Auto repair: How to remove pinstriping from car

Pinstriping can look really good on a car, or it can look like a disaster. Find out how you can remove a bad car pinstriping by reading this informative article!
Pinstriping is still popular on some types of cars, trucks and vans, and it can make a boring car look classier. Nowadays, graphics are more popular on the small, sportier looking cars and trucks, but you can still add pinstriping to any vehicle because it’s inexpensive to buy and easy to put it on.

Some car dealers have their service department add pinstriping onto their vehicles in an effort to spiff up the looks of the vehicles and move them off of their car lots faster. If you purchased one of these vehicles, maybe you don’t like bad red pinstriping on a gold car, for example. So, now comes the hard part of using pinstriping: actually removing it from your car, truck or van.

There are a few ways to remove bad pinstriping, and here are three of the best methods there are:
Method 1

First, you never want to try and use a knife, a razor blade, a copper scratcher, or any other sharp or hard object that can scratch and damage the painted finish on your vehicle. Instead, grab an ordinary hair blow dryer and a credit card out of your purse or wallet.

The next step in this process is to turn the blow dryer on and run it back and forth across an end section of the pinstriping. A note of caution here: be sure that you don’t leave the heat concentrated on one spot of the bad pinstriping too long or the paint underneath can actually blister. Every few minutes, check the end to see if the pinstriping has loosened up – if it hasn’t yet, keep applying the heat from the blow dryer on it. If it has loosened up, use your credit card to gently lift it up from the painted surface of your vehicle. Keep working it up until you reach the other end. If you hit a stubborn spot in the bad pinstriping that is difficult to pull up, put some more heat on it by using the hair blow dryer until the adhesive underneath finally softens up.

After you remove all of the pinstriping off your vehicle, there might be some lines of adhesive left on the painted surface of your vehicle. To remove these lines, use a good quality citrus cleaner.

Method 2

The 3M Company makes a product that can work well with your drill to remove bad pinstriping. The product is a wheel – type attachment that you put on your low – speed drill just like a bit. Then, you hold the wheel carefully against the pinstriping until it comes up. Before you use this product, though, you must make sure that the painted surface of your car, truck or van is absolutely clean. Otherwise, the dirt will scratch the paint when the wheel hits it.

To clean the adhesive mess off of your vehicle, you can use a good quality citrus cleaner.

Method 3

The third method to remove bad pinstriping off of your car, truck or van, is to use rubbing alcohol and a soft, clean rag. Pour some of the alcohol onto the rag and begin rubbing one end of the bad pinstriping. It may take a couple of minutes for the adhesive to soften up, so you will have to have a little patience in doing this. As the pinstriping begins to soften, grab the end of it and carefully pull it away from the painted surface. Keep using the rubbing alcohol and the rag and working the pinstripping up until you reach the other end. If you hit a stubborn spot in the bad pinstriping that is difficult to pull up, apply more of the alcohol until the adhesive underneath finally softens up.

No matter which method you use to remove bad pinstripping off of your car, truck or van, the best way to finish the job is to wash your vehicle again, making sure that you remove all of the adhesive, rubbing alcohol, or citrus cleaner. Then, follow through with a good wax job to make the entire vehicle look shiny and bright.

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