Removing Bumper Stickers

by Julia Woodbury
(last updated May 28, 2010)

Whether you are promoting your favorite music band, make a political statement, or you just want to be a little silly, bumper stickers are one of the ways people can personalize their vehicle. Just because you like a particular bumper sticker doesn't mean that the next owner is going to—or even that you are going to like it several years down the road. These decals can be difficult to remove so you should exercise caution before applying them. If it is too late, and you now want to remove an old bumper sticker, here is what you need to do.

  1. Prepare. The very first thing that you are going to need to do is gather together a few items. You need a hair dryer, a soft rubber/plastic spatula, lubricant (i.e. WD-40, or rubbing alcohol), and soft cotton or microfiber cloths for clean up.
  2. Spray. After gathering your tools together, spray enough lubricant on the bumper sticker to soften the adhesive. Try peeling it off, but don't pull it off—rather peel it back over itself. This will lessen the chances of the bumper sticker tearing and leaving remnants. If this works, congratulations you are finished—if not, keep reading.
  3. Heat. With your blow dryer on low heat, use the air to soften the adhesive. Test the softness of the sticker by pulling back one corner. Continue peeling the bumper sticker back while applying heat to keep the adhesive soft.
  4. Scrape. If your bumper sticker is particularly difficult, even with the heat from the blow dryer, it's time to pull out the rubber spatula. Gently scrape the bumper sticker off using the spatula, and not anything else. If you use a razor blade or anything metallic, you run the risk of ruining your paint job.
  5. Wipe. Wipe away any bumper sticker remains using a microfiber or soft cotton cloth and either WD-40 or rubbing alcohol.
  6. Clean. After the sticker is gone, the area where it was located might look a little dull. Wash and wax your car so that you can restore its former glory.

Author Bio

Julia Woodbury

Julia Woodbury is a recent graduate of Brigham Young University. She delights in the written word and has interests in magazine writing and editing. ...

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