How to Take Pop Rivets Out of a Street Sign

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Removing or replacing a street sign requires the proper tools.
Removing or replacing a street sign requires the proper tools. (Image: pedestrian road sign image by MAXFX from Fotolia.com)

Street signs are made from aluminum and are often attached to a signpost with aluminum pop rivets. The soft nature of aluminum allows you to remove the head of the pop rivet easily. To remove the pop rivets from the street sign without damaging the surface of the street sign, you need to use the proper tools. If you attempt to chisel the head from the pop rivet, you will scratch and gouge the surface of the street sign. Removing the pop rivets with the proper tools will release the rivets and leave the surface of the street sign undamaged.

Things You'll Need

  • Safety glasses
  • 3/16-inch drill bit
  • Variable speed drill motor
  • 1/8-inch punch
  • Hammer

Put on your safety glasses.

Secure the 3/16-inch drill bit in the chuck of the variable speed drill motor, and place the tip of the drill bit over the opening of the pop rivet.

Pull the trigger of the drill motor, and slowly drill into the head of the pop rivet. Stop drilling when the head of the pop rivet snaps free from the surface of the street sign. Repeat the drilling process on all the pop rivets holding the street sign in place.

Place the tip of the 1/8-inch punch into the shaft of the pop rivet body left in the street sign after you have removed the head of the pop rivet.

Hit the back end of the 1/8-inch punch with the hammer to knock the pop rivet body from the street sign. Repeat steps 4 and 5 to remove all the pop rivet bodies from the street sign.

Remove the street sign from the signpost.

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