How to use WrapCut
WrapCut knifeless tape system eliminates cutting on the surface of the vehicle being wrapped. It is a tape with a filament inside it that cuts the vinyl from underneath.
The tape is put down on the surface in the shape you want to cut and then the vinyl is put on top with an overlap. The vinyl is cut by lifting the filament inside the tape, cutting the vinyl from underneath it.
click here for instructions
How long does the vinyl wrap films last?
This is a tricky question, because there are a lot of factors especially once it is installed.
The vinyl films themselves will last anywhere from 3 to 7 years depending on the environment. Generally the stronger the sun and the more your car is outside under the sun the less the vinyl will keep it’s color brightness and may start to fail or crack sooner. If you live in Southern United States like California, Florida, Texas, etc. your vinyl film will last about 20-30% less due to the strength of the sun. This is true for all vinyl films no matter of the manufacturer. This is also true for paint. Colors that have a high content of red pigment will last the least as red pigments fade the quickest from all colors. These colors are Red, Purple, Yellow, Pink, Copper.
The other determining factor is the quality of the installation. Good installations will elongate the wrap look and feel and won’t fail by curling or peeling back.
Style durability in years:
Matte, Gloss, Liquid Metal, Metallic Sparkle, 3D Carbon Fiber, TrueR Carbon Fiber, TechArt Carbon Fiber, Brushed, Camouflage, Candy Diamond, Snake Skin, Wood Grain, Paint Protection Film: 5-7 years
Supercast & Holographic Chromes: 3-5 years
fading occurs faster the closer you are to the equator (the more south you are)
Satin Chrome: 4-6 years
Standard Chrome: 1-3 years
no UV protection on this film, fading occurs faster the closer you are to the equator (the more south you are)
Headlight Tint: 3-5 years
Things to look out for before wrapping your car
#1. Paint of your vehicle
Make sure you know or find-out about whether you car has original OEM paint on it or if it was repainted. If the paint is very old, damaged or has been fixed (patched) there is a chance that the vinyl will pull the clear-coat and/or paint off when removed. If the car was repainted there is a higher chance that when the vinyl is pulled-off it will pull off the paint too. If the car was repainted with low quality, inexpensive way the chances are even higher that the paint will be pulled off when removing vinyl, especially if it is done incorrectly.
You can avert these problems by making sure you follow the vinyl removal technique as explained in our install guide. This technique will greatly reduce the chance of damaging the paint but is still not guaranteed to work 100%.
CWS nor any vinyl manufacturer will guarantee against paint damage as it is due to factors unrelated to the vinyl, glue of the film or any other aspects of manufacturing vinyl wraps or selling films to you.
#2. Defects, damage, stone chips, scratches on paint
Vinyl can only hide surface scratches as it is fairly thin and acts like a “skin” on top of your vehicle. The style of car wrap and the color also effect how it hides or shows defects. Vinyl wraps that have a pattern will hide things the best way. These would be 3D Carbon Fiber, TrueR 4D Carbon Fiber, TechArt 5D Carbon Fiber, Brushed Aluminum, Gloss Metallic Sparkle, Snake Skin and Wood Grain vinyl wraps. Matte and Satin styles will show the most. Darker colors and white will hide the best.
Make sure that you also clean off dried/caked on dirt from the car. Sometimes it is hard to see until you put the vinyl on and it protrudes like a bump from under the film. Before vinyl wrapping a section of your car, drag your hand across it to feel for any protrusions that you will have to get rid of for a nice unblemished finish.
Rust that has eaten through the paint has to be fixed first, as the vinyl wrap will not stick to rusted surfaces. It is also recommended to fix any rusted areas that are bubbling up under the paint, because it will look the same once the car is wrapped with vinyl film and won’t stop it from continuing to rust. Rust will continue to spread and eat away at your car if it is not gotten rid of, whether you wrap it in vinyl or not.
Once your car is wrapped in vinyl and you have no rust under it, it will keep it safe from surface rust and stone chips, scratches that could cause rusting from the outside.
How do I take care of my wrapped vehicle?
Automated Car Washes – Brush-type car washes are not recommended as they can scratch the film, cause edges to lift or chip, and dull the film’s appearance. Brushless car washes are acceptable.
Waterless Car Wash – We recommend using a waterless car wash to clean the vinyl wrap In addition to cleaning the surface, it can also protects your wrap.
Microfiber towels are recommended to gently and safely apply the waterless car wash and remove it. This way, chances of causing micro-scratches on the top coat, or interior surfaces are avoided.
Wash Regularly – 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 and a soft, clean cloth or sponge.
- Rinse thoroughly with clean water. To reduce water spotting, immediately use a silicone squeegee to remove water and finish with a clean microfiber cloth.
Pressure Washing – 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 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 edges of the film.
Difficult Contaminants – Soften difficult contaminants such as bug splatter, bird droppings, tree sap and similar contaminants by soaking them for several minutes with very hot, soapy water. Rinse thoroughly and dry. Spot clean the contaminants. Do not use rough scrubbing, dirty or abrasive tools, which will scratch the film. Wash and rinse off all residue immediately.
Fuel Spills – Wipe off immediately to avoid degrading the vinyl and adhesive. Then wash, rinse and dry as soon as possible.
Film Restoration – The following restoration recommendations will help keep your vehicle wraps looking their best.
- Avoid automated car washes when possible
- Do not use any abrasive polishes or cutting compounds
- Do not use any polishing or wax products on matte or textured films
- If there is wax or wax residue on the surface, remove with an all-purpose cleaner
- Before using cleaning products, always test and approve in an inconspicuous area
Caring for Vinyl Films
Special care must be taken to avoid abrading or scratching the film. Scratching and abrasion marks may be visible and you may not be able to work them out of the unique finish of the film. To help avoid such damage, avoid using harsh chemicals, brushes or hard scrubbing when cleaning your vehicle, and avoid parking near shrubs and trees or any other items that could scratch the film. Rinse thoroughly after cleaning and dry with a clean, soft cloth or soft rubber squeegee to avoid water spots. Do not apply waxes, polishes, paint or clear coat over these films. If there is wax and wax residue on the film, remove with an all-purpose cleaner. To help restore the finish of the film, clean it with isopropyl alcohol and water (2:1 ratio).
Hand Washing Vehicle Wraps
1. Flush the wrap with water to remove loose dirt particles.
2. Use a mild liquid detergent and water mix to wash the wrap with a soft brush,
sponge or rag.
- wash going from top to bottom
- only scrub if absolutely necessary
- after applying the cleaning solution, keep a steady stream of water flowing on the
wrap to wash away dirt particles
3. Rinse the entire vinyl wrap thoroughly with clean water. Let the wrap dry by itself, no need for drying with towels.
Power Washing Vinyl Wrapped Vehicles
Power washing, or pressure washing, may be used. However, aggressive washing can damage the vinyl.
Excessive pressure during power washing can damage the vinyl by forcing water underneath the film.
Water lessens the adhesion of the vinyl to the vehicle allowing the film to lift or curl.
These problems are magnified by wind.
To avoid edge lifting or other damage to the vinyl film, follow these important steps:
– Use a spray nozzle with a 40 degree wide spray pattern.
– Be sure the spray nozzle includes a nozzle protector (tip guard).
– Use a maximum pressure of 1500 to 2000 psi.
– If the system is heated, limit the water temperature to 180°F (82°C) or less.
– Hold nozzle at least 12 inches (300 mm) away from and perpendicular (90 degrees
+/- 10) to the graphic.
– Do not direct the water stream at a sharp angle to the edge of the vinyl
What does vinyl film stick to?
This is a tricky question that sometimes only answered when tried out… having said that we can confidently say that our CWS Pro-line & Economy vinyl films will stick to any painted surface on a vehicle and most smooth non-porous materials. It will not stick to some interior vehicle surfaces, such as rubber (soft or hard) and some other non-painted, ribbed or in other ways not smooth plastics. The best thing is if you are not sure to order some sample swatches for $5 and try to stick it to your target surface to see how well it holds. If it doesn’t hold at all, you can’t wrap it, but even if it holds to some extent, press it down and smooth the vinyl and wait at least 12 hours then see how well it holds. The glue needs at least 12 hours to set itself to it’s full grip (tack).
XPO vinyl film characteristics
Professional grade HQ Canadian made Vvivid XPO vinyl wrap from CWS is a cast vinyl of 3.4 mils thick film. The product may be used on straight, curved & complex shaped surfaces as it is a durable film ideal for long-term fleet and motorsport marketing applications, and provides a lightweight, economical alternative to paint. Great for architectural applications indoor and out.
Thickness: 3.4 mils
Texture: Carbon Fiber with a Matte Finish (standard), Semi-Gloss Finish (True R series), High gloss ( Tech Art Gloss) or Sandblast ( Tech Art Matte ).
Features: VViViD Natural Air release, Centerpoint Technology, VViViD Heat fuse, VViViD Resist.
Area of use: This durable film is ideal for long-term fleet and motorsport marketing applications, and provides a lightweight, economical alternative to paint. Great for architectural applications indoor and out.
Adhesive: Acrylic*-based, reposition able, sliceable*.
Conformability: Very high
Skill level needed: Low
Wrapping interior of car with vinyl film
Yes! You can vinyl wrap the interior of your car with our amazing styles and colors too. You can only wrap parts that are not covered in material (fabric, leather). Usually these areas are the dashboard (instrument panel & glove box), console, center console & doors (areas that are plastic or wood)
Is a wrap permanent?
A wrap typically last for 3-7 years depending on the style of material used, conditions in which the car is driven, how much it is driven and where it’s stored. The vinyl wrap film can be removed without leaving any adhesive residue, returning the car to its original color and condition. Normally a vinyl wrap should be removed after 7 years as it can actually damage the clear-coat and even the paint if left on for longer.
How long does it take to wrap my car?
Installation times vary according to the size of the car and complexity of the project. A vehicle with a lot of complex curves take a lot longer to do. You are looking at 2 to 3 days that includes the wrapping and a rest period for the film.
A basic wrap job if done by 2 people who have done it before takes 1-1.5 day depending on the size and difficulty of the vehicle.
For DIY guys who do it alone or with little help, give it 2 full days to do the job.
Due to the nature of the adhesive of the vinyl and the complex curves to which it’s applied, there is a 24 hour “rest period” after the application to allow the film to fully adhere to the vehicle. In this rest period it is best not to drive the car as the wind may peel back the vinyl before it can fully set. So, add this extra day to
What are the benefits of a car vinyl wrap?
- GIVES YOUR VEHICLE A UNIQUE ONE-OF-A-KIND LOOK
- Does NOT devalue the resell value of your car like a paint job does.
- Vinyl car wraps protect your OEM paint and are 100% removable.
- You can restore the car to it’s original colour by removing the wrap.
- Warranties and/or lease agreements remain valid. Painting can void warranties and is not a lease option.
- Cost for a vinyl vehicle wrap is considerably less (nearly half) than a comparable paint job.
- Many of the styles can not be reproduced by paint.
- Vinyl car wraps wear as well as, or better than paint – when properly cared for. Think of it like a skin for your laptop or a silicon cover for your phone. The vinyl can take a beating protecting the vehicle’s paint underneath.
- Vinyl car wraps come in many colors and can have a matte, semi-gloss, gloss, brushed steel, carbon fiber, matte metallic, chrome and even leather-like finishes.
- Expensive, color-matching paint fees are unnecessary for scratches or accident vehicles; just re-wrap the section that needs repair.
- It’s difficult to tell it’s not paint.
- You don’t have to wrap your entire car; you can just do your hood, roof, mirrors, stripes, etc.
- Matte-paint jobs can be brittle and chip easily while vinyls are more durable and harder to scratch. In the event that repairs are needed, the part that was damaged can be easily replaced, providing a perfect match.
- Hides dings or scratches and “freshens” the look of your vehicle.