Vehicle Wrap - Care & Maintenance

Your vehicle has a new look. Let's keep it in a top condition!

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Vinyl Wrapz is dedicated to installing quality vehicle wraps as well as ensuring the wrap stands the test of time.
Once applied vehicle wrap is often overlooked in terms of care and maintenance. Infrequent or improper maintenance can lead to premature degradation of graphics or colour change film and lower the expected life of the film.

Using these cleaning and maintenance tips will help maintain the premium look and longevity of your new vehicle wrap installed by Vinyl Wrapz.

1.0 Methods of washing vehicle wraps

1.1 Waterless Wash / Spray Wax

● A waterless wash or spray wax can also be used as long as the vehicle isn’t too dirty. These products can help maintain the gloss level and performance of the film. If the vehicle is not overly dirty, this is the preferred method. Avery Dennison’s Wrap Care Cleaner, Power Cleaner and Sealant are recommended for maintaining vinyl wraps. Additional products that have been found to work well for wrap care can be found in the chart in section 5.

● NOTE: Before using any new product on any wrap, be sure to test them in an inconspicuous area of the wrapped vehicle before using on the entire wrap.

● Using a spray wax to care for the wrap film is great for protecting the vinyl wrap from being damaged by environmental pollutants or seasonal airborne pollutants.

● NOTE: Make sure the wax used does not contain petroleum distillates or abrasive components. Always test the wax in an inconspicuous area prior to waxing the whole wrap. Any wax residue can be removed with all-purpose cleaner.

1.2 Hand Wash

● When hand washing, the first step is to pre-rinse the vehicle with clean water, thus avoiding scratching the surface.

● Gently wash with a mild soapy water solution and a sponge, start at the top of the vehicle and work down. Avoid abrading the film surface with unnecessary scrubbing.

● Rinse the wrap thoroughly with clean water when finished.

● Allow the wrap to dry naturally or to avoid water spotting immediately use a silicone squeegee to remove water and then finish drying with a Chamois, micro-fibre towel or soft non-abrasive towel.


● Be careful to not lift the film edges.

● Detergent should be free from abrasive components, strong solvents and alcohols.

● Detergents should have a pH balance between 5 and 9. Always test the detergent in an inconspicuous spot on the vehicle wrap before using.

1.3 Automatic Car Wash

● A brushless automatic car wash with just spray is acceptable.

● The automated brush wash is not recommended as the brushes may scratch the vinyl surface, catch and lift the edges of the vinyl wrap, reduce the gloss finish and/or create a failure point.

● Skip the wax options at the car wash to avoid wax that that contains petroleum distillates which can damage the wrap.

● Let the wrap dry naturally or dab dry with a micro-fibre towel.

1.4 Power Washer

● The use of a pressure or power washer should only be used when all other cleaning methods have been used or tested and did not properly work.

NOTE: Pressure washing could have negative effects on the vehicle wrap including but not limited to edge-lifting and face degradation.

● Keep water pressure below 1200 psi (8- bars or 84 kg/cm2).

● Keep water temperature below 180˚F (80˚C).

● Keep the nozzle at least 12 inches away from the edges.

● Keep the nozzle perpendicular to the graphic. This will avoid lifting edges of the wrap.

● Use a nozzle with a 40˚ angle wide spray pattern.

2.0 Using Avery Dennison Supreme Wrap Care product

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2.1 Protection of a newly applied decal/graphic or wrapped object

● After the installation is complete, wipe down the graphics or wrap to remove any fingerprints, streaks, dust or other light surface contaminants. It is important to start with a clean surface before applying the Sealant.

● To clean the film, spray the Avery Dennison Supreme Wrap Care cleaner onto a microfiber towel and directly onto the surface. A small amount of cleaner will go a long way, so only use 2-3 sprays. Wipe the surface clean, then turn the towel and dry. After cleaning the entire area, apply the Avery Dennison Supreme Care Sealant.
NOTE: DO NOT apply the sealant on a hot surface.

● Spray the Sealant directly onto the film surface. Using a new microfiber towel, wipe the sealant onto the surface using a circular motion, working in small sections. Do not wait for the sealant to dry before buffing it out. The Sealant should be applied and buffed all in the same motion. Repeat these steps moving to the next sections of the substrate.

● The Sealant will provide a protective layer and make it difficult for dirt, bird droppings, tree sap and other contaminants from damaging the film surface.

2.2 Maintaining decals/graphics or wraps over its applied lifetime

● Applied pressure sensitive films in constant contact with dirt, grime and contaminants will eventually degrade, especially if left unclean and exposed to UV light or heat. ● Ideally, a vehicle wrap should be cleaned every two weeks. This ensures that optimal visual appearance is maintained for the life of the wrap. ● The Avery Dennison Supreme Wrap Care Cleaner should be used as a general purpose cleaner in between Sealant applications.

2.3 Spot cleaning and difficult stains on decals/ graphics or wraps

● Avery Dennison Supreme Wrap Care Power Cleaner is intended to be used as a spot treatment on difficult surface contaminants such as bugs, bird droppings, tree sap and road tar. The cleaner should be applied to the contaminant as soon as possible to prevent damage.
● Apply 2-3 sprays directly onto the contaminant, then allow up to 30 seconds before wiping with a clean microfiber towel.
● Apply the Wrap Care Cleaner to remove any leftover residue from the Power Cleaner.
● After cleaning always use Sealant to optimally protect and restore the appearance of the film.

NOTE: We can recommend the use of the Supreme Wrap Care products on gloss, satin and textured finished films. Matte finished films may have the possibility of some slight streaking on the surface. It is recommended to test the products on a small, inconspicuous area before applying it to the entire substrate or vehicle.

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3.0 Additional Cleaning Notes

Wrap films and printed graphics can also be maintained with commercially available cleaning detergents, which are common to the professional maintenance of vehicles, outdoor advertising and other decorative applications. All cleaning activities shall be executed in line with the detergent manufacturer’s written instructions.

3.1 Key points for maintaining vehicle wraps

● Upon completion of the vehicle wrap, it is standard procedure to wipe down the wrap to remove any fingerprints, streaks, or other surface contaminates. The Avery Dennison Supreme Wrap Care Cleaner or Isopropyl alcohol should be used for this step. It is recommended that in addition to the isopropyl wipe the Avery Dennison Sealant or a waterless cleaner or spray wax also be applied at this time. This step will provide a protective layer and make it difficult for dirt, bird droppings, tree sap and other contaminates from damaging the wrap.

● During the winter months, it is important to allow the newly wrapped vehicle to dwell at room temperature for at least 24 hours before being moved back out into the cold environment.

● Regular cleaning of the wrap is required to maintain the overall appearance of the wrap as well as help prolong the life of the wrap. Below is a list of recommendations for cleaning.

3.2 Clean the vehicle every 2 weeks

● PVC films behave similarly to automotive paint if left in constant contact with dirt, grime and contaminants, it will eventually degrade, especially if left un-clean, exposed to UV light and/or heat.

● It is recommended that vehicle graphics should be cleaned on a regular basis or whenever it appears dirty. Ideally, a vehicle wrap should be cleaned every 2 weeks. This ensures that optimal visual appearance is maintained for the life of the wrap.

3.3 Spot Cleaning & Difficult Stains

● Spot cleaning of surface contaminants like bugs, bird droppings, tree sap and tar is required immediately after it appears, as it can stain and damage the PVC film. This is also true of gasoline and other fuels.

● Spot cleaning with Avery Dennison Cleaners as noted in Section 2.3 or Isopropyl Alcohol and a clean non-abrasive rag.

3.4 Always test first

● It is crucial to remember that chemicals can damage a wrap or even paint.
● Always test these solvents in an inconspicuous area prior to cleaning the wrap.
● Always rinse the surface with clean water following the use of any cleaning agent.
● Chemicals should be free from abrasive components.
● pH balance of the chemicals should be between 5 and 9.
● Do not use any aromatic solvents such as acetone, M.E.K., toluene, paint thinner or lacquer thinner.

3.5 Environmental Factors

● Park the vehicle in shade, garage, or undercover whenever possible.

● At high elevations such as mountain areas, the UV damage is increased versus exposure at sea level. Because the air is thinner and there is less UV filtering, damage increases significantly.

● In congested urban or industrial areas, increased smog, pollutants and particulates in the atmosphere will cause reduced durability on the horizontal areas of the wrap. The horizontal areas trap the chemicals on the surface of the material and the increased UV exposure results in shorter durability.

● Vinyl films are not designed to be permanently submerged in water, fresh or salt. It is recommended that watercraft graphics are cleaned with fresh water after each use.

3.6 Removing Fingerprints

The matte and satin products may show fingerprints, however, they can be cleaned by using the Avery Dennison Wrap Care Cleaner, Power Cleaner, or by saturating a clean, lint-free towel with a 2:1 mixture of Isopropyl Alcohol and water or straight rubbing alcohol then wipe the film dry.

4.0 Frequently Asked Questions:

● What detergent should I use for a hand wash?
Use a mild car cleaning detergent and water mix that does not contain any strong soluble substances, alcohol or abrasive components. The detergent should have a pH balance between 5 and 9.

● When should I clean my vehicle?
The vehicle should not be cleaned within the first 48 hours of the wrap being applied. After this 2-day period, it is recommended to wash your vehicle every 2 weeks.

● Can I wax my vehicle?
Yes, as long as the wax does not contain petroleum distillates, which is found in many paste waxes. Products that are a combination of a waterless wash and wax are great options as long as the vehicle doesn’t have a matte finish and isn’t excessively dirty. Test the wax on an inconspicuous part of the vehicle first.

● What about difficult spots?
Spot clean contaminants, such as bird droppings, bug splatter, tree sap, and similar contaminants as soon as possible to avoid film damage. Start by soaking for several minutes with hot, soapy water. Then rinse thoroughly. You can spot clean with isopropyl alcohol and a clean, non-abrasive rag. If a harsher chemical is needed, be sure to test first in an inconspicuous area. Try the Avery Dennison power cleaner in the Supreme Wrapping™ Film Care line at

● What if my wrap has a matte finish?
Use a waterless wash that is recommended for matte finishes. Waterless wash products containing wax can fill in the texture and cause shiny spots. A lighter matte finish will be prone to showing more dirt than other finishes. Use a 50/50 mix of isopropyl alcohol and water to spot clean matte finish films. If the alcohol and water mix does not remove dirt, you can try using a hot soapy water solution. You can also try an all-purpose cleaner purchased at your local hardware store.

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