Some Ottawa drivers complain their new licence plates could soon be unreadable due to peeling and fading, forcing them to spend more to replace them.

Motorists who spoke to CBC News showed licence plates with peeled off material and delaminating letters.

They are worried about a fine from police or having to spend money for a new licence plate.

For most Ontario drivers, it would cost $20 to replace a licence plate. For Peppi Paluzzi, it would cost $99 for his personal plate named after his car detailing franchise, Ziebart, in east Ottawa.

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Benoit Duval's licence plate, which is less than two years old, has suffered damage even though it's parked inside most of the time, he said. (Ryan Gibson/CBC)

Two letters are peeling off his plate and the situation worsens each day, he said. Paluzzi said he has also noticed the problem on two other customers' vehicles over the last few days.

Licence plate materials changed over time

Benoit Duval has noticed the problem as his letters are bubbling too, he said.

"I can't understand that. This is from 2009 and the car is parked inside most of the day," said Duval.

Service Ontario’s policy is to replace licence plates at no charge if they are deemed to have a manufacturing defect within five years of issue.

The government also lists "exhaust fumes, sun, chemicals, stones, high pressure washes and general wear-and-tear" as possible causes for damage.

But Service Ontario does admit "materials used in the manufacturing of licence plates have changed over the years to maximize visibility and improve environmental impact."