Vinyl Wraps: Myths Debunked

 In Vinyl Wraps

Vinyl Wraps: Myths Debunked

We’ve been using, printing and installing vinyl wraps since the concept became a reality. Over the years, we heard countless rumors, myths and “facts” about vinyl, and what it can and can’t do, how long it lasts, etc… So we thought we’d set the record straight, by debunking the most common myths and answering the most frequently asked questions about vinyl and its application.

This is by no means a comprehensive guide to vinyl. It’s just intended to address some of the lingering questions and concerns that a lot of people have surrounding vinyl.

And so, without further adieu, here are the most common myths, debunked.

Veloster-Side
No. It's not paint.A brand new Hyundai Veloster Turbo wrapped in Matte Metallic Pine Green

Installing vinyl on your vehicle, will damage the paint underneath.

False. In fact, it’s the total opposite. Many people wrap their vehicles to preserve the paint underneath. The vinyl acts as a cover for the paint, preventing any adverse weather or sun from beating on the paint. It also acts the same way a clear bra would, protecting the paint from small scratches and dings from rocks or debris. If uninstalled correctly, the vinyl won’t leave any residue, or peel any paint or clear coat with it. That being said, if the paint is already in bad condition when you apply the vinyl, you can expect it to still be the same when you peel it off!

 

Vinyl wrapping is expensive.

Well, compared to a can of soda, yes. But compared to a brand new paint job? It’s a bargain. Let’s look at something like the Hyundai Veloster, pictured above, and below. The Hyundai is wrapped in Matte Metallic Pine Green with Matte Black accents. The total cost? Around $1900. If you wanted that as a custom paint job? You’re looking at upwards of $10,000. Still seem expensive? On top of that, a wrap is reversible, and can achieve colors, patterns and designs, that paint simply can’t.

veloster-closeup
Clean and Crisp.A well cared for wrap will last you 5-7 years.

Vinyl doesn’t last very long.

A well cared for vinyl wrap can last for up to 7 years. (We’ve seen some last longer, but these were mostly show cars that didn’t see much time outside.) We usually give a lifespan of 5-7 years for our color change films (3M, Avery, etc…) and 5 years for our digitally printed wraps. Wraps are just like paint, if you take care of them, they’ll last. If you don’t take care of them, just like paint, you’ll find their lifespan decreases.

Lifespan of your vinyl is also heavily dependent on where you live, how you use it, and what vinyl you’re using. Any kind of Matte color vinyl has a slightly shorter life span due to the fact that it doesn’t have a clear coat over the top, protecting the film. Printed wraps, and gloss colors have a clear laminate over the top, which offers better protection. If you live in a place where there are extreme temperatures, lots of dirt and debris on the road, or any kind of adverse condition, lifespan is also slightly decreased, if you don’t care for your warp.

All that being said, we’ve had plenty of customers here in Colorado that have had full Matte wraps done, and 5 years later, they’re still going strong!

 

Vinyl can’t be removed easily.

False. Vinyl is very easy to remove without causing any damage to your OEM paint. It’s even possible to remove the vinyl yourself with the correct solutions and tools, although we always thoroughly recommend you bring your wrap back to us, or a certified installer to have the wrap removed. That way you gain peace of mind knowing it’s being done right.

 

Vinyl wrap advertising isn’t effective.

A survey conducted by Outdoor Advertising Magazine found that mobile media billboards have a 97% recall rate, and 99% of survey respondents thought that mobile advertising was more effective than traditional outdoor advertising. 3M and the American Trucking Associations noted 91% of the target noticed the text and graphics on truck advertising. Furthermore Ad Agency RYP & Becker Group completed the 3M Mobile Media Advertising Case Study in 2011 with the following findings: 97% of survey respondents recalled the ad, 98% though the advertising created a positive image of the advertiser and 96% thoughts fleet graphics had greater impact than billboards1.

Kendall Racing Truck
All Eyes On You.Vinyl Wraps are commonplace in the race world, as a way to display sponsors and look good.

We’ll be adding to this list as time goes on, and more questions arise. If you have any questions about vinyl, or vinyl wraps, don’t hesitate to get in contact with us!

1Lambourne, Steve. “Vehicle Wraps”. SS Signs and Vehicle Wraps.

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Showing 43 comments
  • tTony Manning
    Reply

    Im interested in getting my S/G 27 roadster or my top sportsman 2015 camaro car wrapped.

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hey Tony,

      Give us a call at 303-293-9215 and we’d be happy to help you with all your wrap needs!

      Thanks,

      The Fineline Team

  • Drew
    Reply

    I didn’t know how easy it was to remove a wrap from a car. Thanks for posting!

  • Vinyl Wrap Essex
    Reply

    it was easy to remove a wrap from car, there’s lot of techniques.

  • Chris
    Reply

    Would the wrap work if the paint is peeling and I sand the clear off and remove all oils and grease in order to apply the wrap?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Chris,

      If the surface is smooth and clean, the vinyl should stick just fine. Vinyl typically adheres best to paint in good condition. If the paint is peeling when you apply the vinyl, the ‘paint protectant’ characteristics of the vinyl won’t apply. Instead when you go to remove the vinyl, you’ll find that the vinyl will most likely peel more paint up with it. If you have any more questions about how wraps work and how they may affect your vehicle, don’t hesitate to give us a call!

  • Roger Lowlicht
    Reply

    Chris
    I wrapped the front of my Bentley Continental GT
    I have a few areas where there are bubbles after a month of use
    Can anything be done?
    I have another area where the wrap lifted up and there is dirt under a clear wrap
    What can I do?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Roger,

      There are some options available to remove bubbles, depending on their size. Your best bet would be to give one of our experts a call, and talk with them over the phone in more detail about what your options are. You can give us a call Mon – Fri, 8-5 on 303-293-9215

      Cheers,

      The Fineline Team

  • galya
    Reply

    If you plan on doing a graphic wrap for advertisement, does it matter what color of plaint the vehicle is?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Galya,

      The color of the vehicle does not matter if you wrap the full vehicle. The wrap will cover the color beneath it!

  • Dan Schmitt
    Reply

    I have a clear wrap on my c7 and was thinking of putting a stinger stripe graphic on my hood over top. Will it stick or do i have to have the clear wrap removed first?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Dan,

      The vinyl will stick to the clear wrap underneath it.

  • Lucy
    Reply

    hi Team,

    I have visible hail dents, if vinyl wrap is applied on the surface, will it cover the dents.

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Lucy,

      Unfortunately it will not. The vinyl adheres and contours the the surface beneath it, so if the surface is dented, the film will wrap in to those dents, not fill them!

  • Randy
    Reply

    If you said off the protection clear coat that is peeling will the wrap adhere to the car?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Randy,

      The film should still adhere. The surface is still metallic, so the film shouldn’t have a problem adhering!

  • Randy
    Reply

    Sand*

  • siaosi
    Reply

    It is incredible to see how people are able to get their cars wrapped. I think it would be a good way to advertise. I would want to do this to my car if I had a business.

  • Bodhi
    Reply

    Hi, I am intrested in doing a diy wrap on my hood. The previous owner spray painted some symbols onto it without any proper prep. In some spots you can feel the thickness of the paint. I was wondering how vinyl wrap will hide this if the wrap is just a glossy black color.

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Bodhi,

      If you can feel the paint, the vinyl not hide it. Vinyl conforms incredibly tight to what’s underneath it, so if you have areas that are slightly raised (due to your paint symbols) then those will show through the vinyl. Your best bet would be to wet sand the spray paint to a point where it is hardly noticeable, and then wrap over the top of that.

  • Greg Bagwell
    Reply

    Can you vinyl wrap over vinyl letters that have clear coat over them

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Greg,

      You can, however you will be able to see the shape of the letters through the vinyl. It’s called overlaying. if you don’t want to be able to see the letters underneath, you would have to remove them before wrapping.

  • brandon freeman
    Reply

    i have small chips in my front bumper but my paint is in fair condition. will it adhere correctly

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Brandon,

      You shouldn’t have a problem with adhesion, but you may run in to problems with removal. If the paint has chips, you may experience the wrap pull up some of the paint in areas where the chips are (depending on the severity of the chips). When wrapping, it’s always best to make sure the surface you will be wrapping on is in good condition, to avoid any complications down the road!

  • Mitchell Garner
    Reply

    I am wanting to wrap the roof of my car in a glossy black color and am wondering what type of vinyl you would recommend

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Mitchell,

      We would recommend the 3M 1080 series wrap film, or the Avery Dennison SW900 Series wrap film. Both are great products!

  • Ray S
    Reply

    Can vinyl be applied over another second layer of vinyl on top ?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hey Ray,

      it can. You can layer vinyl no problem, just be aware that the more layers you do, the thicker it gets!

  • Charles H.
    Reply

    Hi,
    I am interested in wrapping the drawer fronts and other wear areas of my Snap On KRL tool box, with a clear gloss vinyl. The tool box is the regular OEM non gloss red. I was wondering if it will damage the paint when I go to remove it at a later date?
    Also, what kind of product would you recommend I use?
    Thanks

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hey Charles,

      It shouldn’t cause any damage to the paint surface. You could use a material like 3M IJ8150, or look at a clear bra option (like on vehicles).

  • Rich
    Reply

    The front part of the roof of my SUV paint is chipping off and they’re telling me that would need to have the whole roof repainted and trying to charge me $1,000. Would vinyl be a decent alternative?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hey Rich,

      If the paint is chipping, there is a good chance that the vinyl will fail, as it won’t adhere to the chipped parts very well. You would have to prep the surface to make it wrap ready. For this particular situation, it would be tough to say whether wrapping would be a better solution. Sorry!

  • William
    Reply

    I am wanting to get my 1996 f150 wrapped a gloss black I live near Augusta Kansas and was woundering where the closest place to get it done is.

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hey William,

      Check out WrapperMapper. Just enter your zip code or city and it will show you the nearest installers!

  • Toni
    Reply

    Do bumper stickers damage vinyl wraps?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Toni,

      You may find that when you go to take the bumper sticker off, it will want to pull the wrap off too. It really depends on the adhesive used and how long it has been on the vehicle!

  • David weber jr
    Reply

    Is it bad to install wrap in 90 degree weather?

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi David,

      If you can bear the heat, you should be fine! You may notice the vinyl stretches a little more in the heat, but it shouldn’t cause you any major problems if installed correctly!

  • Robert Czyz
    Reply

    Hi – I have a C7 corvette and got the paint protection from the dealer. I wanted to add some temporary stripes(3-4 months) to it but didn’t want to remove the sealant….will the vinyl ruin the sealant or peel it off when I go to remove the stripes? Also will the vinyl not adhere very well and bubble? Any help is much appreciated.

    Thank you very much!

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Robert,

      It depends on what the paint protection product is. With most products, it should be fine. If installed correctly there should be no issue with bubbling, or damage when removing.

      However, we’d recommend calling the manufacturer or a certified installer of the product and running this question by them!

  • Paul
    Reply

    Hi, my car had small dents and peeling paint on the hood, I sanded the bad areas down, added filler and then sanded it all again. It is now smooth. Will I need to prime the hood before having it wrapped or can it be wrapped as it is?
    Thanks

    • Fineline Graphics
      Reply

      Hi Paul,

      You’ll want to add a layer of primer!

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