Painting Your Car vs. Wrap: Pros and Cons

Are you thinking about giving your car a fresh new look? Maybe changing the exterior of your vehicle? And why not? Instead of getting a whole new car, why not give your old car some new life? You have two main options: a car wrap or a new paint job.

Car wraps have been around for a while now. Originally, they were mostly used to advertise a business or service, but there have been major advances in printing and application techniques. Paint jobs are the original method of applying colour to a vehicle and have been around since the beginning of vehicle manufacturing, and true artists can customize a vehicle into something stunning.

So, which is right for you?

Painting Your Car vs. Wrap


Car wraps only take several days to apply and adhere. They simply go on top of the existing paint, after a thorough cleaning. A vehicle can be in and out of the shop in 2-4 days.

Paint jobs take much longer. The original paint needs to be sanded down and/or removed, and then the paint is applied in layers, with drying time in between. Depending on the customization and size of the job, it can take up to a few weeks for it to be done correctly.


Car wraps have come down a lot in price over the years, and the cost will depend on the size and image. And they don’t last forever. They can tear and become beat up looking after a few years, and will last somewhere between 4-10 years.

Paint jobs might cost more initially and it will also depend on the size and quality of paint, etc. But if the vehicle is well cared for, they will last as long as the car does.


Car wraps are 100% customizable, and a person can basically let their imagination run wild. We recently saw a leopard print car wrap, so there’s really no limit to what a person can do to their car.

Paint jobs are also customizable. While it might be much more difficult to lay down a full body leopard print with a spray gun and hand painting, an artist will be able to do anything that’s asked of them.


Car wraps have improved in quality, but depending on the vehicle’s previous condition, they might not actually be able to hide anything. For example, if the car has rust spots and dents, these are going to be noticeable once the car wrap is applied.

Paint jobs, when done by a proper craftsman, are a high quality service. Part of this is due to the work that goes into preparing a vehicle for a paint job, like stripping down the old layers of paint. A proper paint job is a work of beauty and art.

Car wraps are a good option for some people, especially to advertise businesses or to have something temporary for a few years.

Paint jobs are a more permanent investment for your vehicle. And they are tough to beat (in our opinion). A quality paint job shows pride in a vehicle and is generally done by technicians who are passionate about the service.

Especially for classic cars or to make a car stand out from the rest, we think that a classic paint job can’t be beat. Make sure to contact our Vancouver Auto Body Shop.