How To Remove Fender Flare Adhesive

Fender flares are a great way to dress up your car and give it a more modern look. Their presence helps protect your vehicle’s body from damage when parked in harsh conditions, such as off-road or rough driveways. 

Unfortunately, not everyone is happy with their appearance. When you live in a house or apartment as opposed to a yard as many people do, many people won’t be able to look past the space they take up and instead see them as eyesores that will distract from the home’s décor. 

This is why many owners will try to remove fender flares from their cars altogether. How much effort you put into removing your flares largely depends on how attached you were to them in the first place and how badly they’ve been damaged by exposure to the elements over time. 

The good news is that removing flare adhesive isn’t very difficult at all if you have the right supplies available and know what tools you need.

How To Remove Fender Flare Adhesive?

What You’ll Need

A heat gun or hair dryer: Heat guns are great for quickly and efficiently removing the adhesive from your flares. However, you’ll need to be careful not to burn your vehicle’s paint or plastic. 

A razor: You can get away with using a regular razor to remove the adhesive from your flares, but a special plastic razor designed for the job is the easiest and most effective way to get the job done. You can also find these in specialty auto parts stores like O’Reilly or Autozone. 

A plastic scraper: Scrapers like the one pictured are great for removing the excess adhesive from your flares. As you sand down the glue with the sandpaper, you’ll eliminate any excess adhesive left behind, which will help you get a cleaner finish.

Safety First!

For most adhesives, the potential health risk is minimal, but it’s best to be safe than sorry. The first and most important thing you can do is wear protective gear when working with the adhesive. This includes an old t-shirt and rubber gloves. 

You’ll also want to use a dust mask or a respirator when sanding down the adhesive. You don’t want to breathe in any dust or residue that comes off the adhesive as you go.

Clean the Flares

Depending on the condition of the original adhesive, removing flare adhesive may require more than just removing it with a razor. 

You’ll want to clean the flares with soap and water to remove any dirt or other residue that could hamper the adhesive’s removal.

Remove the Adhesive

Once you’ve cleaned the flares, you can begin removing the adhesive. This can be done with a razor, but a scraper will work much faster and result in a less messy finish. 

Position the razor or scraper underneath the flare you want to remove, and then start scraping the adhesive off of the surface. You may need to angle the scraper down a bit to do so. 

With practice, you’ll get the hang of it. Don’t worry about getting every bit of the adhesive off; you want to remove as much of it as possible.

Sand the Excess Glue Off

Once you’ve gotten the adhesive as far off of the flare as possible, you can start sanding the excess glue off. You can do this with rough sandpaper or with an auto-body sander. 

A sanding block attached to a power sander is probably the easiest and most effective way to go about it. It’s important to sand off the excess glue and get the flare as smooth as possible before you clean it up. 

If you don’t, you can end up with paint scratches and other imperfections in your finish that you don’t want to experience.

Finish Up With Some Final Touches

After removing the adhesive and smoothing it out as much as possible, you can finish with some final touches. 

You can use a painted buffer like a paint chaser or buffer pad to give your new flares that freshly-painted look. 

You can also give your flares a subtle shine with a coat of wax or clear sealant.

Are fender flares removable?

You bet! In fact, fender flares are designed to be removed and replaced as needed. Whether you’re replacing a damaged flare or just want to change up the look of your vehicle, removing fender flares is a relatively easy process.

Last Opinion

There are a few ways to remove fender flares from your vehicle. If you’ve tried one method that didn’t work for you, you can try another. Just remember that removing the adhesive takes a fair amount of effort, so don’t rush it. 

If you’re not happy with your flares, removing them isn’t a big deal. You may find that removing the flares is easier than you thought it would be. 

If it turns out to be too difficult, you can always try removing them at a later date. Ideally, you want to remove them before you start driving with your new flares on your vehicle. 

You’ll want to make sure you have all of your supplies ready and that you’re ready to get started on removing the flares as soon as they’re off your vehicle. 

There’s no sense in getting frustrated if you have to wait a little longer than you’d like to get your flares off your car.

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