel surface.


    I then tried the 3M and compared it with the Goof Off. It seemed to be a little more effective overall, but you can achieve good results with both. Later, I found that the 3M is great at removing tar and pretty much anything else on the wheels that wheel cleaner doesn`t remove.


    The 3M product seems to be about twice the price as the Goof Off.

    You can watch this clip from my longer "really thorough wheel cleaning" video that shows the whole process.
    Wheel Weight Adhesive Removal - YouTube">Wheel Weight Adhesive Removal - YouTube" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="350">
    Attached Images Attached Images
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  2. #2

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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    Bal- Interesting as this has been something I`ve dealt with since adhesive weights came out way back when.

    I`ve never tried the (presumably new version) aerosol from 3M, just the the old pre-VOC stuff in the rectangular can, which works *incredibly* well for me (so I bought a lifetime supply). I even gave a can to my Audi tech to keep at the dealership. My best results come from soaking a paper towel (prefer the Viva ones that`re "cloth-like") and using that to let the solvent dwell for a while before using the plastic razor blades.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    I just did a set of wheels for a Lexus ISF that had more wheel weight pad/glue than I have ever seen in my life. I used almost an entire bottle of Goo Gone and about 20 plastic razor blades. I did the same thing as you almost - I sprayed the wheel down with Goo Gone, let it sit for 2 minutes or so, then squirt more on as I was scraping. It was a pain in the butt, but worked well for the most part.
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  4. #4
    Hooked For Life Bill D's Avatar
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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    Thanks for this as I`m going to get new tires soon. I`ll get some Goof Off and make sure I have plastic razors and see how well I do
    Treat it like it`s the only one in the world.
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  5. #5
    Bal's Avatar
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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    I`d really thought that soaking them would help but my guess is that the solvent never really penetrated the adhesive and just evaporated. Your technique of soaking a towel and presumably leaving it on top of the adhesive sounds like a better approach. The car is 15 years old and I imagine that some of the residue is almost that old and has sat in desert heat (car is originally from Palm Springs).

    I got curious and looked up the MSDS of both products. They primarily contain acetone, xylene and ethylbenzene. Goof Off also has methanol, whereas 3M has solvent naphtha. Seems like 3M might have a higher concentration of some of these.

    Goof Off Pro Strength MSDS: http://www.goofoffproducts.com//uplo...SDS-2410.4.pdf
    3M Adhesive Remover MSDS: http://multimedia.3m.com/mws/mediawe...9lxtD7SSSSSS--

  6. #6
    Bal's Avatar
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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    Bill D - my top tip would be to thoroughly clean the wheels before you do adhesive removal. That dissolved adhesive will run and drag dirt all over the place. Once you`ve removed all the adhesive, you`ll probably find it worthwhile to spray the wheel barrel with solvent and run a microfiber over it to remove any tacky areas. You`ll see what I mean in my long wheel video about 8 minutes in.
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  7. #7

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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    dunno if goof off is the SAME as goo gone, but goo gone Pro works for me. Pro being the key word I suppose as when you use goo gone vs gg pro, the P is noticably stronger
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  8. #8
    Hooked For Life Bill D's Avatar
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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    Quote Originally Posted by Bal View Post
    Bill D - my top tip would be to thoroughly clean the wheels before you do adhesive removal. That dissolved adhesive will run and drag dirt all over the place. Once you`ve removed all the adhesive, you`ll probably find it worthwhile to spray the wheel barrel with solvent and run a microfiber over it to remove any tacky areas. You`ll see what I mean in my long wheel video about 8 minutes in.
    I`ll definitely keep that in mind. Thanks again!
    Treat it like it`s the only one in the world.
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  9. #9

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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    Bal- Yeah, that "dwelling via soaked towel" seems to make a big difference. The challenge is getting the towel to stay in place but I get the feeling that what I`m doing is a lot easier than how some others are approaching this. But then the Pre-VOC 3M is probably more potent than the stuff they`re selling now too.

  10. #10
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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    I`ll chime in as a technician who`s done my fair share of tires. (Also as the type of technician that actually removes the leftover stick`m instead of just leaving that junk for the next guy).

    Here at our shop, 98% of the time we use Brake-clean. I`ve used the CRC stuff at home in the past, but haven`t been blown away by it. We use Winzer non-chlorinated, low VOC stuff. Active ingredients from the label are Acetone, and 3 kinds of heptane, and Toluene. (just for comparison sake). I`ll spray it on a shop towel, then rub it on the adhesive spot. If there`s still a big patch of it, then I`ll switch to a plastic scraper (I use a plastic trim tool ground to a wedge) to start at one edge and roll the foam off. Final touch up with another shot to the towel and a wipe down. I`ve done this same sequence with the 3M adhesive remover (non spray-can can).

    As Bal mentioned, good idea to wipe down the area when you`re done as sometimes you leave an invisible sticky film.

    Hope this helps.
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  11. #11

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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    Gyeon tar works well also
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  12. #12
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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    Oneheadlite - thanks for this. Sounds like the Winzer product has similar components to the 3M and Goof Off Pro.

    My neighbor plans to do the same with her wheels on her Mini (they seem to attract brake dust like nobody`s business). We`ll try the shop towel method because I know there are some pretty long stretches of adhesive residue.
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  13. #13
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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    I think the act of trying to use the towel to "scrub" off the residue helps work the solvent into the foam to help it release.
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  14. #14

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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    Oneheadlite- Glad to hear things are done properly at your shop. Sigh...if only everybody did it that way.
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  15. #15

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    Re: Goof Off vs 3M Adhesive Remover vs Brake Cleaner for removing sticky stuff

    While not always the rule, IME, when getting new rubber, the weights generally tend to land on the same ~area~.
    One must be careful to not accelerate possible adhesion issues in removoing old glue if new weights are on the same plane.

    LOL. Talk about timing of this thread.
    Co-worker asked me what do I use to clean my wheels/wheelweels......
    He had his tires replaced at Costco, and I suppose between dirty wheels and tech not cleaning the surface, co worker was missing weights on all 4 wheels !
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