How Auto Refinishing Prep Technicians Remove Pesky Decals

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Decals are one of the quickest and easiest ways for drivers to personalize their cars. Whether in the form of customized family stickers, a business advertisement, or simply a colourful design, decals are quite popular among drivers.

However, there will often come a time when a client needs to have a decal removed, perhaps due to a change of taste or in order to sell the vehicle. Suddenly, this tricky-to-remove form of decoration is not so convenient after all. Fortunately, those who have undergone automotive refinishing training learn just the skills needed to successfully remove decals without damaging the finish of the vehicle. Keep reading to learn how auto refinishing prep technicians can get rid of decals and reveal a vehicle that looks like new.

Be Sure to Clean the Area of the Decal Before Removing It

As with many other auto refinishing procedures you will learn when you study automotive painting, the first step is to thoroughly clean that area of the vehicle on which you will be working. By removing excess dirt and grime, you will be better able to see the materials you are working with, and the dirt will not be able to dilute or interfere with the effectiveness of your cleaning materials. When you have finished washing the area, dry it thoroughly so that you will be starting the removal process from a fresh canvas.

An Auto Refinishing Prep Technician Will Use Heat to Loosen the Decal

Many materials meant for vehicle surfaces are meant to withstand all the weather conditions and air resistance that a car goes through every day. Decals are no exception, which means they will not come off easily just by force. In order to loosen the decal’s adhesive power, use a heat gun at a paint-safe distance to warm up the decal. By doing this, you will reduce the effectiveness of the decal’s adhesive and make it easier to remove.

Scrape the Decal Carefully to Avoid the Need for Automotive Painting

Once the decal has been heated up, you will be able to carefully scrape in from the surface of the vehicle. For this task, it is best to use the professional scraping tools you will have access to as an auto refinishing prep technician in order to best avoid paint chipping or other surface damage in the process.

Scrape the decal away gently. You will likely notice leftover adhesive residue. Depending on its consistency, you may need to apply glue removal solutions with a microfiber cloth in order to fully remove any remaining glue left behind by the decal.

A Final Scrub Will Leave a Professional Result

Finally, when it appears that all remnants of the decal are gone, wash the surface again! This second wash is important in order to ensure that all residues from the decal have been removed, and that there is no remaining dirt or discolouration in the area. For a final finishing touch, apply your best car wax to the area where the decal used to be to achieve maximum shine. From here, you are sure to have a smooth, fresh vehicle surface, and a happy auto refinishing client.

Decal removal is just the beginning.

Contact us at ATC Surrey to learn about the other skills you can learn in our car painting courses.

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