How to Remove Ghosted Decals in Affordable but Ways

Do you have a problem with how to remove ghosted decals from your vehicle? Is it like that, you pick off the emblem from your carriage, but a shadow is still there of the sticker? We are going to help you out to get rid of the problem in this article of how to remove decal shadow or how to remove decal impressions.

Decals are also familiar as decorative stickers or graphics. Images, letterings, or graphic works, printed or vinyl material placed onto a vehicle is known as decals. It is used on the door, windows, fronts, or backside of a government vehicle, car, commercial van, trucks, bus, race car, dirt bikes, RVs, ATVs, UTVs, motorbikes, etc.

It plays a role in advertising business names, products, logos, or a superb way of personalizing the vehicle. Sometimes decals are not for a lifetime, so it needs changes or removes. Removing stickers is so easy. But if adhesive or glue or a shadow is still there, the wall looks weird, or placing another emblem will face problems. Thus, the ghosted decals must be removed cleanly. Moreover, you should also know how to remove sticker imprint.

How to Remove Ghosted Decals

A vinyl decal has four layers. The film face stock stays on the top, which carries the image. The second level is the adhesive layer. A silicon layer places over the label stock. A film liner is the last layer of a decal.

The bottom and upper layers were removed during installation. The adhesive level stuck the decal outdoors. While it needs removing, the glue remains on the wall. It makes the place opaque and unclean.

If you have no idea about the complete process to clean the shadow, the mistakes may damage your vehicle glass or body paint. So, the process should complete with utmost care. Here we share some tricks and procedures on how to remove ghosted decals for you.

The procedure of picking off sticker is always the same.

  1. Removing the image or lettering.
  2. Removing adhesive glue and residue (which is a thin layer of adhesive) together.
  3. Polish the surface.

1. Removing The Image Or Lettering

Before removing the ghosted decals, the illustration or removing vehicle lettering is must. You can do it in the process mentioned below for how to remove sticker outline from car or how to remove lettering from a vehicle or how to remove ghost lettering from trailer:

    1. Wash the surrounding area of the sticker to clean the debris.
    2. Heat the sticker with a hairdryer to loosen the glue. Turn the maximum heat of the dryer.
    3. Pull the label slowly. Or rubbing it with a credit card. Keep heating while doing it.

2. Removing Adhesive Glue And Residue Together

After picking off the sticker, it is a common problem that the glue remains on the place. That is our today’s topic of how to clean it. To solve the problem, several ideas you will find. You might choose any of them which is suitable for your vehicle.

Use Adhesive Remover

There are many special adhesive removers available that you may use for your job. In this way, you need some everyday things. These are-

  • Scraping tool
  • Adhesive removers
  • Sponge
  • Clean, warm water
  • Soap
  • Glass cleaner
  • Cloth and paper towel

The remover applying procedure is always about the same. Some may need extra care or caution. In short, the process is-

  • Use any adhesive remover carefully.
  • Clean it.
  • Polishing and waxing.

Now we are going to discuss some products of adhesive remover.

Rapid remover

Rapid remover works fast. It is a non-toxic, water-soluble remover. First, spray it on the purpose area and then wait for a while. Rub it with a sponge after a minute.

After then, apply a glue residue with the remover and wait for 30-60 seconds. Rub the compound till the adhesive comes on. Then rinse with warm water and dry it with a cloth.

Rapid Remover Adhesive Remover for Vinyl Wraps Graphics Decals

Key Features

  • Gone decals in just 60 seconds
  • Removes most types of glue and adhesive
  • All natural, water soluble formula

Available On Amazon

Ghost off

The popular adhesive remover is ‘ghost off oxidation remover‘. Applying it is a straightforward process. Just spray it on the adhesive and wait for a minute. Then agitate it with a brush or a sponge. Wash it with water and watch if the shadow is gone. If still some remains, then repeat the process.

CrystalTek Ghost Off

Key Features

  • Reduces ghost sign images from vehicle surfaces
  • Restores weather exposed surfaces
  • Rinses oxidation away

Available On Amazon


It is a great product to get rid of ghosted decals. Apply the alcohol and wait for a few minutes to soften the glue. Then rub it with a sponge till the adhesive picks off. Do not use it under the sun.

WD-40 Multipurpose Spray

Key Features

  • Removes grease, grime, gunk, gum, tar, sap, super glue, sticker residue, and other sticky stuff from multiple surfaces
  • Frees sticky mechanisms
  • Loosens rust-to-metal bonds

Available On Amazon


Other products are available in the market to remove ghosts. We mention some of them here for decal ghost removal solution. ‘3M Adhesive Eraser Wheel‘, ‘Rubbing Compound‘, ‘Oxalic Acid (mix it with water and apply through wallpaper paste)’, ‘PolyGlo’, ‘TSRW’, ‘Clay Bar‘, ‘Goo Gone‘, etc.

Use Home Remedies

Sometimes the commercial remover may cause damaging the surface of the decal because of chemicals. It is comparatively harmful to your skin too. If you are not interested in buying adhesive remover, you can try some home items to remove your car’s ghosted decals. This portion will help you to know how to remove ghost lettering from car window.

  • Two/three drops of lemon essential oil + two tablespoons baking soda + ½ tablespoon water. Mix it well and apply it to the adhesive. Rub the area after waiting for a while. Then rinse with warm water.
  • The mixture is for glass cleaning. It will damage your car painting. So be careful about that.

Besides the mixture, the things written below are also useful in this case.

  • Nail polish remover
  • Toothpaste
  • Oil
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Vinegar (wet the cloth with it and rub on the area)
  • Alcohol
  • Peanut butter

3. Polish The Surface

To look shiny of your vehicle, polish, or wax, the surface after removing the adhesive.

Final Words

Using decals is a way to reveal a person’s creativity or personality. It is also useful for business purposes. It is easy to install and remove. When you want to dispel an old emblem, the ghosted decals may remain there.

Some adhesives are so strong that they are difficult to remove quickly. If you follow the instructions mentioned above on how to remove ghosted decals, I hope you can get rid of it without scratches, marks, or damaging paint.

To get a good result, follow the instructions and precautions given by the producers of the products. Use hand gloves while doing the job. Use plastic or rubber or sponge material for rubbing instead of a razor blade to avoid scratches. Do the work in an open or ventilated area, but not underneath the sun.