Is It Cheaper To Paint Or Wrap A Car?

Only a few years ago, you had only one option to upgrade the appearance of your car: you could repaint it.

Is It Cheaper To Paint Or Wrap A Car

However, with car vinyl wrapping becoming ever more popular, many people are now opting for this alternative instead.

If you’re thinking about updating the look of your vehicle and want to make sure that it looks good, then you need to consider the pros and cons of painting and wrapping before making up your mind

We take a look at the pros and cons of both wrapping and painting, and we find out which option is cheaper.

Differences Of Wrapping And Painting Your Car 

Is it better to paint or wrap a vehicle? Some car owners who want to personalize the look of their vehicle have been contemplating these two options for a while now.

The answer depends on several factors such as the type of car, its age, condition, as well as costs and your personal preferences.


While some people might think that painting takes less time than wrapping, it requires much longer.

There is much more preparation and prep work needed when you decide to get your vehicle painted.

Generally, a good paint job has three main steps. The car painter will need to first remove the old paint which can take up a significant amount of time.

Then he will prepare the surface for the new paint. Next, he will apply several different coats. Each coat will need at least 8 hours to dry.

All these steps mean that if you choose to get your car repainted, then you are looking at a minimum of one week without your ride.

On the other hand, with a car wrap, you would be looking at only a few days. This is because wrap installers don’t have to do that much prep work.

For wrapping, the car needs to be cleaned properly, and then the wrap can be applied. A big time-saving factor is that the detailer doesn’t have to wait for anything to dry.

He can apply the different sheets of the vinyl to the car’s surface immediately.


Depending on the quality and the level of the paint job, you can expect to pay between $1,000 to $10,000 for a repaint of your car.

This is a vast range and depends on so many different factors, including the size of your car, the detailer’s experience, and the intricacies of your new paint design.

In comparison, a good quality vinyl wrap can set you back between $2,000 and $5,500. Again, the exact figure will depend on many different factors.

However, for most car owners, the costs of a wrap are much more affordable. This is particularly true if you are a business.

Small businesses often opt for car wraps because they have the option to get a truly customized design with their logo and other company information.

So, is it cheaper to paint or wrap your car? Generally, it is cheaper to wrap your car. However, this does depend on how complex your personalized vehicle design should be, and how long you want it to last.

A good-quality vinyl wrap can last up to seven years when you care for and maintain it properly. In comparison, a professional paint job lasts much longer than a wrap.

Customization Options

Customization Options

If you’re thinking about getting a custom vinyl wrap for your car, there are a lot of customization options available.

You can get a full wrap that covers the entire car from bumper to bumper, or just the hood and roof.

You can also get partial wraps that cover specific sections of the car like the doors, windows, trunk, etc.

This is one of the biggest advantages of a vinyl wrap. You can wrap only certain areas of your car, without having to remove any panels.

In comparison, when you get your car repainted, then the detailer will need to remove each panel to apply the paint properly.

This means that if you want to customize your car in a particular way, such as adding some special decals, then you may not be able to do this with a repaint.

In addition, specific custom paint jobs are expensive. Car paint artists charge well for their skills, and this means that you may be spending well beyond the average for your personalized paint job.

Although vinyl wrap is much easier to customize, with a paint job from a skilled artist, you can be sure that you have a unique design.


When it comes to maintenance, a vinyl wrap is much easier to keep clean and maintain than paint.

With vinyl, all you need to do is wipe down the car regularly with a damp cloth and remove any tough stains as soon as possible.

With paint, you will need to wash it regularly and apply a protective wax coat. Saying this, vinyl can also be protected with a wax coat or a nano-ceramic protection layer.


The durability of both paint and vinyl depends on the quality. A badly done paint job or vinyl application can reduce the durability significantly.

Generally, vinyl wraps on cars can last for as long as seven years. A good-quality paint job however can last for as long as the lifetime of the car.

You can make both more durable by caring for your car’s surface properly, making sure it is cleaned regularly and stored away from the UV sunlight.


The biggest advantage of vinyl wrap is that it is removable without damage to the paintwork underneath.

In comparison, a layer of paint cannot be removed so easily, and it is a permanent change to your car.


So, which option is better for you? If you want something that looks great but doesn’t cost too much money, then a vinyl wrap might be best for you.

However, if you want something that will last for many years, then a professionally painted car is probably going to be the best choice.

Before you settle on one option, make sure to do your homework and find out what’s cheaper for your car.

Edward Cole
Edward Cole

Hi, my name is Edward Cole and I have been in the car customization industry for a decade now. I also specialize in repairs, so I have plenty of experience with looking after my vehicle and showing it off.

When your car is in pristine condition, with a fresh wrap around it, people notice. I cannot tell you how many compliments I have received through my car and its condition. People appreciate a customized car and it will give you a great deal of satisfaction to be driving the most envied vehicle on the road.

One thing that I have found to be incredibly popular in the car customizing industry - by both owner and admirer - is color seatbelt customization. Having anything other than the plain black seat belts like every other car will get you being the talk of the town in no time.

I have created my website in the hopes of inspiring some of you to customize your own vehicle and improve your self esteem. Taking care of your car is an extension of taking care of yourself. So, take a look around and see if you find anything you fancy - you could be steps away from a fresh new look.

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