How to Remove Chrome from Plastic

Jesse01V6

Away from V6's for now........
I've wanted to paint some of the factory emblems on my Mustang and I've never had luck painting over the chrome. It never worked for me on model car parts, so I don't know why it would on plastic emblems.

There are a few methods; you can spray Easy Off oven cleaner on the chrome and let it sit for a few hours and its supposed to come off. I've also heard that letting it sit over night in a bath of Coca-Cola works too. I tried both of the above methods with no success. The method I will show here is using bleach.

Remove chrome parts from vehicle. Clean off any heavy dirt/residue. You can also scuff them with a green scotch bright pad. That seems to help the bleach work quicker.

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Put the chrome parts into a plastic container/bucket or similar. I would advise it not be something you intend to eat from later!

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Pour in the bleach.

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Fill it up to completely submerge the parts. Some you may have to turn over. I would use the regular bleach, not the splash-less stuff.

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After about an hour you will see these black streamers and other residues come up from the parts....

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Give it a good 24 hours to soak. When you return the bleach will look like this....

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Dump out the bleach. You can see chrome (and copper) being striped from the parts...

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Scrub off the parts with some old tooth brushes or scrub brushes.

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You will repeat this process several times until all or most of the chrome and copper coating comes off, using fresh bleach after each "bath". I would give it a good 24 hours between baths. You can also scrub the parts again with some scotch bright pads to clean them up. Just remember not to scratch the raw plastic.

Eventually the parts will look like these.

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Paint, dye, or coat however you see fit.

Hope this helps anyone who has thought of this before.
 

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gravydog

goofy b!tch
couldn't you just prime it first, then paint it? instead of chrome removal?
 
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Derfdog15

Active Member
I always like to try something with plastidip first. You can get colored plastidip or paint over the normal stuff. And it is much easier to undo!
 

gravydog

goofy b!tch
I just bought my first Mustang (2006) & the plastic on the exterior mirrors, under the doors & where the wipers are is discolored an ugly grey. I was wondering how I could darken them.
 

Derfdog15

Active Member
Try some meguilars back to black, or some armoral. If neither of those works, then you can either plastidip it, undercoat, or prime and paint. it all depends on the budget and the look you are going for, you can paint to match the exterior color, or you can paint to match the original plastic color, I believe you can buy a paint that matches the originial plastic color and is for plastic use from ford or most autoparts.
 

Jesse01V6

Away from V6's for now........
Like I stated in the original post, my main reasoning for removing the chrome was because any time I have painted something chrome the paint eventually comes off.

Didn't matter if I scuffed or primed it, it eventually came off.

The emblem I first did I painted red, so far its survived the wreck when it was on my 2001, and it still sits in the grill of my 99 GT. It takes a beating out here in the 110 degree weather out here in Phoenix.
 

08'MustangDude

Profile Violation
You can paint over chrome and not have the paint come off if you scuff the
surface, and use adhesive promoter. Otherwise, just sand the chrome off.
Plasti-Dip also works better, and can be pealed off. People plasti-dip chrome
rims all the time. As log as it's done right, it doesn't come off unless you get
rock chips or other debris that contact it.
 
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