Driving Smart: How to remove a bumper sticker

Do you have a window or bumper sticker on your car that no longer serves it's purpose? Here's how to remove them safely.

Whether they're on your car's bumper or a window, stickers enable you to express yourself to a large audience. But the problem is that trends and tastes change, and political campaigns do eventually end.

Here's how to clean the slate.

  • If it's on a bumper, first wash the surface to prevent grit from damaging the paint in the next steps.
  • Then use a hair dryer on its hot setting to soften the adhesive. Stay a few inches away and work from the center out.
  • Next, use a plastic card like a frequent shopper card or a hotel key card at an angle to gently scrape the sticker loose using a sawing action if necessary.
  • Once it's removed, repeating the heat and scraping can remove any residue, or try bug and tar remover designed for use on paint.
  • Finally, use some quick-detailing spray and a clean cotton or microfiber cloth to finish it off.
  • For window stickers, get a razor blade scraper. It seems extreme, but glass is hard enough to resist scratching, unless the window has been darkened using aftermarket tinting film. In that case, don't use anything sharp.

We find that the sticker itself can be used to remove remaining adhesive. You can rely on the hair dryer here as well. Glass cleaner should finish it off.

Whether it's last year's city sticker or a period of life you'd rather forget, it needn't be too difficult to move on.


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