Wraps: Frequent Questions
1. What is a Vehicle Wrap?
Answer: A Wrap is a large vinyl graphic or decal. It is applied directly over the original paint of the vehicle. The application of the Wrap allows you to change the vehicle’s appearance in a very short period of time and in turn allows you to remove the Wrap, returning the vehicle back to it’s original condition if necessary.
2. What’s involved in a Vehicle Wrap?
Answer: Vehicle wraps, bus wraps and fleet wraps are comprised of three phases. The first is the design phase, which includes getting accurate measurements for the vehicle and actual design of the graphics to be applied. The second is the production phase where the graphic is printed and then laminated to protect the vinyl from abrasions and UV rays that can cause graphics to fade over time. The third phase is installation where the vinyl is actually applied to your vehicle. In some cases there may even be a fourth phase, the removal of graphics if requested.
3. What’s the difference between a partial wrap and a full wrap?
Answer: Anything less than a full wrap is normally called a “partial wrap.” ½ partial wrap normally includes the entire rear of the vehicle and ½ way up the vehicle, and includes a hood logo. ¾ partial wrap normally includes the entire rear of the vehicle and ¾ way up the vehicle, and includes a hood logo. Typically, a Full Wrap includes the entire surface of the vehicle.
4. How long will the wrap stay on my vehicle?
Answer: Normally, you can leave a wrap on between 1 to 6 years. Life of your wrap depends on many factors. Please refer to your supplier for specifics. In general, a high performance cast vinyl wrap using solvent long life inks and a UV protective overlaminates can last 3 to 6 years.
5. Will a Vehicle Wrap damage my paint?
Answer: In most cases vehicle wraps will not damage factory paint jobs. It is important to talk with your supplier and possibly pre-test your paint job prior to wrapping with vinyl. Paint in poor condition may peel when vinyl is removed.
6. Do I have to wash my vehicle before installation?
Answer: Yes. All vehicles have to be free of dust, mud, wax, oil, armor-all type products, and other agents that may prevent the vinyl from adhering to the vehicle surface during the installation process. Even if you clean the vehicle yourself your installer will still do some prep work to the vehicle to ensure it is ready for the vehicle wrap. Most vehicles need to be high pressure washed with detergent. After washing, it is also critical to prep the vehicle surface with degreasers, alcohols and other solvents.
7. Do I need to bring my vehicle in for measurements?
Answer: That depends. There are software programs that have accurate dimension of most standard production run cars, trucks, and vans. If your vehicle is a limited run issue, custom measurements may be needed. Also, some installers like you to bring your vehicle in so they can take photographs and do their designs from the pictures rather than a software template.
8. How long will it take to wrap my vehicle?
Answer: Time to do wraps vary widely from project to project and installer to installer. However, in general vehicle wraps can be done in significantly less time than painting. Paint jobs normally require curing and drying time and much more preparation than a vehicle wrap. Often a full wrap on a standard automobile can be done in one day.
9. If my vinyl vehicle wrap graphics are damaged, can they be fixed?
Answer: Yes. You can normally have the damaged pieces or panels of your vehicle wrap replaced after your vehicle is repaired. You normally do not need to redo the entire wrap if the damage is limited to certain areas of the vehicle.
10. Can you wrap a leased vehicle?
Answer: You must always obtain permission to wrap a leased or rented vehicle. However, in general, most leased or rented vehicles have factory paint jobs with excellent paint quality. Vinyl applied over factory paint is best because vinyl can be removed easier without damage or "paint peel." Leased vehicles are often wrapped throughout the country without incident or damage.
11. How do I care for my Wrap?
Answer: Hand washing is best. Try to avoid high-pressure washes and be careful never to use an ice-scraper on window graphics. There are specially designed products to clean and polish vinyl graphics so ask your supplier.
12. What is considered when calculating the cost of a Vehicle Wrap?
Answer: There are several things to consider: Design Time, Materials (including vinyl and lamination), Print, and Installation. Size of the vehicle, amount of the vehicle to be wrapped and type of vehicle play a part in cost. In general, vehicles with compound-curves, or indention’s, like a VW Bug or PT Cruiser are more difficult and more expensive to wrap than a box van with flat surfaces. Partial wraps are a great way to minimize cost as opposed to a full wrap. Cast (High Performance) Vinyl is more expensive than Calendered (Intermediate) Vinyl and lasts longer so be sure to discuss with your supplier. Make sure to request a clear vinyl overlaminate also. It costs a little more but is well worth it.
13. How can I justify the cost of a vehicle wrap?
Answer: If you are using your vehicle wrap, as signage there is no more cost-effective advertising method available. It has been proven that the cost per impression of vehicle wraps is less than other forms of advertising such as billboards, television, radio and yellow pages. If you are using your vehicle wrap to improve the appearance of your vehicle, digitally printed vehicle wraps can simply not be duplicated by other methods such as paint or airbrush.
14. Can you easily remove vinyl graphics used for wraps?
Answer: Yes, in most cases, if you follow guidelines. There are many types of vinyl that can be used on vehicle wraps. Some vinyls are designed to be removed easier than others. Please ask your supplier which vinyl is right for the vehicle you are wrapping. Also find out what the maximum length of time the wrap may be on the car. In general, all vinyls tend to be harder to remove the longer they remain on the vehicle because the adhesives tend to build up a bond over time. Heat is often used to soften the vinyl and its adhesive in order to assist in the removal of the vinyl. There are also special chemicals and special tools available to assist in the removal of vinyl.
15. Can I see through vinyl on the windows?
Answer: You can see through window graphics that are printed on perforated window film. Window perf vinyl is vinyl that is perforated with very small holes that allow you to see out. From inside the vehicle visibility is similar to regular window tint. From the outside the graphic is visible. For safety reasons the front windshield and front driver and passenger windows should not have vinyl graphics. Rear windshield and rear windows on passenger and driver side doors can normally have vinyl graphics. However, laws vary by state, so please check with your supplier.
16. Is it normal to have some wrinkles or bubbles?
Answer: Yes, on a full-wrap it is very normal to have an occasional wrinkle or bubble. There are many techniques to eliminate wrinkles and bubbles when wrapping, but even the best vinyl-wrappers can't eliminate all wrinkles on severe concave/rounded surfaces. Normally on flat surfaces, there should not be any wrinkles or bubbles. Next Day Signs Certified Installers are specially trained to prevent bubbles and wrinkles. There are also specially designed vinyls that help to reduce bubbles and wrinkles, so ask us.
17. What are some of the great selling points for doing advertising with Vehicle Wraps?
Answer: Cost – Benefit in comparison to other forms of advertising Impressions – 30,000 to 70,000 daily vehicular impressions. Impact – A recent poll shows that: 90% of travelers notice graphics on wrapped vehicles. 75% of consumers form impressions about a company based on the fleet graphics. 30% of consumers base buying decisions on impressions they receive from company vehicles. Less regulation –In most cases you do not need a permit for vehicle wrap advertising, but always check the laws in your area. You own it! –Many forms of advertising, like billboards or radio are simply a rented amount of time. Not vehicle wraps, you own the graphic and the vehicle.
18. What are the advantages of doing a Vehicle Wrap as opposed to a new paint job?
Answer: With vehicle wraps your creativity and design possibilities are limitless as opposed to paint. For example, it is very difficult to paint a photograph, but very easy to digitally reproduce a photograph. Paint simply cannot duplicate what is possible with digitally printed vinyl vehicle wraps. Vinyl vehicle wraps are also a great way to protect your original paint underneath. Finally, it is much easier to change your vehicle wrap vinyl graphics than to change a paint job.
19. What is the best base color for a vehicle that is going to be wrapped?
Answer: Most professionals prefer a black vehicle because black helps to hide any areas that don't match the vinyl graphics. Any base color on a vehicle can be wrapped, but black seems to work the best.
20. Do you recommend vinyl overlaminate for perforated window vinyl?
Answer: Yes and No. If you want optimal protection for fading and scuff resistance then you must use optically clear vinyl overlaminate. However, if you want the utmost visibility through the perforated window film, then you can't overlaminate. In this case an aerosol spray overlaminate could be used prior to install and making sure that liquid does not plug up the perforations. Please note that if you do NOT use overlaminate it is very difficult to see through the perforated window vinyl when driving in the rain.
21. What is the best type of design to have in order to hide installation flaws such as wrinkles or bubbles?
Answer: Since not all bubbles and wrinkles and seams can be avoided, a very “busy” design with lots of background shapes and colors can help hide these flaws. A camouflage background is one example of a “busy” design. It has great impact but it can still hide potential defects or damage to the vinyl wrap.
22. What is the best vinyl to use for vehicle wraps?
Answer: In most cases a high performance wrapping vinyl should be used for vehicle wraps. We use the world's leading brands of high performance wrapping vinyls manufactured by 3M, and Oracal.
23. Should you use or require clear vinyl overlaminate for your vehicle wraps?
Answer: Absolutely, but with one exception. Clear vinyl overlaminates protect the finished print from scuffing, weather and washing. Some overlaminates also provide fading protection from the sun, so ask your supplier. Finally, most installers highly prefer to wrap with a vinyl that has been overlaminated because it provides much more strength during the wrapping process. The only exception to clear vinyl overlaminate would be for perforated window film.
24. Can you wrap primered vehicles?
Answer: Yes and no. It is critical to test the surface of a primered vehicle before we accept this type of job. Some paint-primered surfaces do not have an acceptable bond to wrapping vinyls and need to be sanded or painted prior to installation.
25. I’m ready to buy a vehicle wrap for my vehicle. Where do I start?
Answer: Contact us and set an appointment to start designing or submit your design for a quote.