Labeling film is a special plastic film that has been designed for further processing in cutting plotters or, in many cases, can be printed using the digital or offset process.
Labeling films are available in many different designs. The main areas of application are in the field of advertising, especially in outdoor advertising . Here, the labeling film for the labeling of vehicles, shop windows, advertising signs, advertising tarpaulins, stencils, blinds and more recently also for bonding to house facadesis used.
Car wrappings are very popular with taxi companies. In some federal states, the color light ivory is still prescribed for taxis. In this color, however, used vehicles are difficult to sell. Therefore, many entrepreneurs are beginning to order their vehicles in a more popular color and then recolored with a light ivory gluing. The film can be removed without residue at the later sale of the vehicle. A side effect here is that the vehicle paint is protected and is not exposed to aging changes due to mechanical influences or UV radiation. The paint is here after a few years still almost new.
Labeling films are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), more rarely of polyester (PET), polypropylene (PP) and polyethylene (PE), the latter two having a rigid structure. On the back of the film, a special adhesive layer is applied, which, depending on the purpose, can have a very different structure (adhesive force / composition). The thickness of labeling films is, with exceptions, about 50 to 90 microns. The number of available colors in many types of film and manufacturers in the three-digit range, from a certain purchase amount many manufacturers produce film in any color according to RAL or Pantone Matching System.
Monomer calendered films are intended for short-term use. The monomeric plasticizer volatilises quite quickly, especially when exposed to heat. This leads to a material shrinkage, which can be accompanied by cracks in the film itself. Calendered films are inexpensive, but the use is – depending on the manufacturer – limited to up to three years.
Polymer calendered films are designed for medium-term use. The plasticizer volatilizes much less and the film remains supple longer. The duration of use is up to seven years.
Because calendered films have a kind of “memory effect” and return to their original shape, they are primarily suitable for use on smooth and flat surfaces.
Cast foils are designed for long-term use up to ten years. When suitably processed, they have hardly any measurable shrinkage phenomena (“memory effect”) and are therefore suitable for 3D bonding.
All films have in common that the manufacturers for the film colors white, black and transparent specify an average of two years longer application period. For metallic colors, the application time is often set lower.