Wrap or Paint Your Car
Auto Repair Business & Marketing

Should You Wrap or Paint Your Car? Here Are the Pros and Cons

Cars these days stick to the same limited color palette, which isn’t always very exciting.

Do you want to stand out and change your car’s appearance? There are two choices which you can pick from. You can choose the traditional paint job or the new and popular car wrapping.

Deciding between car wrap vs. paint can be difficult if you don’t know all the facts. In this article, we talk about the pros and cons of each option. We’re exploring the car wrap vs. paint durability, maintenance, application, and more.

Keep on reading to find out about their advantages. You may also learn more about painting and car wrap problems in our guide.


When it comes to application, painting your car can be a lengthy process. In order to paint a car, you first need to remove all of the old paint so that you can work on a fresh slate. After painting one coat, you need to make sure each layer dries overnight before applying a new one.

This is why a paint job can take up to two weeks to complete. It depends on the kind of paint you’re using and the number of coats that get applied. In some cases, you might even have to wait another week after it gets finished before driving your car.

Wrapping a car, on the other hand, only takes a few days to complete. First, you need to thoroughly wash the car so that the vinyl wrap doesn’t trap in any dirt. Then place the wrap all over the car and use heat to activate the adhesive.

This process can take, at most, up to three days. Additionally, after getting your car, you don’t have to wait until it’s ready to drive again. Overall, application time is a pro for wrapping and a con for painting.


If you want a complete wrapping, it could cost you anywhere from $2,500 to $5,000. It depends on the kind of vinyl wrapping you get and the level of customization you want. Removing a wrap may range from $500 to $600 for the labor charge.

If you want a complete paint job, you can get low-quality ones for around $500. A high-quality paint job can range from $1,500 to $5000, depending on what you get and where you go. Of course, the price can vary if you’re only looking to repair a section of the car rather than the whole thing.

Nothing is set in stone as different shops will offer different prices. Car wrap cost vs. paint cost are similar for high-quality jobs. However, for low-quality jobs, painting your car is the cheaper option.


For a paint job, durability gets affected by the quality of the paint used. If your car has cheaper paint, it can last for a few years. Alternatively, higher-end paint jobs can last you a whole lifetime as long as it’s done right.

Car wraps can last from 2 to 10 years. It comes down to the location of the wrap. This can either be horizontal or vertical with various used colors and decals.

It’s important to keep in mind that there are other factors that could affect its durability. Things like UV rays, scratches, or other types of damage could affect how long it lasts. All in all, for higher-quality jobs, painting your car lasts far longer than wrapping.

Customization and Flexibility

When painting a car, you can only use one or two colors. The colors you choose are also a long-term commitment as paint jobs are harder to remove and redo. The paint options you get depend on how many the shop you go to has, which doesn’t always have more creative colors.

Wrapping a car is highly flexible when it comes to choosing what you want. There are multiple colors as well as various effects that you can pick. You can even get custom vehicle wraps made with the design you want to make it even more unique.

Additionally, you can always get the wrap removed easily if you ever change your mind. You’ll be able to go back to the original color of the car without having it damaged. This means that car wraps can be a short-term commitment if you want them to be.


Painted cars need a lot more maintenance to ensure that it stays shiny and new. You have to regularly wash and wax the car so that it doesn’t get damaged or look old. If you don’t, there’s a chance of dirt and other debris permanently ruining the paint job.

For wrapped cars, maintenance isn’t something that you have to worry about. You don’t have to wax the car at all, and you only need to wash it if it gets really dirty. Even if you don’t wash your car, there will be no damage to the wrap whatsoever.


As stated above, when you paint a car, it’s pretty much permanent. There’s no undoing it or going back, so you’re stuck with whatever color you chose. Car wraps, on the other hand, are completely removable.

Another plus is that the wrap protects the paint underneath it. If you’re looking to sell your car, having it wrapped can be one way of preserving its original look. However, repainting your car can seriously drive down the resale value.

The Bottom Line: Car Wrap Vs. Paint

If you want to protect your car’s original paint and want it done fast using fancy colors, wrap your car. Suppose you want something durable or want touch-ups in damaged areas, paint your car. When it comes to painting a car vs. wrapping it, it all depends on why you’re updating your car’s appearance in the first place.

After reading this article, we hope that you were able to learn more about a car wrap vs. paint job. If you enjoyed this article and want to read more like it, check out the rest of our blogs. We have different guides that talk about cars to technology.