Does Mounting Putty Damage Walls? [And How To Remove It]

If you need to hang something on the wall, chances are you’ve thought to use mounting putty. Are you wanting to try this alternative to nails but don’t know if it will damage the walls in your house? Well, we’ve done plenty of research and have the answers here for you.

Mounting putty is a tacky product for sticking display items to surfaces like your walls. It is a damage-free alternative to nails, screws, or tacks, often leaving holes behind. Furthermore, it’s a good option for those who want to decorate in classrooms, offices, dorms, bedrooms, or rentals.

Keep reading to learn more about using and removing mounting putty from your walls. We will also look at the top mounting putty products to decide which one works best for your situation.

Great places to mount putty, Does mounting putty damage walls? and how to remove it

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Places To Use Mounting Putty

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Great places to mount putty, Does mounting putty damage walls? and how to remove it

It’s frustrating when you want to decorate or display an item of importance, but there are policies that prohibit any activity that might damage the walls. Luckily, mounting putty can be a great way around this, as it won’t leave damage behind.


Teachers love to display student work and other instructional materials. Student work displays can change frequently, and mounting putty is easy to pull down and reuse with little to no mess.

Classrooms also have a variety of surfaces to hang items on, and putty is versatile enough to work on most of them.


Office and workspace areas don’t personally belong to employees, so you don’t want to damage them by hanging pictures or decor. Mounting putty makes it easy to affix images or display lightweight materials with no damage.


Many dorm rooms are block walls, so an alternative product is the only option for hanging photographs,  posters, or decor to make your room feel more like home.

Mounting putty works wells and easily removes from block walls, so there’s no worry about repairing walls when you move out at the end of the semester.


Kids love to decorate their personal space to reflect their interests and personality, but parents don’t appreciate walls full of holes.

Since kids change frequently, so can their decor. Mounting putty is a removable and reusable product, allowing them to rearrange their walls art as often as they want without wear and tear on the walls.


Most landlords don’t allow tenants to hang decor with nails because it leaves unsightly holes for repair before the next renter, which means time and money. If you decide to use nails anyway,  you have to putty the holes and repaint them.

Or you have to resort to another way of decorating. Mounting putty will let you decorate the walls and get your security deposit back.

Is Mounting Putty Easy To Remove?

Multiple ways of removing putty from walls

When you remove your poster or pictures from the walls, you should find that the mounting putty is either still attached to the item or the wall. It should easily detach from either one without damage.

When you take down your posters or painting from your wall, you may find residual putty remaining on the walls. Not to worry, it is easy to remove.

How Do You Remove Mounting Putty From The Wall?

There are multiple methods for removing mounting putty from a wall. However, they all start with the same process. First, use a putty knife or similar tool to scrape the putty from the wall.

Most putty knives are metal, so be careful not to gouge the wall or scrape the wall covering with a sharp edge.

If you need a safer putty knife to use with poster putty, consider this plastic set by Bates.

See this putty knife set on Amazon here.

Ball the putty and use it to dab any spots of leftover putty. It should stick to what’s left on the wall and remove it.

If you find that dabbing doesn’t work completely, change your technique. Try to press in and twist the ball. This method should do the trick.

To watch a tutorial using this method, check out this YouTube video.

Another method is to use WD-40. Once you have removed the biggest pieces, spray WD-40 on the wall and wipe clean.

You should always test an inconspicuous area of your wall first to make sure that the WD-40 doesn’t discolor the paint or leave a stain.

To watch this method, check out this YouTube video.

Another suggestion is to soak a cotton ball in a citrus-based cleaner. Then use it to remove any residue from the mounting putty.

You can also try commercial adhesive removers, rubbing alcohol, or vinegar. Magic erasers are another option for removing any stains or oily marks left by the putty’s residue.

Does Mounting Putty Stain Walls?

If you find that a blot remains on your wall paint or wallpaper after removing putty, don’t panic. There are multiple products to remove the stubborn stains, and some are everyday household products that you may already have on hand.

An eraser is an excellent option to try, and you probably have one in your home already. Rub the spots with an eraser. A rectangular kind rather than cap erasers are easier to handle.

Also, if you have a white, use it rather than a colored one. However, if all you have are the ones on the end of your pencils, then use those before running out to purchase another product.

See it in action in this YouTube video.

Another option is to use chewing gum remover. This might not be a product you have on hand unless you have an avid gum chewer who is a bit reckless and gum removal is a common occurrence in your home.

Spray some gum remover on a clean rag and dab on any remaining spots. Then take a towel and dry the area. It is best to pat dry and not rub.

If you need gum remover, consider this one by 3M.

See it Amazon here.

Will Mounting Putty Remove Paint?

Advantage of using putty wont damage walls

One advantage to using mounting putty is that it doesn’t damage walls. However, there is always the possibility that you could experience damaged paint.

Always test first on an inconspicuous area for up to 24 hours to ensure that your paint is compatible with your mounting putty.

You should avoid using mounting putty on freshly painted walls that haven’t been cured yet. Also, don’t use on walls that are already peeling as the adhesive may stick to the chips and cause further peeling.

What Is The Best Mounting Putty?

There are many popular name brands options for mounting putty. Some are pre-cut squares for convenience, while others are full strips so you can take off as much as you need.

A variety of colors allow blending with the wall color or not showing through a thin item like paper. Different products have varying weight capacities, so check if that is a concern.

Different generic names also refer to mounting putty. You might see other products called poster putty, museum putty, or even adhesive putty, but it all does the same thing.

Below is a list of the top sellers with some product descriptions to help you decide which one to choose for your specific need.

Scotch Mounting Putty

Scotch is a product made by 3M, a company known for adhesives. Their product is well-known and designed for lightweight items under 1 pound. It is safe for photos and adheres well to metal, acrylic, and finished wood.

Follow this link to view it on Amazon.

Loctite Fun-Tak

Fun-Tak is a non-toxic repositionable adhesive that doesn’t dry out over time, making it a good choice for items that will hang for a while.

Suitable for use on most smooth surfaces such as wood, plaster, blackboards, glass, tile, plastic, metal, linoleum, Formica, concrete, and brick. It comes in strips and tabs.

View it on Amazon here.


Blue-Tack by Bostik claims to be the original adhesive tack with over a thousand uses. It comes in various colors and is suitable for use on non-porous surfaces. It holds approximately a 1/4 pound, so you have to keep it light.

Find it on Amazon here.

Gorilla Mounting Putty

Gorilla is known for its super-strong adhesive products, so it’s no surprise their mounting putty tabs hold up to 2 pounds. Gorilla tabs work indoors and temporarily outdoors on most surfaces.

See this mounting putty on Amazon.

Duck Brand Poster Putty

Duck Brand is a common name when it comes to adhesive products. Their poster putty is safe and effective at holding up to one pound. It is for indoor use and sticks to most surfaces.

View this poster putty on Amazon here.

Collectors Hold Museum Putty

Collectors Hold by Quakehold is traditionally used to hold collectibles, preventing breakage, especially during earthquakes. Therefore, it makes an excellent mounting putty.

The neutral color blends well and works on most surfaces, including marble. It works on over 40 items without damage.

Check this putty out on Amazon here.

To Wrap It All Up

Alternative ways of mounting putty and its uses

Mounting putty is an excellent alternative to traditional tape, push pins, or nails. There are various options to meet different needs, so there’s something for everybody.

For more information about using mounting putty, read How To Hang Curtains In A Dorm [4 Steps]

If you are contemplating an alternative to mounting putty, consider reading Does Mounting Tape Damage Walls?

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