Driving down the street any given day the amount of signs you encounter is exorbitant, but do you know what you’re looking at? Retail spaces, restaurants and businesses utilize various signage to display their company to the public. A common method for doing so is with channel letters.
Channel letters are custom-made metal or plastic letters commonly used in exterior signage on public and commercial buildings, and are often internally illuminated. These are not to be confused with unlit three dimensional letters that are applied to sign panels or monuments which are usually referred to as dimensional letters.
There are many options to consider for your channel letter signs, including front lit, back lit (halo), front and back lit and of course non-lit. Lets first outline the different options available:
Front lit – This is the most common type of illuminated channel letter. The faces of the sign will be made of polycarbonate, acrylic or molded plastic. Usually the color is achieved by using translucent colored vinyl or if the color is available you can get a colored acrylic/polycarbonate. Another option is a day/night vinyl which has small holes in it so that during the day the sign is the color of the vinyl and during the night the sign is the color of the light source inside the letter.
Halo (back) lit – These letters create a very interesting and impactful display by having a solid front to the letter and an open back. The letters are typically mounted on stand offs which stand the letter away from the wall. Unlike the front lit signs, the back lit signs have an aluminum face painted to match the returns, with acrylic lens in the back that is lit internally by LEDs. This creates a glow behind the letter on the wall. The color of the illumination can vary either through different color LED’s or a colored back acrylic panel.
Front and backlit – These create an upscale look, combining the benefits of both the front and halo components. These signs are very different from normal channel letters and really set apart from the norm.
Open face – These signs are very unique, and most commonly we use exposed neon lights as the lighting inside needs to be as beautiful as the outside of the sign. This creates more of a retro look if you are trying to create that image for your location.
There are typically two methods of mounting. Raceway mounting is when the letters are mounted to a long enclosed channel called a “raceway”. These are typically less expensive to install as the full sign is installed at one time an requires less holes in the mounting surface.
The second method is mounting individual letters directly to the surface. These provide a different look and allow for the halo illumination option. These are usually more expensive as they require more time to mount each letter as well as requiring more holes in the mounting surface.
Other benefits to consider with channel letters is that they require little maintenance, last for years and are easily customizable to your business.
If you are considering a new sign for your business, give us a call for a free consultation. Our design experts will create a stunning sign the will surely create an impression. After all, getting you noticed is PARAMOUNT!