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The Top 4 Reasons Why Vehicle Wrap Application Materials Fail

vehicle wrap installation failure mistakesNobody likes failing.  It just looks bad.  If you own a business, it can be the difference between repeat customers, tons of referrals, or closing up shop.  When it comes to the installation of vehicle wraps, there are four main reasons why vehicle wrap vinyl materials fail.

We should know.  We've been there, done that.  We've made costly mistakes, but have learned to fix them.  We're always continuing to learn.

The key to any failure is learning from your mistakes, taking care of the customers, applying what you've learned, and continuing to work towards perfection; always maintaining high standards.

When things do go wrong with a vehicle wrap installation, here are the top four reasons why:


Wrong Film - When it comes to the installation of vehicle wraps, all vinyl wrap material is not created equal.  There are several levels of quality, and different vinyls for different applications.  Choosing the wrong film can result in poor adhesion to the vehicle surface, bubbling of vinyl, severe wrinkles of the film, and over stretching of the vinyl.

Improper Pre-installation Cleaning - Preparing a vehicle for wrapping is not just taking it through the car wash.  All dirt and oil must be removed from the vehicles surface to ensure a proper bond of the vinyl's adhesive.  Any lingering dirt will show through the graphic installation; even the minutest of dirt particles.  Any oil residue can lead to poor adhesion and bubbling of the wrap material.

Over Stretching of the Vehicle Wrap Film - Good vehicle wrap film is very expensive.  So when producing and printing vehicle wraps, there is a balance of having just enough material or too much material.  Having too much material is wasteful and costly, but worse, having too little can result in having to overstretch a vehicle wrap material beyond it's physical properties when installing.  Over-stretching can be observed by a whitening of the wrap vinyl.  This is typically found on challenge areas such as vehicle bumpers.

Not Post Heating after Installation - Vehicle wrap vinyl is a form of PVC.  One property of PVC is that it has a memory to conform back to it's original shape.  While that can work in favor of a wrap installation, there are problem areas that need to be addressed with post application heating or potential failure may occur.  This failure includes the lifting of material from the vehicle surface at an edge or in deeply recessed channels.  Post heating of the vinyl in these areas to specific temperatures will be cause the material to lose it's memory and give it strength to stay in place.

There are of course other potential reasons for vehicle wrap application failure.  The key to choosing a vehicle wrapping company is one that understands why material fail, holds high standards of production and installation, will take the extra time necessary to ensure a great application, and will be there for the customer when problems occur.

Happy wrapping to you!

image credit: Dennis Yu

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