Mistakes to Avoid When Washing a Vinyl Car Wrap

11 Feb 2021 Vinyl Wraps

Vinyl wrapping your car can give it an updated, customized look, and proper maintenance and washing procedures can ensure that your vehicle wrap remains in good condition for as long as possible. At Wrap Guys America, we want to help you keep your vinyl car wrap in pristine condition for as long as possible. That is why we have put together a list of mistakes to avoid when washing a vinyl car wrap.

washing a vinyl wrap

Learn all about winter car wrap maintenance.

1. Using a Car Wash

Hand washing is the best option for cleaning a car with vinyl wrapping, as car washes can be too harsh on the vinyl edges and cause them to peel. It is better to get out a hose and bucket and wash the vinyl wrap by hand.

2. Using High-Pressure Wash

While you can pressure wash your vinyl wrapped car, it is important to follow specific guidelines to prevent the wrap from peeling. When pressure washing a vinyl wrap, make sure that the water pressure does not exceed 2000 psi (14 MPa) or 180 °F (80 °C). When spraying, keep at least 1 foot away from the vehicle and point the sprayer at a perpendicular angle from the wrap.

3. Using the Wrong Cleaning Products

Make sure to choose products that will not compromise the quality of your vinyl wrap. Some of the products that you should avoid using include:

  • Cleaners with an oil base
  • Kitchen and bathroom cleaners
  • Oven cleaner
  • Engine degreaser
  • Solvents

When cleaning, professionals suggest waterless wash products, isopropyl alcohol diluted in water, or just warm soapy water.

4. Leaving Difficult Stains to Dry for a Long Time

Small but difficult stains should be wiped away immediately. Leaving them to sit for too long on your wrap can cause permanent damage. Hardened stains like bird poop, flattened insects, tree sap, and the like become more difficult to remove over time.

If a difficult substance has been left on your wrap for a long period of time, you can soak the affected area in hot soapy water to soften the stain. You should then rinse the spot and wipe it with a soft cloth or sponge.

5. Waxing, Polishing, and Buffing

There is no need to buff or use regular polish on your car’s graphic wrap. Vinyl’s natural finish can make it glossy, matte, or metallic already without these products. Polishes and waxes have ingredients that can damage a car wrap and make it age faster. Buffing can also scratch the vinyl wrap, leaving unsightly marks behind.

If you would like to learn more mistakes to avoid when washing a vinyl car wrap, or if you are interested in one of our car wrap products, please contact Wrap Guys America at 1-360-329-5413.