The next time you’re off-road in your Jeep and mud is flying all over the hood, doors (if you happen to have them on still), and everywhere else, and you wonder if there’s a way to protect the paint from all of that abuse, it turns out there is! It is possible to wrap a Jeep with vinyl just like other cars, and the added benefits with Jeeps are that it may turn out to protect your investment from the harsh conditions it’s likely to encounter.
Jeep Wrangler Vinyl Wrap Cost
Jeeps are one of the most customizable vehicles on the road today, and for that reason, there are a lot of options for installing a vinyl wrap. You can choose to wrap the whole vehicle or just the hood, doors, body panels, roof, fenders, or any combination of those. The cost is directly related to how much of your Jeep you want to cover, and vinyl is typically sold by the square foot. A hood or door can be wrapped for around $50 if you decide to tackle the project yourself or around $300 at a professional shop.
Buying the Vinyl Yourself
Vinyl is sold by the square foot, and the most cost-effective option is to buy it in 5- by 25-foot rolls. You can get virtually any color you want in a variety of styles: matte, gloss, carbon fiber, or even a custom designed multi-colored wrap. (This will not be as cheap as the matte or gloss finishes though.) If you have a business and want a logo printed, that’s also an option. Some types of vinyl are listed below, but if you want a custom print job, a professional shop may be your only option.
- 3M matte black — About $240 for a 5- by 25-foot roll
- 3M black carbon fiber — About $440 for a 5- by 25-foot roll
- Avery gloss black — About $210 for a 5- by 25-foot roll
- Avery white carbon fiber — About 290 for a 5- by 25-foot roll
- Oracal silver carbon fiber — About $240 for a 5- by 25-foot roll
Labor Costs: DIY vs Professional Installation
The actual process of installing a vinyl wrap isn’t too complicated and is similar to other vehicles. The vinyl is like a large sticker that gets applied to a large section of the vehicle at once. If you decide to do-it-yourself, you will need a heat gun, a vinyl toolkit like this one from 3M, and a lot of patience. Remember too that the vinyl will not hide any imperfections in the body, so dents, scratches, rust, and dirt may all show up in your vinyl job if you don’t take care to prepare the body of the Jeep before you start applying the vinyl wrap.
A two-door Jeep with a soft top will likely only need two rolls of vinyl wrap, which could cost between $410 and $880 depending on the wrap you choose. (It will be more if you decide you want a print shop to add custom graphics or logos.) If you have a longer Jeep or one with a hard top, you may end up needing a third roll which would push the DIY cost up to between $615 and $1320.
Many people decide to forego the hassle of installing themselves and instead let a professional install the vinyl wrap. A wrap from a shop can cost between $2,500 and $4,500 depending on the options you choose (wraps like the carbon fiber, for example, can be more expensive) and whether you have a two-door Jeep or the longer four-door version. Also, if you have a hard top and want that wrapped as well, the cost will be higher still since there is more area to cover than with Jeeps that have a soft top.
Does a Wrap Save Money?
If you happen to live in a harsh climate with lots of road salt or intense sunlight, a wrap can protect the paint on your car for longer than it might otherwise last, helping you get top-dollar f you ever decide to sell your Jeep in the future. Vinyl is removable, so when you’re ready to sell just peel it off and it will look just as it did when you first applied the vinyl.
Wraps can also save the paint on your Jeep from minor damage; if you’re dealing with mud, water, or sand, the vinyl acts as a shield to keep the paint underneath fresh. However, vinyl does have a tendency to chip if subjected to rocks. If you’re off roading on gravel all the time, it would be better to look at another option like Plasti Dip. Although it’s not easily removable, it offers a higher level of protection if you’re pushing your Jeep to the edge.
If your Jeep doesn’t see much off-road action, you might consider a new paint job if yours isn’t in the best shape. Vinyl wraps can be cheaper than paint but typically only last 10 years at most compared to 25+ years for a good paint job. If the wrap is left in the sun all the time or treated badly, it may only last two to three years. Another option if the paint is in decent shape is to get a protective wrap or “clear bra” that protects the paint like a vinyl wrap does while letting the existing paint job show through. The costs for these are similar to vinyl wraps.
Vinyl wraps are a great option to change the color or style of your Jeep and also help to protect the paint underneath. As long as you’re not driving off road in harsh conditions, the wrap can help save you some money over a new paint job or in resale value in the future. But, if your wrap is exposed to gravel, it can chip, and won’t end up being great paint protection. Over all, Jeeps can be one of the cheaper vehicles to wrap if you have a model with no roof, have removed the doors, or other customization.