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DIY Bumper Sticker Removal

Lots of options, but some are safer than others.

Maybe the election is over and your guy lost? Or you got a killer deal on a used car with too many heinous bumper stickers? Either way, you need to find a way to do it quickly and safely at home. Removing bumper stickers is one of those tasks that looks harder than it actually is. That being said, use caution when removing decals from your vehicle, you’d hate to leave a scratch in your paint in place of the sticker. One of the key ingredients to successful sticker removal is the application of heat.

Keep in mind any adhesive is more easily removed in warm weather, so the next time you get out the hose and bucket to wash your vehicle, test drive one of these techniques to remove any unwanted decals from your vehicle safely and thoroughly. If you none of these DIY methods are working for you, just give us a call, we’ll be able to help you out.

Use Hot Water (Very Hot)

Sometimes all it takes is hot water. Wet a rag in boiling water and being careful not to burn your hands, place completely over the decal. Still not coming loose? Pour boiling water directly on the sticker, and while it’s still soaked, peel off a corner of the sticker with your fingers, a rubber spatula or an old credit card. Do not attempt removal with a razor blade or pointed tool of any kind.

Blow Dryer

This method is effective, but ensure you don’t hold the drier too close to the paint. Use the low setting for 30 seconds, and start to peel off a corner of the sticker. Don’t apply heat for longer than 30 seconds at a time: 30 seconds of heat, 30 seconds of peeling, repeat. Wipe remaining residue with a soft, lint-free rag dampened with rubbing alcohol. Finish with a polishing compound and a fresh coat of wax if needed. Works great on steel, glass and some painted surfaces as well.

Natural agents

Some common household products can help loosen the adhesive. Try mixing three parts water, two teaspoons rubbing alcohol and one part either eucalyptus oil, alcohol solution, or dish soap in a spray bottle. Generously spray the area, and soak for 10 minutes. Remove as much of the sticker as possible. If necessary, reapply solution, soak and peel until entire sticker is removed.

Another natural approach is to soak a cloth in vinegar and place it over the sticker for up to five minutes, peeling as we’ve already mentioned. Rub vinegar over the area to remove any remaining sticky residue.

WD-40 or lighter fluid

Make sure you use solvents advertised as “suited for use on paint.” Some people have luck with bit of WD-40 or lighter fluid on a cloth. Rub on the edges of the sticker, and it should peel right off. Make sure you remove all remaining residue with a separate rag and rubbing alcohol. If the area underneath the decal has discolored, buff with a polishing compound and a fresh coat of wax.

Goo Gone

This product is best suited for removing lingering adhesive, but can also loosen the entire decal if you perforate the decal surface so the chemical can better soak through. This product comes in a spray, and once applied let it soak in for several minutes before peeling off. Use a clean, lint-free cloth to wipe clean. Wash area with soap.

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