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ARE VEHICLE WRAPS ROAD LEGAL?
In most cases, yes. While the jury is still out on the legality of vehicle wraps in most states due to their recent rise in popularity, we have heard of action being taken to limit certain films from road use by regulating their production size. Varieties of chrome & reflective films are intended for off-road use only or minor graphical additions instead of total car coverage. Still, there isn’t a current state law barring you from changing your car’s color via vehicle wrap that we know of or requiring you to re-register your vehicle in a new color.
PAINT VS. WRAP: WHICH IS MORE COST EFFECTIVE?
There are pros & cons to both wrapping or painting your vehicle, and normally a high-quality paint job will cost just as much if not more than a high-quality wrap. A cheap paint job is rarely a good thing, and preserving original paint is something we value, so we tend to side with wrapping. While it might be “cheaper” to do an easy respray on your vehicle for a change of color, it will ultimately damage the value and make it harder to resell down the line. A wrap can be removed easily, doesn’t run the risk of inconsistencies that come with a cheap paint job, and can potentially increase the resale value to prospective buyers if they plan on keeping it wrapped.
HOW LONG DOES A VEHICLE WRAP TAKE TO INSTALL?
If the wrap is our primary focus, turnaround time can be as short as a week or less, depending on complexity. Stripes, graphics & accent pieces can typically be completed in 24 – 72 hours, but exterior wraps or full-color changes with door jambs will take considerably longer. Installation times will vary depending on the project and when it’s scheduled. If you’re on a deadline or want to expedite your install, just let us know what the time frame is, and we’ll factor it in when we set up your appointment.
HOW DO I CARE FOR MY VINYL WRAP?
Proper wrap care starts with the basics. Keeping your vehicle’s surface clean is the primary concern, so frequent hand washing to eliminate surface contaminants is necessary if you want to keep your wrap from getting stained or damaged from road grime. For those of you with a gloss free exterior, we offer wrap waxing services for matte & satin films to help keep them protected as well as maintain a nice soft, flat finish.
CAN YOU WRAP UNPAINTED OR PRIMED VEHICLES OR BODY COMPONENTS?
No. With primed and unpainted vehicles or body kits, the surface texture does not allow for proper adhesion of air egress vinyl and makes the wrap prone to failure & lifting.
CAN YOU REMOVE VEHICLE WRAPS?
Most definitely. While it is a bit of a tedious process to undertake, we offer wrap removal services and installation and would be happy to assist. Contact us with more information about what type of wrap you would like to have removed & we’ll help you get back to fresh paint!
HOW LONG DOES A VEHICLE WRAP LAST?
Wrap life span really depends on how well the film is cared for, how much day to day stress the wrap gets from road driving, and what quality of the film was used to do the installation. Some films last longer than others, and the thicker they are, the more damage they can take. We’ve wrapped vehicles that see plenty of road & track time, and their films have survived more than 5 years without needing parts re-installed or failing.
DOES A VEHICLE WRAP DAMAGE YOUR PAINT?
No, but improper installation or removal can! A bad install means your vehicle’s paint might get damaged from razor blade scratches and poor adhesion that ultimately leads to wrap failure. If the wrong type of film is used during the application, as a sign vinyl with extra strength adhesive or low flexibility, it can strip your paint and cause serious damage if; when it is not removed with care!
HOW MUCH DO VEHICLE WRAPS COST?
Every vehicle & application is different, so the price really depends on your vehicle wrap project’s scope. A complete wrap includes door jambs, inner door frames, and sills — this level of vehicle coverage is recommended for those who desire a full-color change and is obviously the most costly. Partial wraps without jambs, frames, and sills are cheaper but ultimately will not have the same illusion as full coverage applications. All of our prices listed are base prices and vary depending on the vehicle type, surface complexity, and film used. For a more precise quote, contact us with more information about your wrap project.
NOTE: prices do not include full vehicle disassembling or re-assembling, or removal of previous films, wraps, and clear bra.
IS IT SAFE TO USE A PRESSURE WASHER TO WASH MY VEHICLE WRAP?
Although hand washing is the preferred cleaning method, pressure washing may be used under these conditions.
- Ensure the water pressure is kept below 2000 psi (14 MPa).
- Keep the water temperature below 80°C (180°F).
- Use a spray nozzle with a 40-degree wide-angle spray pattern.
- Keep the nozzle at least 1 foot (300 mm) away from and perpendicular (at 90 degrees) to the graphic.
Important Note! Holding the nozzle of a pressure washer at an angle to the graphic may lift the film’s edges.
ARE AUTOMATIC CAR WASH SAFE FOR MY VEHICLE WRAP?
Brush-type car washes are not recommended as they can abrade the film and cause edges to lift or chip, as well as dulling the film’s appearance. Brushless car washes are acceptable.
WHAT IS A VEHICLE WRAP?
Wraps come in all different shapes & sizes. Wraps start as large sheets of adhesive-backed vinyl film designed specifically for vehicle application made available in various styles & finishes. Some wraps are a full-color change in matte, satin, or gloss finishes, as well as chrome, “carbon fiber” look, and beyond. Vehicle wraps can also consist of printed designs containing imagery, photos, graphics, or branded elements to represent a business or group, or as “accents” on vehicle features like trim, spoilers, hoods, roofs, and trunks. Truly, the possibilities are endless; recent advancements in vinyl production technology has also opened up the possibilities to textured vehicle wraps like leather, alligator, snakeskin, or holographic & 3D films!
DO I HAVE TO WASH MY VEHICLE BEFORE INSTALLATION?
Yes. All vehicles have to be free of dust, mud, pollen, and other agents that may slow down the installation process.
CAN I TAKE IT THROUGH THE CARWASH?
Yes. You can wash it just like you did before it was wrapped, but it is not recommended that you use wax and a matte solid color wraps. We recommend brushless car washes.
CAN THE WRAP BE REMOVED LATER?
Absolutely. The wrap is actually applied to the vehicle using heat and pressure-sensitive adhesives that can be reactivated and removed by our installers. The removal process is short and does not damage the vehicle.
HOW LONG DOES THE PROCESS TAKE?
The majority of the time spent is on the development of the vehicle graphics design concept. The length of this depends directly on how much direction and input you provide as well as your response time. However, we can have concepts to you in just a couple of days. After the graphic stage is finalized, we enter production. This takes a few days. We print and let the media used dry. We then laminate followed by cutting. Then we move to the final stage, installation. This will take between 1 & 3 days depending on graphic size, vehicle type and, of course, scheduling.
HOW LONG WILL THE WRAP STAY ON MY VEHICLE?
Normally, a wrap can stay between 4 to 6 years on the vehicle depending on conditions, care and overall treatment. At Louisiana Graphics, we use the very best 3M and Avery products available in the industry. Each component is backed with a proven warrantee. Vinyl’s have 5 – 6 year manufacturer warrantees while our solvent inks have a range of 3 – 7 years. We also use lamination that acts as a protective film against many abrasive-cleaning applications and protects the print from minor scratches and regular wear-and-tear.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I WASH MY VEHICLE WRAP?
Wash whenever the car appears dirty. Contaminants allowed to remain on the vehicle wrap may be more difficult to remove during cleaning. Rinse off as much dirt and grit as possible with a spray of water.
Use a wet, non-abrasive detergent such as 3M™ Car Wash Soap 39000 or Meguiar’s NXT Generation® Car Wash or Deep Crystal® Car Wash and a soft, clean cloth or sponge. Rinse thoroughly with clean water. To reduce water spotting, immediately use silicone squeegee to remove water and finish with a clean microfiber cloth.
DO YOU OFFER PRINTED, BRANDED, OR CUSTOMIZED VEHICLE WRAPS?
Printed, branded, and customized vehicle wraps are something we specialize in. If you already have a design mocked up and simply need to get film printed and applied, or you want us to take it all the way from concept to completion, we would be glad to assist in bringing your personal or company fleet vehicles up to spec.
WHAT HAPPENS IF MY WRAP GETS DAMAGED?
There are a few courses of action we can take depending on how your wrap gets damaged, where the damage occurred, and how extensive it is. Worst case scenario, the wrap must be removed entirely, but more than likely, we will be able to pull a section of the wrap and replace it with a new piece of film that was leftover from your installation. Depending on the design or layout of your wrap and where the damage is located, we may also need to reprint graphics or patch a spot in.
DOES MY VEHICLE NEED TO BE CLEAN BEFORE I CAN WRAP IT?
Most definitely. Dirt and contaminants on your exterior would be trapped under the film, posing greater harm to your paint and eventually causing the wrap to fail if they were not cleaned off before installation. Thus, we must require a full 24- step hand wash and clay bar decontamination before the wrap is applied.
HOW DO I RESTORE MY VEHICLE WRAP?
The following restoration recommendations will help keep your vehicle wraps looking their best. Do not use any abrasive polishes or cutting compounds. Do not use any polishing or wax products on matte or textured films. Use if there is wax or wax residue on the surface; remove it with an all-purpose cleaner.
DO I HAVE TO GARAGE MY VEHICLE WRAP?
Store indoors or undercover whenever possible Wrap films (just like paint) are degraded by prolonged exposure to sun and atmospheric pollutants, particularly on the horizontal surfaces such as a hood, trunk lid, and roof. Whenever possible, store in a garage or at least in a shaded area during the day. At night, protect the car from dew or rain, containing acidic pollutants (a common problem in many large metropolitan areas). When a garage is not available, consider using a cloth car cover at night. If your wrap film starts to discolor or turn brown (caused by acidic pollution), immediately have a professional remove the wrap film from the vehicle to avoid staining the underlying paint.
I SPILLED FUEL ON MY VEHICLE WRAPS?
Wipe off immediately to avoid degrading the vinyl and adhesive. Then wash, rinse, and dry as soon as possible.
HOW DO I REMOVE DIFFICULT CONTAMINANTS FROM MY VEHICLE WRAP?
Soften difficult contaminants such as bug splatter, bird droppings, tree sap, and similar contaminants by soaking them for several minutes with boiling, soapy water. Rinse thoroughly and dry. If further cleaning is needed, test one of these products in an inconspicuous area to ensure no damage to the wrap film:
Meguiar’s Gold Class™ Bug and Tar Remover or 3M™ Citrus Base Cleaner. Isopropyl alcohol (IPA) (two parts IPA to 1 part water) or denatured alcohol may also help. Spot clean the contaminants. Do not use rough scrubbing or abrasive tools, which will scratch the film. Wash and rinse off all residue immediately.
CAN I WAX MY VEHICLE WRAP?
Yes! A vinyl wrap laminated in gloss can be waxed and treated as you would any other vehicle. We do not recommend excessive scrubbing if your wrap includes window perforated vinyl. Windows should be treated with extra care, depending on if they have an overlaminate or not.