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Buying a car from a dealer has several advantages. But one annoyance for many is the dealer badges and stickers that they like to put on every vehicle. You can always ask the dealer to remove them. But if they won’t, here are five steps to remove dealer badges and stickers from your car.

Step 1: Identify the badge or sticker type

An expansive Toyota dealership lot under the clear blue sky, featuring rows of shiny new and pre-owned vehicles neatly arranged in orderly rows. The showroom building stands prominently at the center, with a sleek glass facade and the Toyota logo prominently displayed. Customers and sales staff can be seen inspecting cars, and colorful Toyota banners and flags flutter in the gentle breeze, adding a vibrant touch to the scene.
Toyotas on a dealership lot | via Getty Images

The first step to removing a dealer badge or sticker from your car is identifying what type of badge it is. Raised badges are often applied with all-weather mounting tape or adhesive. Flat stickers, meanwhile, come with a less aggressive glue. This gives you a starting point for step two.

Step 2: Apply heat to soften the adhesive

To remove those raised dealer badges from your car, you’ll need to start with a heat gun. This softens the mounting adhesive and allows for safer removal of the badge. Stickers, meanwhile, benefit from heat as well, but don’t require as much to release.

Important: Be careful with the heat gun. Applying too much heat can crack your car’s paint from the bottom up, requiring a complete repaint of the area.

Step 2a: How to remove dealer stickers without heat

If you aren’t comfortable using a heat gun, you can instead use boiling water or a hair dryer to soften adhesives and debadge your car safely. Both are considerably safer than a heat gun but will take a bit more time. Boiling water is the safest option, as it will both soak and heat the adhesive for easier removal.

Step 3: Remove the dealer badge from your car

Once you’ve softened the adhesive and started to loosen the badge or sticker from your car, it’s time for the plastic razor blades or nylon floss. These are less likely to cut into your car’s clear coat, but still have the edge to remove badges, stickers, and adhesives from your car. Start with one corner and work your way over, alternating between applying heat and using the razor or floss. If all goes well, you should have a clean surface to work with. But if you don’t move on to step four.

Step 4: Thoroughly clean any remaining adhesive

If you have any adhesive left behind, remove it using warm soap, water, and a microfiber sponge. If it is still difficult to remove, boiling water can help further soften the glue. And solutions like Goo Gone can assist chemically as well. Just be careful to avoid spilling any solvents on rubber or plastic components.

Step 5: Polish the paint to restore the finish after removing the dealer badge from your car

A row of debadged sportscars parked inside a large garage.
Debadged sportscars | Charlie Larkman via Unsplash

Once you’ve fully removed the dealer badge or sticker from your vehicle, you’ll want to polish the paint. The peeling, scraping, and wiping will mar the paint, no matter how careful you are. A simple one-step polish is often enough to match the surrounding area. But if you find deeper scratches, you may need to opt for a two or three-step polishing process instead.

Contact a professional detailer to remove dealer badges from your car

If this all sounds too complex, professional detailers and PPF installers often offer debadging services. The pros have both the tools and skills to remove dealer badges and stickers from your car. Even better, they can make the paint underneath look showroom new once it’s all done.

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