How To Clean Your Heat Press After An Accident

Need to know how to clean your heat press?


What happened? Did you forget to use a Teflon sheet when you last used your press? Did you accidentally press your transfer the wrong way up? Or did you try to press a fabric at too high a temperature? Does your house now smell like burning plastic and chemicals??!


clean your heat press - how to clean your heat press after an accident


The following is probably not what you want to hear if an accident has already happened, but I have to begin by saying that most of the scenarios mentioned could have been avoided by using a teflon sheet.


This sheet can be cleaned much easier than the heat press if it gets ink or vinyl on it – it is advertised that “nothing can stick to it”. Or, if you do manage to find a way to get something stuck to it,  it can be chucked away and replaced at minimal cost.



How Can You Clean Your Heat Press Platen?


It can depend on the brand and style of heat press that you have, so you should always check your user manual before doing anything else, but we can give some general advice here.

One product, which seems to solve most problems, is called EZ-Off Hot Iron Cleaner. It’s a good idea to have some ready in case of an unexpected accident, but if it has already happened, your press should be fine until it arrives.


This product is also good for giving your press a general clean every once in awhile. You can get a build up of starch from t-shirts, and other grime will invariably find its way onto your press. This product will make your platen look like new again.


EZ-off is used on the heat press or iron while it is hot, so make sure you’ve got plenty of ventilation.


How Can You Remove Vinyl From Your Heat Platen?


Be careful if you are going to attempt to scrape vinyl off the platen with something like a paint scraper. This technique is really too risky – you are highly likely to scratch, scrape and gouge marks into the platen. Only attempt this if you know what you’re doing.
Otherwise, best to order some of the EZ-Off cleaner and use a plastic or teflon scraper.  


Either way, the vinyl will come off easier as the platen warms up (assuming it had been turned off). There is a greater likelihood of scratching the platen if you attempt to clean it while cold.


How Can You Remove Sublimation Ink From Your Heat Platen?


The first thing you can try to remove ink from the heat platen is warm, soapy water. The level of success you will have doing this depends on how long the ink has been on the platen, and how baked on it is.


If warm water doesn’t work, try EZ-Off cleaner. This is more than likely to solve the problem.


How Can You Remove A Burned Or Melted Garment From Your Heat Platen?


Polypropylene is often the culprit when it comes to melting a fabric onto a heat press. This has a lower melting point than cotton or polyester so it can be easily done.

Depending on the amount of polypropylene build up, you will want to gently scrape away the excess with a plastic, teflon or nylon scraper as the press warms up. Once the majority of the build up has been removed, you can give it a go over with EZ-Off cleaner.


What You Shouldn’t Use To Clean Your Heat Press


Do not attempt to clean your press with a solvent. You might start a fire!


Moral Of The Story?


The moral of the story is to always use a teflon sheet when pressing, and it’s always good to have a tube of EZ-Off Hot Iron Cleaner nearby!


Before you clean your heat press though, always check your user manual first and follow the instructions there. There is much variation between presses so it’s best to follow the approved methods of cleaning before turning to others.


Thanks for reading this post. Feel free to share your heat press horror stories below in the comments section. How did you clean your heat press?


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