Some people worry if their wrapped cars will withstand the harsh elements if left outside for long periods of time. Let us look at some of the common concerns surrounding this topic.
In the summer months, your car will be hot from the sun. In winter, cold winds will cool your car. It can even see snow or frost – all of which are harmful to a vinyl wrap’s adhesive properties, which are heavily reliant on extreme heat and cold to create a strong bond between itself and your vehicle’s paintwork. Therefore, if you leave your vehicle outside, its exposure to the elements should be limited. So if you are planning on leaving yours for a long time, it is better to cover it somehow or bring it indoors.
What temperature can vinyl withstand, and is it waterproof?
When it comes to the perfect temperature range for vinyl wraps, you should be looking at between 55°F – 82°F (13°C – 28°C). Anything beyond this will cause your vinyl wrap to become brittle and easily damaged when removing it.
If you leave your wrapped car outside in direct sunlight at 110°F (43°C), for example, this will cause your wrap to warp and bubble up. When you add water into the mix, such as rain and snow, this will cause the sun-baked bubbling vinyl to warp even more because vinyl wraps are not waterproof. When you expose your wrapped car to water or heavy rain, the warm water will essentially strip the adhesive properties from the vinyl and peel it away with ease.
Does vinyl wrap fade in the sun?
Vinyl wraps are very susceptible to sun damage. That is why it is not advised for your car to be left in the sun. The best thing to do is park it in a covered area or any shaded areas available. It will not stop the vinyl wrap from fading, but it will reduce the level of exposure.
How to care for your vehicle wrap
If you want to keep your vinyl wrap in good condition, you should wax it at least once a week if you don’t use your car. Nice men in the local carwash will be able to do this for you. It will help keep any dirt from sticking to the film and scratching it. In addition, the wax will act as a shield against fading.
If your car wrap gets dirty (which it most likely will), feel free to use a mild soap and water solution to clean it. However, make sure you do not scrub the surface as this could potentially cause damage. Try to use an ‘absorbing’ motion rather than a ‘washing’ motion. It is also advisable not to let your car wrap get too dirty in the first place, as the dirtier it gets, the harder it will be to clean.
How long does a vinyl wrap last?
It will depend on how you look after your vinyl. If the vinyl is regularly maintained and cleaned, it will last around 3-5 years. However, if not, then it will start to fade within six months of application.