Changeable Letter Signs


Changeable letter signs are simply cabinet style signs that house a polycarbonate, or acrylic sign face that is mounted with clear strips, or “tracks,” where individual plastic letters are placed to spell out a message in text format. They come in many sizes, and the materials used can vary. Most outdoor changeable letter signs are illuminated internally, with either fluorescent lamps or LEDs. They can include an identification area above or below the changeable letter area in most situations.


  • Communicating about regular events and important dates to your community – people are so busy these days that if they are not reminded regularly and well in advance of any regularly scheduled events or important dates, they lose track and participation percentages go down.
  • Providing a public service – many communities benefit from changeable letter signs through public service reminders such as promoting participation in elections and warning about upcoming seasonal issues, or other challenges specific to the community.
  • Increasing visits, attendance, and membership – brands and reputations are built in part on participation. Whether you are a church, business, school, or municipality, a changeable letter sign can and will increase participation if implemented.
  • Entertaining the community – modern changeable letter signs are being used to entertain communities with regularly posted outdoor changeable letter sign board messages that can often be humorous. Keeping a light heart about community engagement can be refreshing and encouraging to the community at large and can make your organization top of mind as a result.
  • Advertising offers – all organizations have an offering of one kind or another and changeable letter signs can make those offers stick. By changing the offers regularly on a changeable letter sign, you allow people to see that your organization is active and engaged.



  • Economical – Generally speaking, changeable letter signs are affordable for most organizations and they last a long time if built out of quality materials. Thus, economically speaking, they are a great investment.
  • Permitting ease – Local codes across the USA are becoming more sign friendly, but in some areas, changeable letters are the only sign type allowed that provide the flexibility many organizations desire.
  • Durability – Most changeable letter signs are highly durable solutions that can last over 15 years in the field. It is essential to use the right materials to reach this longevity are key.
  • Anti-Vandalism – Outdoor changeable letter signs can come with lockable anti-vandalism covers.
  • Ease of Service – Changeable letter signs are made with simple, easy to service materials. Thus, many organizations find them to be a great solution where service is hard to come by, such as in rural settings.


Integrated Changeable Letter Signs

A sign with a changeable letter section and an identification area mounted into one single cabinet system for a clean design.

Choose Integrated Changeable Letter Signs if:
You need to identify the organization with the sign
You like the integrated all in one look
You need to be able to change the identification area in the future

Changeable Letter Sign for Business with Logo Panel

A sign with a changeable letter section and a rectangular panel specifically designed for the organization’s logo and an identification area above. This is a great option in changeable letter signs for business

Choose to add a logo panel if:
Your organization requires specific branding of the logo
Your logo represents your identity clearly (such as with businesses, schools, and some church denominations)

Stand-alone changeable letter sign

A changeable letter sign without any identification areas.

Choose a stand-alone changeable letter sign if:
You are replacing an existing changeable letter sign
You already have sufficient identification on site
You are seeking to make use of your entire allowed square footage per local code

Monument Changeable Letter Sign

A monument style sign with a changeable letter sign embedded.

Choose a monument changeable letter sign if:
You need to preserve a traditional appearance
You need to reflect the building’s architecture in the sign
You need to keep the sign low to the ground

Creative Changeable Letter Sign

A changeable letter sign that is designed specifically to meet the styling on the organization.

Choose a Creative Changeable Letter Sign if:
You need to get creative to represent your organization correctly
You need to meet local code in a specific nontraditional way
You have a design in mind that requires interchangeability


If quality materials are used, changeable letter signs can last over 15 years in the field. Portable versions with lower quality materials last 1-2 years before fading and cracking are evident.

Fluorescent lamps were always the industry-standard until recent years when LED illumination has become more cost-effective. Lamps need to be
replaced regularly whereas LED illumination typically lasts 5 years before replacement is needed.

Modern changeable letter signs over 6’ in height will include a prop arm that is used to easily remove and replace each individual letter.

Each changeable letter sign will include a vandal cover made of an aluminum frame and clear polycarbonate or acrylic face with hinges. Each includes at least one if not two prop arms. These can come with gas springs or simple aluminum rods. The locking mechanism is set at the bottom edge of the aluminum retainer to secure the sign.

Powder coat is generally more durable and lasts longer but once powder coat is scratched or chipped it is difficult to touch up correctly since the paint will rarely match the powder coat’s color tone. Paint is less durable and can flake or chip off with time, but it can be re-painted or touched up easily. As long as the use will be a permanent low friction area, the powder coat is the better option, otherwise, go with paint to allow for future touch-ups.


Most typical changeable letter signs can cost anywhere from $7,000 to $25,000+ depending on many variables including:
What is the size?
Double or single-sided?
Illuminated or non-illuminated?
Fluorescents or LEDs used to illuminate?
Aluminum or steel used?
Powder-coated or painted structures?
Polycarbonate or acrylic used?
Height of pedestal or pole(s)?

Should you go with a portable changeable letter sign?

Portable changeable letter signs may be attractive due to their sub $1,000 price tags, but they do not last due to the materials used and most are non-illuminated. These tools are used to promote portable businesses, so if you have a permanent organization, the portable sign would most likely not represent your organization correctly or efficiently over the years to come.

What are people saying about our Changeable Letter Signs?

“We love the sign! It looks great and helps us get the word out for all our events!”

– Pastor Richard Brittell


Your changeable letter sign specialist will provide detailed explanations of the good, the bad, and ugly of each warranty in our market. Your Sign Specialist can also answer most service questions up front, but if it requires more specialized attention to a specific detail, each of our factories has fully staffed factory trained technicians on call to assist with any issue that may arise today or down the road.


Let us help you make a well-informed purchase. Contact Guthman, your digital experts, for the best LED signboards in the industry.