We’ve all been there - finding the dreaded pre-chewed gum stuck under tables or chairs. It is especially frustrating when you find chewing gum underneath your office table where you work everyday. Someone put it there, but how do you remove it?
As frustrating as it is to see, or worse - feel, gum under your table, it’s even more frustrating to remove. Getting rid of it is a gross task, and not something easily stomached when you’re squeamish. The sticky blob isn’t like dirt that you can just wipe with a paper towel.
Different Ways to Remove Chewing Gum Under Desk
In an office setting, you don’t necessarily have access to most home cleaning materials that would do the trick. You’ll need to get a little creative if you want to get rid of gum sitting under your tables easily. Here are a few tips and tricks:
Remove using Duct Tape
Most offices have duct tape as a staple office supply. While duct tape is terrific for sealing shipping boxes, it also comes in handy in removing dirt from surfaces. Simply take a piece of duct tape, press it on the gum, and swiftly remove the tape from the table. The gum should come right off your table along with the piece of tape.
Any residual pieces can be removed the same way, with new pieces of tape. You can clean up small residue left behind using a cloth dipped in some diluted soap and water. Cold or ice water works best to remove gum residue.
Remove using Ice
Head over to your office pantry and get an ice cube from the freezer. First, directly place the ice cube on the gum piece to freeze it, making it easier to remove once hardened. Use a plastic spoon or scraper to remove the hardened gum and dispose of it properly in the trash bin. The ice method can also be used to remove gum from your chair and clothes.
Remove using Oil
Search your pantry for a bit of cooking oil, mayonnaise, baby oil, or any other related substance that can loosen the stickiness of the gum, making it easier to peel off. Rub the gum with a piece of tissue or towel dipped in oil until the gum becomes easy to peel off. Roll the wad of gum in some paper, and dispose properly in the trash bin. Wipe the oil away with some alcohol.
Remove using Powder
If you have baby powder or flour on hand, you can use it to remove chewing gum from under your table. Dust the gum with the powder, making sure it’s fully covered, and peel away. Keep adding powder as needed to remove any gum residue remaining.
Sanitizing Your Workspace
You might want to sanitize your workspace. For non-wooden desks, simply use rubbing alcohol or hand sanitizer as you normally would to sanitize a surface. For wooden, stone, and other sensitive material, you can sanitize your workspace with some diluted soap, or use a neutral pH sanitizer that won’t stain or corrode the surface.
How to Dispose Chewing Gum Properly?
Has this been a recurring problem, or has this been happening a lot in the break room or communal pantry table? You may need to rally up your coworkers on proper chewing gum disposal. Stale chewing gum on the underside of desks and chairs is not only disgusting, it is improper etiquette and can spread disease if the chewer is sick.
As a supervisor, consider banning chewing gum from your office entirely, or set up announcements on proper gum disposal for every member to see. Make sure there are ample trash receptacles around for trash disposal, and segregate recycling from general trash.
Proper Disposal of Chewing Gum
After chewing, place the chewed gum on a small piece of paper like its wrapper. Roll up the paper, making sure the gum is fully covered. Search for a trash receptacle and throw the gum into the bin, then wash your hands. When a trash bin is not accessible, keep the gum with you until you can search for a trash bin.
Proper disposal of your chewing gum is a sanitary issue as well as an etiquette issue. Keep your area, and the area of your coworkers, clean to avoid the spread of germs, and keep a healthy community within your office. For more office cleaning tips, check out our blog today.