Removing decals can be an easy process if the right tools are used. Generally there are 5 ways to remove decals. Each has there own pro’s and con’s, depending on what your criteria is (i.e. cost or time). I have outlined what tools are best for what applications. The top five are:

1) Wonder Wheel (maybe a little bias, but it WORKS)

Description: This a rubber wheel that attaches to a drill (connection is included) and works by wearing away the decal. See video for example of it in use

Pro’s

  • very fast and works on most surfaces
  • good for large areas
  • takes away a lot of the adhesive (less need for additional chemical or tool to remove adhesive)
  • cheap (around $25 and seems to last a long time)
  • best tool found on the market for removing large areas of decals


Con’s

  • availability (only found online)
  • if press too hard (very hard) can leave a light brown mark

Best for:

  • cars, trucks, buses, glass

Less suitable for boats

  • make sure you don’t press too hard

2) Plastic Razor

Description: using a plastic razor blade to get underneath the edge of a decal and scrape off

Pro’s

  • very fast on small glass surfaces
  • very good for removing decals on boats as won’t damage the surface
  • only product recommended for removing decals from wooden surfaces (as wont damage the surface)
  • cheap (around $20)

Con’s

  • better for small surface areas. Too slow for big jobs

Cost:

  • low to medium (around $20)

Best for:

  • boats, cars, trucks, buses, glass surfaces, wooden surface

Bad for

  • large areas of decals

3) Metal Razor blades

Description: using a metal razor blade to get underneath the edge of a decal and scrape off.

Pro’s

  • very fast on small glass surfaces
  • cheap (price of a razor blade)

Con’s

  • can easily scratch the surface. Easy to ruin paint jobs
  • better for small surface areas. Too slow for big jobs
  • injury (possible to cut yourself)

Cost:

  • super cheap (price of a razor blade)

Best for:

  • glass surfaces

Bad for

  • painted surfaces on cars, trucks, boats
  • large areas of decals

4) Heat Gun

Description: Uses heat (from a heat gun tool) so the vinyl is heated to a higher temperature that changes the structure of the decal (I.e. makes it possible to peel off)

Pro’s

  • good for large areas
  • once bought the tool, not need to buy further consumables

Con’s

  • cost of initial heat gun tool (usually cost over $80)
  • messy (adhesive gets sticky)

Best for:

  • cars, trucks, buses, glass

Bad for

  • wooden surfaces
  • check for any resprayed areas before using

5) Degreaser / Chemicals

Description: Chemical product (either natural or synthetic) used to remove the decal. Works by the chemical breaking down the adhesive that holds on the decal. Experience has shown that chemicals generally don’t work well in removing the decal as it can not penetrate the decal surface. If you use this method, its recommended to perforate the decal surface so the chemical can break down the adhesive.

We recommend using these chemicals as a supplementary product that is better designed at removing the adhesive that is left over, after a decal has been removed (using one of the tools above)

Pro’s

  • none found. Best suited at removing the adhesive (once the decal has been removed)

Con’s

  • if using a synthetic product, the potential harm to the skin surface (some products can cause skin irritations)

Bad for

  • we don’t recommend chemicals for removing decals, rather they re best suited to removing the adhesive left over