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Do You Know The Secrets To Getting Professional Looking Vinyl Lettering At Do-It-Yourself Prices?

Do you like the idea of saving money, but worried you might get in over your head?

picture of storefront business vinyl lettering

If you’ve never applied vinyl letters before, the process can seem pretty intimidating at first. You don’t want to “mess up” and get the letters crooked. Or even worse, botch the job so badly you have to buy another set and start all over again.

Sign companies are able to use these fears as leverage because as long as you don’t know how easy it is to apply vinyl graphics yourself, you have to pay the “professionals” to do it for you. Plus, in addition to the cost of application, local sign shops charge considerably higher retail prices for the vinyl letters themselves. So you can easily end up paying 300% - 500% more to a full service local sign company.

Want To Save About 70% Over Full-Service Prices?

Yes, you really can save about 70% off by lettering your own company vehicles, enclosed utility trailers and storefront windows. In our step-by-step guide, we’ll show you the real secrets of vinyl graphic application you won’t find anywhere else.

Other so-called “Vinyl Letter Application Instructions” you see on the internet leave out critically important steps.  And missing even one of these key steps can significantly shorten the life of your vinyl graphics. Once you see how simple the instructions are to follow, you’ll get professional results every time.

Vinyl letters and graphics from Best Buy Signs are so easy to apply, they are literally “Goof Proof”.  Every vinyl lettering kit automatically includes:

  1. The secret Goof Proof method we use in our own shop every day – fully illustrated in our step-by-step guide
  2. A 3-Piece Vinyl Magic Application Kit which includes:
    • A special water based deep cleaner and de-waxer (you don’t want to apply vinyl letters to surfaces that still may have wax – they won’t stick as well)
    • Vinyl Magic Application Fluid (for a bubble-free application)
    • A Plastic Squeegee to firmly “press down” the vinyl lettering against the surface (pressure is what activates the adhesive bond)
  3. And our exclusive Goof Proof Guarantee which states, “If you mess up one
    letter or even the whole set, we’ll send you the replacement vinyl letters you need absolutely free of charge.  In fact, we’ll even pay the extra shipping costs!”

Once you’ve put vinyl letters on for the first time, you may wonder how sign shops get away with charging so much for something that’s so easy to do.  It doesn’t take a “professional” to look like one.

Your vinyl lettering, company logo or other graphics automatically come:

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You can choose any letter style, color, artwork or company logo and have it converted into a highly professional, beautiful, multi-colored vinyl graphic image. And computer generated vinyl letters and graphics are so durable, they can last more than 10 years, even through multiple car washes.

  Vinyl Letter hot air gun.Here's a Quck Tip:

In order to preserve the resell value of your vehicle, Vinyl Letters can be removed with the help of a hair dryer or inexpensive heat gun.

Frequently Asked Questions About Vinyl Lettering and Graphics
"What exactly are vinyl letters and graphics"

Vinyl letters and logos are cut from vinyl roll stock resembling the same type of material which bumper stickers are made out of. A computer controlled cutting machine called a plotter, scores and contour cuts the vinyl sheeting into precision, custom shaped vinyl letters and graphics.

When vinyl graphics and logos are applied, it almost looks as if they were printed right onto the surface. There is no clear or white background as with a bumper sticker or other type of decal.

Vinyl Letter step 1Vinyl Letter step 2Vinyl Letter step 3Vinyl Letter step 4

"What are the key differences in all types of vinyl lettering?"

Are you unsure which type of vinyl letters to choose because you don't know these key differences?

Vinyl Letter printing mahcine. Do you even know what your options are?

With the hundreds of choices available in vinyl graphics, it’s easy to get confused.  You could easily pay entirely too much and still not get the results you expect.

Since vinyl letters and graphics are used to produce the text, graphics and logos on 94% of all signs and vehicles, it’s critically important you know which type of vinyl graphics to specify. Otherwise, the decision will be made for you which may not serve your best interests. With these insider secrets, you’ll be able to choose the perfect type of vinyl lettering for any custom sign or vehicle.

"Where can vinyl letters and graphics be used?"

Vinyl graphics are perhaps the sign industry’s most versatile invention to date. They readily stick to most surfaces including:

  • Trucks
  • Trailers
  • SUVs
  • Vans
  • Cars
  • Buses
  • Windshields
  • Boats
  • Storefront Windows
  • Office Doors
  • Interior Store Walls
  • Trade Show Booths
  • Banners
  • Plastic
  • Wood
  • Metal
"What is the best type of vinyl for vehicle lettering and permanent outdoor signs?"

If you plan on having your new vinyl lettered sign in service for 2 years or more, you should choose genuine“2 mil thickness, High-Performance Cast Vinyl Films”.  This specification is universally recognized by sign companies nationally and will remove any confusion as to the type of vinyl graphics you expect to be used for your signage.

Otherwise, if you just assume high performance vinyl graphics will be used, you will likely end up with intermediate vinyl lettering and graphics instead. Intermediate vinyl graphics are perfect for:

  • Banners
  • Temporary or short-term outdoor signs, and
  • Long term interior signs.

However, on vehicles, windows, boats and permanent outdoor signs, high- performance vinyl graphics are strongly recommended.  The small difference in the overall price (approximately 30%) will extend the useful life of your signage by 300% to 400%!

High-performance vinyl graphics have a larger selection of colors to choose from, superior fade resistant qualities and won’t shrink like intermediate vinyl. When intermediate vinyl graphics shrink, they can leave an ugly adhesive residue around the edge of each letter. And as vinyl shrinks, cracks frequently develop in the graphics as it literally pulls itself apart. This doesn’t happen right away but when it does, it literally looks as if someone took a razor knife and sliced the vinyl. It’s not a pretty sight.

"Can you see vinyl graphics and lettering at night?"
Vinyl Letter glow in the dark.

Although there is a vinyl that actually “glows in the dark”, it is designed for interior use only.  What most people are referring to when they are seeking vinyl lettering for night time visibility is reflective vinyl. Reflective vinyl is the same type of vinyl used on STOP signs and other street signs.

Reflective Vinyl Graphic Signs.

Reflective vinyl graphics “light up” by reflecting light back at night such as when your headlights shine on a STOP sign. Without a light source though, the reflective vinyl has no light to reflect back and remains dark. Therefore, if you use reflective vinyl letters for a stationary sign that either won’t catch the headlights or is not lit with exterior lighting, it will NOT be seen. So there‘s no point in spending the extra money.

Since reflective vinyl letters are 74% brighter to the human eye than non-reflective vinyl graphics, they can add extra punch to a sign at night that has exterior lighting. High Performance Reflective Vinyl Graphics are durable outdoors 7-10 years.

"What types of vinyl should I watch out for?"

1. Fluorescent Vinyl Letters

Fluroescent Vinyl Letter colors.

There are certain types of vinyl letters which are more expensive and yet have an extremely short life span. Fluorescent Vinyl graphics are often requested because of it‘s brilliant, eye-catching color.  Although it doesn‘t glow in the dark, it‘s color is so bright, it seems to give off it‘s own light. However, the fluorescent pigments are not UV stable (the rays of the sun wash out the pigment).

The sun usually turns these vibrant colors milky white in as little as 3-6 months. There is one fluorescent vinyl brand we found that has built-in ultraviolet light inhibitors and is rated for up to 2 years outdoors. In either case, fluorescent vinyl graphics should only be considered for short term outdoor promotions. Indoors, it can last several years as long as the vinyl does not get any direct sunlight through storefront glass.

2. Simulated Metal Looking Vinyl Letters

Simulated Vinyl Letters to look like metal.

Mirror Chrome, Brushed Chrome, Mirror Gold and Brushed Gold vinyl graphics resemble the appearance of metal and are frequently requested by clients. However, even though these vinyl films are more expensive than standard colors, the vast majority of these metallized polyester films are rated for only 6-12 months outdoors. If you search hard enough, you can find certain metallized films rated for up to 24 months.

We discovered a manufacturer who uses a proprietary process to extend the life of these metallized vinyl films up to 5 years outdoors! The price is virtually the same and they offer more finishing options. Call us for details and pricing.

Special effect Vinyl Lettering

3. Special Effects Vinyl Letters

These eye-catching vinyl graphic films include, Holographic, Difracto, Metal Flake, Multi-Lens, Mosaic, Carbon Fiber, Fantasy Crystal and Diamond plate. These specialty films are designed for interior signs and short term outdoor applications. The “special effects” break down in as little 6-12 months outdoors.

"What does the sign industry not want us to know about vinyl graphics?"

There is a dirty little secret the sign industry has been hiding from the public for years.  And this everyday practice continues to cost unsuspecting consumers much more than they realize.

Most people don’t know that the sign industry is almost completely unregulated. As a result, sign companies are free to conduct business, behind closed doors, in any manner they choose. Most sign shops conduct business ethically. Unfortunately, far too many sign shops don’t and consumers usually can’t tell the difference, until it’s too late.

Here's What's Happening

One of the easiest ways for a sign shop to cut costs is by substituting intermediate vinyl letters when high-performance vinyl is clearly called for. The raw material cost difference is around 300%! For some sign shops, the financial incentive to save that much money on material costs is just too tempting.

Again, intermediate vinyl lettering is a great product, but it was never intended for extended outdoor use on vehicles and permanent signs. If you personally make the decision to save money by choosing intermediate vinyl graphics over high performance, that’s your choice.

However, it’s not at all uncommon for a sign shop to pretend to offer “superior quality” and then substitute intermediate vinyl letters instead of using the high performance vinyl the customer should be getting. Unfortunately, customers don’t know the difference until after the standard 1 year warranty has expired.

The Root Of The Problem

Part of this problem started more than 20 years ago with the vinyl manufacturers making false claims that their intermediate grade vinyl lettering was “Rated Outdoors For 3-5 Years Outdoors”. Sign shops trusted this information to be correct and substituted intermediate vinyl letters for use on vehicles and permanent signs. After all, upwards of 5 years is not an unreasonable lifespan for a sign, right?

Unfortunately, it didn’t take long to see this 3-5 year rated vinyl start fading and cracking in as little as 6-12 months! Although intermediate vinyl graphics have improved over the years, it still shrinks, cracks and fades in a third of the time of high-performance vinyl.

Most vinyl manufacturers today claim their intermediate vinyl films will last 5-6 years outdoors, but we continue to witness far too many failures in just 12-24 months.  Where do we see all these failures? On signs everywhere, in full public view along the highway, which fade in a very short time after being installed.

The Paradox

The same vinyl manufacturers who over-rate their intermediate vinyl graphics, under-rate their high performance vinyl films. In many if not most cases, high performance vinyl letters have far outlasted their 5, 7 or 8 year ratings. With few exceptions, 2 mil, cast high-performance vinyl lettering maintains it’s dimensional stability (doesn’t crack), is highly fade resistant and lasts for several years, even under extreme saltwater marine conditions.

One Final Word On This Subject

Lighted signs are now commonly decorated using specialized High-Performance Translucent vinyl graphics. These films are specially designed to transmit light evenly through the colored vinyl graphics at night creating a perfectly uniform and professional appearance. When this type of vinyl lettering is used, lighted sign faces can easily last 7-10 years outdoors.

However, intermediate vinyl letters light up just like “the real thing”. To the untrained eye, there’s no difference until the intermediate vinyl begins to show signs of fading in 6-12 months.  So be aware that substitutions are just as common on lighted sign faces as non-lighted signs.

How Can You Protect Yourself?

When the type of signage you want calls for High-Performance Vinyl graphics, ask for it by name. Make it part of the written specifications on your order. You’ll minimize the chance that an unauthorized substitution will be made because you are making it clear you are an informed buyer who knows the difference.

"How do I know that my custom vinyl letters and graphics will turn out the way I want?"
With almost 20 years in the vinyl lettering industry, we continue to exceed customer expectations and guarantee our work with 100% satisfaction

Are you concerned that your custom vinyl lettering may not turn out the way you want?

After all, we are probably hundreds of miles away from you so how can you be certain your order will turn out right? Fortunately, it only takes seconds to transmit full-color custom vinyl lettering designs from our computer to yours because e-mails travel so fast these days.

Upon order approval, here’s how the process works:

  1. First, your order goes straight to the Art Department
  2. Our Graphic Designer will then e-mail you a proof
    (a “proof” is a picture of what your sign will look like)
  3. Once you review the layout, let us know if you would like to see any changes, and …
  4. If you have any changes, we will e-mail you proofs as needed until you’re completely happy with your design.
"Do you offer any buyer protection guarantees?"

Yes! Every vinyl lettering order comes with a 100% Buyer Protection Guarantee

Don't let OTHER vinyl lettering companies give you the run-around, we stand behind all of our work with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, even if we have to pay for it!

Sometimes, we make mistakes. We are only human after all. But it's how a business handles mistakes that counts, wouldn't you agree? So if we do happen to overlook something on your order, we will bend over backwards to make you happy. We stand behind our work with a 100% Customer Satisfaction Guarantee.

We will promptly replace any product that is defective in workmanship or that is different from what you approved. And for your trouble, you'll even get a very pleasant surprise gift.

"Is your website secure and credit card safe?"

Does the thought of buying custom vinyl lettering online with a credit card leave you feeling a bit anxious?

Are you worried you might be taking an unnecessary risk? With all the bad press about credit card fraud and card numbers getting stolen by hackers, it's wise to proceed with caution. We can understand if you still have some personal concerns about the safety of your credit card information.

  1. Security is our #1 priority when we are processing your vinyl graphics order online. We utilize the latest in encryption technology and locked-down, firewalled internet serversOur system uses the latest 256-bit Encryption SSL technology as used by the Banking Industry,, and thousands of other online merchants
  2. SSL technology works by encrypting all your personal and credit card information so it can travel over the internet without being intercepted by thieves
  3. And as an added precaution, the moment you complete your custom vinyl graphics order online and the charges are authorized by your credit card company, your credit card information is INSTANTLY DELETED from our data-base. It's the same as if you walked into our business, charged your order and then we SHREDDED your credit card receipt.
click here to design and price your custom vinyl window lettering and graphics now