How Hard Is It To Wrap A Car?


March 6, 2023

How hard is it to wrap a car?
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Wrapping your car is a powerful way to spruce up your look on the road. 

Yes – it will cost less to go the DIY route, and YouTube the whole thing. 

As a DIYer, you can do that as long as you have the time and patience to do it right. But even if you manage to make it look good once it’s full installed, that does not mean it will stay that way. There’s a difference between how it looks for a week and how long it lasts.

Over the past few years, we at National Car Wraps have wrapped several cars – trucks, vans, company vehicles – and I can tell you that the job is not a walk in the park.

Wrapping a car is extremely time consuming and demanding and requires patience, attention to detail, a steady hand and a certain level and amount of skill.

In this article, I’ll tell you the reasons why it is hard to wrap a car. This information can be used to determine if you have the time and equipment needed to wrap a car yourself.

Why Is It Hard to Wrap a Car?

Here are some of the most important factors to consider when you go the DIY route:

Size and complexity of the vehicle

For an average car, you’ll need a 25-foot-long, 60-inch-wide roll of vinyl. It usually takes 30 to 40 hours, or about two weeks, to completely wrap a vehicle.

So if a boxy SUV or truck is already a challenge, it becomes even more difficult to wrap larger and more complex vehicles, especially those with lots of curves, edges, contours and other unique surface elements.

Quality of the vinyl for application

Without extensive experience in wrapping vehicles, you may choose a lower quality, and cheaper type of vinyl that may not install well. Additionally, these types of vinyl, while they are much more inexpensive, don’t last as long as the higher end vinyls. 

We always recommend using 3M vinyl wrap material. The most common would be 3M 1J-180.

Level of Skill and Reliability of the Installer

It takes years of experience to become a good car installer. Experienced professionals like National Car Wraps, that specializes in vehicle wraps, are likely to come up with the fastest and highest quality solution than an inexperienced do-it-yourselfer.

The Right Equipment and Tools

Unlike paint and decals, the right equipment for vehicle wraps like razor blades, magnets, heat guns and scrapers or squeegees can make the process easier and more efficient.

How Much Does It Cost to Wrap a Car?

There is no set cost for a car wrap, as you need to consider the size of the vehicle, the quality and type of vinyl wrap used, and the complexity of the installation.

In general, a full wrap can cost between $2,500 and $5,000 or more, while a partial wrap can cost between $500 and $2,000. Costs can also vary depending on the experience of the installer and geographic location. If you opt for a full wrap by a professional, the cost can range from $2,000 to $6,000. However, this is only an approximate figure.

Need Help?

So if you have the time and equipment to wrap a car yourself, congratulations and all the best of luck! 

However, if you are looking for a durable and long-lasting way to change the look of your vehicle, protect the original paint and promote your business or brand, National Car Wraps can do it for you – from design to printing to installation with the help of our large network of 3M-certified installers.

Connect with a car wraps expert today!