Covering your car with adhesive film alone is a popular alternative to painting. There is a wide range of choices, from visible and sporty design to advertising messages. With good preparation, you can dress your car yourself. Here we show you what you really need for this, and give you valuable tips around car stickers.
Why should you print your car?
A nice design is not only for sports cars or tuning fans. Many car enthusiasts would like to enhance the visual appearance of their cars, which is traditionally done with a colorful paint job. Car wrapping, i.e. the application of adhesive film on the car body, is an alternative to repainting with many advantages. On the one hand, the application and removal are simpler compared to the necessarily long and precise application of paint. On the other hand, the adhesive film makes it possible to have exciting color gradients, patterns, and designs. This is especially useful for covering your vehicle with an advertising message about your company.
Covering your car with adhesive film alone or with a professional?
The application of adhesive stickers is less painful than painting, but it is still a complex job, which must be carried out with great precision. A good job and a custom design of the film will visually embellish the vehicle. To fully cover your vehicle, manual skill and a minimum of two people are highly recommended.
To cover your vehicle, you need to distinguish between printing the plastic film and placing it on the car. Professional printing shops near you as well as on the internet are good addresses to find producers of the adhesive film. They guarantee an attractive implementation of your print motifs as well as good resolution and suitable color tones. When the films are printed and delivered, you should assess whether you have the skills to apply them on your own. Once the cracks and creases have been made, they can no longer be removed without leaving visible traces, so if in doubt, do not hesitate to consult a professional automotive dealer.
Partial and full packaging, comparison
The choice to cover your car with adhesive film alone also depends on the size of the film and the choice of patterns. The queen test is the complete packaging, i.e. the application of the adhesive film over the entire bodywork. This choice is often made to save the application of a new coat of paint. The films are relatively large, so the application must be carried out with great precision. Having it applied in a specialized workshop is the best choice here.
The same is not true for partial packaging. Here, the car will only be covered in certain places, such as on the side doors or windows. Companies opt for this type of packaging for advertising messages and the application of the company logo or telephone number. They are usually small and handy, and can therefore easily be applied by a private individual. With enough skill, it is quite possible to achieve a clean and meticulous job.
Basic tips for covering your car with prints
Pay attention to outdoor conditions for a clean application of the film, substrate, dust, dirt, and other elements. Fill cracks and damage on the paint before applying the adhesive film, to have a flat surface to avoid wrinkles.
About the wrinkles: even with a precise application, a large film will always form air bubbles. However, automotive professionals can minimize this risk through experience and the use of the right tools.
Optimum adhesion to the substrate also depends on the ambient temperature. Specialists recommend an outside temperature of 20 degrees or more. In other circumstances, under heat or cold, the films may shrink or expand. The consequences appear within a few hours on the vehicle. In extreme cases, the film is torn or many folds appear as a result of its expansion.
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