Quick notes: If you're trying to figure out where to install your Car Mount, go here. If you're trying to remove your Car Mount, scroll down to the bottom of this article.
The most common problems we've seen with Peak Design Car Mounts stem from issues that can be fixed with proper installation.
Instructions are included in the Car Mount packaging. Think of them IKEA instructions: they may be boring and tedious, but if you go off-script you're liable to find yourself embroiled in a fit of frustration, with your sweaty fists angrily clutching your instruction booklet, screaming obscenities towards the heavens, and later apologizing to your family/neighbors for what they all just awkwardly witnessed.
Alright maybe it's not that bad, but the point still stands: follow the instructions.
If you lost 'em, or need more guidance, this article is for you.
Sometime's it's easier to watch somebody else do it. And who better to watch than Wheeler*, the engineer who designed the Peak Design Car Mount.
*Yes, the engineer behind our Car Mount is named is coincidentally named Wheeler, and he's brilliant, and he also designed our phone charging system which you can learn about on our Youtube Channel.
Picture Instructions (As Found In Our Packaging)
1. Select a mounting location. The Car Mount is designed to stick to a wide variety of surfaces, and has best results when stuck to smooth, flat, hard surfaces on your car's dashboard or console. You'll also need to make sure there's enough room for your phone to fit on the mount without blocking visibility or important controls. Without peeling off the adhesive cover, do a test fit to make sure the base of the Car Mount can properly contour to your dash when firmly pressed down.
Having trouble finding a mounting location? Visit this help article.
2. Clean your car's surface with the provided alcohol wipe. In cases where the adhesive fails, it is often because the mounting surface was not cleaned thoroughly enough. Car interiors can have all sorts of grime on them—dust, oils, remnants of cleaning or protective products—and this grime must be removed for proper adhesion. Thoroughly wipe down the surface and wait at least 5 minutes to let the alcohol dry.
If you don't have an alcohol wipe, you can use a mild household cleaner and a soft rag/towel. Most cleaners evaporate a bit slower than alcohol, so you might need to wait a few minutes longer for the surface to fully dry.
On older vehicles, or on painted surfaces, you should test the alcohol wipe in an inconspicuous area first. Alcohol is a solvent and can cause paint removal or discoloration on sensitive surfaces.
3. Remove the adhesive backing and attach the Car Mount by firmly pressing down on the base plate and holding firmly. Make sure you're pressing down on each side of the base plate, and hold for as long as you can...30 seconds or more ideally. Doing this ensures that the base plate, which is designed to flex, matches the contour of the mounting location. This maximizes adhesion surface area.
4. WAIT A FULL 24 HOURS BEFORE MOUNTING YOUR PHONE. We know, it's excruciating. You thought you were done and now you have to twiddle your thumbs for A DAY before you can actually enjoy it. But please, don't skimp on this step.
Our Car Mount uses strong, secure, temperature/weather-resistant 3M VHB adhesive. Think 'double-sided tape on steroids.' This adhesive needs time to fully bond to its substrate. If you attach a phone to the mount before it's bonded, the weight of the phone exerts a peeling force on the adhesive. Your adhesive may not fail right away, but it will be far more likely to fail a week or a month down the road.
5. Enjoy phone-mounting bliss. You put in your time, now enjoy the glorious fruits of your labor.
Removing Your Peak Design Phone Mount
You can safely remove your Car Mount from a wide range of surfaces (though we can't guarantee safe removal from all surfaces...see our article on preferred mounting locations for more details).
To do this, grab some dental floss. If you don't have dental floss, get some. You can use it for other things, too.
Holding the floss tightly in each hand, work it beneath a corner of the base plate of the Car Mount. Keeping the floss relatively taut, move it back and forth in a sawing motion and gradually pull it further beneath the base plate. Keep going until the Car Mount completely detaches. After relentless testing, we've found this to be the safest and easiest way to break the adhesive bond.
You may have some adhesive residue left on your vehicle's dash. To remove this residue, you're going to need one of the most expensive and complicated tools that you own: your finger. Press your finger onto the residue and move it back and forth to roll it off. You should see the remaining residue ball up and fall off.
Another tool you can use is blue painter's tape. Tear off a piece and dab the sticky side repeatedly against the residue. It should gradually pick it up.
Note that every Car Mount comes with a spare 3M VHB adhesive pad so you can re-mount it. If you need additional pads, email email@example.com.