Vinyl wrapping the rims on your wheels can make your car stand out. Many people have used this simple process to customize their cars, but some businesses have also used the technique to advertise their services too.
This raises the question, is it safe to vinyl wrap rims?
The short answer is yes. Vinyl is adaptive, so you can use it to dress up your vehicle’s rims. However, there are some things you should know before doing so.
You’ll learn more about how to wrap your car’s rims in this article, as well as the benefits and drawbacks of the process.
Keep reading to learn more about wrapping your car’s rims!
Why You May Want To Vinyl Wrap Your Rims
If you want to give your car a unique look that will attract attention, then vinyl wrapping may be what you’re looking for.
It’s an easy way to customize your vehicle’s appearance without having to spend much money or time. Vinyl wraps are ideal for the following reasons:
Personalizing Your Vehicle
You can personalize your vehicle’s rims by choosing from different designs and colors. Wrapping is a simple and easy way to quickly switch up your car’s appearance.
There are many vinyl brands to choose from, allowing drivers to dress up their rims in vivid shades that make a statement, or subtle finishes that match their original vehicle.
Shielding Your Rims From Damage
If you’ve recently painted your rims, applying a vinyl wrap will protect them from scratches, dirt, and other types of damage. You can opt for a clear wrap that lets the original paint shine through, or go for a different style entirely.
Vinyl is also flexible, which means it won’t shatter if you hit something with your car. This makes it easier to keep your rims clean and free from dust and dirt.
May Increase Resale Worth
Striking, well-cared-for rims can captivate prospective vehicle buyers, as they give an impression that you look after your vehicle.
Despite this, you should always ensure that the wraps you choose are of high quality. Other than your vehicle looking good, the buyer will be able to remove the vinyl without damaging the paint or the rim’s metal.
Why You May Want To Skip Wrapping Your Rims
Vehicle owners may wrap their rims for several reasons, but there are a few reasons why you may want to skip doing so.
Vinyl does best when applied to an even, steady surface. Your rims may be made from smooth metal, but they will spin along during drives, meaning the surface isn’t stable. As the vinyl isn’t stuck to a constant surface, it isn’t likely to last for a long time.
The rims on a car are located in an area that’s consistently exposed to damaging elements. Dust, grass, ice, grease, and mud are all substances that can degrade vinyl.
Vinyl wraps will need frequent cleaning to keep them looking new. Some people don’t have the time or the space to clean their rims every week.
If vinyl wraps aren’t cared for properly, their color and finish will begin breaking down, wasting your money as a result. This can also be a safety risk, as vinyl pieces may tear off the rims and fly into your engine.
You definitely can vinyl wrap your rims, but do go over these pros and cons to decide if the process is right for you.
How To Vinyl Wrap Your Car’s Rims
If you’ve decided that you do want to wrap your car’s rims, you can get started with the process itself.
The method is simple enough, as you only need some vinyl wrapping, scissors, a cleaner to clean the rim, and a squeegee.
Step 1: Cleaning
Before you start applying your vinyl, you need to make sure that the metal is fully clean and dry. This will let the vinyl stick to the rim properly, without any dirt or bumps underneath.
Begin by mixing some water and gentle detergent. Use this mixture and a clean cloth to cleanse the rims, making sure that all grime, grease, and dirt particles are gone.
If you notice any stains, try removing them with rubbing alcohol. Use water to rinse everything off, then dry with another cloth.
Step 2: Applying The Wrap
Now that the rims are clean, you can begin applying the vinyl. Take your pre-measured vinyl wrap and peel off the plastic backing. Carefully lay down the sticky side onto the rim, using your fingers to press it down onto the metal.
Go over the vinyl with a squeegee or flat tool to press the vinyl into place. Start at the middle and move outwards, taking care not to press too hard or too lightly.
If you notice any bubbles, use the tool to push them out from the center out to the edges until they disappear.
Step 3: Sealing And Trimming
After you’ve laid down the wrapping in the desired position, start pressing down the sides into the creases. Use your scissors to cut any excess vinyl.
Once you’re done trimming, seal the edges with a hot iron, taking care to avoid burning yourself. Take another look to check everything looks good, then you’re done!
Looking After Your Vinyl Wrapped Rims
Like other parts of your car, your vinyl-wrapped rims will need regular maintenance. Looking after your rims will avoid their color fading and ensure that they last as long as possible.
Here are some tips that can help you do this:
Clean Your Wraps Regularly
Your vehicle’s wheels will be exposed to dirt, grease, and grime with every drive. This means that it is important to clean your wraps frequently. Try to do so every week.
Use a gentle detergent and a soft cloth to clean the wraps, taking the time to rinse and dry them afterward. If you plan on using strong cleaning products on your wraps, test the cleaner on a hidden area to see how it affects the vinyl.
Take care when driving your car through car washes. Some brushes can be too rough and may lift off the vinyl, leading to peeling, cuts, or raised edges. If you do want to go to a car wash, opt for facilities that don’t use brushes.
You should also avoid high-pressure water streams, as the strong pressure could make the vinyl lift off from the rims. If this occurs, the vinyl will start to peel off, allowing the metal beneath to peek through.
If you do notice stains on your wraps, it’s best to handle these at home. Use isopropyl rubbing alcohol and a cloth to tackle the stain, then rinse off with clean water. Avoid scrubbing, but if you must, use a brush with softer bristles.
Don’t Park In Direct Sunlight
Some vinyl wraps do have UV ray protection, but this layer can disintegrate if it’s exposed to enough sunlight. The sun may also cause the vinyl’s color to fade faster than normal.
To slow down the process, park your car in the shade whenever possible. If you can’t find shade, cover up the rims with a tarp or blanket.
Follow The Instructions
Even if you’re experienced with vinyl wraps, you should always follow the guidelines included with your product. Various brands and finishes may need to be handled differently.
For example, matte wraps should never be treated with polish, as this will spoil the finish.
Never skip reading the instructions, even if you think you know what you’re doing. This simple step can help to prolong the lifespan of your wrap.
Wrapping your rims in vinyl is a simple way to protect them and give them a new look. Although most types of vinyl are similar in terms of application, it’s important to take the time to read the instructions beforehand.
This will help you to get the best results and avoid any problems.
Once you’ve finished wrapping your rims, remember to keep them well maintained. Doing this regularly will help them to last longer and look great for years to come.