Report: Ford Maverick Owners Say Decals Fall Off After Wash

You know those factory-applied stickers and decals you’ve seen for decades? The ones that start fading after two or three years? Like on old Z/28s or Plymouth Road Runners? Well, this isn’t like those, this is about Ford Maverick pickups losing the stickers in car washes, or exposure to water for certain lengths of time. 

Maverick forums show damaged decals on numerous trucks

2022 Ford Maverick
2022 Ford Maverick pickup | Ford

Maverick forums are reporting multiple incidents of this happening. You can see one example of this with the side stripe almost completely gone. Others show decals on the bedsides mostly removed. One even describes picking up his brand-new Maverick at the dealer after being washed. The sticker on the hood was already damaged. 

There are different kinds of car washes, including those automated coin-operated ones with those gigantic brushes. Those are known to cause damage in some cases, especially with antennas and side-view mirrors. 

What does Ford say?

2022 Ford Maverick
2022 Ford Maverick pickup | Ford

The folks at Motor1 contacted Ford about the issues but have not received a response. The good news is that the stickers are easy to remove, obviously, so they should be easy for your local Ford dealer to replace. It is under warranty.

There is sort of a science to applying water-slide decals. Ambient temperature is preferred when applying them. But it shouldn’t be too hot or too cold. All Ford Mavericks are built in Hermosillo Sonora, Mexico. 

Believe it or not, there is a right and wrong way to apply decals

The 2022 Ford Maverick First Edition on a gravel road
2022 Ford Maverick First Edition | Allison Barfield, MotorBiscuit

Hermosillo is one of the hottest cities in Mexico. It’s mostly a tropical climate. But in the summer there can be days when it is 120-degrees. If the temperature in the factory gets too hot, it speeds up the activation of the adhesive. But that is not always a good thing. 

Over activating the adhesive weakens it, and makes it harder to place and set the decal. If the decals are left in the water solution too long, much of the adhesive can dissolve. These are just some of the causes for some decals sticking well, and others not so much. 

The Maverick is supposed to be affordable, so does Ford use cheap decals?

2022 Ford Maverick
2022 Ford Maverick pickup | Ford

The Maverick was meant to be an entry-level, affordable pickup. So Ford was careful about costs. The black pebble steering wheel that easily scratches is only one instance of keeping expenses down. Whether this applies to the decals, who knows? 

Many have suggested that the truck has a cleaner look without the decals. We tend to agree. After all, this isn’t the 1970s. But that also means that technology should be advanced enough to avoid this from happening.

However, again, we know of random problems with other Ford products. When they do arise, Ford says to take it to your nearest dealer; it’s under warranty and the deal it makes with you when you purchase any vehicle is that there is a set time where the dealer will fix anything free of charge. That’s why there are warranties.

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