How to apply window graphics

Window graphics are a fantastic addition to any shop front. But to get the best results – and truly impress your potential customers – you need to install them correctly. Follow our simple step-by-step guide to installation and ensure your new decals are both wrinkle and bubble-free.

5 steps to successful window graphic installation

cleaning window in preparation for window graphics installation

1. Prepare the window

First things first, you need to clean the window and get it ready for your graphic.

This can be done using a mild liquid detergent. However, it’s important to avoid ammonia-based products and those with silicones or solvents – as these can leave residue on the glass and will cause issues further down the line. To ensure the surface is completely free from dirt and debris, our experts recommend using a mixture of clean luke-warm water and isopropyl alcohol.

2. Choose an appropriate method

There are two main installation methods for you to choose from – including wet and dry – and the right one for you will depend on the specific nature of your window graphics.

Whilst the ‘wet’ method is commonly used for large full-window decals, the ‘dry’ method is typically employed for smaller projects and clear film graphics. But this can vary – and, before you start, it’s always worth checking the product specification sheet to see which method is recommended.

3. Position the window graphic

You’re now ready to apply the window graphic to the window.

If using the ‘dry’ method, hold the decal in the desired position and use a strip of masking tape (across the top) to secure it in place. At this point, it’s a good idea to take a few steps back and check that it looks right from a distance. Once you’re 100% happy with its alignment, bend back approximately six inches of the release liner – to reveal the sticky adhesive underneath.

If using the ‘wet’ method, start by laying the window graphic on a flat surface. Carefully remove the release liner and spray the adhesive-side – with an approved application solution or soapy water – until it’s visibly wet. Position the decal on the window, again, taking care to align it correctly.

4. Squeegee it down

The next step is to secure the window graphic in place. For this, you can use either a professional felt-edge squeegee applicator or a thick, sturdy piece of card. Just make sure the edge is free from small nicks or bumps – as these can cause imperfections (i.e. bubbles and wrinkles) in the graphic.

Hold the squeegee in your dominant hand, at a slightly upward angle, and apply firm pressure. For wet applications, it’s best to start in the centre and squeegee outwards. Whereas for dry applications, you should begin at the top and work downwards in rows – peeling back small sections of the release liner as you go and making sure to overlap your strokes.

5. Tidy up

Once the decal is firmly stuck to the window – and you’re satisfied there are no kinks or bumps in its surface – it’s important to tidy up your work. The ‘wet’ method is likely to leave a lot of excess moisture on the window, so gently wipe this away with a lint-free paper towel. You should also remove any masking tape, making sure not to damage or pull-away the graphic as you do so.

Need further advice on how to apply window graphics?

window graphics installation provided by Vinyline

Luckily for you, Vinyline Graphics are experts in this area. If you’re struggling to get-to-grips with window graphic installation – wet or dry – you’re welcome to get in touch. Just give us a call on 01744 756644 and a member of our team will be more than happy to help.

Alternatively, you may prefer to outsource the job? As part of our full-turnkey service, here at Vinyline, we can both design and professionally install new window graphics on your behalf. Tell us what you have in mind and our skilled engineers will bring your vision to life and have it up on the window in no time.

To find out more about our graphic installation services, simply fill out our online enquiry form and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.