Graffiti can cause immediate and long-term damage to structures and communities, so it’s important it’s removed swiftly. Whilst some people maintain graffiti is an art form, the unauthorised application of graffiti is considered to be a criminal offence.
As well as causing damage to underlying paintwork and surfaces, graffiti can have a significant impact on property values. Both commercial and residential buyers or tenants tend to be put off if buildings are surrounding by unauthorised street art. As a result, you may find it difficult to obtain a fair price for your property and may have trouble selling or renting it at all.
In addition to this, graffiti can contain offensive wording and imagery. This can expose young people to inappropriate materials, cause distress and fear within communities and lead a rise in prejudice. Whilst any form of graffiti can be detrimental to a community, offensive street art can be particularly divisive and harmful.
Due to the financial, practical and societal damage graffiti can cause, it’s important that it’s removed quickly. As well as removing graffiti swiftly, property owners, tenants and local councils can help to reduce the amount of graffiti on our streets by using anti-graffiti protection and sealing.
How does graffiti removal work?
Graffiti is applied to various surfaces, including brick walls, concrete, painted structures, sculptures and even memorials. Due to its wide application, effective graffiti removal methods must be applicable in a variety of situations.
Technicians may need to remove graffiti from cladding, brickwork, stone, paving slabs, wood, iron, steel and various other materials. Crucially, graffiti must be removed completely without causing damage to the underlying surface or materials.
If a painted wall has been covered with spray paint graffiti, for example, technicians will need to use equipment which is capable of removing the spray paint without also removing the underlying paint.
As graffiti is present on so many different types of surfaces, professional evaluation is typically required before removal can occur. An experienced removal technician will be able to determine which graffiti removal methods can be utilised safely, depending on what type of material lies beneath it.
Similarly, a professional technician will also be able to determine which methods of graffiti removal will be successful, depending on how the graffiti has been applied. Spray paint typically requires more powerful removal than marker pens, for example.
With specialist expertise and experience, graffiti removal technicians can completely eradicate graffiti from all types of surfaces, regardless of whether they’re porous or non-porous. In addition to this, professional graffiti removal equipment can access hard to reach areas and ensure that graffiti of public places can be fully removed.
Graffiti artists often apply graffiti to bridges, roofs and tunnels, for example. Whilst these areas can be difficult to access, specialist graffiti removal equipment is more than capable of adequately reaching affected areas and removing the offending imagery.
Once graffiti has been removed, a mark is often left behind. Known as a ghost mark, this still devalues properties and affects the aesthetics of communities. By using professional graffiti removal services, you can ensure ghost marks, as well as the graffiti itself, are completely removed from any surface.
Similarly, if adhesive materials, such as stickers or posters, have been applied to buildings, lampposts or railings, this can typically be removed too. Using the same specialist equipment and professional expertise, technicians can use industrial-grade materials to ensure the underlying surface is left in great condition.
How can you prevent graffiti?
Once graffiti has been fully removed, specialist graffiti prevention tools can be employed. Anti-graffiti coatings can be applied to any surface, including brickwork, metal and paint. As well as preventing paints and markers from adhering properly to the surface, anti-graffiti coatings make it far easier to remove subsequent graffiti.
Without an anti-graffiti coating, for example, specialist equipment and materials are usually required to remove graffiti. After an anti-graffiti coating has been applied, however, graffiti can typically be removed using warm water and gentle chemical solutions.
Similarly, pavement sealing is an effective way of removing graffiti of public places and keeping pathways clean and tidy. As well as reducing the impact of graffiti, pavement sealing also makes the removal of chewing gum and other materials far easier.
Whilst community efforts are changing the rate at which graffiti is applied, it is still prevalent in most urban areas. Due to this, specialist graffiti removal and anti-graffiti preventative measures are required to keep our streets, public spaces and buildings in good condition.
To find out more or to arrange graffiti removal now, contact Token Cleaning on 01279 422752 or 07860 233343.