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Removing visor airbag stickers

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Old 07-16-2007, 11:43 AM   #1
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Default Removing visor airbag stickers

Search didn't find much info for the A8 and it seems every manufacturer is different in how they put those damned things on. Denatured alcohol works on a Porsche but it's been a while since I did it on a Audi.
What works best to dissolve or remove them on a A8, '06 in my case...
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Old 07-16-2007, 12:19 PM   #2
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Default I think it's pretty much a lost cause.It seems to be pretty much integrated into the shade material.

via the glue..so if someones has done it, I'd be surprised.
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Old 07-16-2007, 02:31 PM   #3
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Default Non Alcantara - Just pick it off; Takes a long time but works. Alcantara, just buy new visors.

Or live with it.
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Old 07-16-2007, 06:41 PM   #4
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Default Like this?

First I tried picking at it (upper right corner of where sticker was--the material is a tiny bit rougher but you have to be staring right at it). Just couldn't get it--no more than about 1/4 square inch at a time. Then tried heat. No go.

Solution: liberal application of garden variety isopropyl rubbing alcohol--I used the high test/100% stuff. I put it on with a rag soaked in it and let it get into the alcantara material at the edge of the sticker and also tried to soak it into the sticker face each time. I usually went about a minute from application to peel attempt. More patience--maybe a five minute full sticker soak might have worked best. I could sometimes get a square inch or more, and now it peeled evenly most of the time without feeling like I might mess up the fabric. The sticker material was nasty, often resticking to my fingers.

Once I removed it, I simply opened sunroof and windows and let it air dry overnight. Liquid darkens the alcantara a bit when wet, but it was obvious right away it wasn't stripping any color/dye and no obvious adhesive was left behind so I figured it would dry fine. I can confirm there is no appearance of any liquid stain whatsoever. Medicine smell was completely gone overnight.

If you look carefully you can just see the sticker outline. I peeled it about a week ago, the car is a 2006 with a build date of May 2005 and a delivery date of August 2005, so it has about two years of general upholstery fade. In practice you don't see the sticker border mark in everyday use. I took this picture at 8MB originally with a flash on a Canon SLR.

Now that I got the general technique down, I would say it is about 30-45 minutes per sticker to do a reasonable job.

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Current #1: '06 D3 A8L W12 brilliant black w/ amaretto; 4 seat setup, CPO; modestly lowered, H&R 20mm rear and 12mm front DRs with 275/35 on OEM polished + forged 20's; S8 sway bars (see: rear bar and gen'l D3 bar info and front bar); tweaked 385mm front factory brake mod and matching rear brake mod; matching C6 A6 back headrests (better rear view: headrest tweak); owner installed AMI retrofit with part number details here. [If you want pics in foregoing links, ask AW where they went...used all to work] Upper control arm reference (+ more info in replies) here. Lower cost D3 OES sway bar links here.
Current #2: 2013 Q5 2.0T hybrid; Scuba blue w/ chestnut sport interior; Euro delivery 7/2013 (pictured at Ingolstadt); RS5 front brakes
Prior (each modded): 2000 C5 A6 4.2 & '96 C4 A6 2.8Q, both still w/ family; '85 C3 5000S 5 sp FWD; '73 C1 100LS

helpful cross reference to a C6 post with MMI and other TSB's that also cover D3 A8's.

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Old 07-17-2007, 07:59 AM   #5
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Default Good explanation. What color is your interior?

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Old 07-17-2007, 09:12 AM   #6
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Default Amaretto--actual color a bit more tan and less pink than pic. looks

Like a fresh baseball mit
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Current #1: '06 D3 A8L W12 brilliant black w/ amaretto; 4 seat setup, CPO; modestly lowered, H&R 20mm rear and 12mm front DRs with 275/35 on OEM polished + forged 20's; S8 sway bars (see: rear bar and gen'l D3 bar info and front bar); tweaked 385mm front factory brake mod and matching rear brake mod; matching C6 A6 back headrests (better rear view: headrest tweak); owner installed AMI retrofit with part number details here. [If you want pics in foregoing links, ask AW where they went...used all to work] Upper control arm reference (+ more info in replies) here. Lower cost D3 OES sway bar links here.
Current #2: 2013 Q5 2.0T hybrid; Scuba blue w/ chestnut sport interior; Euro delivery 7/2013 (pictured at Ingolstadt); RS5 front brakes
Prior (each modded): 2000 C5 A6 4.2 & '96 C4 A6 2.8Q, both still w/ family; '85 C3 5000S 5 sp FWD; '73 C1 100LS

helpful cross reference to a C6 post with MMI and other TSB's that also cover D3 A8's.

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Old 07-17-2007, 01:22 PM   #7
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Default You are brave!

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Old 07-17-2007, 04:24 PM   #8
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Default looks good

I have the same amretto interior- another project for tomorrow!!
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Old 07-17-2007, 07:31 PM   #9
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Default I figured I could always apply a new sticker if I had to hide a problem...

as long as it didn't stain or snag the fabric big time. It worked out fine.

I also took off the big yellow doorjamb stickers that seem like way overkill--the French translation for Canada makes it doubly visually painful, especially on a black exterior car. They are an easy removal and come off in one piece. Then I noticed the car also has smaller and more tasteful silver stickers in the doorjamb/fender area that have much more a factory look. I left those be.
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Current #1: '06 D3 A8L W12 brilliant black w/ amaretto; 4 seat setup, CPO; modestly lowered, H&R 20mm rear and 12mm front DRs with 275/35 on OEM polished + forged 20's; S8 sway bars (see: rear bar and gen'l D3 bar info and front bar); tweaked 385mm front factory brake mod and matching rear brake mod; matching C6 A6 back headrests (better rear view: headrest tweak); owner installed AMI retrofit with part number details here. [If you want pics in foregoing links, ask AW where they went...used all to work] Upper control arm reference (+ more info in replies) here. Lower cost D3 OES sway bar links here.
Current #2: 2013 Q5 2.0T hybrid; Scuba blue w/ chestnut sport interior; Euro delivery 7/2013 (pictured at Ingolstadt); RS5 front brakes
Prior (each modded): 2000 C5 A6 4.2 & '96 C4 A6 2.8Q, both still w/ family; '85 C3 5000S 5 sp FWD; '73 C1 100LS

helpful cross reference to a C6 post with MMI and other TSB's that also cover D3 A8's.

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Old 08-26-2010, 10:28 PM   #10
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Default I can attest to MP4.2+6.0's method.

Thanks to MP4.2+6.0 for the sticker removal tips. It's worked great so far.

I did the two long thin stickers on the non-mirror sides of both visors using 70% isopropyl alcohol (only percentage I had) and cotton ***** (about 7 or 8 per sticker). I used a insignificant amount of the isoproply in the process.

At certain angles, you can make out a very slight ghosting in the texture of the alcantara at the edges of where the stickers used to be. I used a suede brush to rub the uncovered fabric a few times after the visors dried and that might of helped but I don't think it is necessary.

My alcantara is amaretto as well. There is no discoloration that I can perceive. My girlfriend agrees and said that it looked much better without the stickers.

Tomorrow, I will try for the two big rectangular ones on mirror side of both visors. I will take pics after it's all done and try to remember to take some during the removal as well.
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Old 08-30-2010, 03:03 PM   #11
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Default A few in-progress photos

These photos are from yesterday evening. The end result looks great but I have not had a chance to snap photos of the completed visors in daylight lighting. There is no trace of the isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol smell. The visors were dry and the smell gone after an hour or two tops.

I would have used 100% isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol if I had some but the 70% seemed to have worked well enough. It took about 20 minutes per large mirror side sticker (rough estimate since I didn't really keep time). The non-mirror side stickers went even faster.

I tried peeling the stickers without the isopropyl but the sticker would break too easily and it seemed to be taking alcantara with it. The isopropyl dissolves the adhesive after a minute or so but only penetrates about 3 or 4 mm from the edge of the sticker so you have to reapply with the cotton ball repeatedly as you peel the sticker back. A cotton swab might have worked better but I didn't think of it at the time. I'll post the finished pics soon.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_0536.jpg (62.8 KB, 306 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0537.jpg (60.4 KB, 288 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0539.jpg (60.8 KB, 284 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0543.jpg (41.5 KB, 286 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_0545.jpg (47.4 KB, 287 views)
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Current: 2003 BMW 540iA Msport (e39) until my Tesla Model S is built.
1988 BMW 325 (e30 SuperETA), soon to be registered as California classic vehicle.
Previous:
2007 A8L W12 (brlnt black ext, black/amaretto int. W12 options: sprt pckg 20's, B&O sound, AMI retrofit, adaptive cruise, solar sunroof, full leather upgrade, four power seat config., US front bumper markers delete, visor airbag stickers delete.)
2004 A8L 4.2 (brlnt black ext, black int. Options: premium package, cold weather package, front head/vent/massage, 4 zone climate, rear lumbar)
1997 A4 1.8T quattro sedan (black ext, black/grey int, modestly lowered)

Last edited by ModestW12; 08-30-2010 at 03:32 PM. Reason: missing word
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Old 08-30-2010, 04:47 PM   #12
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Default Confirming two years later it all...

looks good. Place where the sticker ever was is barely perceptible. Removed all of them from visor. Much cleaner, non taxi cab look.
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Current #1: '06 D3 A8L W12 brilliant black w/ amaretto; 4 seat setup, CPO; modestly lowered, H&R 20mm rear and 12mm front DRs with 275/35 on OEM polished + forged 20's; S8 sway bars (see: rear bar and gen'l D3 bar info and front bar); tweaked 385mm front factory brake mod and matching rear brake mod; matching C6 A6 back headrests (better rear view: headrest tweak); owner installed AMI retrofit with part number details here. [If you want pics in foregoing links, ask AW where they went...used all to work] Upper control arm reference (+ more info in replies) here. Lower cost D3 OES sway bar links here.
Current #2: 2013 Q5 2.0T hybrid; Scuba blue w/ chestnut sport interior; Euro delivery 7/2013 (pictured at Ingolstadt); RS5 front brakes
Prior (each modded): 2000 C5 A6 4.2 & '96 C4 A6 2.8Q, both still w/ family; '85 C3 5000S 5 sp FWD; '73 C1 100LS

helpful cross reference to a C6 post with MMI and other TSB's that also cover D3 A8's.

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Old 09-08-2010, 03:07 PM   #13
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Default Finally some pictures two weeks after completion

Here are some pics I shot yesterday evening. Since it was getting dark I had to use a camera flash and as a result traces of the sticker outline show up more in the photos than seeing it in person. I never notice them when driving/occupying the car.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg DSC_0087.jpg (33.6 KB, 313 views)
File Type: jpg DSC_0088.jpg (32.0 KB, 310 views)
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1988 BMW 325 (e30 SuperETA), soon to be registered as California classic vehicle.
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2004 A8L 4.2 (brlnt black ext, black int. Options: premium package, cold weather package, front head/vent/massage, 4 zone climate, rear lumbar)
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Old 09-08-2010, 05:23 PM   #14
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ModestW12 View Post
Here are some pics I shot yesterday evening. Since it was getting dark I had to use a camera flash and as a result traces of the sticker outline show up more in the photos than seeing it in person. I never notice them when driving/occupying the car.
Pretty minuscule outline. You have to be looking for it to see it. I just found my weekend project. I love this forum and all the projects people post.
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Old 09-08-2010, 06:50 PM   #15
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That alcantara reminds me of an old movie where the scene is shot in the car lol
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Old 11-06-2010, 09:11 AM   #16
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First sticker took 25 minutes. First attempt stingy with the alcohol. Also working from above didn't let gravity bring the alcohol behind the sticker but toward the floor.

Then once I started working with gravity and treating the alcohol like it was only .89 a bottle like a cold knife through butter. I did get a little help on the passenger sticker. The right corner hadn't been touched since the car left the factory.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg SNB10999.jpg (58.5 KB, 285 views)
File Type: jpg SNB11001.jpg (65.1 KB, 285 views)
File Type: jpg SNB11003.jpg (51.5 KB, 285 views)
File Type: jpg SNB11008.jpg (28.5 KB, 284 views)
File Type: jpg SNB11017.jpg (28.5 KB, 285 views)
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Old 11-07-2010, 03:15 AM   #17
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After pics from this morning.
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File Type: jpg SNB11037.jpg (45.4 KB, 281 views)
File Type: jpg SNB11040.jpg (56.7 KB, 282 views)
File Type: jpg SNB11030.jpg (82.8 KB, 281 views)
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Old 11-07-2010, 03:18 AM   #18
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Whoops!
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Old 11-07-2010, 08:16 PM   #19
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Default Yep, you got it.

A few years later on mine, no regrets. Hardly even remember they were ever there.
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Current #1: '06 D3 A8L W12 brilliant black w/ amaretto; 4 seat setup, CPO; modestly lowered, H&R 20mm rear and 12mm front DRs with 275/35 on OEM polished + forged 20's; S8 sway bars (see: rear bar and gen'l D3 bar info and front bar); tweaked 385mm front factory brake mod and matching rear brake mod; matching C6 A6 back headrests (better rear view: headrest tweak); owner installed AMI retrofit with part number details here. [If you want pics in foregoing links, ask AW where they went...used all to work] Upper control arm reference (+ more info in replies) here. Lower cost D3 OES sway bar links here.
Current #2: 2013 Q5 2.0T hybrid; Scuba blue w/ chestnut sport interior; Euro delivery 7/2013 (pictured at Ingolstadt); RS5 front brakes
Prior (each modded): 2000 C5 A6 4.2 & '96 C4 A6 2.8Q, both still w/ family; '85 C3 5000S 5 sp FWD; '73 C1 100LS

helpful cross reference to a C6 post with MMI and other TSB's that also cover D3 A8's.

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Old 02-09-2011, 03:51 AM   #20
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I haven't received my '11 Avant yet, but I am wondering if the removal might be even easier if you remove the sun visors from the car first, and do the whole thing on your kitchen counter. I imagine popping off the plastic cover at the hinge will give access to mounting screws? Not sure how the electrical connection for the mirror light is handled though.
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Old 02-09-2011, 03:51 AM
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