Car Wraps: Everything You Need to Know
What are car wraps?
Car wraps are durable, high performance film or graphic that is adhered to a vehicle right over the factory paint job. It attaches to the vehicle much like a sticker and can be removed at any time without damaging the original paint, if performed by a trained professional.
Why do it?
There are many reasons:
- It’s cheaper than repainting a vehicle (which can cost up to $10,000)
- You can create unbelievable designs and print the graphic in a matter of minutes.
- They can be installed in a couple days.
- The color choices are virtually unlimited. Get creative!
- Wraps protect the original paint.
- They last for years (assuming you don’t choose cheap ones).
- They stay clean with much less work. No waxing needed!
- And it can be removed in a day if you don’t like it.
How much are car wraps?
The cost of a car wrap varies based on a bunch of factors:
- Vehicle Size – Do you own a smart car or a Hummer? The bigger the vehicle, the more expensive the wrap because of the cost of the material and the labor to install it. Sometimes a business doesn’t need a full wrap, so then a partial wrap is the way to go.
- Vehicle Shape – Do you own a box truck or a Porsche? A flat surface is much easier to adhere the film to than a curved one. Sports cars look great with a nice wrap, but it takes time to apply it to every corner, curve, and crevasse on the vehicle.
- Wrap Thickness – Do you want a paper-thin wrap at 1.3 mil, the average thickness of 4 mil, or a thick, protective wrap at 6 mil? The thicker the wrap, the more protection is offers against everyday wear and tear.
- Wrap Material – Most are vinyl, offering a slew of surface finishes from matte to gloss, to optically clear. Calendered vinyl is good for flat surfaces and small curves, while cast vinyl is better for complex curves and edges.
- Outdoor durability – They can last anywhere from a couple years to 10 or more depending on the materials chosen and the quality of the installation.
- Companies – Like anything, there are many companies to choose from. When you’re choosing a wrap provider, stick with the trusted names in the industry – Avery Dennison, Hexis, Orafol, 3M, etc.
- Installers – Don’t go cheap. Everyone price shops because it’s the smart thing to do, but don’t make the mistake of purchasing a wrap simply because of the price. Wrap installation is not easy, and anyone who charges a price that sounds too good to be true is not doing it right. The installation of your vehicle wrap is just as important as the material you chose. If the wrap isn’t installed correctly, you can expect bubbles, lines, and a far shorter life span. This is one of the times where it pays to go with quality.
How long does it take to install?
A single wrap can typically be completed in a couple days, so it’s light-years faster than a paint job which leaves the owner car-less for weeks. Forget about Avis and Hertz and wrap your car instead. Your wrap probably costs less than the car rental fees you would pay.
What protection does it offer?
Vehicle wraps protect the car’s paint job, especially when the chosen film is 4 mil or more thick. They safeguard the vehicle from sun, wind, water, dirt, grime, and more. Not only that, but they’re easy to wash. Hand washing with soap and water works just fine. You can even request to get a special wrap protector film sprayed on the car that with help even more.
What colors are available?
If you can think of a color, it can be done. You have unlimited options. And after you choose a color, you can choose a finish – matte, satin, gloss, metallic, color-shift, reflective, and so on. Customize as much as you’d like. You can create truly unique and exotic looks with a bit of creativity.
How long does it last?
An auto wrap can last anywhere from a couple years to 10 or more. The easiest way to control the life span is to choose the material based on how long you need it for. The durability is also significantly impacted by storage. Is your vehicle kept in a garage or is it outside all the time? Keeping the vehicles in a controlled environment, such as a garage or warehouse will extend the life dramatically.
Should I wash my car before I bring it in?
Definitely. Bring your vehicle in as clean as possible. We take precautionary steps to prep your vehicle prior to doing any work, but cleaning it ahead of time will certainly help to insure the best possible results.
Can I wrap my vehicle windows?
Sure, but we recommend using perforated vinyl so you can still see out the window.
Can they be removed?
Yes, they can be removed at any time. We highly recommend that you have a professional installer perform the removal as well so the paint isn’t damaged.
Where do I get my car wrapped?
Stop in to Bourbon St. Wraps to chat or give us a call at (480) 659-9110. We can talk about your ideas for the design or give you a free estimate based on what you’re thinking of doing.
What can you wrap?
We can do anything – a car, truck, bus, boat, train, plane, bike, window, wall, and so on. The most common wraps are cars, trucks, and motorcycles, followed very closely by walls and windows. Businesses come to us all the time for commercial auto wraps for the company vehicles. It’s a great way to generate name recognition and build a brand in a city. Frosted windows are very popular with our chain store clients, but work well for anyone looking for a creative display ad.
If you’re thinking about a wrap job, consider how much you need. Do you want to change the color of the entire vehicle? Only the hood? What about the roof? Taillights or headlights? We allow you to fully customize everything. Come up with the idea, design it however you like (or we can always help you), and then we’ll make it happen. Our job is making your creative vision a reality. It’s why we get up in the morning.
What locations do you serve?
We do vehicle wraps in Phoenix, Tempe, Scottsdale, Chandler, Mesa, and Gilbert, Arizona. Clients drive from hours away for our wrapping service, and we’re happy to tell you we’re well worth the trip. Stop in to our showroom and check out how we do it.