Top Tips for Applying & Removing Vehicle Graphics

Tips, tricks and application / removal process for vehicle graphics

Vehicle Graphics are stickers, decals and cut vinyl graphics such as lettering and numbers, they are predominantly used for events graphics and branded sign writing of any type of vehicle. Usually adhered to painted panels and windows, they can be easily and safely applied and removed with a little know how. 

Tips & Tricks:

  1. Always ensure your vehicle is clean of dirt, grease, road tar before applying any graphics. Even if your vehicle has been washed you will need to clean the area with an alcohol solution to ensure the graphics adhere as best they can. 
  2. Never apply adhesive graphics to paintwork which is bubbled, rusted or that is not factory paint or a professional respray. If you do – when you remove these graphics there is a risk it will remove the paintwork with it. 
  3. Don’t try to apply graphics on a windy day outside! If you have the use of a garage, great! If you don’t, then applying graphics on a windy day can be problematic – if you have no choice then get someone to assist you to apply your graphics. 

Tools Needed For Vehicle Graphic Application:

  1. Cleaning Solution: Alcohol Spray or Isopropanol – This will remove any grease / wax residue which could affect the adhesion the graphic
  2. Cloth or Rag: Preferably a lint free cloth, an old cotton pillowcase or microfibre cloth will work
  3. Scraper: Known as a squeegee in the industry, this is a flat flexible plastic tool – any flat plastic with a smooth edge and a little give will work as well as thick card. 
  4. Masking tape: There isn’t really a substitute for this – it needs to be a low tack tape.
  5. Tape measure: You only need to ensure the graphic is level so if you do not have a tape measure to hand you could use string or masking tape.
  6. Soap solution: A simple soap solution is just water with a few drops of either washing up liquid or baby soap in a spray bottle which omits a fine spray. 

Tools Needed For Vehicle Graphic Removal:

  1. Heat Gun: Not everyone has access to a heat gun, but a hairdryer on a high heat can work similarly although does not omit the same amount of heat. 
  2. Removal tool: Usually made of plastic with a tapered edge to tease up the edges of vinyl, you could use any slim rigid plastic. 
  3. Cleaning Solution: Alcohol Spray or Isopropanol – This will remove small amounts of glue residue
  4. Tar & Glue Remover: This is a strong solvent based cleaner to remove stubborn glue residue. It is made from a combination of chemicals – use a cloth or spray bottle to apply, leave to soak in then wipe down the area. Use in a well ventilated space.

You can download our recommended application processes below: