One of the biggest pet peeves in the trading card hobby is the so-called “tape loader” — a perfectly-good trading card top loader that has clear tape stuck to the top of it. This is done to keep a card from sliding out of the top loader when sent in the mail. While that seems courteous of the sender, the problem is that it pretty much ruins the top loader. Peel off the tape and it leaves behind a sticky residue that will transfer to other top loaders that it is stored with. Leave the tape on and it becomes a trading card supply that you don’t want to look at. Either way, it’s pretty much useless. Price tags adhered to top loaders also cause a similar conundrum.
Many times, I’d just throw out a sullied top loader. That made sense when a 25-pack of top loaders cost $4 or $5. Who wants to spend time trying to salvage something that could be replaced so cheaply?
But now, standard-sized top loaders cost upwards of $10 per pack — if you can find them. Top loaders for jersey and game-used cards cost more. Top loaders are too expensive to throw out these days and are actually worth cleaning and re-using.
Here is how you can get rid of tape and tape residue from top loaders and make them as good as new.