Channel letters are the professional choice for high-impact outdoor signage. They're clearly visible 24 hours a day and guaranteed to draw people's attention. Not every channel letter is the same, many use neon tube channel letters as the light source while more modern units have moved on to LED channel letters. The four basic types of channel letter signs are front lit letters (the most common option), reverse lit letters, front and backlit letters, and open face letters. Whether you run a retail outlet, restaurant, gas station, hotel, spa, or any business really – channel letters will draw the attention you need.
Types of Channel Letter Signs
There are no standard channel letter signs. All signs with channel letters are unique. All channel letter signage consists of an internal channel (hence the name) that houses the light fixture. The walls that make up the sides of the channel are called the return. The difference in the four types of channel letters is how they're lit and how the channel is covered.
Front Lit Channel Letters
Front lit channel letters are one of the most common types of signs that you see in retail environments. All front lit channel letter signs have their light source facing forward and covered by a faceplate. If you are looking for cheap channel lettering then front lit channel sign letters are your best option.
Reverse Lit Channel Letters
Reverse channel signs are the opposite, with the light pointing backward. High-quality reverse lit channel letters will also have a faceplate covering the illumination source. Reverse channel letters have a trim cap that holds on the acrylic face while the light comes from behind the channel lettering. If your reverse channel letters need an led sign light replaced, feel free to give us a call. Reverse channel letter signs are often used for large outdoor pylon signs at malls.
Backlit Channel Letters
Backlit channel letter signs have the lighting source from the back side of the acrylic face. Backlist illuminated channel letters are the most common signs you will see at big grocery stores and malls. Behind the acrylic sheet, there is a channel letter coil that lights up the sign letters. These backlist channel letter signs are also referred to as cabinet signs. We have a wide variety of business signs but these are one of the most common led signs.
Open Face Channel Letters
are becoming less and less common because they tend not to last as long as their covered counterparts. Like the name suggests, these letters have an open face or in other words, they're lacking the faceplate that covers the illumination source. Because they lack a face plate, virtually all open-face channel letters use neon illumination.
Different Ways to Create Illuminated Letters
LED Channel Letters
There are several different ways to create illuminated sign lighting. The most common way and the most durable is to use LED channel lettering. LED Channel letters will last for years especially when you use stainless steel with an acrylic face for the lettering part. All of our channel letter signage is UL listed and rated.
Neon Channel Letters
While neon channel letter signs are outdated now because they do not last as long, they are starting to become trendy again as dimensional letters. Neon signs use a neon gas inside the custom signs to light up the halo lighting while the LED channel signs have led mounted lights on the inside of the channel lettering. If you are trying to decide between neon or led signage, keep in mind that neon tubes will only last about 5 years before they need to be replated. Neon tubing can also break much easier than standard channel letters and logos.
There are two common methods for installing the sign face for channel letters, individual and raceway. Like it sounds, individual installation means you install each letter one at a time. It's not the most convenient method, but sometimes it's the only way. Raceway installation is just a fancy term for using a cabinet to mount your channel letter signs. The use of a raceway cabinet makes mounting the letters much more convenient.
Channel Lettering Signage Uses
- Gas station signs
- Retail store signs
- Mall signs
Q&A about Channel Letters
Do you offer wholesale channel letters?
For bulk channel letter orders, we do offer whole channel letter pricing. If you need pricing for channel letters wholesale, just give us a call today. Keep in mind that even if you buy a wholesale channel letter you will still need help with installation. Channel signs can be hard to install and you will want to make sure you are using a licensed electrician.
What is your favorite channel letter signs?
There are so many options when it comes to lettering for signs but we prefer led channel lettering due to the durability and brightness. Channel sign letters are often much less expensive than neon tube signs. Channel letter sign companies can have many different options of illuminated signs. If you are still confused and thinking “what are channel letters?” Then give us a call and we are happy to walk you through the different lettering signage options.
What if I need to repair channel lettering.
Custom channel letters are usually outdoors for 10+ years so eventually, something will break or become damaged and need to be repaired. The most common issue is that the illuminated sign will have a light bulb break. We can generally repair individual sign letters pretty easily. It is often hard to replace outdoor letters for buildings when the acrylic panels start to break. If you send us a picture of your signage letters, we should have a pretty good idea of the cost to repair letters.
Looking for something more permanent, try our Monument Signs page.
Why NonStop Signs?
So, now that you know all about halo channel letters, why should you choose NonStop Signs to make yours? We're certainly not the only place that provides them.
We use only the highest quality, lightweight, rustproof aluminum to make our returns and durable, yet vibrant acrylic for our faceplates. We can produce channel lettering in any shape, size, or color, and install them ourselves. All of our halo channel letters use LED illumination to ensure a low energy bill, long lifespan, and maximum return on investment. But most importantly, we take pride in our work.
NonStop Signs consists of a team of printing, signage, and graphic design experts in San Diego who treat every project they work on like it was going to their own front door. Now, are you ready to see what a San Diego channel letter sign can do for your business Then call us at 1.800.205.9005