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For those on the fence with PPF

UT4EVER

Member
Jun 22, 2020
172
136
Georgia
Take a look at the lower rear section of my 28xxx VIN PUP after 26k miles. Needless to say, this car is currently in the shop getting paint correction and XPEL PPF installed. I have another MY recently purchased and I had it wrapped the first day of ownership. Worth the investment imo....

BFFC0848-0462-4458-BB0B-02DBF982DC30.jpeg
 
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Clark_Kent

Member
Jun 23, 2020
379
268
Smallville, KS
So, what happens if you put PPF over paint that has a year's worth of damage without 'paint correction'?
It will look exactly like it did before you put the ppf over it. The only advantage is the paint in that area will not take on additional damage since it's now protected by ppf.

FYI, paint correction won't fix rock chips. The panel needs to be resprayed and then ppf can be applied.
 

Jjrss

Member
Mar 9, 2021
290
174
Tacoma
Take a look at the lower rear section of my 28xxx VIN PUP after 26k miles. Needless to say, this car is currently in the shop getting paint correction and XPEL PPF installed. I have another MY recently purchased and I had it wrapped the first day of ownership. Worth the investment imo....

View attachment 661169
Did you have mudflaps installed to try to prevent any of the roadrash?
 

Midnightsun

Member
Nov 29, 2020
438
517
Canada
I keep seeing people saying they do not need it because they have no gravel roads. Please confirm you never travelled on gravel roads just so everyone understands you definitely need PPF protection AND mudflaps no matter where you live or how clean you think your roads are. The only exception would be if you only use your car to drive to the local Walmart once a week which is a couple of miles away at speeds under 30mph. :rolleyes:
 

Midnightsun

Member
Nov 29, 2020
438
517
Canada
Why spend 5k? No need to do the entire car. I do this to all my cars regardless of brand because they all end up looking like crap after a few years however I must admit the Tesla fairs much worse than the norm. Full front end, mirrors, headlights and lower door panels. A quality product like Xpel usually runs me around $1500.
 

2020

Member
Jun 6, 2020
153
-2
atlanta
I've had many cars PPF'd (front and whole car). My observations are that rock chips that hit the front look just as ugly as a paint chip and you still get "swirls". Yes you can remove the PPF and the paint should be good. However based on my experience I have never had to peel off the PPF when I sold any of my cars and don't remember any dealer telling me that they would ding (sorry for the pun) for rock chips. Bottom line is if it makes you feel good go get it, however as a cost factor probably not worth it.
 
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pt19713

Member
Feb 5, 2020
987
1,270
Delaware
I just can't get over the fact that I need to spend an additional 5K+ to prevent my 65K car because the manufacture is unable to create a durable product compared to it's competitors.

Honestly, would it not just be more cost effective to repaint if/when I decide to sell?
You can spend $150 on a precut piece to protect that area. Can be installed yourself. Note, I'm referring to a larger piece that covers the lower portion of both doors, not the small piece Tesla sells.
 

UT4EVER

Member
Jun 22, 2020
172
136
Georgia
I keep seeing people saying they do not need it because they have no gravel roads. Please confirm you never travelled on gravel roads just so everyone understands you definitely need PPF protection AND mudflaps no matter where you live or how clean you think your roads are. The only exception would be if you only use your car to drive to the local Walmart once a week which is a couple of miles away at speeds under 30mph. :rolleyes:

My car has never been on a gravel road!
 
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UT4EVER

Member
Jun 22, 2020
172
136
Georgia
I just can't get over the fact that I need to spend an additional 5K+ to prevent my 65K car because the manufacture is unable to create a durable product compared to it's competitors.

Honestly, would it not just be more cost effective to repaint if/when I decide to sell?

I’m just doing the front bumper and the lower sides on my white one ($900). That’s the only area I have had any issues after 26k miles. I did the entire front clip and the lower sides on the red one though.... I think that a rock chip would be more noticeable on the red color so I decided to also do the hood and front fenders.
 

Itsuo-DC

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Nov 26, 2018
175
105
Washington, DC
Did you have mudflaps installed to try to prevent any of the roadrash?

I have had mine installed since mile 5--now close to mile 4K. I have not seen any major chips or even really major damage to the paint in front of the rear wheels. Perhaps they made a huge difference?
That photo could have been from my car. I'm getting the film from Tesla just to cover those areas ($50).
I also have this film but I've been waiting for warmer weather to install them; it's probably about time now but one of the corners of the PPF came off the backing while in storage and has some debris stuck to it: whoops. Hopefully that won't effect the adhesion using the solution and taping the corners down for a few days after installation.
 

DayTrippin

Member
Apr 30, 2021
710
672
Jax
I plan to order a Tesla this week. As a result I've been doing a lot of reading about the need for PPF on Teslas in general. It seems like the general consensus is while the new paint is better, on the M3 and MY, that almost mandatory to do PPF. So when I looked at the cost of doing PPF, I was shocked at how bad the Tesla Tax is.

I had another car done not long ago as it was going to see a lot of highway use and doing a lot of towing. It had more frontal area and cost less than half to do what I was quoted for an M3 or MY. So honestly the pricing seems borderline ripoff for what most places are charging.

So I went to my local paint magician. That is the best name to call this guy. All the Lambo, Ferraris, Bentley's, Ford GTs, etc, seem to end up at his shop. He almost always has a few Teslas outside his shop as well. So I asked him straight up should I do PPF or not. His recommendation was that the multicoat finishes seem to be much better than the others.

He said he would recommend PPF but he also mentioned, that if I had an M3, he could respray the entire front bumper for about $500. The last quote I got was $1900 to do the full front and 5k to wrap the entire car. Based on that pricing, it seems at best maybe a little economic advantage to wrap. The last car I had PPF on, someone backed into the front and I pretty much had to repaint the bumper and throw away all the PPF on the bumper. If I didn't have any PPF, I would have come out ahead financially. I didn't bother having PPF put back on after that.

So I am really thinking about just rolling the dice on whatever Tesla I end up ordering and maybe just deal with respraying it down the road if really needed. Then of course you have the hole issue of if you had any paint work question to answer but before and after pictures can satisfy that. If I save 2k on the front, that goes a long way toward any repainting I might need or touch-ups by this guy.

I almost feel that the costs charged for PPF film are crazily high. It is like the feed off your fear. Maybe if I didn't have someone awesome near by I might lean more toward it. All the guys running the PPF shops in my area are driving pretty high end cars so apparently it must be a pretty profitable business. I did window tinting in college so I must just buy the pre-cut kit and give it a shot. Even if I waste a kit or two getting it right, I'd still come out at least a thousand or more ahead.

At this point I'll shop around a bit more but I think as soon as you say you have a Tesla, they double the price quote. I think some of these shops prey on FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt). If the shops keeping asking that kind of money, and people keep paying it, then obviously there is enough value for someone. I would urge you to ask around and see what a good shop would quote to respray your bumper.

The best way I've found is go to the dent repair shops. They usually don't do any painting but they normally have some guy on speed dial so to speak that is basically a paint magician who can help out. That is the guy you want. I've used that approach in 4 cities and it has always panned out. These guys almost never advertise and all their clientele is word of mouth. That is how I found the guy I use. I knew I had the right person when I saw some cars that were going to be shown at the Concours d'Elegance at Amelia Island. The one where you see old Bugattis and Talbot Lagos like at Pebble Beach.

For those of you on the fence about PPF, get the additional data points of what it would cost to paint the areas most likely to be impacted. I was shocked at how little it was. Maybe it is worth it in your area. Maybe you don't want to deal with repainting. Maybe you'll never have anyone back into your car. It is your money to spend how you want.
 

Clark_Kent

Member
Jun 23, 2020
379
268
Smallville, KS
I just can't get over the fact that I need to spend an additional 5K+ to prevent my 65K car because the manufacture is unable to create a durable product compared to it's competitors.

Honestly, would it not just be more cost effective to repaint if/when I decide to sell?
You don't "need" to spend additional money. There are plenty people who opt out of ppf and they're doing just fine. And this also isn't a Tesla problem. I've owned over a dozen vehicles and the ones I didn't put ppf on got rock chips regardless brand. It's a fact that a vehicle driven outside will take on rock chips over time if it's not protected by film, full stop.
 

DayTrippin

Member
Apr 30, 2021
710
672
Jax
I too think rock chips are inevitable, especially in some states. The issue for me is how susceptible Teslas seem to be to it. Also that big flat front nose makes a pretty juicy target. What also shocked me was the photos I saw of the rocker panel damage from stone chips. I had Audi Quattros for years in a very bad winter climate and never did I see the level of damage even on one driven every winter for 5 years, the way some of the M3s and MYs are after just one winter. I am surprised someone hasn't started a class action lawsuit.

I lived in a foreign country that had absolutely terrible roads in the winter and they never did much to maintain them. Summer wasn't much better but at least you could avoid the tank craters as they were more visible. Even the local POS built cars' paint seemed to hold up better. This is in a country where their cars were copied from cars like the 70's Fiats. Somehow even their paint seemed to be more durable, even with extremes in temps, as winter could go from -60F to 100F in the summer. They even generally had good door, hood, and other panel alignments. Would I want to own on of those cars again, hell no, but if they can get it right using factories with 50's technology (if lucky) then Tesla should be able to.

Will it stop me from buying a Tesla now? No, but it does make the decision harder and does drive up the price. It likely will impact my decision to buy another car in the future if the other companies catch up with their charging networks and their tech. While Tesla has a lead, it isn't insurmountable by any measure. I drove a Mustang Mach E today and while it lags Tesla a bit, it is definitely a serious warning shot across the bow of at least the MY. Paint was great, panels lined up, materials were better inside and no rattles on the test drive. Factor in the 7.5k tax credit and no Tesla Tax, and it presents a pretty good value.

If I go with the red, I'll almost likely invest in at least the front PPF and rocker panels to give it better chance to survive. I am still calling around to get estimates but so far it seems almost like there is some price collusion between places. Like the OPEC cartel of XPEL PPF installers. Even a guy who does it out of his garage is charging pretty much the same as the places that have an actual presence. The 2k spent on PPF I would prefer to spend on wheels I actually like.

Thankfully this a good forum for information and I am going into my purchase with at least some information regarding the pros and cons of Tesla ownership.
 
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