Introduction to Sign Surveys

Whether we’re installing one of our custom signs, or installing a sign for a national brand, we always make sure to do a comprehensive sign survey prior. Sign surveys prevent headaches along the way and most importantly could save the client time and money by fully assessing the location, access needs, and by capturing photos of the site.

What is a sign survey?

Comprehensive sign surveys are where a worker or team of workers take measurements and photos from a job site where a sign is to be installed, or in the case of repairs, remodels, or upgrades, where a sign may already exist. We learn a lot of valuable information from each survey that allows us to do our job better and therefore help our clients rest easy knowing we’re considering all elements of the job.

When are signs surveys conducted?

Front of River St. Deli restaurant in Chattanooga with measurements on the photo for the new neon sign

Pre-Fabrication / Sales Survey:

If a sign is a new build, then a sign survey will be made prior to the construction of the sign to inform the design of the sign. This survey will help determine the type of signage for the layout and location. Likewise this will instruct the initial proposal for the sign.

New Construction (As-Built Survey):

As-Built Surveys are used to confirm that the architectural plans that we have match the real-world location as it is. This survey is likewise conducted prior to the sign’s creation.

What are the benefits of a sign survey?

  • Saves time when installing new signs
  • Helps foresee and/or prevent problems with sign creation and installation
  • Determines access needs prior to sign installation
  • Determines the type of equipment that may be required for the installation job
  • Prevents design errors prior to the production of the sign

What does a sign survey consist of?

Each sign can be very unique; however, these are the usual measurements and bits of information one records for a sign survey.

Hand-written sign survey notes from the field

Confirm access

  • Electrical
  • Crane Access
  • Site Access
  • Specialized equipment needed?
  • Blocking / Mounting Requirements

Confirm measurements

  • Cut Size
  • Elevation
  • Components
  • Cabinet Size
  • Pole Size (if Pylon / Monument)


  • Photos of the location where the signs will be
  • If a repair job, photos of the sign prior to repair