If you have decided to overhaul the look of your new BMW with vinyl wrapping, then this article is for you. Here we will discuss vinyl wrapping, the various car care methods and proper maintenance procedures to be followed in order to extend the life of your BMW vinyl wrapping. 

If maintained properly, you could expect your BMW car wrap to last roughly five to seven years, however it can last even longer if you apply extra care and keep your car parked in a garage.

What Is A Car Wrap?

Car wrapping is a modern way of customizing your vehicle, be it for commercial use or for privately owned cars. It has increased in popularity as an advertising platform because it is less expensive than a custom paint job, and it offers significantly more options for designs and finishes than paint. With the reasonable pricing of wraps now, private vehicle owners are also looking at this method as the preferred method of “repainting”. 

Vinyl vehicle wraps cover the outside of your car, protecting the exterior of your vehicle, while also adding a bit of colour and character. In this regard it plays the same role as paint but that is where the similarities stops. 

Let’s Look At The Differences Between Vinyl Wraps And Car Paint?

Car paint is a complex mix of chemicals that bond permanently to the car’s sheet metal. Vinyl is also a mix of chemicals but it is classed as an organic polymer and it is an incredibly durable , flexible and versatile rubber-like material. 

Do Car Wraps Damage The Paint?

That’s the beauty of wrapping your car – the answer is NO, they do not damage the original paint job! It is completely safe to be applied to any type of paint, gloss or matte finish and in fact will provide a protective cover over it. You can also go wild with your designs and at any time you can revert to the original paint job or if you want a new look, just re-wrap with your new design, giving your BMW a brand new appearance. That is the best part of car wrapping – it is not permanent.

What Are The Pros Of A Vinyl Wrap:

  • Factory paint remains untouched and is preserved and protected. Vinyl wrapping acts as a protective cover.
  • Customize your car’s appearance
  • Significantly cheaper than painting
  • Faster turnaround than a quality paint job with minimal downtime
  • Longer lasting than cheap paint jobs
  • Higher resistance to damage 
  • Massive protection from UV rays
  • Better flexibility and designs – you can use an array of colours with chrome, neo-chrome (burned titanium), matte or satin finishes, carbon fibre finishes, camo look, or even your own custom design. Texture is part of the fun with vinyl design as different textures reflect light in unique ways that can add drama or elegance to a car’s look.

(You can do a stunning show design in paint, but it will cost you double the price)

Tips For Washing Your Wrapped Car Correctly

Washing your BMW vinyl wrapped car correctly, is vital for durability and longevity. As we have established, a vehicle vinyl wrap is not paint, but a lot of your car wash techniques can still apply here – such as pre-rinse, wash, rinse, dry. However, there are a few precautions and some very important  tips to follow:

The Don’ts:

  • Don’t  take your car to automated car washes that uses brushes as these may damage the wrap
  • Do not work on or clean the wrap when it is hot or parked in direct sunlight (park in shade and wait for vehicle to be cool to the touch)
  • Don’t wash with isopropyl alcohol.
  • Do not use a pressure washer or if you do use one, use at the lowest setting and do not bring the spray nozzle too close to the surface of your vehicle. Also avoid high pressure on edges and seams.
  • Don’t use a spray nozzle that is designed for removing house paint or stains from concrete – that is too strong
  • Do not use a clay bar on a wrap
  • Do not wax your wrap if it has a matte finish 
  • If you do decide to use wax, ensure the wax does not contain petroleum distillates

Washing Your Wrapped Car

  • Remember, the car must be cool to the touch and parked in the shade
  • If the car is not overly dirty, it is preferable to do a waterless wash
  • If your car is dirty then a hand wash is the ideal way to clean your vinyl wrapped BMW.
  • Pre-rinse – soak the wrap first. This will remove any dust and loose dirt. Remove stubborn contaminants but be careful not to scratch the vinyl. Take your time. 
  • Using a clean microfiber cloth or sponge, gently clean the car with mild, soapy water 
  • Always use good quality, mild detergent automotive specific shampoos.
  • Rinse thoroughly yet gently with low pressure – you could use a garden hose or one with a fan spray nozzle.
  •  Let the car dry naturally and finish off using microfiber towels or chamois 

“PRO TIP: A leaf blower or air compressor can be used for lightning fast drying!”

By following our guidelines and tips, you will keep your BMW vinyl wrap in tip-top shape all year round. However, you also need to take care of the car itself so do not miss out on your routine maintenance services and ensure that any parts that are showing signs of failing are replaced immediately. For top quality, used or new BMW parts, contact your local Sparesboyz (Durban and Cape Town) for the most affordable and reliable parts. Sparesboyz also offers courier service nationwide. Now, all that is left is to go out and enjoy your wrapped ride!