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Removing Vinyl Wrap

Discussion in 'Vehicle Wraps' started by CanDoASign4U, Jul 5, 2012.

  1. CanDoASign4U

    CanDoASign4U Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    North Carolina
    I'm preparing to provide a labor estimate for the removal of a wrap on a 20' refrigerated box truck; two sides and the back. The vinyl removal would likely be done outside and with the heat we've been having it just might make it bit easier to remove the vinyl, but ...who knows.
    Just curious if any of you might have any advice they would offer for my first time removal of a graphic of this size? For example; time it might take, materials I might need, etc. I have experience removing smaller vinyl logo's and lettering but never anything of this size. I'm fairly sure that the vinyl is 3M and that it has been on the truck for over 3 years.
  2. CS-SignSupply-TT

    CS-SignSupply-TT Very Active Member

    May 31, 2011
    What is the UP side of this job? What sort of PROMISEs have you made to the customer? Is this a CUSTOMER or a J-O-B nobody else wants to tackle? Since you are not doing an install at this time, you might want to consider doing this job AFTER sundown, BEFORE sunrise.
  3. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

    Jun 7, 2006
    Kinda hard to say if we don't know your skill level. Also, not knowing the type vinyl, let alone how worn it is.... makes for a little bit of a problem.

    My guess would be about 3 to 4 hours with maybe some torch and cleaning fluids costs.
  4. GP

    GP Very Active Member

    Dec 12, 2007
    Somewhere between 4 and 35 hours.
  5. DRPSignsNGrafix

    DRPSignsNGrafix Very Active Member

    Depends on the Vinyl, there wear that's on it. I'm with Gino about 3 to 4 hours. Also if your not doing lettering or rewrapping the truck afterwards. Why are you doing this job? Doing it to get your foot in with customer? Like Tim said before sun up or after sundown might be easier. Lots of elbow grease.
  6. Border

    Border Very Active Member

    Feb 8, 2007
    If it's 3M and in good shape still, it will most likely be much easier and faster than you can imagine, especially if you have it good and hot in the Sun. The warmer the better!
    regardless though, prepare the owner for the possibility it may require more labor but you will quickly know once you start.
  7. Jillbeans

    Jillbeans Major Contributor

    Dec 24, 2003
    Butler, PA
    I'd charge my shop rate (mine may be different than yours) of X amount an hour and estimate at least 8 hours.
    If it's covered with goo you are going to need some Rapid Remover, that's about $17 a quart and you'll probably need 3. You'll also need a l'il chizler.
    A big pack-o-paper towels from Sam's Club, then some sort of detergent to wipe it all down with after the adhesive removal, probably Dawn dish soap. Contractor bags for the removed vynull & paper towels and adhesive snot.
    So probably another $100 for materials (that's a bit generous)
    The heat may help or it may not.
    It's not a fun job, so charge accordingly. Make sure you have access to a hose and and a power source in case you need to use a heat gun, hair dryer, or lamps.
  8. CanDoASign4U

    CanDoASign4U Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    North Carolina
    Thanks for all the input and any that can be offered in the future. This a sub job through another, much larger sign company far, far away. They are just fishing to see if it's cheaper to let someone do it locally or send in their crew. It is a job solely; likely with no future opportunities with this particular company. That having been said, it is also an opportunity for us to learn something new, an experience that may come in handy in the future.
  9. Charlie J

    Charlie J Very Active Member

    Oct 1, 2006
    Removal sucks....that's the only thing you're going to learn from this job.

    A couple week ago I spent 8 hours removing old reflective vinyl off of a tow truck.

    Bid it at $100/hr. 8 hr minimum.
  10. sfr table hockey

    sfr table hockey Very Active Member

    Jan 24, 2009
    It may be worth buying a clothing steamer for about $60 to $80 and see how easy old vinyl comes off. It will make a brittle vinyl soft and easy to remove and best of all most of the residue comes off with it. I would think on a wrap once you get an edge started with the steam it would come off every bit as good as it does off backlits. Only question might be when the steam may be too hot for the surface the vinyl is on. On a truck I would not think that would be an issue but always test first.

    Some thinner lexan sheets have warped a bit with the steam but did go back flat once cooled but there could be some things the steam is too much for.

    That job with the reflective might have been a good one for the steamer.
  11. 2B

    2B Very Active Member

    May 5, 2011
  12. OlsonSigns601

    OlsonSigns601 Member

    Jul 23, 2011
    Step 1. Drive the Truck to Home Depot
    Step 2. Open the Back of the truck
    Step 3. Proceed to exit the parking lot
    Step 4. Hold up two fingers with one hand and a Benjamin in the other.