How to Soften Plumber Putty in The Microwave | Useful Tips & Easy

You are going to need to soften the putty first before you can handle it. Don’t know how? Well you are in luck. This article will present to you several solutions on how to soften plumber putty entirely on your own.


How to Soften Plumber PuttyOverviewThings that you will needThe softening processStep 1: Exam the ingredient listStep 2: Pour in the oils.Step 3: Use the heat.Step 4: Hammer the putty out.Conclusion


In most major renovating projects, plumber putty can be said to be an important material, especially when it’s come to sealing pipes or alike. The way to use it is also very easy, simply apply an appropriate amount of the putty where you need a sealant then it’s done.

The plumber putty will provide the joint with a better fitting while preventing any possible leakage. But after some time, use or not use, the putty may harden and become very hard to handle.

If you can’t figure out how to deal with the situations then below is information that may come in handy.


Putty even allows a person with basic knowledge to fix leakage around the house. It commonly appears in a soft form like clay and you can easily bend it to your need. Normally, putty won’t harden for a long time.

But when it does, you may have to spend quite a bit of time and effort to handle it. Yet there are still clever tips and tricks to leisurely deal with the putty when it’s become rock hard.

The harden putty will trouble you no more if you apply what you learn here to practice but first you are going to need several things to do this right.

Things that you will need

Due to a variety of ingredient that made of many types of putty, you should prepare for every possible situation and switch to another method if the current method is not working. So namely, you are going to need oils, rags, heat gun, wire brush, hammer and chisel.

About the oil, you can use either machine oil or even cooking oil. And you can use the hairdryer or even the microwave if you don’t readily have an access to a heat gun.

use the heat gun on how to soften plumber putty

Since you are going to possibly deal with lots of chemicals and their fume here, do put on protective gears. Equip yourself with a pair of goggles, gloves and facemask. Wear them the entire time when you try to soften the plumber putty.

If possible then do this in a wide and well – ventilated space without any flammable material in your proximity. When everything is in its place then let’s starts the process.

The softening process

Step 1: Exam the ingredient list

It would be wise to inspect the putty ingredients first before you attempt to soften it. The most usual materials you can find here are minerals and bonding chemicals.

In some cases, the chemicals are actually flammable. Applying heat on the putty or putting it in the microwave will pose a fire hazard with the presence of these chemicals.

So it’s vital that you carefully check the ingredient list. If you see an ingredient that you don’t know then look on the Internet to see if it’s flammable or not.

In addition to that, there is also putty that utilizes a large amount of oil, commonly canola, linseed or a combination of both. When being exposed to air, the oil will dry hence the putty will become rock hard.

Heating methods will not be effective in this case as well. The remaining oil in the putty might be ignited by the heat or if there is no oil left then you only make the putty drier and harder.

Step 2: Pour in the oils.

A very easy way to soften the putty is to pour in a generous amount of oil upon the putty surface. If possible then try to get and use the same manufacturer oil on the ingredient list but if you simply can’t find a matching oil then just use whatever oil you have at the moment.

easy way to soften the putty is to pour in a generous amount of oil

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The putty is still in its original container then just pour the oil in, close the lid, make it airtight and wait for a few days. The next time you open the can, stir the putty around for a bit then the putty should be ready to use.

If the harden putty is located in the pipes joint then apply the oil the same way but remember to use something to press the oil down and prevent them from being exposed to the air. Depend on the amount of putty present, the oils to use and times to wait will be varied but it won’t be too large.

Step 3: Use the heat.

If you are sure that the putty doesn’t consist of any flammable materials and oils then the heat method will be a good choice. Just toss the putty can into the microwave and heat it up for a bit.

After that, take the putty out and leave it to cool down for a couple minutes then the putty will be ready to use again.

toss the putty can into the microwave and heat it up

The putty is located on pipes joints then simply use the heat gun and concentrate the heat onto the putty. After a minute or two, the putty will be softened and you can remove it with ease.

Step 4: Hammer the putty out.

If all previous methods have failed then it’s time to invest in some serious forces. Take out the wire brush, hammer and chisel and use them to crack open the putty. The putty tends to brittle when it’s dry and hard so you can simply hammer it out and throw it away.

If you don’t want to discard the putty, which you really should, then there is another solution. Gather all the pieces and parts of the putty and soak them in a combination of oil and water.


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After all the putty has dissolved then dry the whole thing till all the water has gone. What remains is the putty which has bonded and ready to be used once again.

But do take note that this will not always work and the discarded putty should be disposed of anyway.

The video below will give you some more detailed tips on how to soften plumber putty.


And that would be the end of it, very easy to do, right? Putty is a useful material a sealant but hardens putty is not that simple to deal with. It also contains many dangers as well if you don’t handle this right.

But if you just use the tools and follow the correct procedures as above then you will encounter trouble softening the putty on your own. With just a couple stuff around your house, soften the putty is only a simple task to you now.

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