Car wrapping has become popular in recent years as a way to temporarily change the appearance of your car.
It’s less labour-intensive than a respray and thus cheaper. The carefully-cut plastic wrap also protects the paint underneath.
However, your car insurance could be void if your car has wrapped and you haven’t declared it.
That’s because, like any change made to your car after the first registration, a wrap is classed as a modification – and all modifications must be declared when taking out an insurance policy.
More visibility, more cost
Companies have had their vans or business vehicles wrapped in corporate colours for years. However, firms that wrap private vehicles – such as Yiannimize, as seen on TV show Yianni: Supercar Customiser – have now shot to success.
A wrap doesn’t increase the performance of your car, and it shouldn’t inhibit the safety systems. So why the declaration? Well, a wrap could be problematic for security. Covering your car in a lurid colour or pattern makes it stand out to friends and onlookers, but also makes it more visible to thieves.
According to Jardine Motors Group, a wrap could raise your premium by 15 percent. And some insurers won’t actually cover you, meaning you’ll have to consult a specialist.
Notify the DVLA
“We find a lot of [insurance] companies don’t even know what a wrap is, but there are specialist ones out there,” said Duncan Richards, spokesperson for Autoshine and Tinting.
“We’ve had customers say, ‘My current insurer won’t insure it, they’ve cancelled my policy’. We’ve also had others who haven’t charged extra, so each insurance company is different.”
As well as the declaration to your insurance company, the DVLA also needs to be made aware. As a wrap is often a full colour change, the car’s V5C must be updated to match.