Should you wrap your vehicle instead of painting it? That’s a good question. You’d think that being a vehicle graphics provider, we’d suggest you always choose wrapping over painting. However, there are times that paint may be the way to go. Here are 5 good reasons to wrap your vehicle instead of painting it.

5 Good Reasons to Wrap Your Vehicle Instead of Painting

1. The Cost

If we eliminate discount paint jobs, which often reduce their pricing by eliminating proper preparation, wraps or decals may be more cost-effective. “According to Cost Helper, “For a high-quality paint job, drivers reported spending between $2,400 and $7,500, with an average price of about $5,000.”

How much does a vehicle wrap cost? We’ve completed wraps for less than $2000 and more than $4000, depending on the type of vehicle and square footage of coverage. J.D. Power, the marketing and research firm well known for its car and truck rankings over the last 50 years, shared the following in their article, How Much Does It Cost To Wrap A Car?

  • Compact car or coupe: Prices vary depending on design, but start around $2,000.
  • Family sedan: The average family sedan would run you about $3,000.
  • Compact crossover: Most compact crossover vehicles start at around $3,500.
  • Full-size SUV: A Full-size SUV is likely to start at about $4,000.

In many cases, wrapping a vehicle costs less than professionally painting it. Not every vehicle needs a full wrap, and you can save hundreds, even thousands of dollars by using partial wraps or decals.

2. Resale Value

The sale-ability of basic colors is much higher than exotic colors. So, do you love bright chrome yellow? Does your company use pink vehicles? Vivid colors may limit potential buyers in the resale market. So, buy a white vehicle, wrap it to your heart’s desire, and have a white vehicle, again, when it’s time to resell.

As Listverse explains—“Ever drive down the road and notice most of the cars you see are colored in four colors (mostly black, white, silver, or gray)? Part of the reason why is resale value — people who want to resell their car later know they are far more likely to find a buyer if the car is one of these common colors.”

Another consideration is that although adhesive vinyl graphics material is not warrantied to protect the paint, it does help in protecting the paint on your vehicle. As 3M shares in this FAQ, Does wrap film protect the vehicle’s paint from damage? “Wrap film will protect the paint underneath from some sun damage and mild abrasions. It is not designed as a paint protection film, but the wrap does provide some protection between light abuse and the car finish.”

3. Options

Several options are available,  depending on your needs and budget. The term “wrap” is liberally used to define any type of adhesive vinyl graphics. But a full wrap is only one of the options available. Knowing the options helps you determine what’s best for your needs. Check out the coverage options in our FAQ article, What Are My Vehicle Graphics Coverage Options? or learn How to Save Money on Vehicle Graphics with the different graphics coverage options.

4. Time

Painting or wrapping a vehicle can be similar in time, depending on the quality or complexity of the project. However, a full wrap can be complete in a day; paint can take much longer. There are many variables, but here at TKO Graphix, we’d be happy to look at your vehicles and give you a free estimate of the time it would take to wrap your fleet. Here are some variables that will affect how long it takes to complete a wrap on a car or truck, FAQ: How Long Does a Vehicle Wrap Take?

5. Window Coverage

By incorporating window film in a wrap, you can use the vehicle’s entire surface for promotion. And before you ask, yes, it’s safe. Here’s what 3M had to say about its 3M Scotchchal™ Perforated Window Graphics,

“This 4-mil cast vinyl film allows a full image to be seen on the outside while allowing viewing through windows from the inside. A 50 percent perforation pattern enhances light transmission for a good balance of viewing through the window and image density as viewed from the outside.”

If you’d like to read more about window film check out this post, Window Graphics: A Window of Opportunity

So, Should You Wrap Your Vehicle Instead of Painting?

There you have it, 5 good reasons to wrap your vehicle instead of painting it. Before painting a vehicle, compare vehicle graphics to painting by researching the options and making the best decision based on your needs and vehicles. Vehicle graphics don’t always replace paint, but should always be considered as an option. We’d be happy to help you decide whether to wrap your vehicle instead of painting it. Contact Us.


TKO Graphix is a national fleet and vehicle graphics company helping customers since 1985. We provide full-service graphics solutions such as design, digital printing, screen printing, installation and removal of fleet graphics, vehicle graphics, and commercial graphics.