Removing stickers from street signs | Traffic signs cleaning

fact check policy
Updated on:

April 25, 2023

Five ways how to clean road signs from stickers and graffiti | How to clean a street sign

Having clean street signs is important for everyone's safety and keeping intersections free of destruction while driving or waiting at the traffic signal. Vandalizing public property is very prevalent in our world, but people do not always realize how much danger they are putting people at.

Stickers used for marketing and can be coated or have no coating and have various types of adhesive. Knowing how to clean road signs efficiently can benefit your city or can be a part of services you offer to your customers, communities, parking lots or local authorities.

Table of Contents (Show)

Table of Contents (Hide)

different stickers on road sign

Five methods of removing stickers from street signs

metal scraper

1. Old way - Using Metal scraper

Scraping a small area with a metal scraper and then brushing sensitive areas lightly and gently. Be aware that you can damage paint and case rust of metal.


You can damage paint with metal and cause rust after awhile.


2. Costly way - Use WD-40 to take off a sticker from street sign

WD-40 is a simple and quick method to remove stickers and other sticky residues. A great choice for any surface. You can test a small area of the sticker to determine if it will come off easily. If it is taking too long, you are probably using the wrong thing.


Expensive in commercial quantities

heat gun for stickers remoal

3. Risky way - Clean stickers with a heat gun/hair dryer

This step requires hair dryers and heated guns. Adjust dryer settings for hot temperatures and hold it 6" from the rear bumper sticker/sign. Blow hot air into the sticker middle and then along the edge of the sticker. The sticker should flap off. Do not overheat the surface to avoid paint fading and deformation of the road sign.


You can damage paint and make deformation of geometry

washing road signs

4. Traditional way - Clean a road sign with water

1. Wipe with a dry cloth

Start by wiping up all of the dust on your road sign with a dry cloth. Making sure that the surface is not dirty when you clean is key. Depending upon the dirt and the color of the sticker, you will need a damp cloth to soak up the sticker. Grime and dirt cleaning solution can be helpful as well.

2. Rinse the sticker with running water

To remove tough stickers on the road signs, you need a source of high pressure water to help you remove stickers from a stop sign or any sign. Direct the hose to the sticker, and start scrubbing it lightly. Repeat the step if needed.

Side note

If the sticker is really glued on, pouring boiling water on it would be ideal. Bring boiling water to the sign to allow the glue to loosen. Also make sure water is in contact with every part of your stickers to remove it without effort.

3. Wipe

After you have gently scrubbed the sticker off the surface, wipe with a dry cloth. You're done. Using water for sticker removal can make a mess around the road sign.


Time and water waste, you can create mess around the road sign that will require more cleaning.

5. Best way - Cleaning road signs with steam cleaners

Steam cleaning has been prevalent in car cleaning over the last decade, but did you know that you can use it to remove stickers from signs as well bumper stickers? Landing a deal with your city to help clean signs and graffiti can bring a large profit for you and your cleaning company and expand the horizon of services you offer to people.

If you are trying to expand your services in the cleaning business, people want to remove bumper stickers all the time. Here's a video on how to clean stickers from a road sign with a steamer.

Recommended steam cleaners for cleaning of road signs, bumper sticker and graffiti

If you are in a search of a steamer for a specific type of jobs, here is an example of the Fortador line below

Fortador PRO industrial steam cleaner

industrial steam cleaner

Diesel Hybrid Industrial Steam Cleaner Fortador PRO is powered by a powerful and efficient Lamborghini diesel burner. It provides both a steam cleaning and washing function, with the ability to produce detergent with steam for cleaning wheels and engine or commercial cleaning. The steam is at a high pressure of 16 Bar or 235 PSI, for use for Car Wash, Industrial steam cleaning, disinfection and much more.

All enclosed in a single aluminum power coated casing, of modern design and made of ecological and corrosion free resistant alloy. 7" Touch screen with Auto-Diagnostics system: Alerts informing about maintenance and service like cleaning of filters, descale, burner adjustment and vacuum cleaner

Fortador PRO Max steam cleaner with vacuum

steam cleaner with vacuum

The 2022 Diesel Hybrid Multi Purpose Steam Vacuum Cleaner Fortador PRO Max is powered by an efficient Lamborghini burner. Giving both a steam cleaning and washing function, with the ability to provide two different detergents to remove stains at the same time. This machine is the most powerful among the Fortador line and very versatile. The 7 in touchscreen with an auto diagnostics system that alerts you of maintenance and service needs is very user friendly, guaranteeing a smooth performance. Being an ecologically conscious company, this cleaner only needs 1 gal of diesel for 6 hrs of consumption. This model also includes a vacuum that can be used with steam, expanding your services to extracting things from upholstery as well.

At the steam pressure of 20 Bar, it is sure to remove bumper stickers, spray paint, adhesives, and permanent marker on hard surfaces.

Fortador slider for your steam cleaner

sliding platform for mobile sign cleaning business

If you are thinking of starting a business that perform a professional clean for a vehicle, house, or public property, you might want to think about investing in a van. Being mobile with your business will help you expand your clientele as you will have access to cleaning job practically anywhere.

To properly form a mobile business with your steamer, you will need a fully equipped vehicle. For your steamer to be movable, think about getting a slider to have the steamer on. It is very easy to install, and all you will have to do is slide the steamer out and turn it on to perform your clean, no need to put the 400 lb machine down on the ground.

To be able to provide the best service that will sell, you will also need a set of cleaning solution.

To give you a better idea of how to make a successful mobile business, here is a guide with a list of instructions on how to build a mobile detailing van or car wash trailer.

Conclusion - What else can the steamer clean?

Besides being able to take off stickers from street signs, the steamer is also able to vehicle cleaning, sanitizing and disinfection, cleaning of public areas, property like homes and offices.

About the Authors

Lev Tretyakov
With over 25 years in the industry, I bring extensive sales expertise in heavy equipment across diverse sectors. Pioneered the first CAD/CAM school in CIS countries. Proud owner of Miami's premier auto detailing hub, Totaal Steam Detailing, hailed as the finest in Miami-Dade by Google.
Sabrina Tretyakova
In the world of cleanliness and hygiene, Sabrina Tretyakova stands as a beacon of expertise and dedication. As an ISSA-certified cleaning technician, Sabrina brings a wealth of knowledge and three years of unwavering commitment to her profession. Having served a staggering 1,200 clients

Learn More

The Power of Steam: Unlocking the Benefits and Advantages of Steam Cleaning


Essential Cleaning Checklist for Childcare Centers: A Step-by-Step Guide to Maintaining a Healthy Environment


Innovative Technologies for School Cleaning: Protocols for a Hygienic Campus


Contact Us
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
This is some text inside of a div block.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.