You have undoubtedly figured out that your worn or damaged caulk is not going to repair on its own. Thus, you have decided that caulking over the previous caulk is a time and cost-saving solution to the issue. 

However, can you caulk directly over old sillicone caulking?

In some cases, using multiple coats of new caulk is recommended since the initial coating might shrink as it cures. Nevertheless, it is NOT advisable to apply new caulk directly over old caulk as most kinds of caulk will not adhere to the old caulk. It varies according to the material the caulk is constituted of. If it is silicone, you will have to take it off because nothing will adhere.

Suppose there are uncaulked surfaces on either side of the region you want to caulk. In that case, you could directly re-caulk it since the new caulk will adhere to the uncaulked surfaces on either side. Nonetheless, it is preferable first to eliminate the old caulk and wipe the surface beforehand with rubbing alcohol.

How to Remove Old Caulk?

The old caulk can be removed in a range of methods. It is usually determined by the type of caulk that is being replaced. You could cut elastic caulk off flat surfaces with a utility knife. Unfortunately, if the length exceeds 300 feet, it is not permitted.

On the other hand, silicone caulk should be eliminated with a silicone remover, like a WD-40 or Goo Gone. You could also utilize a blade scraper or razor tool. When employing a razor or scraper, keep it at a low angle and apply gentle pressure. If the caulk is new or acrylic, you could try softening it by soaking it in isopropyl alcohol. Nevertheless, be cautious not to meet with the uncaulked areas. 

Once you eliminate the old caulk, scrub the surface with a wire brush or a home cleaner. Before applying any new caulk, wipe it using a clean cloth and dry it. What’s more, you must ensure you utilise the right kind of caulk. 

Takeaway Tips For Caulking Over Existing Caulk 

If you need to caulk over previous caulk or caulking a wide or deep surface, you can go ahead as long as the new caulk is not silicone. Additionally, double-check if they are created using the same ingredients. If the two are not compatible, they may drift apart over time. Here are some suggestions:

  • Ensure the caulk is clean and dust-free before applying. Ideally, wipe the surface using a gentle cloth. 
  • Wait for the caulk to dry completely before applying another caulk layer. If necessary, use a heater or fan to dry a wet surface or existing caulk. 
  • You can re-caulk over small crevices, but not those that are too visible
  • Before applying new caulk, ensure the existing caulk is completely sealed and attached

Ultimately, spending time on the planning stage will boost the likelihood of your second caulk coating succeeding. Therefore, if you want to caulk directly over old caulk, you now have the ‘know-how.’ However, it is unlikely to be a speedy process and might only be temporary.