In this guide we’ll show you how to vinyl wrap a PC case. If you want to give your case a makeover with a new color scheme, and maybe some fancy effects and patterns, using vinyl is often cheaper, quicker, less messy, and easier to work with than spray painting. What’s more, it’s also simpler to remove than paint, whether you mess it up or if you just want to change colors.
We’ve previously looked at how to vinyl wrap a graphics card, but vinyl-wrapping your case needs a slightly different method. That’s because you need to deal with large surface areas, a greater risk of air bubbles and you also need to make sure your case can still breathe, with its panels still fitting correctly. Dealing with large sheets can be tricky, and you’ll need to allocate extra time to get into hard-to-reach areas on panels and PSU covers.
At Custom PC, we’ve been modding PC cases and components since 2003, giving us loads of experience in the art of customizing your system to make it your own. We know exactly what tools you need and which methods work best.
1. Measure surface areas
You’ll need plenty of self-adhesive vinyl to cover case panels, so estimate the surface area you need to cover and ensure you buy enough. Pay careful attention to the widths of the panels, and ensure the vinyl sheet is both wide and long enough, not only to cover the panels, but also fold over the edges.
2. Align any patterns
Before you start cutting, it’s important to align any patterns in the vinyl with your case panel. Here, we’re using a carbon fiber effect, so it makes sense to have it sitting square rather than diagonally.
3. Cut to size
When cutting large sheets, it’s best to use a vinyl sheet cutting tool, which is included in many vinyl wrapping kits. This will cut the vinyl in one go, meaning there are none of the jagged edges you might get from using scissors.
4. Heat with hairdryer
A hairdryer will make the vinyl more malleable, making it easier to press into case recesses and stretch over components. Heat it with a hairdryer for 30 seconds on a high setting, moving the heat over the whole surface area and warming individual areas as you fix them as needed.
5. Use a squeegee
Remove the backing paper to reveal the adhesive side, then press one edge against your case panel. Now use the squeegee to smooth the sheet over the panel and work out any air bubbles. If they prove stubborn, lift the sheet and try again.
6. Press over vents and buttons
Now press the vinyl into any areas you’ll need to cut out, such as vents and buttons. You’ll be able to see some of these by illuminating the panel from beneath, allowing you to see the sections you need to cut out.
7. Stretch and press into corners
It’s important to anchor the vinyl into crevices in order to prevent it from lifting over time, and also to cover the edges of panels. Use the wrapping spatulas to work the vinyl into these areas and use plenty of force to stick the vinyl down.
8. Wrap around edges
To secure your vinyl in place, cut the edges into sections so you can wrap straight pieces around the edges of the case and cover them. Use the squeegee to press down these pieces, and make sure there’s a tight fit around all the edges in order to avoid air bubbles.
9. Cut out case features
Finally, cut out any covered air vents with a scalpel, so you don’t impact airflow. Large vents such as the ones pictured will take a while to cut out, but cutting out really small vents can become tedious – don’t start vinyl-wrapping a case with small vents unless you’re willing to put in the work.
That’s it for our guide on how to use vinyl wrap on your PC case – we hope you enjoy your newly customized PC case. For further PC customization ideas, check out our guide on how to paint your PC case, as well as our article on how to etch glass PC case panels. If you’re planning a new build, then you’ll also want to read our full guide on how to build a gaming PC, which covers every step of the process.