How To Hire Your Car Wrap Company

As more and more people begin to recognize the benefit of getting graphics on their vehicles, there are of course more and more companies offering vehicle wrap services. How do you pick one? How do you know if the company you are dealing with really has any idea what they are doing?

There are a few things you can ask about and be mindful of when finding a company to work with. This is by no means a comprehensive list, but it ought to make you look like a little more of an expert than say . . . kicking the tires.

Do You Use 3M Materials?

Tiremax Truck WrapThere are several print materials out there that are more cost effective for a vehicle wrap company to use. Years ago, ABI Digital Solutions used to just handle the print only for a number of wrap companies. It was very tempting to try and use off brand materials because of the cost consideration, but once we began to handle the entire wrap process (design and installation) we found out what all the fuss was about. The 3M material just simply works better. It goes on easier, and lasts longer. You might think it is of no concern to you whether the wrap goes on easily or not, but trust me . . . it matters. The material is expensive. So, if there is a problem with installation, the installer is going to do their best to just “make it work”. That means you could end up with excess wrinkles, awful looking splices and seams, bubbles, or a wrap that fails prematurely.

Do you have an in house installation team?

As I mentioned, at ABI Digital Solutions we used to handle just the print side of the equation. This is a potential recipe for disaster if a problem should arise with your product. Did the problem arise because of the print or because of the installation? If the installer messes up a panel during installation, who is responsible for getting a new panel printed? Trust me, you as a client don’t want to me in the middle of these disagreements. If the vehicle wrap company handles all aspects of the wrap process from design to production to installation there will be fewer possibilities for mishap and confusion. This is less important for simple decals, but a full vehicle wrap is a pretty complicated. There needs to be great communication between the design, production, and installation team to get them done properly. Having one company that can handle all of this for you helps a lot.

Are you using caste or calendared materials?

This is a fairly technical question, but it is important to make sure of. Remember above when we talked about the cost difference between 3M and other off brands? The difference in cost there might be 10-20%. The cost difference between caste vinyl and calendared materials is more like 100-200%, so you can see there is a pretty big cost advantage to using the cheaper material if the vehicle wrap company can get away with it. Here’s the difference between the two: calendared materials want to return to their original shape (flat), while caste materials can be manipulated into different contours and shapes and then stay there. In other words, calendared materials are great for flat surfaces, while caste materials work great on curves, corners, or wavy surfaces . . . like a vehicle! Calendared materials will go on great initially, but over time they will try to revert back to their original flat shape. This will lead to bubbles, de-lamination, wrinkles, or even a panel coming off! This leads to the next question . . .

Do you offer a guarantee?

Any company can simply pass on the material manufacturer’s guarantee. If they are using 3M materials, they will obviously be willing to pass that on to you. Look for something more, form the wrap company, in writing. The 3M guarantee is great, but frankly it is full of legal loopholes. I’m sure they have probably paid out a few warranty dollars over the years, but I have never met anyone who has collected that money. Besides, 3M is in Minnesota, good luck collecting on that. You want a guarantee from the company that wrapped your vehicle. At ABI Digital Solutions, we consider our warranty to be a mutual contract: you agree to take care of the car by washing it properly, waxing it at least twice per year, and letting us know as soon as there is a sign of a problem, and we agree to fix it for you. You end up with a vehicle that looks great longer, we end up with fewer problems. Everyone is happy.

Can I Trust You?

OK, obviously you are not going to ask the company this question, but you should ask it to yourself. If the wrap company telling you that you have to do a full wrap without offering more cost effective options? Is their bid significantly lower than everyone else’s? Are they telling you the wrap will look as good as a paint job? Red flags. Take the last one for example. I’d love to tell you a wrap will look as good a a paint job, but it simply is not true. Your wrap will look GREAT . . . from 4-5 feet away. When you get right up close, there is a chance you will see some minor imperfections such as a small wrinkle on a bumper, or a relief cut on a particularly difficult area. If they try to tell you it will look flawless, well . . . you are getting sold.

Again, this is by no means a complete list of questions, but we hope it helps you find a trustworthy, reliable vehicle wrap company. Of course, we hope you will consider ABI Digital Solutions for your project, but we wish you the best of luck however you get your graphics done. It is a GREAT way to market your company, or to simply add a little style and personality to your car.