What are Custom Lighted Signs?
Custom lighted signs are 3-D exterior signage, made with a combination of aluminum and plastic acrylic molded facing, and include energy-efficient LED illumination.
Custom lighted signs are entirely customizable. You can choose your own custom illumination option, design your own style, add type with your choice of font, choose specific colors, and more.
We can help you design, fabricate and install your high-quality exterior or interior lighted signs today. Whether indoors or out, these vibrant signage solutions attract attention and help your brand stand out.
These custom lighted signs are the number one choice for restaurants, bars, hotels, shops, schools, and more. Just drive by any shopping center in the evening and you will see the wide range of styles available for custom lighted signs glowing from these commercial centers.
Custom Lighted Sign Components
There are 5 primary components to know when it comes to custom lighted signs:
- The Channel or the Return – This is the bulk and depth of your sign. The return is a heavy-duty, yet lightweight piece of aluminum bent and welded to maintain the shape, design, and structure of your signage. The aluminum material captures and “channels” the light to dictate how your sign will illuminate.
- The Face – Usually acrylic, but can be aluminum for back-lit signs
- Trim Cap – Metal strip attached directly to the facing. It includes a soft acrylic feature designed to hold the face securely to the aluminum channel ( also called return).
- Back – The back of the channel letter sign can be either aluminum or acrylic depending on your lighting style option. The back is attached to the pre-shaped aluminum channel by either welding, stapling, or punching.
- Lighting Source – The bulk of channel letter signs use LED lighting. It’s safer, more energy-efficient, and produces a beautiful, long-lasting glow.
Top Benefits of Our Custom Lighted Signs
Custom lighted signs are often the first consideration for exterior signage. Not to mention, this type of signage is eye-catching and ensures your business will get noticed!
Many shopping centers, shopping malls, or other business centers make this type of custom lighted signage mandatory. Not only is it a trusted signage solution, but it is used by national brands, small businesses, and local restaurants. No matter what size your business is, without a doubt, custom lighted signage can make all the difference.
Visibility at night and day is one of the main benefits of custom lighted signs. At night these signs illuminate which, undoubtedly, helps to ensure that your business remains visible even in the evening. Equally important, and often overlooked, is their power during the day. In particular, your custom sign attracts new customers and enforces brand awareness around the clock.
With this purpose in mind, it’s important to remember that custom lighted signs are fully customizable to ensure brand consistency. Choose from a wide range of fonts, thicknesses, sizes, and custom features to make your brand stand out.
We use only high-quality materials when it comes to our signage. Custom lighted signs use top of the line aluminum, acrylic, and LED lighting solutions. LED is the standard in modern custom lighted signs and a cost-effective solution for maximizing your visibility.
Our team at Coastal will also provide you full-service installation in San Diego and surrounding areas. To summarize, we offer site check, design, permit drawings, permit procurement, and professional installation.
Lastly, often custom lighted signs can be easily reused should your business relocate.
Winning Features of Custom Lighted Signs
- Underwriter Laboratory (UL) certification
- Cost-effective 3-D signs
- The number one choice for exterior signage
- Can also be used for interior signs
- Wide range of customizations
- Designed to be illuminated
- High-quality, energy-efficient LEDs
- Custom cut and welded aluminum
- Contour cut acrylic facing
- Color matching
Illumination Options for Custom Lighted Signs
There is a range of custom lighted signs to consider for your business.
- Custom Lighted Signs (Fully customizable aluminum constructed signage)
- Channel Letter Signs (Font focused lighted signage aluminum constructed signage)
- Custom Backlit Signs (Printed vinyl with an illuminating backlight)
Our custom lighted signs offer you the chance to choose which style is best for your business. Generally, our custom lighted signs are channel letter style signs. If interested in custom backlit signs, visit our custom backlit signs page.
Styles for Custom Lighted Signs
Front-Lit or Standard-Lit Custom Lighted Signs
Front-lit custom lighted signs are the most common option. Owing to their popularity, they are the standard style we offer customers.
Note: A unique feature of front-lit signs is that digitally printed vinyl can be installed on the acrylic facing.
Back-Lit or Reverse-Lit Custom Lighted Signs
Reverse-lit signs allow light to escape from the back of the sign or letters to produce a glowing effect around the edge.
Note: Given that there is more aluminum used and more welding, the resulting cost can be slightly higher.
Simultaneous Glow: Front and Back-Lit
Thanks to expert construction, you can have the best of both worlds. By installing an aluminum divider, we can install LEDs on the front and the back of your sign interior. So, you get front-lit letters with a reverse-lit glow!
Note: This option will likely require twice as many LED lights.
Open Face Custom Lighted Signs Signs or Neon Signs
This classic style is iconic. The revolution of the neon sign began with the Geissler tube in 1898. Scientists discovered that a sealed glass tube with the newly discovered neon gas emitted a lovely, bright luminous light when charged with electricity.
Open face signage work to replicate this style. Using a clear acrylic facing, these signs provide the appearance of the open face so that onlookers can see the light within the letters. Traditional open-faced signs used neon, however LED’s are now commonly used.
Of course, open-faced signs generally have no face, however clear acrylic faces can be installed to protect the neon from damage or nesting birds.
There is a wide range of possibilities for custom lighted signs, just take a look around the next shopping center you visit. Each business stands out from the next with its unique font, color, sizing, illumination, and more.
Make sure to choose options for your sign that connect to your brand and help your sign showcase your business. You can even select custom shapes to add to your design!
You have the option to choose the color of the aluminum used in your sign, add a vinyl overlay on your acrylic, determine the depth of your letters, select a custom trim cap color, and more.
LED color options are also available.
Sizing for Custom Lighted Signs
The size of your sign will depend on the impact you want to make.
We recommend a minimum size of 10-12” for your letters. This will allow readability from about 300 feet away. Skew accordingly if you want readability at further distances by using the index found here.
Height, capitalization, illumination, color, and font all play a role in the readability or legibility of your sign. It can be complicated to figure it out, so be sure to speak with our team directly for any specific questions you may have.
Mounting and Installation Options
Our team is available to deliver and install our custom lighted signs anywhere in Southern California, including San Diego, Orange County, and Los Angeles.
Mounting options for custom lighted signs includes:
- Raceway Mount – Each letter is pre-installed on a raceway box. The raceway is a strip of metal in the form of a box that houses all the circuitry for illuminating the custom lighted signs.
- Direct Mount – Each letter is attached directly to the wall. The wiring on the building facade powers each of the letters.
- Flat Backer Mount – Similar to the raceway mount, this type of installation consists of a large flat backer plate onto which the letters are mounted. This can help create contrast between the letters and their background or help hide an ugly facade.
Lifespan of Custom Lighted Signs
All of our lighted signs are UL listed and are backed by a 5 year warranty on the sign finish and hardware.
Caring for Your Custom Lighted Signs
Custom lighted signage is often the primary exterior signage solution. Taking time to properly care for your signs is important in ensuring their overall impact and extending their lifespan.
First, prioritize regular cleaning. Custom lighted signs use a combination of acrylic and aluminum, so it is imperative to use gentle products that won’t scratch the acrylic. Acrylic is long-lasting, however, it is prone to scratching. Scratched acrylic will result in dull signs. So, do not use tough scrubbing pads or sponges that might scratch. It is also important to avoid abrasive cleaners that can harm the acrylic.
When cleaning your sign, first remove large debris or dirt. You can use a gentle leaf blower, but do not use a power washer. This can ruin your sign. Next, simply use warm water, mild soap or cleanser, and a gentle cloth to wipe away dirt and grime.
For optimal visual effect, keeping these signs clean is important! Dirt and debris will impact the ability of the light to shine through the material and negatively affect the overall look.
Local Delivery and Installation
We are happy to deliver and install our custom lighted signs anywhere in Southern California.
Coastal Creative offers full-service installation that includes an initial complimentary site check, design, permit drawings, permit procurement, and a professional installation. We have both our C-45 sign contractors license as well as our B-General building contractors license, so all projects big or small are possible with our expert staff. Give us a call at 858-866-6560 today to get your project started!
For certain corporate and enterprise projects we are happy to discuss additional options with you. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
Once we’ve completed your custom lighted sign project, we’ll ship it to you anywhere within the United States. Depending on your order size we may offer free or expedited shipping. Please contact us using the form to get the exact details, and we’ll ensure your experience is amazing!
Lighted Signs Questions and Answers
Your top questions about custom lighted signs
What are those signs that light up called?
Neon signs are what come to mind when we first think of light-up signage. As the first long-lasting luminous signage, it is an iconic style and the vintage style is still coveted today. Modern light-up signs offer many more options including channel letter signs, backlit signs, and lightbox signs. While neon lights were originally used to light up signs, energy-efficient and safe LED lighting is now the norm.
Where to buy custom lighted indoor signs?
Coastal Creative offers custom lighted signs for both indoor and outdoor solutions. Our clients can choose from elegant and font-focused channel letter signs for indoor features to backlighted cinema-style lightboxes for indoor art displays. All of our lighted signage is great for both indoors or outdoors.
How much does it cost to get a custom neon sign?
Classic neon sign costs will vary depending on the size. Smaller signs (18” – 24”) will cost about $250 to $500 while larger signs (3’ – 5’) can cost you $1200 or more.