Will a car wrap cover scratches & scuffs?

By Richard Clark on Dec 11, 2020 8:27:55 AM

8 min read
Will a car wrap cover scratches? Blog cover image of a newly branded vehicle wrap

In this blog, we’ll reveal if a vehicle wrap can cover scratches, dents and scrapes and how wrapping can improve the appearance of an older vehicle.

Will a van or car wrap cover scratches? 

It all depends on how deep the scratch or scuff is. Vinyl wraps bond tightly to surfaces when applied, so wrapping a car or van with a scratch may cause the defect to be more noticeable as the vinyl picks up the contours of any chips or deep scratches. If you can run your hand across the vehicle without feeling any raised edges, then a vinyl car wrap will successfully cover the scuff or scratch. 

You can still wrap a car with scratches, but for best results we recommend that any deeper scratches or chips from hail damage or stones are repaired before the vinyl wrap is applied.  

If you’ve already considered the above and your vehicle is scratch-free or maintaining the original paintwork is not top priority, there are a number of advantages to wrapping a personal vehicle or existing business vehicle  

Breathing new life into older vehicles

Whether you are looking to increase the visibility of your business, or establish your brand identity across your fleetvehicle wraps are an extremely versatile marketing solution for businesses. Alternatively, if you have a premium car of your own, such as a Maserati or Porsche, a vinyl wrap can give it a unique look and feel so you can stand out from the crowd.  

But have you thought about how vehicle wrapping can give an older car or van a new lease of life? 

There are a number of benefits to leveraging your existing vehicle assets and giving them an upgrade, including increasing their life on the road – without stretching your budget.  

Looking for more information on increasing the longevity of your vehicle? Discover how a small business used vehicle wrapping to give their vans a new lease of life.

Firstly, what condition is your older vehicle in? 

If a van or car has lacklustre paintwork in need of an update, then vinyl wrapping is a fantastic alternative to purchasing a new vehicle.   

However, as well as looking out for scratches and scuffs, there's one other element to bear in mind before proceeding with a wrapping project: dents. 

What if my vehicle has a dent? 

As older vehicles have been on the road longer, you might find that it may have been involved in a previous accident and has had dents removed and repairs made. Where repaired vehicle panels are resprayed compared to the rest of the vehicle, vinyl wraps may remove the newer paintwork when the vehicle is unwrapped at a later date.  

While this may not affect commercial vehicles as much, for car wraps on personal vintage vehicles this is definitely something to be aware of before you embark on a wrapping project. It all depends on your priorities - ask yourself what matters most, the visual look or the value of the vehicle. The last thing you want is to unwrap before you resell the car and find that the vinyl has lifted the original paintwork.  

What are the benefits of wrapping older cars or vans? 

  1. Increasing Longevity 

For businesses, wrapping an older van with tired-looking paintwork that has seen better days can be a more efficient option than leasing or purchasing a new vehicle for its shiny new exterior.  


Wrapping an older transit van could cost £2,000. But divide that over the lifetime of the wrap, (about 5 years on average), and the wrap is only costing you about a £1 per day.  

This may be a more cost-effective solution to consider first before leasing or purchasing a new vehicle, that would need to be wrapped anyway. 


  1. Protecting Paintwork 

For owners of high-end vintage cars, a vehicle wrap can provide an exciting new look, all while protecting the original paintwork and maintaining resale value. A premium vintage car is a significant investment and a wrap can act as a first line of defence for chips and scratches. 

Visit our blog for some top tips on vehicle wrap aftercare.

  1. Consistency 

Wrapping an older vehicle with a laminate coating will transform the faded panels of the original paintwork to a freshuniform, brand-aligned exterior.  

While an older, plain vehicle will stick out within your fleet, an older wrapped vehicle will fit in seamlessly with your other business vehicles.  

This helps to boost brand awareness, recognition and overall trust - particularly if you need to access secure areaas part of your business, such as a building site 

If your van is fully wrapped, your brand will speak for itself, compared to an older, plain van which could get turned away even if your driver has identification – a potentially embarrassing situation for your business! 

Check out how this business van was transformed to display company services  and generate leads.

Before & After

JB Sales van before Raccoon vehicle wrapping used to cover scuffs and bring it up to dateJB Sales van with specialist vehicle wrap application


A cost-effective alternative to investing in a brand-new vehicle 

So, will a car wrap cover scratches? Unfortunately the answer is no for deeper scratches - make sure that you consider the condition of the vehicle first, any dents, hail damaged, chips or larger scratches will need to be repaired in order for a smooth wrap application 

But if you have vehicle that are just a bit tired looking a fresh wrap can bring it back up to scratch with the rest of your fleet, plus provide a fresh source of leads. 

For more information on what vehicle wrapping can do for you, check out our Ultimate Guide.

You will learn the benefits of branding your fleet, how fleet wrapping works, how much it costs, how to maximise the effectiveness of your branding, different types of fleet wraps, how other companies use vehicle wrapping and frequently asked questions. 

Richard Clark

Written by Richard Clark

Founder of Raccoon, a graphics company launched in 1992. Still working hard to help businesses and brands connect with their target market!