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What kind of care and cleaning is needed on magnetic signs?
There are several points to keep in mind. But first, before the "horror stories", it is good to know that most folks "slap on the signs and forget" and never have a problem. That being said, a few points.
1. Fresh paint should not have magnetic signs. Fresh paint gives off solvents for some time. If the paint is sealed (either with a wax or magnetic sign) the paint can darken where sealed. This is permanent. How long should paint "cure"? It varies depending on the quality of the paint. But at least 30 days on all paints. Cheaper paint - up to a year! Factory paint or fully cured paint - never any problems like this.
2. Both surfaces must be clean. If dirt and grime are on the back of the magnetic or on the paint, this can rub on the paint. In time, leaving faint scratch marks. While it is nothing that a little buffing can't take care of, why risk the problem. Clean the paint and magnetics before applying. And from time to time (when you wash your truck or car) take a moment to clean both surfaces.
3. Ideally, the magnetics should be stored flat and someplace warm. If you "throw in the back of the truck on a cold day" - later when you pick them up and try to apply they could either crack (if real cold) or not conform to the surface and later blow off. Again, if possible, store in a warm area and keep flat. If they do get cold and where left "balled up", warm up and gently work with till flat once again. Again, not likely to ever have this problem, but it is good to know.
4. Finally, while it is very rare, in cold/freezing/wet weather magnetics can come off - and be lost - as you go down the road. It seems that water gets under the magnetics and when it freezes, lifts the magnetics loose. Again, very rare, but it has happened. It's best to remove in wet winter weather.
All the above being said, all these "horror stories" are very rare. Most folks "slap on and forget". If you take just a few precautions you'll have many years of use from your magnetics.
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