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How to Remove Hydrographics Film

How to Remove Hydrographics Film

How to Remove Hydrographics Film

Hydrographics or water transfer printing is a decorating process where carbon fiber, wood grain, camouflage, and designer prints are applied to a product surface in 3D. Metals, plastics, wood, and glass are materials that can be decorated with this technology. This extends the range of items compatible with this technique. For example, car parts, ceramics, and pretty much anything that can be submerged in water and painted will work with hydrographics.

If you’re reading this article, you’ve probably had your share of fun with hydrographics. It’s a creative way to decorate your items with intricate patterns, as it’s durable and appealing. However, sometimes you might want to remove your design. Maybe you messed up in your application, or maybe you’re just ready for a new one.

Fortunately, you can remove hydrographics. However, the final product’s acrylic is resistant to debris and scratches, making the removal process challenging. It will last for many years when exposed to customary conditions, but scratches destroy the hydrographic finish. The following are techniques you can use to remove hydrographics.

Removing Hydrographics From Glass

Glass is probably the most comfortable surface to remove hydrographics. Armed with rubber gloves, microfiber cloth, acetone, and water, rub gently on the glass surface to loosen the bond between the film’s atomic makeup. Finish by cleaning the glass with a professional glass cleaner that prevents streaks.

Removing Hydrographics From Vehicle Surfaces

Using a microfiber towel, pour a small amount of alcohol-based paint remover onto the vehicle. Using small circular motions, gently and thoroughly rub the surface, making sure not to damage the integrity of the material. The most appropriate solvent to use is acetone or lacquer thinner.

Removing Hydrographics From Wood

Denatured alcohol, mineral spirits, and a rag are all you need. Spray the denatured alcohol of choice on the wooden surface, give it a second or two to react with the film, and rub thoroughly.

Removing Hydrographics From Plastic

The state-of-the-art chemical process that creates adhesion during the immersion process creates a strong bond between the film and the plastic product. To successfully scrape off the film, use denatured alcohol, water, and oil. Soften the scraped-off areas using oil to maintain the uniformity of the product surface.

Acetone is a powerful solvent capable of removing oil-based and water-based paints on surfaces around the homestead. It functions to soften the entire film coating along with a gentle rub. The film comfortably wears off due to acetone’s ability to dissolve plastics, glues, and acrylics.

Paint Stripper

Another chemical used to remove hydrographic film safely is your local paint stripper. It penetrates the hydrographic film, causing internal stress that weakens the film structure, resulting in the separation of layers. We recommend you research the best paint stripper available in your area before buying.


This is an effective method used to remove deep-set film dried into a surface. It requires specialized equipment and thorough cleaning after the removal of the film. It’s less laborious when removing a film from a large surface, but care should be exercised to avoid scarring product surfaces.

Hydrographic films are an excellent way of decorating your treasured surfaces. We recommend that you wear personal protective gear, whether installing or scraping off the film.