Southern California Sign Blog

City of Burbank - Open House Real Estate Sign Guidelines

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, May 31, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

City of Burbank - Open House Real Estate Sign Guidelines


Open House Sign Image


Real estate signs are an integral component of the Realtors business arsenal. They allow the agent to effectively market a property, and they serve as an important directional aide when conducting an open house. With the advent of technology, real estate signs now function in conjunction with many other marketing tools available to the Realtor. However, they retain their status as one of the most important methods of marketing a home.

Unfortunately, real estate signs can become the source of controversy in a community. If residents perceive a preponderance of real estate signs, they will put pressure on local government officials to restrict the display of the signs. Fortunately, state laws exist to protect the rights of real estate practitioners and home owners to market properties via real estate signs. The laws balance these rights with the community’s need to control visual clutter and safety.


You must follow the directions contained herein and use common sense.
Signs will be picked up and destroyed if not in compliance:

  1. Size - Total Face area no more than 24 (inches) x 24 (inches).
  2. Height - Vertical distance from ground to highest point not to exceed 3 ft.
  3. Can only advertise a residence in the City of Burbank.
  4. No more than 4 signs per property on public rights-of-way
  5. Must be on stake or A-Frame support.
  6. Signs must be in good condition and of professional signage material.
  7. No balloons or flags can be affixed to the sign, nor any other object that would call attention to it.
  8. Time - Signs shall only be displayed during the “open house”. Saturdays and Sundays (or federal or state holidays) not earlier than 8am and must be removed no later than dusk or 6pm, whichever is earlier. Thursdays, signs may be displayed no earlier than 8am and removed no later than 2pm.
  9. Must have a valid PERMIT as evidenced by valid DECALS on each side of the sign. These permits must be renewed annually.
  10. Identification required. Must have your name, address and telephone number affixed to the sign in an area not to exceed 2”x3” (Business card taped to the sign would be ideal).

It is recommended that you read the entire ordinance for other provisions not set forth on this sheet. Avoid placing signs on the new Chandler Bike path -- it is considered a median. For a full copy of the sign ordinance please contact the Burbank Association of REALTORS at 818/845-7643.

Download your Public Works Department Application/Permit - Temporary Residential Real Estate Open House Signs

If you have any further questions or need a professional sign made, please give us a call at THE SIGN STUDIO (818) 843-9200 or e-mail us at


Topics: Open House Signs, City of Burbank Real Estate Signs, Burbank Signs

Los Angeles Sign Company | Dimensional Signs & Letters

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Thu, May 30, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Los Angeles Sign Company | Dimensional Signs & Letters


Dimensional Letters and Logos provide a sophisticated, professional, and distinctive image. Whether you're creating a simple sign on top of your headquarters or an intricate lobby display, your message deserves to stand out. A great way to enhance the appeal of your business instantly. Made with acrylic, wood, aluminum, PVC or a variety of sign foam to ensure of durability. For further information or questions, please send us an e-mail at or give us a call (818) 843-9200.


 Dimensional Letters @ The Sign Studio, Burbank, CA


Topics: Dimensional Sign Letters, Acrylic & Metal Letters, Glendale & Pasadena Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | New Sign Buyer's Checklist

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Wed, May 29, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

New Sign Buyer's Checklist

Here's a quick questionnaire to help identify your signage needs and guide your SIGN STUDIO consultant in making good recommendations for your project.

Use of your sign:
Are you directing, informing, or selling?

Image you want to project:
Professional? Sophisticated? Youthful? Fun? How should it coordinate with your other graphics and advertising?

Your target customers:
Whose attention do you want to attract?

Viewing distance and time:
How far will readers be from the sign? How long will they have to read it?

Mounting your sign:
Where will the sign be displayed? How will it be attached? Will you need the approval of a landlord or local sign code authority?

Display time and conditions:
Temporary or permanent? Indoors or outdoors?Sign copy and layout: What message do you want to communicate in your copy? Do you have special logo or layout requirements?




For further information or questions, please give us a call at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Sign Estimate


Topics: Sign & Banner Company, Sign Buyer's Checklist, Glendale & Pasadena Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | Trade Show Signs & Banners

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Tue, May 28, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Los Angeles Sign Company | Trade Show Signs & Banners

A Trade Show Display Booth Is Your Canvas, Get Noticed

Your trade show display booth is the canvas for your marketing message. Get noticed with a custom trade show display from The Sign Studio.

A Few Seconds. That's all the time you have to attract potential customers to your trade show booth. Get noticed with portable tabletop displays, pop-up displays, retractable banners, motion displays and even ceiling and floor graphics. The Sign Studio's state-of-the-art digital printing capabilities can help you create a custom display that will grab attention and draw potential customers into your booth.
Portable Trade Show Displays, Pop Up Display

The Sign Studio offers what is considered to be the strongest portable display system in the industry as well as the easiest to setup and break down. Multiple configurations and unique modular design allows you to modify the size and shape of your portable display booth as your needs grow. The versatility and customization make The Sign Studio pop-up displays the perfect solution for your exhibit presentations all in lightweight and compact design.

Retractable Banner Stands
Retractable Banner Stands are the most popular banner stand in today's market and can be seen throughout most all Trade Shows. Retractable Banner Stands store the banner safely inside the base where it's protected during travel or in storage. Once on location, simply unroll the banner from the body of the unit to present an instant display that can be continually re-used.

Tabletop Display Booth
Looking for a simple way to showcase your services or products? Not interested in transporting everything but the kitchen sink to each show. Then the solution is simple; a compact and lightweight, inexpensive tabletop trade show booth from The Sign Studio! The ease of set up and break down makes our tabletop displays a cinch to handle.

Tradeshow Signage, Retractable graphic
If you have any further questions or need more information, please call us at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Topics: Trade show signs & Banners, Glendale & Pasadena Sign Company, Retractable Banner Stands

Los Angeles Sign Company | LED Signs vs. Neon Signs

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Mon, May 27, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Los Angeles Sign Company | LED Signs vs. Neon Signs

The Many Benefits of L.E.D. Illuminated Signs

LED stands for light emitting diode and the technology has been around since the 1960s. Its greatest benefit is that it uses only 12 volts. Neon uses up to 9,000 to 15,000 volts. LED has comparable brightness to neon and is rated to last up to 100,000 hours when properly installed.

Because LED is a low voltage system, fire hazards are greatly reduced over neon lighting.

LED lighting can save up to 80% power over comparable sized traditional neon-lighted signs. Return on investment can be made within three years via power costs savings.

LED lighting and components require only one 3/8" wall penetration per channel letter. Compare this to neon which requires two 1" wall penetrations per channel letter. This means less wall destruction and excess conduit and GTO wiring. A LED lighting installation is clean and simple.

Only recently has the technology advanced to the point where LED lighting is almost comparable in pricing to neon. Although it is still more costly to install LED, The Sign Studio DOES NOT pass this additional cost on to our customers. Our bids are competitive with other sign company neon lighting estimates.

Also, embracing change isn't easy. Neon has been a faithful lighting option for the sign industry for over a hundred years. There's no doubt that the change over to LED for sign lighting will eventually happen, however, The Sign Studio is on the leading edge of this exciting technology right now.

Installation Examples of LED vs. NEON:


LED Installation


Neon Installation

If you have any questions or would like further information, please give us a call at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at



Topics: LED Signs, Exterior Signs, Glendale and Pasadena Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | Lifetime Guarantee On Your Sign Letters!

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Sun, May 26, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Los Angeles Sign Company | Lifetime Guarantee On Your Sign Letters!

There are some instances when the signage you buy comes with a lifetime guarantee and Gemini lettering is just what comes to mind. Gemini has become a familiar supplier to many sign fabrication concerns for this very reason! The warranty covering lettering, custom logos and shapes extends to fading, breaking, as well as defects in the manufacturing process. This represents a true cost saving that protects your investment in this portion of your sign. Whether you order individual letters for mounting directly to your building or storefront, or integrate the lettering for mounting on an exterior post and panel sign or monument, the fact remains that you are making a very smart investment choice. The material finishes are rigorously tested to withstand extreme environmental conditions and this process is continually refined. Like most signs, periodic maintenance, like dusting and washing them with mild dish soap, will keep your lettering looking great for years!

Gemini Letters

The Sign Studio is proud to supply Gemini lettering, like the metal laminates pictured above, to our customers. Other options range from molded plastic, cast and cut metals, or metal faced lettering mounted to a variety of substrates. Feel free to consult with us about your choices in lettering style, size and mounting options, as well as Gemini aluminum and bronze plaques.

If you have any further questions or need more information, please call us at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at

Topics: Lifetime Warranty Gemini Letters, Sign Letter Guarantee, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | ADA, Tactile and Braille Signs

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, May 24, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Los Angeles Sign Company | ADA, Tactile and Braille Signs

Family Restroom Door Signs

When selecting family restroom signs, consider what message you are trying to convey to the public. Are the restrooms equipped for the entire family, ADA compliant and/or do they offer a changing station for mothers with babies?

Most family restroom signs convey simple images, often in black and white, that convey the purpose or functionality of the restroom. For example, women are depicted with a triangle shape, imagery that most people associated with a skirt, men are depicted without this added shape and a child is often holding hands between a man and a woman. If the restroom is ADA compliant, the image of an individual sitting in wheelchair is the most commonly chosen for the family restroom signs.

Beyond the basic imagery, family restroom signs are available in a variety of color backdrops; black, blue, green or even white. For lighter color signs, the imagery is often printed in black, whereas signs with a darker backdrop may offer the same imagery but in white forms for visual contrast. Family restroom signs are available in vertical and horizontal layouts, and a variety of sizes.

When selecting a sign for your business or organization, keep in mind that the sign needs to not only be easy to identify, but readable from a reasonable distance. Consider the overall size of the space as well as where the average visitor's viewpoint will be when selecting the sign's size. Ultimately, the sign's form and function should be simple, easy to understand and visible for all visitors entering the space.

If you have any questions or need assistance with anything, please give us a call at The Sign Studio (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at

ADA Family Restroom Signs

Topics: ADA Washroom Signs, Braille & Tactile Signs, Glendale & Pasadena Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | The Value of Signage

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Thu, May 23, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Understanding the Value of Signage

There is an old axiom that the 3 keys to successfully selecting real estate are "location, location and location". The 3 keys that guide the successful selection and development of commercial properties are Visibility, Accessibility and Parking.

An effective on-premise sign is a critical component of visibility, and the sign should receive the samecareful attention as these other components. Without a properly designed and placed on-premise business sign, a commercial site cannot function at its full economic potential.

This section presents information about:
- understanding the value of signage
- determining what an effective sign will mean for your business' success
- working with and possibly correcting problems with existing signage, and
- using signage to change customer behaviors.

The Functions of the On-Premise Sign
An effective on-premise sign is a critical component of visibility, and the sign should receive the same
careful attention as these other components.

1. It develops a memory for a location and the products or services available at the location.
2. It reinforces a memory and extends recall of other advertising efforts.
3. It attracts new customers by prompting first-time or impulse visits or purchases.
4. It modifies customary purchase decisions or habits. Changeable copy and temporary window
signs are especially effective in encouraging variation from accustomed consumption patterns. (For
more about modifying customary purchase habits, see the section that follows.)

Branding a Site
One measure of how effective or valuable an on-premise sign is to its site is demonstrated by how well it
helps to brand the site. A sign "brands" a location, just as a product label brands the product. If an
attractive image is not communicated by the business' sign, the business will rarely convey its true
message, or get the clientele it seeks.

Every site development and sign program strategy will benefit if the on-premise sign is made the focal
point of the site. If a site is "signcentric", it means that the sign catches the customer's attention and leads
him to the target business. A measurable positive effect on gross revenues should immediately result from

Developing and Measuring Readership
How do you know if your sign is (or is not) branding your site for future reference by potential customers?
You determine readership.

Readership advertising effectiveness tests whether a message is effectively speaking to the intended
audience. Two of the most commonly used research techniques are the recognition and recall tests
discussed above. Rating services conduct the tests and tabulate the results for all major-media
advertisers (i.e., television and newspaper advertisers rely on Nielsen Ratings Services). Small business
owners not engaged in franchised or chain business operations, however, usually do not have access to
national rating service readership tabulations; these independent small business owners may require the
services of a local market researcher to obtain readership measures. Often, on-premise sign companies
and trade associations will assist in compiling data.

Why do you want to measure readership? Without knowing the effectiveness of your signage, you
won't know how well you are doing, or what you might want to change. For your greatest success - with a
sign and therefore with your business - measuring readership is a diagnostic tool so you can fix whatever
is not working, and increase what is working.

The importance of signage to mobile consumers is underlined by the fact that many are in a hurry. By way of example, Burger King Corporation conducted a survey over several weeks. The survey results were part of evidence submitted in a legal action brought by Burger King (among others) against Agoura Hills, California, to prevent the removal of its freeway-oriented, high rise on-premise sign as required under a new sign code. The Burger King sign was visible to the Ventura Freeway; the building was not.
Surveys were conducted at Quick Service Food (QSF), family and atmosphere restaurants. The
participants were asked how they first became aware of the restaurant. Here are the results.

How did you first become aware of this restaurant?
The spontaneous nature of the QSF visits at 35% has implications for most business strategies,
particularly advertising in the form of on-premise signage. Burger King and its co-plaintiffs won the lawsuit, and the City was permanently enjoined from enforcing its high-rise pole sign ban against them. (See, Denny's Inc., v. City of Agoura Hills, 56 Cal.App. 4th 1312, 66 Cal. Rptr 2d 382 (1997)).
In another example, The Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) has trip generation rates that are
derived from counts taken at the driveway of various land uses. While typical trip generation rates are
Participants' Responses Quick Service Food (% of responses)
Family Restaurant (% of responses)
Atmosphere Restaurant (% of responses)
Saw it (the sign) while passing 35% 26% 13%
Always knew 29% 27% 19%
Word of mouth 14% 30% 54%
Advertising 10% 6% 4%
All other 6% 7% 7%
Don't know 6% 4% 3%

Derived from counts taken at the driveways of various land uses, not all trips generated at the driveway
represent new trips made for the express purpose of entering the site; instead some are made by
motorists who did not set out for the site, but who enter it as an intermediate stop on the way to or from
another destination. This type of stop is referred to by the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) as a
"pass-by trip"; for our purposes, it is defined as an "impulse" stop.

The percentage of pass-by trips or impulse stops varies by land use. The following table sets out ITE
estimates regarding the percentage of stops attributable to motorists for whom the site is not a scheduled
destination. The table demonstrates that impulse trade is very important to many businesses. Effective onpremise communication can help persuade passersby to stop and shop.

In the modern marketplace, the right place-based advertising will effectively and economically permit the
local shopkeeper to compete, even with the mass merchandiser or large retailer.

Acquiring New Customers
In 1995, the California Electric Sign Association (CESA) and the International Sign Association (ISA)
commissioned a major study of on-premise signage performance by the University of San Diego. This
study had two parts.

Part I of the study involved analysis of a group of variables, including signage, location, hours of
operation, population demographics and geographic characteristics on sales at 162 southern California
locations of a major fast-food chain. These variables were tested at each location to predict the impact of
on-premise signage upon:
1. annual sales revenues
2. annual number of transactions
3. the average dollar amount spent per transaction.
The results of the study indicated that the number of signs at a particular site has a significant and
positive impact on both the annual sales revenues and number of annual customer transactions. For
example, from the results of the study, the researchers were able to predict:
Type of Land Use Impulse-Stop
Shopping Centers:
Larger than 400,000 sf Gross Area 20%
Between 100,000 to 400,000 sf Gross Area 25%
Smaller than 100,000 sf Gross Area 35%
Convenience Market 40%
Discount Club/Warehouse Store 20%
Fast Food Restaurant 40%
Sit Down Restaurant 15%
Service Station 45%
Supermarket 20%

1. On average, one additional on-premise sign resulted in an increase in annual sales revenues of
4.75%. This translates to a $23,750 increase in average sales revenues for a typical store in the
study group with annual sales of $500,000.
2. On average, one additional on-premise sign increased the annual number of transactions by
3.93%. This translates into more than 3,900 additional transactions for a store with an annual
average of 100,000 transactions.
3. On average, one additional 36-square-foot wall sign added $0.06 per transaction, while one
additional 144-square-foot pole sign added $0.78 per transaction.
Part II of the study involved analyzing seven years of weekly sales data for "Pier 1 Imports" to measure
the effects of modifications, additions, or removal of on-premise signage on sales performance.

The results showed that "on-premise signage has a statistically significant and financially substantive
impact on the revenues of a site [and]... is a significant constituent of the factors causing the success of a
retail endeavor." In brief:
1. The addition of new signage to previously unsigned buildings, and the replacement of existing
signage (generally, with larger signs) resulted in an average revenue increase of 5%.
2. The addition of a pole sign, or a plaza identity sign including the store's name, resulted in an
average increase in weekly sales of 5-10%. The increase was attributed by the researchers to the
new signs' enhancement of site visibility to passing traffic.
3. The addition of small directional signs indicating entrance and exit routes resulted in weekly sales
increases ranging from 4-12%. The increases were attributed to the signs' ability to guide a sitebound
shopper more than any specific advertising effect.
These increases in revenues, as a result of signage, demonstrate the positive effect on profitability at a
specific site, especially given that normal profits in the retail industry are approximately 1-2%.
The California Electric Sign Association (CESA), the International Sign Association (ISA), the Sign User
Council of California, and the Business Identity Council of America sponsored the study. A summary of the findings appears in The Economic Value of On-Premise Signage, a compendium of signage-related
research results and articles (e.g., sign amortization; copyright and trademark protection.) The booklet was published jointly in 1997 by CESA and ISA.

Modifying Customary Purchase Habits
One of the primary goals of advertising is to change purchase behaviors. Effective advertising can
increase purchases within discrete segments of the market by introducing "intervening opportunities"
along customary travel paths. This is especially so in highly discretionary areas, such as quick service
foods and economy lodging, yet it holds true, also, for the business with more specialized products or
services to offer.

Generally, a business' fixed and variable costs should be covered from a stable consumer pool, with
profits coming in from unexpected sources. The right sign often prompts an unplanned stop, or changes
the customer's mind once he is on the premises. Changeable copy and temporary window signs are
especially effective in encouraging variation from accustomed consumption patterns. Because temporary
or variable message signage is relatively inexpensive, the dollars generated by such signage usually
represent pure profit.

It is estimated that 35-50 percent of the consumer population today shops outside their local area.
Legible, conspicuous on-premise signage will assist in attracting a large percentage of these non-local
and newcomer consumers. Further, an effective on-premise sign provides 24-hour exposure of its
message to a large pool of potential customers at a fraction of the cost (when depreciated over several
years) of other media. The lower the cost to obtain customer memory or top-of-mind awareness, the
higher the return on advertising dollars.

The Signage Appraisal Process
Like real estate, signage has a value that can actually be measured or appraised. The visibility component to a real estate site typically encompasses more than the traditional sign out front.

How is an appraisal of a sign done?
The three traditional approaches are:
1. Cost of Replacement (or Substitution). The signage appraisal method applies a cost replacement
approach to determine the cost of replacing a sign's commercial communication or
advertising value with other forms of advertising, such as newspaper, television, and radio
advertisements. It is not used to measure the cost of replacing the physical structure of the sign, as
is the common measure of value in building or home appraisals.
2. Market Comparison. Generally speaking, the market recognizes premium prices for those
commercial properties with the best visibility. Outdoor advertising structures such as billboards or
bus shelters have recognized buying, selling, and leasing markets. The market sales comparison
approach as applied to the visual communication component of signage in its many forms may
measure the differentials of rents in the market. Customer surveys also may be developed, tested
and analyzed. The sales per square foot of similarly situated sites with varying levels of signage or
varying ability to be seen via the passing traffic may also be analyzed.
3. Income Flow or Capitalization. This approach is used to ascertain the present value of the
anticipated future income to be generated by a property over its remaining useful life. For the
purposes of signage appraisal, this method focuses on income generated by customers who are
prompted to stop solely by the sign. The retailer's gross retail margins are analyzed and then

This analysis is complicated by alternative signage forms such as business form or product franchising or
chains where the system is integrated into networks of retail sites supported by national advertising
(media) programs. The fundamentals of valuation and evaluation start with understanding that signs are
commercial speech. Additionally signs are relied upon and used by consumers to make and influence their shopping and purchasing decisions.

Highest and Best Use Analysis
Prior to the above described three-part appraisal process, a highest and best use analysis of the site is
undertaken. This analysis establishes the most profitable use of a site in light of any legal, physical or
financial constraints. Highest and best use (as applied to signage) means that the on-premise sign is
viewable by the intended audience (i.e., passing motorists, pedestrians), and that its copy can
communicate as it's meant to (i.e., is clearly visible, legible and understandable by the intended audience).

If you have any questions, please give us a call at The Sign Studio (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


 Sign Value Image

Topics: Los Angeles Sign Company, Glendale & Pasadena Sign Company, Important Sign Value

Los Angeles Sign Company | Sign Development Programs

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Wed, May 22, 2013 @ 06:05 AM


Large institutions such as libraries, college campuses, hospitals and the like, will typically go beyond the traditional aspects of building construction or renovation and work with a sign consultant or fabricator to develop a specific sign program. This will consist of analyzing the floor plan to understand exactly how the building is being used, not only by the building owner and inhabitants, but by visitors who are able bodied and those with disabilities. A survey that includes way finding and accessibility will be taken into account, the types of signs required and their placement throughout the building must be considered. Many details go into this process which should be a collaborative one between the building owner, architect, builder and sign consultant.

The basics will include a complete site plan with tabular legend showing address, zoning, owner and tenant information, contractor, lot particulars and type and quantity of the proposed signs. Property lines, location of utilities, landscaping, parking stalls, street lines, utility poles, fencing, as well as existing signage, etc. must all be identified. Scaled elevation drawings will show the existing location of signs (whether being retained or removed) and will include the locations of the proposed signs.
Architectural elements will include:

• Compatibility of the signs with the design motif of the building
• Incorporating common design elements such as sign materials, colors, lettering style, etc.
• Consistency of the design to promote unity, continuity to prevent disarray and/or clashing features
• Compliance with local zoning and planning departments
• Public safety and regulatory concerns

If you have any further questions or need more information, please call us at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Sign Estimate

Topics: Outside Signs, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Company, Sign Development Program

Los Angeles Sign Company | Handicap and Disability Parking Signs

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Tue, May 21, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Los Angeles Sign Company | Handicap and Disability Parking Signs

Disability Access Signage, Handicap Parking Signs and more at The Sign Studio in LA County

Are you looking for a unique sign to designate disabled or handicapped parking? We are the unique sign company that can create it for you! The Sign Studio in LA County will use their expertise and imagination to create the perfect signage for you. A sign that says and shows your compassion but also incorporates the International Symbol of Access (ISA) or blue wheelchair. Our illuminated signs offer a great advantage for the disabled community by being easily visible in dark locations! Our professional team of designers can help make your environment inviting and accessible to everyone. Our professional team of installers will insure you meet ADA standards with all our ISA compliant signs. We follow all the federal American with Disabilities Act Handicap Accessible Parking Regulations.

The Sign Studio is a full service sign company from creation and development to installation and customer satisfaction. Increase your sales with a custom designed accessible sign. Let your signage say "I care" about you! Our indoor or outdoor handicap and accessible signs will meet your needs as you are meeting the needs of others. Cater to the Community! The Sign Studio in LA County does not discriminate. We are the sign company for everyone!

If you have any questions or need assistance with anything, please give us a call at The Sign Studio (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at

Handicap Sign Image

Topics: Reserved Handicapped Parking, ISA and Disability Access Signs, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | Cost Effective Banners

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Mon, May 20, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Banners are the most popular, versatile, and cost effective type of signs among businesses today.

Banner Sign Images

You've come to the right place for your custom vinyl or digital print banners. At The Sign Studio we encourage you to let our experts design your banner for the most effective utilization possible. Custom vinyl banners are among the most popular and cost effective forms of advertising for businesses today. From all weather vinyl banners to our indoor event banners, see what The Sign Studio can do for you!

Attract new business with your all weather banner!
Vinyl and digital print Banners are great for both indoor and outdoor use and can help generate traffic and sell products. Banners are great for promotional sales events, attracting new customers to buy items that they might not initially have purchased.

Customize your banner!

The limitless size and available colors of our outdoor banners allows you to customize a large commercial banner for your business or we can design anything on your mind. If you are not sure what you want, let our expert designers show you some layouts. With emerging technologies, banners are now available in several different materials including poly, vinyl, nylon and flex-face. The ease of installation and effectiveness of vinyl banners makes advertising easy.

Give us a call at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at for further information or if you have any questions.

Need a QUOTE

Topics: Pasadena & Glendale Banner Sign Company, Sale & Lease Banners, Grand Opening Banners

Los Angeles Sign Company | Installation Methods for Ground Signs

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Sun, May 19, 2013 @ 06:05 AM


The most common and effective ground mount methods of installation are:

Pouring a concrete pad is a safe way to prepare a site for signage. The concrete will be
hard and dry when you are ready to install and the stands can be made at your leisure.
To install simply bolt the plate at the bottom of the stand to the concrete base using
Hilti-type expanding fasteners.
Pros: Easy install, easily removable.
Cons: Sign is not theft proof.

If more permanence is required, dig a big hole, put the stand in the hole, and fill with
Pros: Very durable.
Cons: Difficult to remove.

Some sites do not allow concrete for environmental reasons. This means digging a
bigger hole and filling with rocks before covering with earth.
Pros: Environmentally friendly.
Cons: Time-consuming, not as durable.

Always remember to check with your local Zoning and Planning Departments before installing any projects.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at The Sign Studio - (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Blog Picture of Monument Install Methods

Topics: Sign Installations, Ground Signs, Pasadena and Glendale Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | The Impact of Your Sign in Marketing!

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Sat, May 18, 2013 @ 06:05 AM


Have you considered the impact that your sign has on your business?Let's discuss what signage can do for your business, and how signs can be used to your advantage.

Signs are one of the most efficient and effective means of communication. Signs help people find you; they reach people who are passing by your establishment; they present an image of your business. In short, signs, tell people who you are and what you are selling.
Signs are such a powerful communication medium that it is difficult to estimate the extent of their influence. Other media require the directed attention of the person receiving the message. Signs, however, can convey a message while creating a mood or feeling of atmosphere. It is not necessary for people to give full attention to your sign in order to derive meaning from its presence.

What Is a Sign?
A sign is the most direct form of visual communication available. In fact, so many people use signs without a second thought that it is easy to overlook their importance. When we cannot talk to other people directly in a given location, we tack up signs: wet paint, beware of dog, enter here, garage sales, etc. signs are the only form of mass communication directly available to everyone - they are the people's street communication system.

What Signs Can Do for Your Business
- Signs perform three major communications functions for your business; they give information and direction, provide a format for street advertising, and build your image.
- Signs Give Information About Your Business and Direct People to Your Business Location.
- Signs index the environment so people can find you. This is especially true for travelers, new members of your community, and impulse shoppers who may be on a journey to purchase a particular good or service which you sell. Americans are mobile. Each year 40 million of us travel over 1.7 trillion miles by automobile and approximately 19 per cent of us change our place of residence. A primary source of customers for your business is the large number of people who are new to your community or who may be just passing through. Your sign is the most effective way of reaching this mobile or transient group of potential customer.
- Signs can correct a poor location by substituting effective communication for poor site characteristics. If your business is located on a site which is not visible or in a building which does not correspond with the goods or services offered, your sign can overcome this disability. For example, most buildings are not built to conform to the design needs of any particular type of tenant. Without an effective sign it is often impossible to determine what type of business is being conducted in a given building. In addition, when your site is located off a busy traffic artery or in an area which is not easily accessible your sign can communicate to people who are passing on a busy street several blocks away. If you are located off a busy freeway but far from an exit, your sign becomes your main device for directing people to your business. High-rise signs are used when a business is located away from potential customers' normal pathways of travel.

Signs Are Street Advertising
Your sign provides an easily recognizable display format for the goods or services you are selling. For most businesses the street is where potential customers are. The message conveyed on the street reaches people who are close enough to make a purchase.

Street advertising also helps people develop a memory of your business name and the products and services you sell. People tend to buy from businesses they know.

Signs can build an image for your business and help you identify with the market segment you are trying to reach.

Through materials and design, a sign can appeal to a given group of potential customers. For example, some firms attempt to capture the youth market, others senior citizens, others unmarried single people and so forth. If you have a particular market segment that you wish to attract to your business, your sign can be an important means of bringing these people in.

The Advantages of Signs
On-premise signs are your most effective and efficient means of commercial communication because they are inexpensive, available, practical, easy to use, always on the job, and directly oriented to the trade area of your business.

For further information or if you have any questions, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at

Signs As a Marketing Tool Image

Topics: Billboards and Graphics, Glendale & Pasadena Sign Company, Signs & Banners

Los Angeles Sign Company | Vehicle Graphics and Wraps

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, May 17, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Is the World of Vehicle Wraps complicated? Is this something you want to get into or would you rather hire an experienced professional Sign Company to do your vehicle advertising for you?

Vehicle Wraps Outline


• Full and partial vehicle wraps have become a cost-effective means of advertising. Vehicle wraps can be a creative business endeavor with a Vehicle Wraps Summary.

• Vehicle wraps can be a creative business endeavor with a reasonable potential for profit.

• Establishing a wraps business requires investments in equipment, supplies, shop space, education and time.

• Wraps production process involves design, print and installation.

• The learning curve is significantly less with a background in graphic arts, web design, wide-format printing or advertising.

• Specific wraps training is available at various locations and industry trade shows, as well as from equipment and vinyl manufacturers and experienced professionals. Training involves design and layout, basic procedures and various methods and approaches of the installation process, followed by practice and individual experimentation.

• Equipment:
• Computer
• Suitable graphics software
• Inkjet printer
• Laminator
• Squeegee and miscellaneous hand tools

• Supplies

• Media (predominantly vinyl, but advances are being made in other materials)

• Laminate

• Ink

• Popular installed digital inkjet printing equipment:

• Roland VP-540 54"

• Mimaki JV33-160 64"

• Mutoh ValueJet 64"

• HP 9000s 64"

• Roland SP-540V

• Mimaki JV3 54"

• Laminator Choices

• Laminator should be at least the same size as the printer to completely laminate the vinyl.

• Laminator manufacturers:


• Neschen/Seal



• Ink Choices

• Solvent inks

• Mild solvent inks

• UV-curable inks

• Vinyl Choices

• Specialized products are manufactured for wrap applications

• Evaluate consistency, quality, durability, performance, cost, compatibility and removability.

• Check reports and reviews about issues with bubbling, printing and cracking.

• Evaluate vinyl manufacturer’s warranty

• Avoid calendared vinyl

• Experiment with matte or reflective vinyl.

• Manufacturers of vinyl wrap media:

• 3M

• Arlon

• Avery

• LG Hausys

• Mactac

• Oracal

• Pricing Guidelines

• Costs of equipment and materials as well as rent, labor, taxes and insurance expenses must be factored into the overall pricing method.

• Other pricing factors: square footage of material; design and production time; installation time; customer’s budget.

• Price wraps to be competitive, yet profitable.

• Market pricing largely dictates prices

• Key is to run the operation efficiently.

Sign Estimate

Topics: Vehicle Graphics, Vehicle Wraps Partial and Full, Pasadena and Glendale Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | Retractable Banner Stands and Graphics

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Thu, May 16, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Stand out at your next trade show or event with retractable banner stands and graphics from THE SIGN STUDIO!

Our retractable banner stands are an easy, cost-effective promotional solution. All of our retractable banner displays are constructed in eco-friendly facilities and are even recyclable once they've reached the end of their life.

THE SIGN STUDIO offers several banner stand models in both standard and economy categories to suit your needs and wallet!

Our standard family of retractable banners is a group of high-quality, rigid retractable banner stands made in the USA from the finest materials. These retractable banners feature molded end plates and a three-piece bungee corded pole. Our standard models stand 83.25 inches tall and are available in widths of 31.5 inches, 35.5 inches, and 39.25 inches. Double-sided retractable banner displays are also available.

Our economy line of retractable banner stands are a low-cost alternative to our standard roll up banner stands. THE SIGN STUDIO's economy models are functional and reliable, but use lighter weight materials and simpler construction to save you money. These portable banner stands are produced by a handful of independent retractable banner and display producers from all across Asia. Two economy models are available to fit your needs and your budget: our single-sided model measures 31 inches wide and 77.5 inches tall, while our double-sided retractable banner is 32.75 inches wide and 78.25 inches tall.

If you need help with your graphics, let the experts at THE SIGN STUDIO design it for your, just sit back and wait for your layouts to review via e-mail. It's that simple!

Retractable Banner Stand
If you have any further questions or need more information, please call us at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Topics: Tradeshow bannders and signage, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Company, Retractable Banner Stands

Los Angeles Sign Company | Signs Are Important and Effective

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Wed, May 15, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Signs Are Important and Effective

Your sign is an integral part of your advertising program along with the other forms of commercial communication such as television, radio, newspapers, magazines, and billboards. There are four basic criteria used to judge the effectiveness of these advertising media: (1) coverage of the trade area, (2) repetition of a message, (3) readership of a message, and (4) cost per thousand exposures of a message. Two other criteria important for the small business owner are (5) availability and (6) ease of use. Let's see how signs measure to the above criteria.

1) Signs are oriented to your trade area. Signs do not waste your resources by requiring you to pay for wasted advertising coverage. The people who see your sign are the people who live in your trade area.

2) Signs are always on the job repeating your message to potential customers. Your on-premise sign communicates to potential customers twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, week after week, month after month, year after year. Every time people pass your business establishment they see your sign. The mere repetition of the message will help them remember your business.

3) Nearly everyone reads signs. Signs are practical to use for nearly everyone is used to looking at signs and using signs, even small children. Studies have shown that people do read and remember what is on signs. When special items are displayed, sales increase for these particular items within the store.

4) Signs are inexpensive. When compared to the cost of advertising in some other media, the on-premise sign is very inexpensive. Table 1 indicates the cost-per-thousand-exposures for various media in a given type of community. Unless your trade area encompasses an entire city or region, where you must rely upon broad based media coverage, there is no better advertising dollar value than your on-premise sign.

5) Signs are available to each and every shop owner. There is no need to schedule the use of your sign. Your sign is available to you whenever you need it and to be used however you please.

6) Signs are easy to use. No special skills or resources are needed to operate a sign once it has been installed. If it is an illuminated sign, all you need to do is flip the switches and that may not be necessary with timing equipment. Once the initial expenditures are made no special resources or professional services are needed. You need only operate and maintain your sign.

For further information or if you have any questions, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Effective Signs Image 3

Topics: Effective and Important Signs, Outdoor Exterior Signs, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Company

Los Angeles Sign Company | Effective Blade Signs

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Tue, May 14, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Effective Blade Signs..............
What are Blade Signs ?

Blade signs are often used when you're looking to attract pedestrians or drivers who don't see your storefront because they are traveling perpendicular to the front of your business. So while they may not be able to see your front sign, they will see your blade sign. Blade signs are often illuminated both on the front and back with 2 faces, however they also hang from a variety of different brackets with a cut-out design. Our custom-made blade signs and bracket solutions are eye catching and built/constructed to withstand all the elements. The Sign Studio uses top grade materials. There are so many variations in materials and colors, as well as mounting options. Single or double-sided, illuminated or non-illuminated, our blades are engineered to project your message and grab the attention of pedestrian and passerbys.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at The Sign Studio 818-843-9200 or send us an e-mail at
Need Quote

Blade Sign Pictures

Topics: Hanging double 2 sided sign, Pasadena and Glendale Sign Company, Blade Signs

Los Angeles Sign Company | UL Fabricated Signs

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, May 10, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Illuminated Store Front Channel Letters May Look Alike But Do You Know What You Are Getting?

Channel Letter

Illuminated store front Channel Letters may look alike but do you know what you are really getting?

At The Sign Studio each channel letter is fabricated to UL specifications. Why is this important? Simple, it assures the customer their illuminated 3D letter above their store front is safe and built to last. Drive around at night, see burned out signage, flickering neon and broken plexi faces. The average customer is unaware what they are truly getting for the price they are being quoted, after-all all letters appear to look the same from the outside when first installed BUT the big difference is the way in which the sign letters are manufactured.

What materials will be used in the fabrication of your electrical sign letter? The Sign Studio uses heavy gauge aluminum where some competitors use cheap paint lock metal which start to rust the day it goes up ( ever see brown rusty streaks coming off a letter on the building? that's paint lock metal ), secondly what thickness is the acrylic pan channel letter face? Thin sheets of plastic are half the price of standard but one may not tell until the weather changes because plexi expands and contracts as climates get colder or hotter thus cheap plastic faces crack quick. What about the lighting ? Is it 2 rows of 12mm Neon or 1 row of 8 mm Neon? What about the transformers, are they used or rebuilt? Even wiring cost differ greatly. Thus next time you are in the market for Channel Letters, whether plastic faces, led lit, Open Face Neon or even Halo reverse lit, it is always good to ask if your getting UL letters. Look for the sticker (is it real), ask the shop for their UL number and always be suspicious of low prices. You may find your sign letters look good the first few weeks but when costly service calls happen your original cost rise fast, so when you are looking to get your business name in lights, contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at

Remember, know your image will be well lit when the sun goes down with properly fabricated UL letters, you will get what you pay for at


Topics: Los Angeles Sign Company, Glendale and Pasadena Signs, UL Fabricated Signs

Los Angeles Sign Company | Sign Variance

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Thu, May 9, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

SIGN VARIANCE - What is that? Why do I need a Sign Variance?

It is important to work with your sign professional and local zoning department when designing your business signage. A quick check on the zoning/building code will give you a guideline to use when developing your signage.

Sign Variance Picture

Sign variances become necessary when unique circumstances exist for a property that do not allow for adequate identification of the business. Most sign variances are requested for the purpose of exceeding a municipality's square footage or setback allowances. A quasi-judicial board of elected community members will hear your case and make a decision based on the characteristics of your specific request. Many communities request that you consider and provide answers to the Duncan Factors (used for consideration of area requests).

These are seven factors which the board must answer before approving your variance request. Please find these factors, summarized below:

1). Will the property provide a reasonable return without the variance?
2). Is the variance substantial?
3). Will the surrounding properties be adversely effected by the variance?
4). Will the variance inhibit government services (fire, police, ems)?
5). Is the hardship self-inflicted?
6). Is there a reasonable alternative to this variance?
7). Does the variance follow with the keeping of the zoning code? (Minimum amount needed)

If you have any further questions or need any information, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Topics: Sign Variance, Los Angeles Sign Co, Glendale & Pasadena Sign Co

Los Angeles Sign Company | Quality Vehicle Wraps & Graphics

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Wed, May 8, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Fair & Reasonable Pricing On Quality Wraps Are Worth It!

So often we look to economize, especially in light of the current economy. However, the old adage, "you get what you pay for," really does hold true, particularly when it comes to vehicle wraps. Here are some of the signs you should look for in evaluating the quality of a vehicle wrap:

• Check the bumpers. These are difficult to wrap given that there are lots of curves, nooks, and crannies. Make sure that premium wrap materials (cast vs. calendared) were used and that the material is not lifting, especially on the underside. This is sometimes an area were trimming, tucking and priming is sometimes overlooked.

• Are the grills and fenders wrapped? This is important if the grill and fender color of the original paint job does not match the new wrap colors. They should be wrapped to match!

• Make sure the door handles are wrapped with the same photorealistic image as the rest of the vehicle.
There's nothing worse than the original color door handles poking out from the image. I saw an example recently of a white door handle showing through on a matte black wrap!

• Make sure that seams are kept to a minimum, especially on the sides. It's possible to pay a little more to have full sheets printed so that there is less seaming necessary. Also, be sure to check the top and bottom of the vehicle to make sure that the original paint is not showing through. (Keep in mind that some people opt not to wrap the top of the vehicle because this area may not be visible or non-essential. This is more a matter of personal preference).

• Pay attention to placement and layout of the graphics, especially if the image includes faces. A face in the middle of a door handle may not be what you had in mind. Make sure that the designer tells you about any design glitches before the installation.

As you can probably tell from the discussion above, there may be reasons for that cheap price that you have been quoted. Don't settle for a "wrap gone wrong!" Have it redone. After all it's your image, branding and reputation that are at stake.

Vehicle Wraps & Graphics

Call us at The Sign Studio (818) 843-9200 to make sure you get the quality vehicle wrap that you deserve. Or send us an e-mail with your questions or request at


Topics: Los Angeles Sign Co, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Co, Vehicle Graphic Signs

Los Angeles Sign Co. | LED Electronic Message Display Sign

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Tue, May 7, 2013 @ 06:05 AM


Electronic Display Signage, LED Signage, Message Centers

What is an LED?
A light emitting diode (LED) is a tiny, electronic semiconductor that converts electric energy into visible light. The chemical compound used within an LED determines its color, brightness and power efficiency. Unlike incandescent lamps, LEDs have no filaments that can burn out or fail.

What is a pixel?
Pixel is short for picture element. Pixels are points of light that illuminate together to form letters, words, graphics, animation, and video images. A pixel can be made up of a single LED, multiple LEDs of the same color or multiple LEDs of different colors. A pixel is the smallest element of the electronic display system that can be individually controlled. It can be turned off or on at various brightness levels.

What is resolution?
Resolution is the basic measurement of how much information a screen shows based on the total number of pixels within the display area and is a significant factor in determining image quality. Pixel pitch (center-to-center spacing between display pixels) and the display's physical dimensions help to determine resolution.

What is a module?
An LED module is a combination of parts that form the building blocks of LED video displays, message centers and dynamic message signs.

What is a digit?
A digit is a numeric symbol with seven segment bars. Each segment uses discrete LEDs to produce a value between 0-9. Scoreboards, timing systems and price displays use digits to display information.

What are viewing angles?
LED displays are at their brightest when viewed "head on" and slowly decrease in brightness as the viewing angle increases. The viewing angles of an LED display - both horizontal and vertical - are the angles at which the intensity has dropped 50 percent from the direct "head on" brightness.

What are viewing distances?
Viewing distances are calculated based on the display type and the distance from the display. Each display will have a minimum and a maximum viewing distance that may vary based on application and intended use. For example, a large character will have a longer viewing distance while a small character will have a shorter viewing distance. We use 50 feet for every one inch of character distance as a general point of reference.

If you have any questions or if you need further information, please call The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Electronic Display Signage, LED Signage, Message Centers

Topics: Los Angeles Sign Co, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Co, Electric Signs

Los Angeles Sign Company | Is it time to evaluate your signage?

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Sun, May 5, 2013 @ 22:05 PM

It's Time to Evaluate Your Signage!

Signage is often overlooked, but what does your sign say about your company...

• Do you look open for business?
• Welcoming to customers?
• Is your sign easy to read and spot from the road?

Signage can help answer the following questions:

• What type of business are you?
• Who are you trying to reach?
• Is your business thriving?

A little cosmetic work can refresh your business. A decaying or fading sign reflects poorly upon a business. First impressions are key and you only have one opportunity to make them. Have you considered a sign face lift?

A business with no sign, is a sign of no business!

Without a sign:

• Your business has no identity
• A lack of business traffic

The Sign Studio will work within your budget to help you form the identity you're looking for. Don't go another day without signage, or a sign face lift!

If you have any further questions or need any information, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Sign Makeover Before and After

Topics: Sign Evaluation, Los Angeles Sign Co, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Co

Los Angeles Sign Company | Does your sign need a makeover?

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Sat, May 4, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Revitalize Your Business with a Sign Makeover

Your signs say a lot about who you are and what you do. That's why it's critical that you display the right signs and graphics for your business, event or organization. Sign makeovers from The Sign Studio can help make a big difference in your success.

Whether you want a few simple updates, or are in need of a complete sign and graphics makeover, we work with you to understand your specific sign needs. THE SIGN STUDIO makes it simple for you to bring your creative ideas to life or, we can design something customized to your specifications.

Keys to an Effective Sign Makeover

• Photos in advertising create 300% greater recall than ads without photos.*
• Full-color graphics create the highest awareness of all sign categories. **
• Colored backgrounds organize information and enable viewers to read it 26% faster. ***

* Based on a Direct Marketing Association study on color
** Based on a 3M marketing study on visual merchandising
*** Source: Pennsylvania College of Optometry

If you have any further questions or need any information, please contact The Sign Studio at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at

Sign Makeover Before and After

Topics: Los Angeles Sign Company, Glendale & Pasadena Sign Company, Business Signs & Banners

Los Angeles Sign Company | Sign Installation & Maintenance

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Fri, May 3, 2013 @ 06:05 AM

Sign Installation and Maintenance - HOW IMPORTANT it really is!

Signage is the single, largest promotional tool you have. It is your way of saying to the public, "Hey! We're open for business and here to serve." Nice job! You've reminded your current customers that you are here ready to take care of their next need and you've introduced your business to future customers.
But what if your sign is in disrepair? What if the lights in and around your sign are out or the face is broken or dirty. Worse yet, what if it is outdated? Now what kind of impression or message are you communicating? It still reads "Hey - pick me" but it consciously and subconsciously causes your customers to read between the lines . . .

. . . and what they're reading isn't good!

It's saying, "maintenance and upkeep isn't a priority for this business and neither is quality or cleanliness." "If they care so little about their business, how could they possibly care about me, their customer?" What your sign has done is effectively set a negative expectation of your business in the mind of your customer. Your unkept sign defeated the very purpose for which it was intended.

Upkeep and freshening of your signage and lighting shouldn't be an afterthought; it should be a priority . . . protect your marketing investment and allow your signage to do what you intended - work for your business, not against it!

Something else to consider: On average, 46% of first-time customers find your business as a result of your sign. What would a 5 or 10% drop in sales mean to your bottom line simply because your sign was in disrepair or out of date?

Sign Maintenance is another area in which our personnel excel. Our 24/7 service department is on call and ready to serve your sign needs. From storm damage to national maintenance support to routine lamp outages, we have the parts, personnel, and knowledge on hand to make sure your sign maintenance needs are addressed in a timely fashion.

Call to schedule your service project TODAY (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at

Sign Maintenance, Sign Upkeep, Sign Problems

Topics: Los Angeles Sign Company, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Company, Sign & Banner Maintenance and Installation

Los Angeles Sign Company | Vehicle Wraps and Sign Graphics

Posted by Julie and Chris Ramirez on Wed, May 1, 2013 @ 06:05 AM


Durability of vehicle graphics is often a grey area. Some seem to last forever, others deteriorate quickly. Clients spending big money on a vehicle wrap are often concerned about this issue. The big question always is, how tough are your vehicle graphics? What is the warranty?

There are four factors that determine the durability of vehicle graphics:
• The quality of the mounting surface.
• The quality of the graphic products used.
• The installation methods used.
• Maintenance of the graphic during its lifetime.

The type of surface that the graphics will be mounted to has a major, but often overlooked, role when it comes to the long-term durability of vehicle graphics. For example, if the vehicle no longer has its factory paintjob, the quality of the repaint has a major effect on the adhesion of the graphics. The graphics might stick well to the paint, but if the paint doesn't stick to the vehicle, all is lost. Some unpainted vehicle surfaces, such as aluminum truck boxes, stainless steel tanker bodies or fiberglass box walls, may interfere with proper adhesion as well. Some graphic films specifically void any warranties on such substrates, others recommend various surface preparation techniques before application. Check with the manufacturer and proceed with caution. Preparation of the mounting surface prior to installation can have a huge effect on any graphic's durability. Not only must the vehicle's surface be squeaky clean, but all surface waxes and/or remnants of polish compounds should be removed as well. This can be done using a clean soft cloth and rubbing alcohol. A poorly prepared mounting surface will virtually guarantee early failure of an otherwise perfect wrap.

The single largest factor in graphic durability has to be the graphic itself. This is a complex mix of print media, ink and overlaminate. All three items have to be carefully matched for maximum compatibility. Fortunately, manufacturers and sign professionals usually offer recommendations on which combinations work the best for their products and installations. Those with warranties only offer the maximum guarantees on specific tried and tested product combinations. Warranties on products range from one to seven years depending on the inks and overlaminates that are used. Recommended products are Avery Denninson, 3M, MACtac, Oracal and Arlon. All products offer different warranties so make sure you ask your Sign Professional what products they use.

Installation techniques are another critical aspect that effect long-term durability. Manufacturers' directions for each type of graphic material give specific instructions for installation that should be carefully followed. Special care must be taken when conforming the graphic film around complex surface shapes. These are the most likely areas to fail later. The more complex the surface, the more chances there are for tenting. The more cuts that have to be made in the graphic panel in order to make it fit the shapes, the more chances of edge failure. The more stretching that has to be done over convex shapes, the more chance of film cracking in the future. Anyway, you get the idea. Anything that you have to do to the graphic to alter its factory shape will affect long-term durability.

Maintenance after installation is the most overlooked aspect of durability for vehicle graphics. The client who might never consider missing an oil change might not help his wrap continue looking its best simply because they don't understand how to keep it safe. Keeping the vehicle clean and free from dirt, grease, salt, acid and drew build-up will help tremendously to extend the life of the wrap. The non-vertical or horizontal areas of a vehicle graphic can be the most challenging areas in which to maintain durability.

Here are some post-installation precautions that can improve long-term performance:
• Cleaning the vehicle should be done with a liquid, nonabrasive cleaner that has a ph value between 3 and 11 and no strong solvents in it.
• If using a pressure washer, make sure it has less than 2,000 psi of pressure; and hold the nozzle more than 12" from the graphic surface.
• Special care has to be taken around exposed graphic edges as well. Wash the vehicle with a soft cloth or sponge, not a hard brush, and avoid excessive scrubbing.
• Checking the graphic regularly can also help to prolong its life. Loose edges should be promptly repaired using an edge seal product.

Vehicle graphics can last a long time, or a short time. Either option may be required on any particular project. The short-term graphic is easy, but the long-term graphic requires planning, expertise and maintenance. It involves a delicate partnership between manufacturer, producer and client, but can produce amazing results when all of the stars are aligned.


Key to success:
- Prior to installation, not only must the vehicle's surface be squeaky clean, but all surface waxes and/or remnants of polish compounds should be removed as well.
- Maintaining a wrap's good looks involves some effort from the client, such as using non-abrasive cleaners, avoiding stiff-bristle cleaning brushes, and checking frequently for loose edges.
- The quality of the installation will also affect a graphic's chances at long term durability. Careful attention to detail, making sure not to over-stretch the vinyl over curved surfaces and using a minimum of cuts and pinholes all add up to a more durable graphic.
- Failures generally happen first along areas where the vinyl was stretched to conform to dramatic surface features.

If you have any questions or need further information, please give The Sign Studio a call at (818) 843-9200 or send us an e-mail at


Vehicle Wrap Pictures

Topics: Los Angeles Sign Company, Pasadena & Glendale Sign Company, Vehicle Sign Graphics