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Do Wall Decals Damage Walls? [Inc. Fatheads]

Finding the perfect wall art for a home can sometimes feel impossible. Are you interested in using wall decals to spruce things up but don't know whether they will damage your walls? Well, we've done plenty of research and have the answer waiting here for you. Let's get into it.

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In general, wall decals won't leave your walls damaged. Like any other wall sticker, decals should peel off your walls smoothly, as long as you're gentle. Of course, removal can depend on what type of surface you're working with and how you applied your decal originally, so that's not to say damage is impossible.

As we begin, we will cover all things wall decals and discuss how to keep your walls damage-free. Whether you're redecorating or already have a wall decal, we're here to offer some help. With that said, let's dive right into this post!

A mock up wall decor of a huge mountain and sun inside a childs room, Do Wall Decals Damage Walls? [Inc. Fatheads]

Are Decals Easy To Remove From Walls?

Yes! Decals are generally very easy to remove from walls. Considering that their adhesive tends to weaken over time, peeling off a decal shouldn't leave damage behind if you are careful.

Interior of a geometrical designed bedroom with wooden flooring and a bedside table

That said, the glue you initially used for your wall decal can make a big difference in how easy/damage-free the removal process is, so this could be different for everyone.

Furthermore, removing a decal from the wall needs to happen slowly, so expect some damage if you do this too fast.

How Do You Get Wall Decals Off Without Damaging The Wall?

For those wanting to get the decals off their walls without damaging them, this shouldn't be too difficult. Especially for those with painted walls underneath their decals, using a bit of heat to loosen the glue is a good place to start.

You can use a blow dryer to do this turned-on high or even a specialty heat gun, so there are a couple of options. Once you have your heat source, start at the corner of your decal, slowly peeling it as you go.

As we said, this process won't be fast, so depending on the size of the decal, you could be peeling for a few hours.

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Do Vinyl Decals Damage Paint?

Vinyl decals shouldn't damage the paint on your walls. Most times, vinyl stickers/decals will come in two options: temporary or permanent, with the temporary options being virtually damage-free.

Of course, if you use a permanent vinyl decal and remove it after a while, you might be able to escape chipped or peeled paint, so overall we recommend them.

That said, if you use a temporary vinyl decal on an outside wall, don't expect it to last long because when exposed to outdoor elements, vinyl tends to peel quickly.

Furthermore, the glue that typically comes with vinyl decals can be very strong, so if you recently applied yours, you might want to wait on removing it.

Are Vinyl Decals Removable?

Yes, vinyl wall decals are removable. As we mentioned, these decals will usually come in two strengths, temporary or permanent, with temporary vinyl being easier to take off.

Again, you can always try to use less adhesive while installing your decal if you plan to peel it off soon, so that's something to consider.

Heat will also help loosen up a vinyl decal, regardless of strength, so grab a blowdryer/heat gun when in doubt.

Are Fathead Decals Easy To Remove From Walls?

A two seater light blue colored sofa with an origami wall decor

Typically yes, a Fathead wall decal will be easy to remove. According to their website, Fathead rub on transfer decals come off relatively easy and won't leave damage behind, which is good to know.

Fathead decals aren't super strong for the most part, so if you need a low-risk option, they are worth checking out.

How Do You Remove A Fathead From The Wall?

If it's time to remove your Fathead decal, doing this shouldn't be too complicated. To start:

  1. Assess the size of your decal; if it's big: grab a partner.
  2. Gather your decal's original backing paper and place it on a nearby flat surface.
  3. Slowly peel your Fathead decal, starting at a corner and moving across.
  4. Once finished, place your decal on its backing paper, and you're done!

It's also worth mentioning that if you run into trouble while removing your decal, using a blow dryer or heat gun will make this process easier, so that's an option to try.

Fathead also mentions that if you can't find your decal's original backing paper, a shower curtain will work, too, so there is no need to panic.

Are Wall Decals Reusable?

Although some brands advertise their decals as reusable, we don't recommend trying this. Considering that a decal will already have glue on it once you remove it, trying to reposition or relocate it usually results in a lumpy, low-quality finished product.

That said, if you recently applied your decal to the wall and need to reposition/remove it, you can certainly try using some heat and see if your sticker is ready for another round of glue.

However, the more you move a decal, the less likely it is to last long-term, so be cautious of that when you initially place it.

How Long D0 Decals Last On Your Wall?

Typically, you can expect a good quality decal to last several months or even years on your wall. Inside decals tend to last much longer than outdoor ones, so the location can also affect their lifespan.

On top of that, how you install a decal will affect how long it's able to stay on a wall, so evenly applying your glue is important.

DecalMyWall recommends applying your decal within 24-72 hours of receiving it for best results, so the fresher your sticker, the better.

How Do You Stop Wall Decals From Peeling?

A city scape decorated wall with a white babies crib and small rocking chair

If you notice your wall decal peeling, there are ways to fix it. The first (and easiest) way to reapply a decal is by using heat. As we mentioned earlier, heat activates the adhesive on a decal, so that's an easy way to get your sticker back on the wall.

You can also try cleaning the surface underneath your decal, as this could be the problem, using two teaspoons of mild dishwashing detergent to one-quart water.

Sometimes, dust, dirt, or debris make their way onto your walls and cause bubbles to form under your decal, so it's best to give your surface a good clean before applying one.

Why Is My Vinyl Decal Not Sticking To The Wall?

When it comes to vinyl decals not sticking to the wall, this could be for a few reasons. Most commonly, vinyl decals won't stick to the wall if they are too cold, so we recommend using heat to apply them.

Another reason for this could be you waited too long to stick your decal to the wall, and its glue dried, so try to do this pretty quickly.

Vinyl wall decals are also ineffective if you put a sealant under them, so try to avoid using one on your walls.

Can I Use A Decal Outside?

A children's room with geometric shape decorated walls and wooden chair

Yes, there are outdoor wall decals that you can use outside. Although these tend to work differently than indoor options, outside decals typically stick best to windows, doors, mailboxes, signs, and treated boards.

Again, you don't want to try using an indoor decal on a wall or surface outside as it will likely peel off or become damaged, so try to find a weather-tolerant option.

You may also need a stronger adhesive for outside decals, which should come with your product or a recommended add-on.

Is A Decal The Same As A Sticker?

In theory, decals and stickers are the same things. Considering that they both use an adhesive to stick to a surface, a decal and sticker share many similarities.

That said, a decal tends to refer to a larger wall decorating option while a sticker is more for a piece of paper, so in that way, they are different.

Again, this is splitting hairs, so you can use the terms interchangeably.

To Wrap Things All Up

A mock up wall décor of a huge mountain and sun inside a Childs room

Whether you want to try using a decal to brighten up your walls or need to replace your current one, figuring out whether they damage the wall is essential. We found that wall decals won't usually leave damage behind, although this can vary depending on how you install them/their strength.

Furthermore, wall decals come in two main options: temporary and permanent, with the temporary decals being easier to remove. We also found that you can use heat to remove and reapply a wall decal, so if you need extra help, grab a hairdryer or heat gun.

Regardless, make sure to choose a decal that fits your space, and don't forget to clean your wall before applying it.

Made it to the end? Check out these helpful related home posts below!

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