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Car Decal Installation Can Be Easy When You Follow These Instructions

Do-it-yourself car decal installation is totally possible if you have patience, a steady hand, and a willingness to learn a new skill.

Ultimate Graphics Studio vinyl graphics for cars come with step-by-step instructions and video guidance for applying your new vehicle decals. When you follow them carefully, you’re likely to get incredible results.

But there are two installation methods to choose from: wet and dry. In some cases, one is better than the other. Keep reading to learn when to use these methods and to discover tips to make the application process go more smoothly.


Dry Car Decal Installation

With dry application, you get one chance to apply your custom car decal before it adheres to your vehicle. The dry process works well, but for those with little experience, it can be frustrating.

When Should I Use Dry Installation?

The biggest benefit of dry installation is that it is an overall faster process, especially if you know what you’re doing. Dry application is best for skilled applicators or for smaller graphics. You should also use the dry method if your decals adhere with aqueous-based glue. Contact us to learn more about the adhesives we use in our decals.

Downsides of Dry Installation

The most difficult part of working with vinyl decals during dry installation is that the decals tend to stretch if they stick down by accident and you have to pull them off to re-stick properly. Of course, in some cases, it is hard to reposition the vinyl at all without causing creases or misalignment.


Wet Car Decal Installation

The major difference between dry and wet installation is that the wet method requires the use of a spray bottle full of water with a couple drops of dish soap. This solution allows you to reposition the graphic until it is perfectly aligned and smooth.

When Should I Use Wet Installation?

Use the wet installation technique on decals with solvent-based adhesive; the water in the spray solution will not affect its adhesion strength. Wet installation is ideal when you are not experienced in applying vehicle decals because it allows you to reposition graphics as needed for a limited amount of time. This is particularly important for large graphics.

Downsides of Wet Installation

The biggest downsides of wet installation are the time it takes to apply your vehicle decal and the extra equipment needed for installation. Some people find the installation solution to be messy as well.


Both Methods Require Preparation

To succeed at either wet or dry application, you’ll need to properly prepare the surface of your vehicle so it is ready to accept your adhesive decal. If you skip this step, you’ll be sealing dirt, debris, or old wax between your car’s paint and the decal. In some cases, failing to complete the preparation step shortens the lifespan of your vehicle decal or even damages it.

Before applying your vinyl graphic for cars, clean the area where the decal will go using rubbing alcohol or a mild detergent solution. Then, thoroughly dry the area using a clean, soft cloth. Be sure to choose a cloth that won’t create micro-scratches in your paint or clearcoat.

Afraid to Try Car Decal Installation?

It’s okay to be wary of installing your large-scale vinyl graphics for cars by yourself. After all, you want a perfectly-adhered, bubble-free custom graphic.

In this case, it can be better to purchase your graphic from Ultimate Graphics Studio and then contact a professional installer in your area. A professional installer will be familiar with the quality of vinyl we use for our decals and can adhere it to your vehicle for you.

If you’re a little worried but still favor the DIY approach, Ultimate Graphics Studio is here to help! Not only can you contact us for advice and read our list of frequently asked questions, but we’ll also send you one new decal for a limited time if you make a mistake and want to try again.

Shop Now for Vinyl Graphics for Cars

If you’re ready to transform the look of your ride and leave conformity in the dust, then it’s time that you start shopping for vehicle decals made especially for your ride’s make and model. Browse are pre-designed decals for your Porsche, BMW, Ford, Jeep, Dodge, Tesla, Chevrolet, Mini Cooper, or Toyota.

Don’t see your make and model on the list? We’ll create custom car decals based on your ideas and car specifications. Submit our custom order form for details.

Happy shopping! We can’t wait to see your ride’s transformation with Ultimate Graphics Studio decals.

August 23, 2023 — Juan C Espinoza