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I have a few stick-on child safety locks, such as this one found on Amazon.

When it comes time to remove them, what should I do to avoid destroying the finish on the appliances? They are stuck on really well and won't budge by hand.

Child safety oven lock

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What kind of finish do you have on your appliances? – Niall C. Aug 18 '10 at 2:10
I have this on a white oven and dishwasher. – spoulson Aug 18 '10 at 11:31
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Try removing it first without removing the foam backing. You can dissolve the foam backing with constant application of WD-40 and scrubbing with a wet wash cloth. We had put some of that foam sticky tape on an old apartment door once and I found that by spraying it with WD-40 and scrubbing it, I was able to remove the foam tape and residue easily without removing any underlying paint or finish.

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I like GooGone for this sort of use. It works faster than mineral spirits, but I've never compared it to WD-40. If nothing else, it smells better. – Joe Aug 18 '10 at 22:37
It turns out I was able to yank them off with some muscle without damaging the surface. They are a foam backing, so while Joe's suggestion did not work, peeling them back did work well without needing to apply any WD-40 or similar. – spoulson Aug 30 '10 at 14:04

I had these on painted wooden cabinet doors. I slid dental floss behind the plastic part which cut the plastic latch off, leaving the foam adhered to the door. Then I peeled the foam off by hand and it did no damage. I couldn't believe how easy it was! I thought it was stuck for good.

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Wow. This worked like a CHARM ! – Georgi Angelov Feb 18 at 3:48

If the adhesive is 3M VHB (Very High Bond), which I think is what they use for the 'command strips', and it doesn't have a foam backing on it, you can just put firm pressure on it to try to twist it. Hold it there under pressure, and it'll slowly release and pop loose after a few seconds.

If it's foam backed, this won't work, as the foam will absorb the force, keeping it from being applied to the adhesive.

Depending on the condition of the surface, how well the surface was prepped, and how long it's been left on (which I'm guessing is months), it's possible it might damage things -- I've had a number of times when I've taken paint off of walls with the stuff. Hard plastics and shinier finishs seem to hold up, so most appliances should be okay.

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I used the pointed end to a bottle cap opener and used it to pry off the base. An old fashion can opener the one that is pointed and makes a triangle opening. Separate the two top and bottom as if you were opening the drawer. The bottom piece has a square shape where the top snaps into. I used a metal bottle opener the pointed end and pried it off my cabinet drawer. It worked and took off the sticky part too. It worked so well I was able to reuse the latch and place it in the correct spot on the cabinet drawer. The first time I placed one I placed incorrectly on my drawer. The top was on my first drawer and the bottom was on my second drawer. Did not like this set up. Now the top is on the side of the drawer where the wall is and the bottom is on the drawer itself. My son can't get into this drawer.

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Use a sharp toothless knife to cut the sticky part slowly. Takes 1 minute each

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Use a hair dryer to soften the glue/backing and a paint scraper to pry/push the glue off.

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