Can I Wrap My Leased Vehicle?

by Deborah Scott on May 5, 2017

leased car fleet wraps ready to be wrapped Riveting Wraps.jpg

We get this question all the time and many of the vehicles we wrap are leased vehicles  But the answer may not be the same for everyone so we've put together a short  check list to help you make the right decision for your leased vehicles.

#1  No Matter What... Read Your Lease

Every vehicle lease is different so you've got to review your own vehicle lease(s) to see if there are any provisions that prohibit adding vinyl graphics or vehicle wraps to your vehicle.  For some of our clients, the leased vehicles are delivered directly to our wrap studio by the auto dealer.  It is evident in these cases, the lease agreement is either silent on or explicitly allows vehicle wraps and graphics.  Make sure that is the case for your lease before you wrap your vehicle.

#2    Verify Your Leased Vehicle is Not Freshly Painted 

It is important to confirm this for every vehicle we wrap.  Vehicle wrap vinyls (and adhesive vinyls in general) do not get along well with fresh paint.  While paint may appear dry on the surface, it is not actually dry until it is fully cured.  During the curing process, paints release gasses.  This can prevent proper adhesion for your graphics.  Curing times can vary from a week to up to 8 weeks, so if new pant or body work has been done on the vehicle, ask your dealer or the repair shop how long to wait for the paint to cure.  

While you are waiting for that paint to cure...  go ahead and get your graphics designed and your car on the installation schedule. 

#3   Pay Attention to the Warranty Period for Your Graphics

High quality vehicle wraps and graphics usually look great long beyond their warranty period.  For a business owner or fleet manager this seems like a big plus - they can save money by extending the expected life of their graphics.  Unfortunately there is a hidden problem they may be overlooking.  The problem is not with the appearance, but what is happening underneath those great graphics.  Adhesive qualities change over time, becoming more aggressive in their adhesion to the surface.  For vehicle graphics that have been on vehicles long beyond their warranty period - removal can become challenging - requiring scraping and in some cases chemicals.  While great care is taken not to damage vehicle paint when removing very old graphics, the risk of damage does go up.  As a rule of thumb, 5+ years is a very reasonable period for vehicle graphics. At 10+ years you may experience some challenges with removal.

The good news for leased vehicles is that the duration of the lease and the warranted life of the graphics usually line up.  Be sure to confirm the warranty period with your vehicle graphics installer and make a plan to have your graphics removed at the end of our lease term.

#4  Use A Only Premium Name Brand Cast Vinyl

RainMaker Signs uses only 3M Premium Cast Vinyl paired with a 3M Premium Cast Laminate for vehicle graphics and wraps.  Exceptions are made using other top name brands and specialty vinyls when specifically requested by our clients.  Other great vehicle wrap brands include Avery, Arlon, and MACtac.  Make sure it is a cast vinyl (not calendered) as cast vinyls are specifically designed to conform and hold to a vehicle's contours over time.  

You can find stories online about paint wearing unevenly under vehicle wraps.  This could be caused by graphics being applied to a vehicle before the paint has fully cured or using poor quality vinyl to wrap the vehicle. There are plenty of low quality options being sold by sign and vehicle wrap shops.  So verify that your vehicle is being wrapped with premium brand name cast vinyl.  

If you want to save money by having your vehicle wrapped with an economy vinyl, do so at your own risk - vinyl failure could cost you more in fines to your leasing company than the original cost of the vinyl.


A Brief Word about Magnetic Vehicle Signs

If you think magnetic signs have a lower risk of damage to your leased vehicle, think again.  Magnetic signs can easily scratch the paint when they are taken off or moved on a vehicle.  Small particles and bits of dirt become highly abrasive when caught between the vehicle and highly magnetic image.  Additionally, if water works in behind the magnet the magnet can actually fuse to the paint making removal without damage to the paint virtually impossible.  If you choose to apply a magnet to your vehicle, remove, clean and dry the area behind the magnet on a regular basis.  Additionally do not leave the vehicle out on the rain with the magnet applied.

We know this seems counter intuitive.  So take 5 minutes to Google or research the problems people encounter with magnetic signs on their vehicles.  The most important component of making a good decision is being informed.  If you choose to use magnetic signs always follow all the instructions for proper care and your decision will be a good one. See RainMaker Signs article on caring for your magnetic vehicle signs.

Do More Than Drive Those Leased Vehicles

New Call-to-actionAdding business building graphics and wraps to your leased vehicles will yield valuable, long lasting benefits to your bottom line. Learn more about The Riveting Wraps Difference that sets us apart.  Our goal is your success. However, the rewards are satisfying and it can last for the many years. 

 For more professional advice on vehicle wrapping, contact Riveting Wraps at (425) 368-5007 or email us at 

Topics: Vehicle Advertising Smarts

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