Vehicle wraps. The right cleaning

We all know that it is essential to do cleaning thoroughly before applying vehicle wraps. But how can we make it the best? What are the sequences as we clean it? And how can we do it properly without using any harsh chemicals to protect the surface?

Today we will learn to prep and clean a vehicle in a way that would not only speed up your wrapping but also is adequately done. We will be taking trunk cleaning as an instance. But this is good to apply to any other section of the car.

By looking at this, we will be able to streamline the cleaning procedure and know how to avoid harsh chemicals, which is not only suitable for beginner installers to understand the process but also a good tip for advanced installers.

Before we start, here are some tools that we need to prepare for this: scratchless sponge, clay bar/ glove, plastic removal tools, plastic scrapers and sponge, auto skins hook and hold, application glove and isopropyl alcohol. And then we can get moving.

Hardware Removal

In this case for trunk cleaning, we have to remove all the hardware beforehand. Once those parts are taken off, you will find a vast amount of dirt underneath. This is also why we have to do the cleaning after this removal because otherwise, the dirt would go around to the area which you have cleaned up.

Adhesive Residue Removing

Then what we need to do is to remove the adhesive behind those parts. But do not forget that your client would want them back over the wrap. So it will be helpful for us to leave a ghost there during the post-install process. Thus, we will use just soapy water rather than adhesive remover here. Scrape off only the main section of the adhesive residue.

Micro Fiber Towel

As all the dirt and adhesive residue are taken off, you can use a microfiber towel to wipe over the surface. The reason why we use microfiber towel instead of a paper one is that it absorbs quickly and better. This will save you some energy and stroke of your hand. If we use a paper one, we will have to spend a lot of them. And this requires a longer time too, so microfiber towel is the ideal choice here.

Scratchless Sponge

The next step, we will have to use a doodlebug sponge – the scratchless one here, because you will see lots of hardbitten specks around the license plate area, even though you have cleaned up the dirt (especially when the car is old enough). We do not have to use harsh chemicals here, just using a doodlebug sponge. And it is very useful in removing things like tar. However, we do not need to go over the entire trunk, focus on the area that needs it. And then again, wipe over with a micro fibber towel and absorb the soapy water.

Clay Bar/ Glove

After these steps prepared, pick up your clay bar/ glove – It is much convenient and efficient than actual clay because it saves you a lot of time from things like forming the clay in your hand. When you wipe with the clay bar/ glove, be sure to do it from top to bottom with overlapping stroke. And use a microfiber towel to remove all the soapy residue afterward.

Paper Towel

Once all soapy water is absorbed, it is time to degrease. But before that, this is when we will switch to a paper towel because this will tell you if there is any dirt remaining there. You can fold over one paper towel and continue wiping, but remember to pay attention to what comes off there, because if there is dirt, we will have to clean again.


The last step is to degrease the main surface area with isopropyl alcohol, removing any little specks or dirt might have popped up from the edges, because if we leave just one speck or dirt, there is a chance of ruining the entire vehicle wrap.

So here is the regular cleaning process for your reference. And it suits all sections of your install with these sequences. We hope these tips will help you clean properly because cleaning well is the first step to a successful finish.

Vehicle wraps. The right cleaning