Last Updated on 7 months by Ollie Barker
How to remove inspection sticker from windshield to reuse? Ever find yourself with an inspection sticker and you don’t need it anymore? Did you know that most states and provinces allow drivers to reuse inspection stickers for up to three years? There’s no need to throw out a perfectly good sticker.
Follow these simple steps, and I can assure you that the next time your car is inspected, the inspector will once again smile at your clean windshield.
In short, whatever approach you choose, this core process stays the same:
- Spraying the adhesive cleaner
- Waiting for the solution to absorb
- Peeling—occasionally involving seeping and splashing the cleaner
- Get every edge; start at the corners and move inward.
Is It Legal to Remove the Inspection Sticker?
If your inspection sticker is past its expiration date, you can remove it. However, if it’s missing or in the wrong place, you should reuse it by removing it safely.
While the car is still in your garage, removing the inspection sticker is permitted. On the other hand, if you drive it on the road, it provides an officer with a good justification to stop you from driving. As a result, you risk being stopped for driving without an inspection sticker.
It can be difficult to deal with the towing firms that impounded your car because they could load it and remove it at any time.
Always check your state’s legislation to discover how much time is left beyond the expiration date.
Consider that many modified cars traveling to a car show are stopped because they lack an inspection sticker.
Reasons Why You May Need to Remove an Inspection Sticker from Your Windshield to Reuse It
- The inspection sticker leans to one side.
- An inspection sticker is not necessary for your location.
- You need correctly reattach it because the sticker has an air bubble.
- The adhesive is not sufficiently sticky.
- You wish to transfer a windshield from an old or broken one to a new one.
Or perhaps you’re like me and want to get rid of it so that you can detail and polish every corner of the car perfectly. Since, you know, every little thing counts, and when you want to show off your incredible build, the inspection sticker has to go because it’s ugly.
How to Remove Inspection Sticker From Windshield to Reuse: 5 Simple Methods
#1 Using heat
- Heat gun (preferable) or a hairdryer
- A razor blade
Heat is one of the finest ways to break apart the adhesives of the stickers without hurting them. While some people find that a hairdryer suffices, I advise using a heat gun for the best results and the quickest removal.
Additionally, a clean, unused razor blade is required because it is far more efficient than attempting to peel the sticker with your fingers.
I’ve also included some advice for reapplying your sticker after using this technique:
- Heat the sticker from outside your car using a drier or heat gun, so the heat is blowing directly onto the sticker’s adhesive side.
- Lift the razor blade and sticker slowly by pressing the razor’s tip against the sticker’s loosened areas. Stop lifting and apply additional direct heat if you begin to feel increased resistance or tears.
- As you continue to apply heat, you will see that your sticker’s adhesive gradually becomes looser, allowing you to remove it safely.
- Use a heat gun or hair dryer to pre-heat the region of your windshield where you intend to reapply your sticker for improved adhesion if you are doing so.
#2 Using dishwashing liquid
- Dishwashing liquid
- A soft cloth
- A scraper
Another way to remove the inspection sticker is to use hot water and dishwashing liquid to clean the area around the sticker. The dishwashing liquid will soften the adhesive, making it easier to remove.
Soak a cloth in warm soapy water and lay it over the sticker. Let it sit for 10 minutes, then use a scraper to carefully pull off any residue left behind. You may need to scrape several times with different scrapers before all the glue has been removed.
#3 Rubbing alcohol
- A wash mitt
- Rubbing alcohol
Rubbing alcohol can be used to remove inspection stickers. A wash mitt should be obtained and soaked in rubbing alcohol.
To make this process much simpler for you, place this over the sticker for at least 5 minutes, if not longer.
Once the glue on the inspection sticker has been loosened by the alcohol, you should find that it comes off much more easily.
Rubbing alcohol can also be used on its own to remove thick applications of glue from glass. Soak a cloth in rubbing alcohol and lay it over the area that needs to be cleaned. Wait 20 minutes to remove excess gunk or adhesive that is still stuck to the glass.
#4 Apply WD-40
- A microfiber towel
- A razor
If stickers are so difficult to remove, why not try WD-40?
The majority of DIYers and car enthusiasts keep WD-40 in their garages or home. It works great as a lubricant and may be used to remove your inspection sticker without damaging it.
This procedure only takes five minutes, but you might want to have a microfiber towel on hand as well as a razor to keep your fingernails from getting really disgusting.
- Spray your WD-40 on the sticker and let it sit for at least three minutes.
- As the WD-40 works its way into the sticker’s corners, use your razor to pull those corners away until the sticker is completely gone.
- To get rid of any remaining glue residue, massage the area in circular motions with your microfiber cloth.
#5 Use ice
You might be astonished to learn that ice can function just as effectively as a heat source to remove a windshield sticker or decal! In contrast to your heat gun, it hardens and weakens the glue so that it may be removed from your windshield with ease rather than loosening it to allow it to peel away.
Ice cubes should be placed in a bag or piece of cloth and held on the sticker for several minutes. If you think it would be more effective to rub them over it, you can do that too.
Apply the ice consistently until you can see an impact on the glue, and then begin to pull the sticker away from the corner.
To prevent the adhesive from warming up while you work, you might want to keep adding ice to the sections you are peeled away.
Once the sticker has been removed, you can reattach it to the desired spot on your car using a heat gun.
How to Reglue Inspection Stickers
Now that you have successfully removed the inspection stickers from your car. What about regluing them so they will look nice on your windshield? Even though stickers are reusable, it loses adhesiveness over time.
During the removal process, you could have damaged the stickers a bit that they became tacky. If you just reattached them with any glue, the sticker may not stick as you want, or the image on the sticker can be broken.
Also, don’t use duct tape. If you use duct tape, your sticker will look fake and ugly.
Using 3M spray adhesive is a great choice as it won’t leave any stains. You can spray it at the back of the sticker, let it dry (not completely), and reattach it to the desired place. Voila!
If you want to remove an inspection sticker for re-use, this is the most important tip you will ever learn. Reusing stickers is the easiest way to get a new inspection sticker for your car, and it prevents other motorists from getting upset with you.
The methods described above are safe and effective, and the needed tools are readily available in your home.
Hi, My name is Ollie Barker.
With 25 years working in repair and detailing shops. I’d love to share my tips & tricks to all car lovers. Also, give my recommendations on which products are the best to have on the market.
Thanks for visiting CarDetailingArt! Hope you enjoy your time on my little blog!