Decals or stickers are a great way to advertise your business. You can put them on your car or truck, your office window or a wall. No matter where you put them, there are a few tips to follow to ensure a perfect application every time.
#1: Start with a Clean Surface
Wash the area where you’ll be applying the sticker with either soap and water or, ideally, a mixture of rubbing alcohol and water. After cleaning with soapy water, rinse thoroughly with clean water until no soap or residue remains (this is crucial for a good stick!). Do not use window cleaning products as they may leave a residue behind, making your sticker cling less effectively.
#2: Watch the Temperature
For the best results, install your stickers in a shaded area away from direct sunlight. When possible, you should apply stickers when the temperature is above 10º C and below 30º C.
#3: Use Tape to Position the Sticker
Masking tape helps to ensure that your sticker is positioned exactly where you want it. Before removing the white backing paper, position the sticker where you want it to go. Place a piece of masking tape along the top edge of the sticker. This fixes it in the proper location. Then, lift the sticker as if it’s on a hinge and carefully peel off the backing paper. While holding onto the bottom edge, slowly lower the sticker, using your thumb or a squeegee to press from the centre out and gradually working your way from top to bottom.
#4: Try the Wet Method
You can apply most smaller decals without using water but for larger stickers the wet-method can be a life-saver. After cleaning your surface area, wet the area again using a spray bottle and a solution of about 5% soap / 95% water. Put a squirt on the back of the decal as well. Apply the sticker while the area is still wet. This will keep it from adhering immediately and give you time to reposition if necessary. Then, remove any air and water bubbles using a squeegee or a plastic card. The soapy water will dry in a few minutes and leave your sticker firmly affixed.
#5: Be Aware of the Transfer Tape
When you receive your sticker it will consist of three layers; 1) the transfer tape, the masking tape top layer that holds the parts of the sticker together; 2) the vinyl sticker; 3) backing paper, the bottom layer of white paper that clings to the adhesive side of the sticker.
Before applying the sticker it’s important to make sure the sticker and transfer tape are pressed firmly together. This ensures that all parts of the sticker come off of the backing paper when it is peeled away. To do this, apply pressure evenly across the transfer tape with a squeegee or a plastic card.
Also, once you’ve applied your sticker, it’s recommended to leave the transfer tape in place for at least 3 hours before carefully removing it. In very cold winter months, you may need to leave the transfer tape on even longer. To speed up the process when it’s cold out, you can warm the application surface using a blow dryer on low heat. This ensures the adhesive on the sticker has time to make a good, permanent bond with the surface it is adhering to.