How to unclog aerosol spray bottles

Written by lisa miller
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How to unclog aerosol spray bottles
Aerosol bottles can clog easily. (spray with a cap image by Yasen Pramatarov from

Aerosol cans can present a common everyday nuisance when they become clogged. Clogs can occur in hairspray, spray paint and other aerosol spray bottles when resins, debris and other materials collect and build up in the small openings of the can's nozzle. Luckily, removing a clog from an aerosol bottle is a fairly straightforward process and can be achieved in a relatively short amount of time, saving consumers from having to replace their aerosol spray bottles.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Soft cloth
  • Small bowl
  • Rubbing alcohol

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  1. 1

    Remove the spray nozzle from the aerosol can and run it under hot tap water for a minute or two.

  2. 2

    Wipe the nozzle clean with a soft cloth. Clean thoroughly, taking care to wipe any crevices in the nozzle.

  3. 3

    Soak the nozzle in a small bowl of rubbing alcohol for two or more hours if the clog remains. Rinse with water once again and wipe clean.

  4. 4

    Replace the nozzle on the aerosol can by pressing it gently into place.

Tips and warnings

  • In the case of spray paint bottles, you can prevent the paint clogging by turning the can upside down and pushing on the nozzle until a clear mist comes out.
  • If paint or other resins remain in the base of the nozzle, use a straight pin or needle to gently clear out the clog from the tubelike opening at the nozzle's bottom. Be careful not to stretch, puncture or modify the opening.

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