Why Do I Need an LED Retrofit?

Fluorescents can be a fire hazard. This sign is a perfect opportunity for a retrofit.

“Wow, it took me a while to find you guys!” Ever hear that from a customer, due to a dim, unlit, or damaged sign? At that point you call up your local sign shop and ask them to come out to replace a bulb, or check the wiring. At the time of the diagnosis they tell you that yes, they could replace the burned out fluorescent bulb or repair the wiring, but your best option would be to replace the entire works with an LED retrofit. Then they quote you a price that is quite a bit higher than a replacement bulb. What?!! You decide they’re trying to upsell you into a solution you simply don’t need. But what are the unseen costs you’re incurring by sticking with the old technology, and what is the ROI for making the switch?

Cost vs. Value

An LED bar that fits into your fluorescent fittings

  • Lower Maintenance Costs: LEDs cost less to maintain because you replace them less often. Fluorescent bulbs are cheap but fragile, and you have to pay for a bucket truck to come out and change them up to 2 or 3 times a year in some cases. LED lights running 10 hours a day can last up to a decade, meaning one trip to install and no more labor charge for years to come.  Your LED retrofit could pay for itself in as little as 2 years.
  • Lower Operating Costs: LEDs use about 1/3 of the energy of a fluorescent bulb, meaning your energy bills will be lower without sacrificing brightness. Also, fluorescents can lose up to half their output in cold weather, while LEDs continue to operate at full efficiency in both very high and very low temperatures.
  • Increased Visibility: LEDs are brighter than fluorescents. A regular fluorescent sign bulb shines in 360 degrees, wasting light that shines toward the back of the sign. The light from LEDs is directed straight onto the sign face for increased brightness and readability. If one LED module burns out, the overall effect to the sign is much less than if an entire fluorescent bulb burns out.

    Each LED element is quickly and easily installed into your existing sign cabinet.

  • Reduced Environmental Impact: Fluorescent bulbs contain mercury and phosphor, and must be disposed of in an environmentally conscious way. If your company has green initiatives and goals, LEDs are a necessity.
  • You Can Keep Your Existing Cabinet: With an LED retrofit, you don’t need an entirely new sign. You can keep your existing cabinet and sign face, and our technicians will replace only the lighting elements. It’s a cost-efficient glow up for your sign that will immediately draw attention.

Double Your Value with a New Sign Face Too

Once your new lighting is in place, you may notice that your sign face suddenly looks a bit drab or old. Signwave’s experienced design team can create a bright, fresh graphic that will play off the new lighting perfectly. Done along with the retrofit install, you save even more money by avoiding two install trips. It’s a double whammy that will turn heads and draw in customers.

 

An LED retrofit plus an update to the vinyl face makes the K&M Truck Repair lightbox stand out in Ronkonkoma

A Smart Choice with High ROI

Choosing to update your illuminated sign with an LED retrofit is a smart decision that we recommend because it’s our job to boost your business: to help you get more attention and save money. If your lightbox or pylon sign isn’t looking its best anymore, give Signwave a call. We can find the best solution for you.

Neon – It’s a Gas!

The Las Vegas strip. The Pike Place Market sign. Times Square. These words probably all draw up images in your mind that have one thing in common: NEON. For over 100 years, the technology used to create neon lights has remained very much the same, and purists the world over still rely on it for colorful, eye-catching signage. From large, show-stopping outdoor signs to small interior window signs, here’s a little background info you might not know about your favorite gas!

The Discovery of Neon and History of the Neon Light

The chemical element neon was first discovered in 1898 by British chemists Sir William Ramsay and Morris W. Travers, who at that same time discovered two other inert gases: argon and xenon. When isolated inside a sealed tube, the neon emitted a very bright reddish-orange glow. However because so little of the gas was extracted during their small-scale air liquefaction process, it was too costly to use in quantity. It wasn’t until 1910 that Air Liquide business owner George Claude was able to produce enough neon in his larger-scale process to make it practical for use in lighting applications. His first attempt at neon lighting, to be used in home settings, was unsuccessful. But once he was able to channel the neon light’s extreme brightness and unusual tint into signage applications, the demand began to grow. He sold the first neon signs in the United States to a Packard dealership in Los Angeles in 1923.

Just three years later, Jacques Risler of France discovered how to create additional colors in neon. By coating the sealed tube containing the gas with different fluorescent coatings or “phosphors,” the ultraviolet light emitted by the gases inside caused the tube to glow with various colors. Colors outside the red/orange spectrum usually have additional compounds added to enhance the color, such as argon and mercury. By the 1960s there were about two dozen color options available, and today there are almost 100.

Iconic Neon

Here are just a few examples of how neon can be used to create signs that are recognizable the world around.

Classic Texas barbecue neon sign

The grandfather of all neon cities, Las Vegas

The Pike Place Public Market in Seattle boasts one of the most recognizable neon signs in the US.

Neon can be fabricated in a wide variety of colors

Your (Business) Name in Lights

One of the main benefits offered by neon signage is its longevity. A well cared for neon sign can last for years, even decades. But just as in the early 1900s, neon can be very costly to fabricate and repair, making it outside the budget of many small businesses. So what alternatives have come along? Enter LED technology.

Just a few of the color options in LED neon style rope lighting

LED (light-emitting diode) technology is used in just about every illuminated sign we create at Signwave, from lightboxes to channel letters. It’s super bright, cool to touch, energy efficient, versatile, long-lasting, and affordable. There are even LED rope products that can mimic the look of classic neon tubing with more flexibility and color variety. With all the options that LED technology opened up, a classic-looking neon sign with modern benefits is in anyone’s reach.

Are You Ready To Be Iconic?

Whether you’ve been in business for 40 years or 40 days, you can be a neighborhood icon with the right signage. Are you ready? Call Signwave today and we’ll come to you for a consultation and site visit. We can help you stand out in the crowd.

 

 

 

Using color to identify subsidiaries in dimensional lettering

A Perfect Season for Interior Signage

Wintertime is Interior Signage Evaluation Time

Why are interior signs important?

Outside all signs point to more cold weather to come, but inside it’s a perfect time to reevaluate your business’s interior signage. Attractive signs are much more than just bits of information to stick on a wall or door. After all, it’s not just your customers that use them as a visual marker. You and your employees and co-workers see them, walk past them, and work under them day after day. A drab, purely practical sign does nothing to inspire pride or productivity.

Cream and blue ADA sign reading "work room"

Do a site evaluation and make notes

Take a walk around your facility and see where you have a generic, off-the-rack sign, a piece of printer paper, or nothing at all to designate the different areas and offices. What message would it send to your employees and customers if you had a custom-made, coherent signage plan in place to increase visibility, decrease confusion, and create a harmonious work environment?

Where can we make improvement?

Consider these options:

  1. Signage in your company colors to designate workrooms, conference rooms, and storage areas
  2. ADA compliant bathroom signs that also sport your company’s logo
  3. Panoramic wall vinyl with photos depicting scenic areas in your town, or your products in action
  4. Cozy, welcoming signage in your staff dining areas
  5. Clear directional signage for your customers and visitors
  6. Custom nameplates for offices
  7. Long-lasting, custom made floor markings for social distancing and safety

Custom Motivational wallCustom Wall Graphics for Conference Room

There’s no better time than today

Right now is the best time to make those interior changes, before the warm weather calls us all outside again. Signwave can implement your vision, or start from scratch and come up with a full site signage plan to meet your aesthetic and your budget. Give us a call for a site visit!

painted dimensional logo on shiplap wall

Take Pride In Your Brand – Logo Signs For Building and Lobby

Like you, we work hard to elevate our brand to prominence, and we all spend every minute of the day to make sure it stays on top. Your logo is the embodiment of your brand and deserves all the attention that you can bring it with signage outside and throughout your place of business.

Your Logo In Lights – Illuminated Property Signage

Whether your business is retail, manufacturing, or service-oriented you want the world to know who you are and where you are. Your best opportunity to succeed is with highly visible and expertly executed signage. Forgive us our moment of pride while we show off some of the logo work we’ve been doing for our customers recently. These are just a few examples of our creative logo wizardry – give us a call to see what magic we can do for yours.

Fabricated Metal Lettersets – Casting A Glow

A custom finish, rendered with perfection, will display pride in your property to all who enter. For this entrance to a luxury property in Woodbury, NY we created fabricated stainless steel letters with a brushed gold titanium finish. An array of energy efficient LEDs cast a halo effect on the brick wall behind to assure a majestic presence day or night.

closeup view of The Preserve sign day and night version

A closer view of The Preserve lettering, day and night versions

The Art Of Channel Letters Done Right

Even a complex logo can be handsomely rendered with the right channel letter design, manufacturing and installation process. Here’s a 50′ wide announcement to the neighborhood of the new business in town that we created for the new Water Lilies Fine Asian Cuisine kitchens in Bay Shore, NY. The elegant flower logo is composed of 14 segments, each its own channel element, with LEDs, custom color front lit translucent polycarbonate, and clear polycarbonate backs for a stunning halo effect.

illuminated channel letters with halo lighting

Front and halo lighting along with an intricate logo design create a strong brand and presence

Inside The Building – Illuminated Logo Signs For Your Lobby, Conference Room or Showroom

Your Lobby Tells Them Who You Are

No other company is like yours. Thus your lobby sign should be like no other. Here’s a unique logo treatment we created for the customer entrance of a manufacturing and distribution company in Islandia, NY. This design features a dimensional logo with red halo lighting, custom color print faces, and a textured wall behind for an extraordinary overall effect.

PVC sign with red LEDs casts a halo effect on the wall.

PVC sign with embedded red LEDs casts a halo effect on the wall behind.

SEG Lightboxes – Perfect For Showrooms

A common style of showroom signage is a silicon-edge graphic lightbox. But the effect can be anything but common. An array of LEDs in a thin wall-mounted frame permit an easily-changed seasonal display rendered in full color graphics on translucent fabric. A silicon edge bordering each print permits easy changeout to keep your messaging current. Learn more details about SEG graphic frames and lightboxes at this article. Also great for tradeshows!

A photograph of SEG graphic ads in a subway

Illuminated silicone-edge graphics attract attention and are easily changeable.

The process all begins with your brand and vision. Let us show you how our design creativity, materials expertise and skilled craftspeople make your logo something of which to be proud.

New Traffic Sign Laws that WILL Affect Your Community Signage

It has always been true that traffic signs on roadways where the public has access, from shopping centers to hospitals to hotels, must conform to the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). This affects color, size, design, reflectivity, and installation. Recent changes to the laws now proscribe that certain materials, often used for private community signage, are no longer acceptable for use on these thoroughfares, even those behind access-only gates. For example, carved wood and HDU signage, while beautiful and easy-care, are now unlawful.

Stop signs come in multiple sizes and reflectivity grades…which one is right for your property?

Why should this draw the attention of property owners and facility managers? Consider this: the largest group of people who purchase the MUTCD is…LAWYERS. Because 21% of all insurance claims are on private property, resulting in an average of 1,200 fatalities per year, law professionals want to be up to date on how to hold property owners and managers responsible for payouts due to negligence. If you aren’t up to code, it could be you who is held financially responsible for injuries due to noncompliant signage. Also, local authorities are being called upon to do more rigorous inspections and issue more and higher fines for noncompliance.

If you own or manage:

  • apartment, office, or condominium complexes
  • universities
  • local school districts
  • shopping centers
  • sport complexes
  • restaurants
  • or any other property with public vehicle access

then the public access roadways on your property are governed by the MUTCD standards.

The good news is that sign shop owners are well aware of these changing standards, and have the knowledge to help you make the correct, compliant choices for your roadway signage. We can conduct a thorough assessment of your existing signage and devices to determine which ones don’t make the cut. We can design, fabricate, and install new signage that is the correct material, reflectivity, and size at the correct height and visibility. We can help alleviate your fears regarding liability and let you focus on the many tasks a property manager needs to perform.

Call Signwave at 631-761-9292 and let us start the process today, and ask us how we can create more beautiful street signs for you as well while we’re there.

How To Get The Lighting Right on Building Signs

Here’s a thought for your next building sign: dual-lit channel letters on a backer panel.

Dual-lit Channel Letter Sign with Backer Panel

A building sign can be illuminated in a variety of ways: this one uses three of them.



Reliable and energy-efficient LEDs illuminate both the front and rear faces of each channel letter element. The front faces are made of translucent polycarbonate available in any color you choose, allowing your logo to be faithfully rendered. With the rear faces being clear, the LEDs shine through creating a halo glow around each letter.
 
Each element is mounted on a backer panel. The distance from the panel that the letters are mounted will determine the intensity and size of the glow. And the panel itself will be designed to assure the desired color and refectivity. It will assure the desired color contrast to your logo regardless of the building’s exterior surface. The backer panel also serves as a “wireway,” allowing the installer to minimize the number of connections to the building’s electrical service.

The sign’s illumination can be regulated with a building timer, or with a photocell to automatically power the sign when it gets dark.

channel letter diagram

Channel letter diagram



There are a good number of options to consider in designing an illuminated building sign. Your professional sign company will work with your designers, or create your signs straight out of your imagination. Call Signwave at 631.761.9292 to get started with a free consultation.

Illuminated Letter Sets: Adding A Shine To Your Residential Luxury Property Signage

The first impression that visitors and prospective tenants have of your condominium, gated community or other luxury estate development is the most impactful, and your property signage will help deliver the impression of refinement that your residents crave. An upgrade to illuminated entrance signage for your property may be just the kind of burnishing that your development needs to enhance your property’s ambiance and brand to the next level.

Custom Metallic Letter Finish

Letter finish is so important to the overall impression of your site signage and will have a lasting impact, day or night. For our recent project at The Preserve in Woodbury, NY, we selected a titanium-coated, brushed gold finish for the stainless steel lettersets that flank their property entrance. The glint of the finish of their property signage signals luxury to all residents and visitors. The electroplating and coatings provide resistance to weather and corrosion for many years to come. With a wide variety of custom finish options available, you can be sure to find the exact right look that suits your environment.

Halo Lit Letter Construction

channel letter diagram

But the real WOW effect begins when the sun goes down. Contained within the cavity of each letter “can” is a series of LED modules. The insides of the letters have a reflective white coating to assure an even reverse-lit effect without hotspots or shadows. The letter backs are constructed from clear shatter-resistant plastics.the letters are spaced off the wall with specialty posts to create the halo glow behind when the letter is powered on. LEDs are available in various colors and temperatures.

Complete Sign Service

closeup view of The Preserve sign day and night version

Your professional sign company will align all the moving parts of the project to make it simple for you. From expediting the required permit applications, proposing designs and finishes, providing sample letters for your review, fabrication, working with your site management, installation, electrical service if required, a full service sign company like Signwave will assure that you are satisfied with the entire process, and especially with the final product.

When you are ready to consider illuminated lettersets for your luxury community please give Signwave a call at 631.761.9292. We offer free design consultation for new customers.

safety signage

Returning to Work Safely: Evaluating your Safety Signage

Now more than ever, employers have to be aware of our responsibilities regarding the safety of our employees. We have to go beyond the old fashioned “X days since our last accident” signage and create simple but effective everyday reminders of how to avoid injury and maintain overall health. Now is a perfect time to do a signage inventory to see where you might fall short in protecting your workforce. Because the day is coming, sooner rather than later we hope, when our facilities will be fully staffed and running full force again, and we can’t wait until then to make the changes we need.

safety signage inventory list

Determine the Right Location For Your Safety Signage

Each area of your facility, whether factory, warehouse, restaurant, retail shop, or office, needs safety signage in place exactly in the location where it should be utilized: blade safety in cutting areas, back strain warnings in areas where heavy lifting is done, and hand washing reminders by sinks and in bathrooms. Choose signage that fits the location in size and material…it won’t do you any good to have a knife safety reminder sign on the opposite side of the kitchen just because it won’t fit over the food prep table. And a paper sign from your office printer in a high-humidity area seems cost-effective, but how many times will you need to replace it?

 

Avoid Cluttered Information Signs

Don’t allow an overabundance of signs to cover up or distract from your most important messaging. Go through all the pieces of printer paper and sticky notes, and come up with one or two clear, visible signs that can convey all the information needed. Custom signage is easy when your sign company can design, fabricate, and install the entire job exactly to your needs.

 

Are Your Signs At The Correct Height?

The height placement of signage is so important that the government regulates it very strictly for signage that must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. It’s important for non-ADA signage as well, so take stock of where your signs are hanging and make sure they are at or near eye level. If not, ask your sign company what the law requires or, if no law applies, what will work best for your specific need.

 

Replace Out of Date Safety Signs

As we look ahead to a post-COVID-19 world, it will be very important to reevaluate the accuracy and efficacy of the safety information on your signage. Think about the new ways you’ll want your employees to wash their hands, cover their coughs, wear their protective gear, and handle an absence due to illness. Make sure the signage you install keeps up with all the most current scientific information and human resources initiatives. There are many inexpensive material choices for less permanent signage that can help ease the transition until experts have a better grasp on what measures should be mandatory, and which are merely recommended.

 

Assess Missing and Damaged Signs

Hm, I wonder why that area on the wall is a different color than the wall around it? Is it possible that an important piece of signage fell, or broke, or was supposed to be temporarily moved and somehow never got replaced? Make a note of any signage that is either missing or no longer effective due to fading or other damage, and replace it. Looking at your signage plan as a whole gives you an opportunity to create a fresh and consistent design aesthetic that will be as attractive as it is informative.

 

Are Temporary Signs Appropriate?

Again, remove and discard signs with outdated information, and any that are damaged or unreadable. They’re just making physical and mental clutter for everyone. Then evaluate whether they should be replaced with a more robust permanent sign that fits with your overall design plan, or if it makes more sense to continue using less expensive temporary options for signage that changes frequently. Your sign company can recommend a myriad of options to fit your budget and need.

 

Once your inventory is complete, call your sign company. Here in New York, we are allowed to continue operating as usual when servicing an “essential” business. However we know your business is always essential to you, so there are many things we can do right now to move your project forward while still following all state and federal mandates. 

 

Call Signwave at 631-761-9292, and we can start today to help you get ready for that wonderful day when we are all operating full steam once again, with health and safety as our number one priority.

 

floor directory interior brushed aluminum

Commercial Building Signage For 15 Merrick Avenue

directory raised lettering brushed aluminum building sign

This newly-renovated office has beautiful brushed aluminum signage as a key decorative element throughout the building, starting with this custom changeable directory.

We recently were called upon to perform a building-wide upgrade of the commercial building signs at 15 Merrick Ave. in Merrick, NY. The customer was upgrading the entire look of the carpets, walls and fixtures of the building and wanted signage with a style and finish to reflect the standard of tenant that they attracted. At the same time they were looking to improve the signage in other ways:

  • create a consistent look and feel for facility signage throughout the building
  • improve accessibility with adherence to 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design
  • ensure a safer environment through clearly marked and legible fire exit, stairway and elevator signage.

ADA women's room bathroom signage brushed aluminumADA building signage interior brushed aluminumADA building signage interior brushed aluminum

The signs were made of brushed aluminum with contrasting raised letters and Braille beads. Clearly positioned by all exits, stairwells and elevators were clearly marked traffic flows in case of emergency. We fabricated the directory and tenant signs, those likely to change down the road, with custom frames with magnetic-backed panels. This will allow us to replace individual tenant panels at a low relative cost.

ADA interior tenant brushed aluminum signage

Each tenant in this renovated Merrick office building has its own ADA-compliant office sign in beautiful brushed aluminum.

If you are looking for ideas on how to upgrade your commercial building signage, please give the Signwave team a call at 631.761.9292 or ask us a question with the form on our homepage.

A photograph of SEG graphic ads in a subway

Getting an edge on your competition

When your product and service offerings are changing to meet the fast pace of today’s business, one thing that might prevent you from purchasing signage is the fear of having to do it all over again within a few years, or even a few months. How do you stay current without breaking your budget?

A photograph of SEG graphic ads in a subway

Illuminated silicone-edge graphics attract attention and are easily changeable.

Just take a walk through your local mall and notice how many retail stores are using silicone edge graphics, or SEGs. These are large, usually internally illuminated fabric display cabinets that grab your attention using bright colors, bold graphics, and lighting. And they change regularly, sometimes multiple times within a season. These displays are made up of three elements: a plastic or aluminum frame, strategically placed LED lights, and a dye-sublimated fabric print.

Close up image of how to insert the silicone edge into the frame

The silicone edge easily slips into the frame for one-person installation.

Dye sublimation is a process in which heat bonds ink into the fabric so that the color is bold and long-lasting. Your graphic is printed onto and INTO the fabric, and then a strip of silicone is sewn into the edge of the fabric. This silicone strip slides securely into a channel that runs around the outside edge of the frame, holding it firmly in place so the graphic is taut. The LEDs are permanently affixed to the inside of the frame, so connect the wiring to your electric feed and voila! Your sign is ready for display. There’s only a small sliver of frame visible around the edge, so your graphic takes center stage.

Why are these signs so popular? Changeability and price. Once you have your frame, updating your fabric graphic is as easy as sending a new art file over to Signwave (or having our experienced design staff create one for you). We’ll have a new graphic printed and ready to install in no time. Even better, it doesn’t take a sign professional to do the installation. You or a member of your staff can remove the old graphic and install the new one in a matter of minutes, saving you money.

Trade show display 2

Silicone edge graphics can be illuminated (from interior or exterior sources) or displayed with no lighting.

As perfect as this technology is for retail, it works just as well for trade show graphics and office/showroom decor. An entire tradeshow display can be built from SEG signage, and it can be illuminated from behind the frame or using attached lighting at the top. After the show, the fabric can be removed and folded away, and the frames can be disassembled for compact, lightweight travel and storage. The graphics will last for years and are washable. Another option is to recess the frames into the walls of an office or showroom for an elegant and impressive way to showcase your products and services. Changing the graphics as your business evolves is simple.

Call Signwave and let’s discuss how you can integrate silicone-edge graphics into your marketing plan!

Is My Signage ADA Compliant?

Make yourself more accessible with Braille signage.

When it comes to doing business in an increasingly wide and varied world, one of the many important issues a company faces is accommodating people of differing abilities. The penalties for ignoring laws regarding accessible facilities, information, and websites can be stiff, both monetarily and in terms of customer good will. The Americans with Disabilities Act–the rules and regulations governing what accommodations are fair and lawful for all–is not always clear or concise. If you don’t have an ADA expert on call, how do you know you’re doing everything you’re supposed to do?

ADA signage applies to more than just restrooms.

Fortunately for you, Signwave has the expertise you need to ensure all your signage is ADA compliant. We understand what materials, fonts, and color options are allowed, and why. We know the regulations regarding installation of ADA signage, and what the allowable exceptions are in cases where ideal install locations aren’t feasible. We know where you can let your creativity shine, and where you need to stick with the standard. Let us take that stress off your plate so you can rest easy that your facility provides accessibility for all your visitors and employees, and you’re not at risk of penalty for violating state and federal laws.

Project spotlight: Planet

Dealing with transactions between different currencies has always been a challenge. But with the constantly-changing and complex laws regarding VAT, along with instability in the European markets due to Brexit and various other political factors, the international shopping landscape can be almost impossible to navigate. Enter Planet Payment, a Garden City-based international payment services provider, simplifying the process for both vendors and shoppers around the globe. It was no surprise, then, that when they decided to rebrand they went with a simpler name: Planet.

When Planet called us about the signage they would need to rebrand their office spaces, we jumped into action. We worked seamlessly with Planet’s team of graphic and interior designers to ensure the materials we used would meld perfectly with their vision of clean lines and luxe finishes. And it all started with a logo.

dimensional planet logo

We rendered the new Planet logo in crisp, matte black dimensional letters mounted flat to the wall.

Next on Planet’s to-do list was privacy vinyl for glass-walled offices and conference rooms that lined a busy hallway. It’s important for morale that offices feel open and bright, but no one wants to feel like they’re working in a fishbowl where anyone walking past can look right in. The solution? Beautiful Etchmark vinyl with a slight sheen, with abstract shapes that resemble currency symbols reverse cut from the material. Visually the design ushers you through the space in a very welcoming way.

 

In the lobby seating area pictured below, we echoed the abstract currency shapes only this time cut from matte black vinyl. Again, using matte finishes and veneers gives a softer, more luxurious feel to the space compared to shiny gloss. When financial institutions incorporate clean, modern design choices like this, what was often considered old and stodgy can suddenly feel more youthful and relevant.

 

The biggest part of this project by far was the vinyl for the walls. Planet has a very urban vibe, so the designers envisioned wall murals that depicted city life from all over the world. Signwave chose a beautiful self-adhesive wall vinyl that has the look and feel of real textured wallpaper for a fraction of the price (and much easier to install). Even the mostly-white text wall has a complete coverage of vinyl, which is pretty neat if the wall you want to use has scuffs or imperfections you want to cover. It’s like a paint job, only easier!

Changing your business name and image to reflect new focuses and capabilities is a long, arduous process. But once you’ve got your vision pinned down, changing your signage is easy. Signwave has the knowledge, skill, and confidence to help you. Call us today to get started.

Why do I need a custom sign shop?

No matter what industry you work in these days, you have to be aware of who your competitors are and what they’re up to. What services and products are they offering? What are their price points? What have they got that you don’t? Increasingly, we have to be aware of the growing competition from companies whose entire business is operated online.

This isn’t news to anyone, including your customers. As the economy shifts and changes, customers are constantly searching for vendors who can work quicker, cheaper, and better. Or they’re figuring out ways to do the work themselves using how-to videos and suppliers. How does a brick and mortar business survive in that world?

As a company that services businesses, we try and help our customers navigate the paths of brand visibility while dealing with that exact scenario in our own industry.

metallic lobby sign

Brushed aluminum veneer on acrylic

What’s the point of a custom sign when I can get it online?

It’s inevitable. We get a call from a potential customer who wants a particular sign, and they want us to match the price they saw online. What do we say to that? We say, “By all means, if the internet store has the exact size and color and wording that you want, buy that sign.” We don’t want to waste your time or ours proposing something that we both already know you can get elsewhere for less.

BUT…

What if the sign you saw online doesn’t include the required ADA components? What if you want your sign in a very specific Pantone color to match your logo? What if the size of the sign you saw online is just a tiny bit too large to fit the space you want it to go?

What if you simply don’t know what you want yet and need an expert to guide you through the process?

custom signs, logo signs, window signs, salon signs, sign consultationNow, you need a custom sign company.

Signwave has the knowledgeable sales staff to walk through your physical space with you, and listen carefully to your needs. We can advise you on sizes, materials, and construction. We have talented designers who have worked with innumerable sign-making materials, with the creativity to develop a project that is unique to you. We walk you through all the steps of making that design a reality, working within your budget. We work with your town to ensure all signage is legal and permitted, taking that burden off your plate.

We have the industry contacts to coordinate all aspects of your branding project, from an illuminated sign on top of a 10-story building, to the etched lettering on your office doors, even to the branded napkins you set out for your corporate events. And we have skilled installers to put everything together for a finished project that potential customers can’t ignore, no matter how distracted they are by their mobile devices.

WE are a custom business, to help YOU stand out in the crowd as a custom business. Attract the customers you want so you can keep them with your stellar service, unmatched by any faceless internet company. It’s working for us, and we can make it work for you too.

Painted HDU sandblasted sign

Digital Signs: The Next Step in Sign Evolution

In an increasingly digitized world, digital signage is the next and most logical transition for businesses that want to attract tech-savvy consumers, young people, and customers who simply enjoy technology that is new, interactive, and cool. Examples of digital signage include the entertainment/payment kiosks at your restaurant table, menu boards, up-to-the-minute flight schedule information in airports, and giant billboards in Times Square. All these types of signs provide information, are visually arresting, and can be changed at the tap of a keyboard.

Today let’s focus on the ubiquitous directory sign. Most buildings need them, and it’s very important that they are easy to read and up to date. A digital directory has a lot of advantages over traditional modular-style directory signs, foremost being the immediacy of updates. Not only can management instantly update tenancy information, but they can regularly refresh the design as well as create new and interesting advertising graphics for the tenants on site. Someone may be here to visit the office next door to yours to have their annual eye exam, but as they stop by the directory to find the office’s suite number they are greeted with a colorful ad for your shoe repair business, reminding them to stop by later with those boots that need to be resoled.

Arranging for a new digital sign at your office couldn’t be simpler. You don’t have to be a tech genius! Signwave will walk you through the process, which will include:

  • Onsite assessment where we visit you, take measurements, and talk about your needs.
  • Consultation services: together we work through Signwave’s initial proposal and pricing.
  • Hardware and software: determining which components fit your needs and budget.
  • Installation and commissioning: determining what contract work or permitting needs to occur, then overseeing the professional install crew on the day of installation.
  • Content creation and management: Our design team will create the design and content to your exact specifications.
  • Training and support: Once everything is installed and the content is ready, you’ll have all the training you need for the hardware and software, plus 24/7 phone support.
  • Ongoing service and program evaluation: As you use your service, we can make recommendations for changes or upgrades as you need them.

Our digital display package includes:

  • A high quality brand name digital display
  • Premier tilt mount, On-Wall Cabinet Enclosure, or In-Wall Cabinet Enclosure
  • Lifetime Software License
  • Content Design
  • First Year Content Management
  • Onsite Installation
  • 24/7 customer support

There are 3 different mounting options, to fit any space or budget:

The tilt-mounted directory is most cost-effective and easy to install.

The on-wall cabinet directory has added security because the wiring is inaccessible to the general public.

The in-wall cabinet directory has a seamless, professional appearance but has a more involved installation process.

Are you ready to bring your office into the digital age? Call Signwave at 631-761-9292 and let us show you how easy it can be.

Dimensional Letter Signs Refresh Flower Retailer

Retail signage can make or break your business. Draw customers in with new letterbox dimensional signage

If the cold weather has you feeling dreary, give the front of your store a pick-me-up with a new dimensional sign. Our team helped popular florist retailer Towers Flowers at 235 Higbie Lane, West Islip, to update their storefront with a new dimensional sign with new metal lettersets.

We installed four lettersets, as well as window graphics and updated graphics to a street-facing light box. Our high quality acrylic letters make each sign eye-catching and long-lasting. Our metallic acrylic has a chic gleam that would spruce up the front of any business.

Upgraded signage will keep your storefront fresh. When customers are shopping around, they will notice your business with a sign that stands out. Refreshing your store’s look can boost sales and make your business stand out.

A new building sign can draw the attention of both pedestrians and car passengers to reach the maximum audience. People want to support businesses that look professional and updated.

Signwave’s installation crew is professional and efficient

Signwave delivers professional installation with a talented crew. When our team installs a new sign on the front of your business, you can be certain it will draw attention to your store for many long years. Signwave produces custom work that will fit your precise signage needs. Our talented designers will help you create a beautiful custom sign that will attract the most business during the holidays this year.

For a free consultation for your business’s newest signs, call Signwave at (631) 761-9292

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sign updates, vinyl, sign service and repair, sign repair, garage sign, property managers, parking sign

Garage Sign Updates for The Fountains at Lake Success

As The Fountains’ property managers needed more accurate information on their signage, adding a layer of vinyl to the existing parking signs was a far more economical solution than replacing the signs outright. The resulting sign updates are impeccable in presentation and, most importantly, they display accurate details for tenants and visitors alike.  Read more

color precision, color match, color perfection, color matching, sign color

Getting the Sign Colors Right

“Close Enough” isn’t good enough when it comes to your brand. Good signage has to match a business’ brand — everything from the establishment’s overall aesthetics, to the packaging, even their ad campaigns. If signage and branding don’t match, then recognizability will suffer as a result. A sign might be highly visible, but it won’t “click,”if it doesn’t connect with the product or business. But when it’s done right, when the sign colors and style match the brand, your signage will stand out and bring the customers in.  
Read more

Property sign for Brentmako, Long Island, NY

What kinds of signs do you need for your business?

There are so many types of signage that appear inside and outside of office buildings, commercial properties, hospitals and campuses. Each one gives an impression to all who work and visit there. What is your property signage saying? Let’s look at a few of the many ways your signage can help give your property appeal – or turn your visitors away:

Employee Entrance sign

Employee Entrance sign at Designatronics

Wayfinding and directional.

Are all parking lot entrances and exits clearly marked? Are the signs visible from the road, and from enough distance to assure drivers know where to turn in? Are the signs durable and attractive? Once in the parking lot, do visitors know how to navigate to the parking area and building entrance they need?

Exterior building signs.

Northport Wellness Center outdoor directory sign

Outdoor directory sign for a Medical Center in Northport, NY

Is the property management company clearly identified? Is branding of anchor tenants clearly visible? Is window signage used in attractive ways? Is all signage in compliance with local regulations?

A&E logo wall graphics

A&E logo closeup

Lobby signage.

Is there a directory of tenants that allows visitors to know how to reach their destination? Are all appropriate safety signs displayed? Is all signage in compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act? Are elevators, staircases and public facilities clearly marked?

We can help with a sitewide audit of your signage to make sure it is doing all it can to make your property shine. Fill out our contact form, or give us a call at (631)761-9292.

Installation of custom-branded changeable letter sign

Changeable Letter Sign For Dairy Queen

Franchisees need precision in following specifications to assure that their signage is exactly aligned with brand requirements. In Dairy Queen’s case, it means Lexan sign faces with translucent black vinyl and faithful renders of their their logos and brand. The changeable letter sign has rails so the backlit lettering can be easily swapped out depending on the special of the day. Read more

Salon signs, window treatments, wall treatments, gold vinyl

Privacy Window Treatment for The Valon Salon in Hauppauge, N.Y.

Beauty services need beautiful signage, like this privacy window treatment we provided for The Valon Salon. The Hauppauge establishment had their salon windows enhanced with a coating of highly reflective, double gold metallicized vinyl. What results is signage that stands out with its strategic placement – a real plus in the competitive Long Island salon ecosystem.

Look Good & Stand Out with a Window Treatment

It is a great way to spruce up your establishment’s window with some slick signage. The glass surface is transformed to reinforce the business’ branding and aesthetic. It also physically reinforces windows and protects them from scratches by providing a protective layer over the glass. That layer can also block out glaring light, whether it’s from the sun or from vehicle headlights.

Window treatments eye catching and help make customers comfortable indoors, which is invaluable for establishments that require relaxing atmospheres – such as spas or cafes. They’re also easy to install, so that’s a win-win! Want to get your establishment’s windows treated? Contact us for a consultation to determine how to best meet your signage needs.

About the Client

The Valon is where customers can give themselves the gift of relaxation, “where wanderlust & beauty are close to home.”

 

Routed and Carved Sign Panels Make a Lasting Impression

Post and Panel sign with carved lettering and digitally printed graphics

Post and Panel sign for Malverne, NY school property with carved lettering and digitally printed graphics

Masonry and a routed and painted sign panel combine to provide a solid presence, identifying your school, institution or public area. Malverne UFSD administration had already worked with Signwave to create beautiful sandblasted plaques for their Administration Building, High School and podiums. They brought us back to recognize their Middle School, Intermediate School and Primary School for their being awarded “Blue Ribbon” status. After a planning session with the Malverne UFSD team, Signwave came back with a similar design for all three schools to assure a unified look for their district.

Carved, painted sign, with digitally printed graphics for the crest

Red brick posts support a carved, painted sign, with digitally printed graphics for the crest

Masonry is a popular medium for sign pillars – in this case, classic stacked stone – but they could be rendered of brick, PVC, wood, steel or even foam. Steel rails were inserted between the pillar courses to assure a substantial connection that would withstand the elements. Between the rails we mounted two sign panels, made of thick PVC.

This is where the Signwave design expertise shows its value. We routed the main panel into a classic shape to match the brand that the institution wants to convey – a classic, reliable institution that will serve the community for many decades. We carved the school names into the panel, and painted them blue and white to match the colors of the district. We printed their crest on digital media, using our latex print technology, and overlaminating to assure the colors wouldn’t fade.

After professionally mounting the panels to the rails, the signs were ready to greet all of Malverne’s students, staff and visitors. Signwave is proud to have been selected to create the public image of this school district!

sand blast stencil

Sandblasted Signs For Schools – What A Relief!

The Malverne Union Free School District had a new Administration team that agreed that a facelift was due. A new logo was designed, and they needed to update their building and podium signage to reflect their new look. After perusing our website, Signwave got the call.

The Signwave design team worked closely with them to define those sections of the logo to be raised or recessed, discuss textures and paint techniques, and mounting options. Then it was off to fabrication.

Painted sandblasted sign showing HDU substrate

Bold colors on a sandblasted sign

Sandblasting is one of several techniques used to create beautiful dimensional signs that can stand up to the elements. For this project, a block of High Density Urethane (HDU) was sawn and routed to size and shape. A vinyl mask was created to block off those areas not to be abraded by the blasting material, and the material (“sand”) was selected to provide the proper texture and density. The substrate was positioned in a protective booth and our skilled craftspeople blasted away.

Medallion sign

Medallion sign represents local school pride

After a perfect relief was achieved, it was off to the paint shop. Like many companies and organizations, color matching to their logo specifications was critical. After two coats of paint and two coats of polyurethane, it was handed off to our installation crew, just in time for graduation ceremonies. The four schools in the district were all looking their best with brand new dimensional signs, that will last for many years to come.

sand blasted sign

Modern techniques, traditional style

After that success, we followed up with more sandblasted signs for the District – a crest for the outside of their administration building, and a giant 7’ diameter crest for the High School. We also provided carved and routed monument signs for each of their school buildings, but that’s a story for another blog post.

Let’s talk about ways to show your school pride in signs.
Drop us a line or call 631-761-9292 to arrange a consultation.

 

Door signs for both wayfinding and information at Long Island location.

Multi-Purpose Signs: Visibility and Wayfinding

What better way to let visitors and customers know how to find your new business than by posting a big beautiful sign on your door? And what if you have multiple doors?

Opaque door signage for privacy inside, information outside Suffolk County location.

Opaque door signage provides privacy inside, important information outside this Suffolk County location.

Recco Home Care in Suffolk County recently moved into a new office suite with multiple entrances to the parking lot. They consulted our sign shop to make sure that not only were they visible to the neighborhood, but that everyone knew which entrance to use.

Signwave recommended printed “window perf” signs on the glass doors. Window Perf is a fantastic material for providing full-surface signage that also permits light to come through so insiders can see through to the outside. It is available in different grades, that vary by the amount and size of the perforations, the color of the adhesive side, and the expected longevity. For Recco, we were able to clearly mark the customer entrance and the Training Room entrance, but also use the other door surfaces to direct customers to the correct door to use.

For extra visibility we added some cut vinyl window graphics that featured their logo and a description of the services they provide.

Grand Opening banner at new Suffolk location

Grand Opening banner at new Suffolk County location aids recruitment.

And to top it all off, a roof banner announced their Grand Opening for all to see. The outdoor signage not only called attention to the company’s arrival in the neighborhood, but also provided the phone number and web address, as well as information about the free training program. Because of windy winter conditions, this was printed on mesh fabric with reinforced webbing all around.

Now the neighborhood not only knows they are there, but knows how to enter. We also helped them spread the word about new employment opportunities in the Long Island community. Welcome Recco Home Care!

Front Door and window signs on Suffolk County building

Consistent branding with variable messaging makes it clear what Recco offers and how to reach them.

Window Perf is a translucent material available in different grades, that vary by the amount and size of the perforations, the color of the adhesive side, and the expected longevity. We’ll be glad to arrange a meeting to show you samples and discuss how this material can be used in combination with banners or other exterior signage to solve your wayfinding and visibility challenges.

Custom street signs

Custom Street Signs Enhance Community Aesthetics

Country Pointe, a distinctive Long Island community, needed to replace street signs that were faded and illegible at worst; pedestrian at best. The Board Of Directors was looking not just to replace the signage but to upgrade the look and feel of the suburban landscape. By the time they found Signwave, they were nearly exasperated. It had been hard to find a sign company that would take their vision seriously. The Signwave team listened with an open mind and found solutions that looked and worked as well as they had imagined.

“The neighborhood looks so much more beautiful now, thanks to Dan and & folks at Signwave…I don’t think anyone on the Board or who lives here could be happier! I am so pleased how our work together went and I am so thrilled with the results!  – Audra B., Country Pointe, Melville

Don’t let any sign company sell you designs that fall short of your vision. Your neighborhood pride commands respect at Signwave.  Schedule a site analysis and we’ll be glad to explore unique signage solutions with you.

Aluminum and acrylic business property sign

Integrating Business Signage with the Landscape

Designatronics, a designer and manufacturer of high quality mechanical components, recently consolidated its operations at 250 Duffy Ave., one of the largest industrial buildings in Hicksville.

With frequent customer visits to their plant, and scores of deliveries every week, they needed point of entry signs that would show visitors and vendors where they are, and which entrances to use.

Signwave handled the entire installation project from permits to polish. If you’re consolidating, relocating, or establishing a new location, ask us what you need to know to make it easy to navigate your business property access.

Read more about office and campus signage, see more samples, or schedule an on-site review of your business facility.

The new architectural signs, made of aluminum and acrylic, provide the level of prestige that properly reflects their brand.

Hospital emergency sign

Responsible Wayfinding Signs for Healthcare Facilities

Directory signs make it clear to visitors which way to go


Multiple entrances. Long corridors that all look the same. Ongoing renovations and organizational changes.

How does a patient or visitor know which way to go? This is more than a matter of convenience in a healthcare facility. Visitors are already in a state of stress if they or a loved one are seeking treatment. It’s our responsibility to make the journey from their arrival to their destination as fast and frictionless as possible.

“We had a big problem with the visibility of the site signage at our Medical Center. Customers and visitors couldn’t figure out which entrance to use, and tenants were clearly unhappy,” explains Fran D, of the Northport Wellness Center. “We needed new directory signs both inside and outside our facility.”

Driving, walking, or waiting. Make it painless with well designed informative signage.

Women restroom sign close up

Let’s take a step back and define wayfinding in basic terms: a system of visual cues that guide visitors from point to point. This starts with vehicles approaching your property and finding the most efficient point of entry. It may end with a room number or other designation. It should guide the individual approaching your facility on his or her own, and also provide for safe efficient flow of traffic in crowded areas.

Directional signs, one step at a time.

Reception in dental clinic design in a modern style

In very large facilities, a common mistake is to try to list too much information in a single sign. Only the most pertinent information should be given at each intersection or point of decision-making. This technique, known as progressive disclosure, keeps the visitor from getting confused and eliminates wasted effort comprehending irrelevant information. At the same time, repetition is a good thing. Every 25 or 30 feet, it’s a good idea to remind people where they are and where they are headed.

Northport Wellness Center saw the benefits of updating their signage right away, and continues to evaluate and improve the flow of traffic throughout their facilities. Signwave presented us with options and discussed materials and pricing, matched our color and design requirements,” said Fran. “We’ve since called them back for several other projects, and are very happy with their recommendations.”

With clearly visible signage at all entrances, well placed directional signs, legible designation and relevant information, we can improve productivity and enhance the patient experience. This means fewer missed or late appointments, less distraction among employees from visitors stopping to ask for directions, and ultimately, a higher rate of visitor satisfaction.

Let’s review a signage plan for your changing facility. Call Signwave at (631) 761-9292 to get started.

 

Wayfinding signage system in a parking garage

ADA Compliance and Signage: Thinking Beyond Braille

Have you ever gone down the wrong corridor in a hospital or office building? It’s frustrating, right? Imagine how it feels if your vision is impaired, if you are having trouble walking, or if you are already suffering from anxiety. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) aims not only to ensure against discrimination, but also to avoid this kind of distress in public facilities.

Braille in the elevator? Absolutely. But it’s just a start.

Design your sign system to enable and empower all visitors.

Accessibility, even according to the law, is rather loosely defined. Any physical or mental impairment that substantially limits an individual from navigating your facility is considered under the ADA. Examples include standing, walking, speaking, breathing, seeing, hearing, learning, sitting, reading.

This applies to all kinds of signs: designation, means of egress, directional, and informational.

Both visual and tactile characteristics have impact. RV, or Raised Visual signs, can be tremendously helpful to someone whose vision is impaired and who may not read braille, including the chromatically challenged. Raised lettering can also help with lighting, as cast shadows counteract glare in changing daylight. Visual Only, or VO signs, are more vulnerable to lighting anomalies, but with consideration of surface finish and contrast we can maximize visibility and enhance the visitor experience.

Restroom signThe importance of legibility is easy to see.

While illumination, color, and contrast are important, viewing distance is also essential to consider. Font weight and size, the height at which signage is mounted, and the approachability of signs should be optimized for the widest possible range of readability.

Consistency is key — placement of signs should be predictable — but unique markers help to make sure the corridors don’t all look the same. Well placed murals, infographics or decorative motifs can help differentiate one hallway or building from another.

When your signage system guides, informs and assures the visitor, navigation is efficient and stress-free.

Let our expert team guide you in making your facility more accessible. Call Signwave at (631) 761-9292 to learn more.

 

 

Safety Signs

Safety Signs

The Robert J. McMahon Children’s Center, part of the SCO Family of Services, is a residential center for children and adolescents with special needs. As part of their recent capital improvement program, they installed playground equipment throughout the grounds to provide a fun recreational outlet for their residents. The equipment went in without a hitch but one thing was missing – the signage to help ensure that the residents would enjoy a safe and injury-free environment.

Enter Signwave. We consulted with the facilities staff and did a complete site survey to determine the optimal placement, size, color, and content of all of the safety signage for their playground equipment throughout the property. We designed the iconography and text for maximum readability while assuring the look would be complementary to their existing site signage and branding.

We fabricated the signs using .040 aluminum with rounded corners to assure that there would be no sharp edges to snag on people or clothing. We printed with bright, long-lasting latex inks on calendared vinyl, and laminated it to assure protection against the harsh outdoor conditions. We acquired the specialty hardware needed to secure these signs to the chain link fences, posts and walls at the facility. Our installation crew was onsite and the project completed in a week from initial engagement.

Need to post rules for safety? Let’s make sure your signs take all of the details into consideration. Schedule an on-site review and ask us to review materials and mounting options with you.

Mounting a sign

Why Signs?

Signs are everywhere we look. Adhered to doors, windows, walls and floors. Hung from ceilings. Wrapped around cars, vans, trucks, boats, planes, skateboards and helmets. On poles in the ground, on brick walls, on edifices, on your desk or on your office building 600 feet off the ground.

Signs are there to tell you what to do, where to go, how to get there, and what the rules are. Signs are the most effective, yet least expensive, way to tell the world about your organization or business.

A sign is your introduction and handshake with those passing by, identifying your business to existing and potential customers. It is an opportunity to make a favorable first impression.
Most businesses, regardless of size, rely heavily on signs. On-premise signs tell people who you are and what you sell.

A sign is a critical piece of any business, and a good sign is a critical piece of a good business. We know that our customers are not sign experts, nor are we experts in our customers’ businesses. We will work closely with your team to create the right sign, using the right design, the right materials, on schedule, and on budget.