To Paint or Wrap The Pros and Cons

Are you tired of the same old car colour? Has the brightness of your car faded away, and now it’s looking a bit sorry for itself? Perhaps you feel like a change, and a new colour will give your car that brand new feel again. Well, whatever your reason, you have a couple of options to choose from: the traditional painting method or the newer vinyl wrapping method. Wrapping was invented in the 1950s. But it was very expensive and was only used on costly, top-end vehicles. However, the price has dropped significantly, and now it is usually cheaper to wrap your car as opposed to painting it. However, both methods have their good and bad points, and today we will have a look at some of those.   

Image from Pixabay

What is a Car Wrap?

First things first, for those of you who are not entirely sure what a car wrap is, it is a method that allows you to protect the cars body without having to give it a paint job. A thin layer of vinyl film is basically stuck to the body of with car with an adhesive. This is done via a heat treatment applied to the wrap, which activates the adhesive on the vinyl. There is now a huge variety of vinyl wrap colours, patterns, designs, and decals you can choose from. By wrapping this way, you can completely transform your vehicle. Wrapping is a popular option for businesses who want a logo printed on every vehicle in their fleet.

What About a Paint Job?

OK, so you probably think you know what a paint job is, but just to be sure: A paint job completely restores the old paintwork on your car. Or, it can be used to change the colour, if you so wish. To do this, the body is cleaned and degreased. Then it is sanded down to ensure there are no imperfections. Then it is sprayed with a specially created machine to ensure an even finish. After all, coats are applied, a layer of transparent paint is coated on top to give it that brand new look. Painting is the option of choice for collector vehicles and cars that wish to maintain their original look. Clearly, painting a car requires more work than wrapping. Also, it is the more time lengthy option. However, it is possible to spray your car yourself, but you risk making it look worse than it did initially.

Bad Paint Job?

If you are thinking of using a wrap to cover a bad paint job or dings and scratches, think again. The vehicle’s body needs to be smooth so that the vinyl will actually attach to the car properly. Otherwise, the wrap will look like a mess.

What is the Cost?

If you go for an inexpensive paint job, it will usually be cheaper than a wrap. If you want a paint job with many layers, it is more expensive than a wrap—anything up to around $10,000. A decent wrap is usually cheaper than a good paint job, especially if you are looking for something with a pattern. The wrap price depends on the shape and size of your vehicle, plus the wrap design. It can cost anywhere between $2900 to $5100. High-end cars with a specific matte or chrome finish, for example, can cost a bit more. In a nutshell, vinyl wraps are created to do the job of traditional paintwork but at a lower price. Sidenote: always remember to tell your insurer if you change the car colour. Otherwise, you may not be covered. Imagine dinging that newly wrapped Audi and having no insurance! 


There is no issue when it comes to the durability of a wrap as opposed to painting. In fact, it actually protects the paintwork underneath it. Some companies will call a wrap paint protection film Brisbane. A wrap can usually take a little more wear and tear than paint. A stone being thrown at it, may not show on the body like it would on paintwork. However, wraps can rip, and the Sun will take its toll too. It is advisable to replace a wrap every two to ten years.

What about removing the colour?

Say you’re bored of that wrap and want to go back to the original paintwork. No problem. A wrap is easy to take off and will not destroy the protected paintwork underneath. Unlike paint which is permanent and has to be sanded off then repainted or wrapped.

What’s the Resale Value?

If you have repainted your car a different colour, this will usually result in depreciation in value. If it has been touched up, it should not affect the sale price. On the other hand, wraps can actually increase the resale price. This is because the wrap is preserving the paintwork beneath.