Monday, May 18, 2009

How to debadge your vehicle

Removed emblems
Yesterday I decided to remove the badges on the back of our SX4 for a cleaner look. I wanted to leave the Suzuki "S" on the back, but decided to remove the badges that said "Suzuki," "SX4," and "AWD." It's an easy process, but fairly time consuming if you don't want to scratch things up. Here's how I did it.

I had the following product, as seen on the right:

• Hairdryer
• Goo Gone
• Dental floss
• Clay bar system
• Wax
• Detailing solution
• Light polish
• Microfiber towels

1. Make sure the area you're going to work on is clean. This will prevent you from mistakenly adding any scratches.

2. Heat the badges up using the hairdryer. This will help to loosen the foam adhesive tape on the back.

3. Use the dental floss between the emblem and the car to cut the foam adhesive tape. You'll now be left with ugly foam tape on the vehicle.

4. Apply a generous amount of Goo Gone to the foam tape using a microfiber towel. Goo Gone shouldn't harm your finish, but test it in an inconspicuous area to be sure. Several applications may be needed.

5. Use another microfiber towel to rub off the adhesive tape. This will take some time and elbow grease. Eventually the tape will ball up and come off on the towel. Once the adhesive is completely off, use a bit more Goo Gone to remove any excess residue.

6. Use a clay bar system (I used Mother's California Claybar) to remove any additional gunk. If there are no scratches, hazing, or anything else, apply your wax and you're done.

7. In my case, there had been some fine scratches that had been made during the removal process. I used a light polish to remove the scratches. Once that was complete, I applied my wax.

Assuming all goes right, you should have a clean, shiny finish under the badges. Here's a photo of the completed surface. I took a photo with my ugly mug in the reflection to show how shiny and clean it is after the de-badging.


nlpnt said...

Looks nice. I kept the factory badges on mine, but got rid of the dealer one- car's not really yours until you get rid of the dealer advertising!

Andy Lilienthal said...

LOL--isn't that the truth. I always tell them NOT to put their sticker on the back. Luckily, our SX4 came with a dealer license plate bracket that was easily removed.

nlpnt said...

"I always tell them NOT to put their sticker on the back."

I bought off the lot so they had already done it. Good thing the mfrs. won't let them drill holes to mount them anymore!