Does Wrapping a Car Lower Its Value?

Over time, vinyl wrapping has become more mainstream. While some people may wrap their cars to express themselves, others think it helps protect the paint job, even making cleaning easier. But the big question remains whether or not wrapping a car lowers its value.

A properly installed vinyl wrap does not reduce the value of a car in most cases. The quality of the wrap, its maintenance, and the prospective buyer’s taste will all play a factor in the vehicle’s worth at the time of sale.

New or used, many people wonder if wrapping a car is worth the cost. Indeed, there are some things to keep in mind when we drop off our rides for wrapping.

Let’s find out!

Reasons That Wrapping a Car Might Lower Its Value

While wrapping a car does not lower its value in most cases, there are some situations where it can result in a lower vehicle worth.

#1 Wrapping Material Used

If the vinyl wrap used is too thin, the sun’s UV rays will still damage the cover underneath it.

This may cause the vinyl to peel off from the paint job or get ripped, resulting in a terrible outlook and a lower resale value than when the car had no wrap.

#2 Buyer’s Opinion on the Wrap

Wrapping our vehicles may not be the best idea if we are thinking of re-selling it in the future. 

Some people tend to assume something is wrong with wrapped cars. So, the buyer might end up negotiating a lower purchase value on account of the wrap even if nothing is wrong with the car.

If the car is already unique, then putting the vinyl on it might lower its value majorly because potential buyers can’t tell what is underneath the wrap and why the car is up for sale.

#3 The Shape of the Car

A unique car with an interesting design makes wrapping challenging.

It can also result in air bubbles and tears and will make buying the vehicle practically impossible.

#4 Maintenance of the Wrap

Some car wraps are costly, especially those made from high-quality vinyl. However, poor maintenance of any car wrap is just as costly.

Regardless of how expensive the wrap is, it may result in a lower resale value than if the car had no wrap in the first place.

#5 Poor Wrapping Technique 

One of the biggest concerns about body wraps is what happens when they’re removed.

Car wraps can leave an ugly, messy residue on the vehicle’s paint job and windows if poorly done.

Car wraps that are not professionally installed also come with a high risk of bubbling and peeling off. 

#6 Removal of the Wrap

Car wrap costs are expensive but they are not everyone’s preference.

So, when selling to a buyer who doesn’t like wraps, the costs include the expense of the initial wrap itself and the cost to remove it.

The potential risk of paint damage also rises during the removal process.

Does Wrapping a Car Void The Warranty?

No, the manufacturer’s warranty is only voided if we remove any manufacturer labels, or if we neglect to follow their maintenance schedule. However, the warranty does not cover any damages that result from improper installation of the wrap. 

Therefore, to prevent voiding the warranty, it is advisable to remove the wrap from plastic parts like bumpers after a few years. Failure to do so can result in extensive damage to these parts in the future. 

There are many instances where a car owner wraps their vehicle, not affecting their warranty.

However, there can be some variances in this situation depending on:

  • The insurance company 
  • The type of wrap used to customize the car exterior design 

When we use a vinyl wrap or other similar wraps, then the car manufacturer is very likely to void the warranty. But, again, this isn’t something that most insurance companies can approve, since it’s not part of the standard car design.

Also, wrapping a car under a lease is not advisable. It is best to leave this decision until after the end of a lease.

This means that any damages that happen during the wrapping process will be considered normal wear and tear when returning an undamaged vehicle after the contract lapses.

Is It Cheaper To Paint Or Wrap a Car?

Painting a car is a lengthy process, especially when the car requires multiple coats of paint that also need to dry up well before proceeding. Not so with wrapping a car.

The total cost of a wrap is about the same as paying for a number of paint layers, but we get more design and finish options than a standard paint job. 

The cost incurred in wrapping or painting vehicles depends on factors like the type of vehicle, available budget, and personal preferences. For example, it’s more affordable to use a vinyl wrap on most cars and trucks than go for a whole new paint job. 

The challenge we face with a paint job is all the maintenance it requires. Regular waxing and washing are essential, despite taking up much time and money. However, with a wrap on top of our car’s regular finish, we can significantly cut down most of these recurring costs.

Repainting a car is just as involving, especially if they are multiple cars. Other than the cost of painting, the process itself can be messy and time-consuming. Even worse, we might end up with the wrong shade of color if the painter doesn’t get the mix right.

So if the car is in good condition, consider touching up the minor dings instead of wrapping them entirely. Also, be sure to properly prime the surface to ensure that no damage occurs to any other parts while painting. It saves time and money.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How Long Does it Take to Paint or Wrap Your Car?

After a new paint job, it may take one to two weeks before the finish is dry enough for regular driving. Applying a wrap takes three to five days before it is fit for a ride. 

Is Getting Your Car Wrapped Worth it?

The payoff of getting wrapping cars is very subjective, and it depends on what we are willing to sacrifice. For many people, it is worth it because it costs less than a paint job.

For others, however, simply because once it’s done, it can lower the car value and not protect the paint underneath after all.   

Does My Vehicle Have To Be New To Use Car Wraps?

Factory-fresh cars are the perfect test subjects for vinyl wraps. However, it’s advisable to rely on professional painters to apply a vinyl wrap onto the car for a desirable outcome.

Wrapping cars provides a different feel and certainly has an impact on its resale value. The effect of car wraps on the value of our cars will vary depending on several factors mentioned above.

Ultimately, the material used and the vehicle’s condition will determine the vehicle’s eventual value at the time of resale.

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Hi, I'm the founder of VehicleAnswers.com! Having owned a wide variety of vehicles in my life, I was astounded at how hard it can be to find answers to common automotive questions. Rather than sit idly, I decided to create this website to help others!