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How to protect your Vinyl wrap in the Winter



There are two questions we always get asked when we create a vinyl masterpiece.  The first is: How long will it last?  The answer is there are many potential factors that can result in damage to your vinyl over time, so it is impossible to gauge. That said, if you maintain your vinyl correctly, then you can expect 5 years from a hull wrap, some striping and graphics can last for decades.

The second and possibly most important question is, how much will it cost?  The answer is, typically the third of the cost of a paint job.  The project will be priced on application and there are no guarantees for life.

Look after your vinyl.

Keeping your vinyl and Boat in good condition during the winter is therefore crucial to the lifespan of your vinyl. There are a few things you can do to make sure the vinyl remains in good condition and prevent plenty of headaches and avoidable repairs in the coming (winter/off) season.

LEYTON sponsored Sunfast 3300 sailing boat with a full vinyl yacht hull wrap velociwrap


  • The cold weather has a detrimental effect to Vinyl, as it is not as flexible during cold weather. This means any amount of pressure may rip or cause damage. So careful treatment is necessary.


  • When cleaning make sure you use fresh clean water. Use a general purpose vinyl cleaner (neutral PH and not water alone), to remove oil, dust, and grime from the vinyl seats and vinyl trim at the start of the season and every time you use the boat.  Do not use water from the river because the minerals and dirt will stay on your vinyl – acting sort of like sandpaper and wearing it down.
  • Tree sap is one of the worst things you can get on vinyl because sun and heat can melt the sap into the vinyl. Clean the sap off quickly if it does land on the vinyl.


  • Wax is a great preventative measure to protect against the elements. We recommend Boat Sheen Wax, they have several different products available. Use by hand or use an exceptionally low speed on a machine, be aware if there is any warmth on the pad it may melt or dull the vinyl finish.


  • A Ceramic coating can also be a good option, we recommend Ceramic Pro Marine. It offers protection for both underwater and above water surfaces of any vessel.


  • Fender socks act as a barrier between your vinyl hull wrap and fenders. Not only in the winter but all year round, protecting from constant repetitive abrasion especially if you boat is blown on to the dock by the prevailing winds. Easily bought online.


  • Fender cloths are another great way to protect any vinyl wraps. Typically, 3-5m wide, they will from the boat between the fenders and the hull. The inside and outside skin is fluffy, a canvas style material similar to a spray hood or dodgers.


It’s tempting to wrap the boat up for the winter and leave it until the spring. Getting things fixed early can be beneficial and in addition, businesses such as ourselves, Velociwrap are often focused on ashore work in the off season and so we should be easily able to fit your vinyl hull wraps, hull striping.

Most vinyl wraps, graphics and striping must be done out the water. Albeit some can be done in the water. Lifting mid-season is expensive and can cause delays to your schedule if the weather isn’t particularly helpful. Plus if you delay booking work until the spring, contractors may not be able to meet your desired timescale.


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