Spring on the Road

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Paint versus car wrap options

Over time a car's exterior can fade or suffer some dings and dents. Before owners sell or trade in their rides for something new, investing in a new color may be all that's necessary to revitalize the look of the vehicle.

Changing the color of a car is not something every driver should try on their own. Such a task can be time-consuming, and it requires a good deal of skill to turn out looking good. Furthermore, painting a car involves a variety of different tools and equipment, from a spray gun, sander and buffer to specific types of enamel or acrylic paints.

After considering the work involved and the expense of investing in the equipment to get the job done right, many vehicle owners opt to hire a professional to change the color of their vehicles. Many service centers offer two options to change the look of a car or truck: painting and car wraps.

Paint job

A professional paint job will yield an impressive result. A skilled auto painter can recommend the right type of automotive paint for your make and model and guide you in color selections. While there are hundreds of different color choices available, professionals also may be able to mix colors to create the custom look you desire.

Paint work may be done to match the existing color of the vehicle after accident repairs have been made. Or you may be tired with the color of your car and simply desire a change. Experienced service shops can offer these services and more. Other shops may specialize in custom paint jobs that may entail graphics, detail work or the blending of multiple colors to give the vehicle an airbrushed effect. Custom painters are artists, and their work may be very detailed.

Painting may demand your vehicle be off the road for a week or more, so it's best to have an alternative travel plan. Also, be sure to investigate how painting will affect the value of the vehicle. A paint job may end up depreciating the value of a resale because it's changing the original vehicle permanently.

Car wrap

Car wraps are typically made of high-quality vinyls that come in a bevy of different colors and styles. Wraps also can be used for custom graphics or to advertise businesses.

The vinyl wrap completely covers the paint of the vehicle. But because car wraps can be removed, they do not permanently change the vehicle and are therefore unlikely to affect its resale value.

Car wrapping can take less time than a labor-intensive paint job. Some jobs can be completed in only two or three days. Car wraps also may be the less expensive option if you're not selecting a complicated, custom design. Many car wraps will last between five to seven years, which is on par with the life span of a professional paint job, which lasts five to 10 years.

Changing the look of a vehicle may be as simple as choosing a new exterior color. Professional paint services and vinyl car wraps make it easy to switch up the style of a car or truck.