There are more than 4 reasons to use quality films for your fleet graphics, but these 4 should be reason enough. Here are 4 reasons to use quality films for your fleet graphics.
4 Reasons to Use Quality Films for Your Fleet Graphics
1. Better Looking
Of the 4 reasons to use quality films for your fleet graphics–this may be the biggest. Premium adhesive vinyl has a definite advantage over lower quality when it comes to vehicle wraps. First, low-end adhesive vinyl isn’t made to confirm to curves and doesn’t do well when heated. Heating premium adhesive vinyl is how vehicle graphic installers apply graphics around curves and seams. Low-end material can stretch and get out of shape, thus making the design look like something out of a funhouse mirror, instead of professional.
There are two primary adhesive vinyl manufacturing processes. Cast vinyl is the high-end product, and calendered vinyl is the lower.
Here’s what Molly Waters, Technical Specialist for Avery Dennison and winner of the ISA (International Sign Expo) Innovation Award, had to say.
“Because the vinyl is cast on the casting sheet in a relaxed state, this material offers very good dimensional stability. This process also allows the film to be very thin (most cast films are 2 mil), which helps with the conformability of the product. Material manufacturers recommend the use of cast films on substrates such as fleets, vehicles, recreational vehicles, or boats where the customer wants a “paint-like” finish that will last a long time, usually five to 12 years, depending on how the film is processed.” — Cast vs. Calendered Vinyl
2. Faster Installation
Since premium adhesive vinyl conforms to the shape of the substrate, it is easier to install than lower-quality material because it holds its shape, shrinks less, and is available in thinner gauges. All of this means it’s easier to install and quicker, and time is money. If you want to save money, then faster installation may be one of the most important reasons to use quality films for your fleet graphics.
The less time an installer spends completing the graphics installation on your fleet vehicles, the less it costs you. Now multiply this by the number of vehicles involved, and you can have a significant dollar figure.
However, the logistics of vehicle graphics might be the more significant savings. “For many company fleets, downtime is tangible and can be translated into dollars. In fact, downtime costs a fleet an average of $448 to $760 a day, per vehicle, and those figures add up fast.” — The true cost of vehicle downtime.
Imagine this, a fleet of 4,000 vehicles, each missing one day of work. 4,000 vehicles losing $400 each is 1.6 million dollars!
A national lawn care company wanted to de-identify and rebrand over 4,000 vehicles without losing work time. The business used the vehicles from 6 am to 6 pm daily, except Sunday. Adding to the challenge, the vehicles were in over 200 cities throughout North America. We completed the job on time, after hours, at 200 locations. Their trucks didn’t experience any downtime. Read more about it here, Case Study: Rebranding 4,000 Vehicles at 200 Locations with Zero Down Time.
3. Easier Removal
Number 3 of the 4 reasons to use quality films for your fleet graphics is for an easier removal. A common problem with low-end adhesive vinyl is when a cheaper permanent adhesive is used, it can cause huge problems down the road for removal.
Low-end materials are notorious for being difficult to remove and creates problems. For example, using cheaper short-term adhesive vinyl on a long-term application is a no-no. It may save money upfront but can be a nightmare at de-identification (removing old adhesive vinyl graphics).
Removing vinyl fleet graphics that are cracked and weathered due to their age, or the use of a lower-end material for the wrong application, is very difficult and increases the amount of time to remove. There are times where using a heat gun or propane torch just doesn’t work to remove these graphics.
4. Holds up to the Elements
Number 4 of the 4 reasons to use quality films for your fleet graphics looms larger in more severe climates. Cheaper materials fade faster, rip easier, and bubble more frequently than higher-end material. The good stuff lasts longer and holds up better to the cold, sun, and everything between.
Another way some providers reduce cost is by not overlaminating the vinyl. Overlamination of adhesive vinyl graphics protects the design from harmful UV rays, acid dew, and road debris. Laminating the material is recommended by manufacturers, such as this from adhesive vinyl manufacturer 3M in their brochure, 3M™ Scotchcal™ Overlaminate Protection.
“… vinyl overlaminates have been specifically designed to provide high conformability and flexibility, yet still provide UV, weathering, and abrasion protection to underlying graphic constructions. Scotchcal overlaminates are the optimum choice for great-looking graphics, superior conformability, easier application, and long-term graphic protection.”
4 Reasons to Use Quality Films for Your Fleet Graphics
Don’t just take our word for it. High-end films pay for themselves!
3M says, “High-quality films offer maximum durability and allow you to get the most from your graphics. They offer faster installation and removal to make a project more efficient by minimizing downtime.”
“In addition, they are able to withstand harsh outdoor exposures. Premium graphics help mitigate the risk of fading, peeling, cracking, and difficult removal. They also offer superior print quality. Starting your project with a good film foundation is the key to great vehicle graphics that last.” — 3M Fleet Graphics Guide
TKO Graphix Can Help
TKO Graphix staffs more certified, full-time, experienced vinyl graphic installers than any provider in North America. We know what works and what doesn’t. Contact Us for a free estimate.