One of the most popular trends right now in the automotive world has nothing to do with how your vehicle actually runs. Instead, it’s all about the aesthetics While getting a custom paint job can be expensive and permanent, the trend of getting a vinyl wrap for your vehicle offers a cost effective, removable way of upgrading your look.
Recently on Motorz, Chris talked to Troy Downey, owner of A.P.E. Wraps. Troy provided some key tips for wrap design, preparation, installation and care. When it comes to the design, the first step is to meet and discuss your ideas with your local vehicle wrap experts. If you have Photoshop experience it certainly can’t hurt to draft and bring along a few designs. This will not only give the designer a better idea of what you want but it’ll also help you visualize the result you have in mind. Don’t be afarid to be opinionated about the look you want. After all, it’s your vehicle.
Following design, the next step is preparation. As Troy said on the show, the areas most likely to lose adhesion are going to be panel gaps and other points of separation on the vehicle’s surface. This can include taillights and other key fixtures on your vehicle. Thus, it is probably a job best left to professional mechanics.
If your wrap shop says they’ll need to remove the vehicle’s badges temporarily, don’t be alarmed. Not only is de-badging the vehicle a good idea for preparation but often times it is necessary based on the type of wrap and overall design chosen.
When it comes to cost, don’t be afraid to spend a little extra to ensure quality vinyl. As is usually the case, if the price sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Paying a little more for a durable wrap with clean removability can save tremendous amounts later on and avoid possibly damaging the factory finish. For quality wraps expect a lifetime of four to five years along with four year clean removability.
Following vinyl design and preparation comes installation. This is a step best left to the professionals. Although there is nothing like working with your own hands, in this case the possible cost of a single mistake can be quite significant. Leave this one up to your local experts.
As for maintenance, wraps require a bit more care than standard paint. The car wash is going to be a thing of the past. Hand washing and waxing your wrap is the way to go. Simple steps like using a car cover and avoiding long exposure to sunlight can add life to your wrap.
While A.P.E. Wraps is based in San Diego, California, they can still provide their services to many locations around the country. As Troy said on the show, only a small percentage of wrap installs are performed in-house. A.P.E. Wraps has a vast range of installation networks to make sure you can get your wrap installed at a convenient location.
Want more information? Head to the A.P.E. Wraps website for more. Also check out the video below to see Troy on Motorz.