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Mud flap effectiveness after 1.5k miles (or lack of)

techmagnetic

Member
Sep 29, 2020
93
59
Boston
For the first two months of owning my MY I drove without any mud flaps on. In Feb 2021, I installed mudflaps from ZL1 Addons. After about ~1.5k miles of driving in a Northeast winter, there's some pretty nasty paint and trim damage. The trim is most surprising. At the time of installation, I saw no paint damage of note.

Today I replaced them with the EVMudflaps which should provide more coverage, but honestly idk if mud flaps in general really do much after all with these specific cars. I just posted it on Twitter, so might as well just drop that thread here since it has pics.

 

alexcue

Member
Aug 5, 2020
378
237
Los Angeles
Try the PPF for that area, I'm using the Tesla mudflaps, and they seem to have helped. But our winters aren't any where as bad here as where you are at. I just drove once on some snow prepared roads, and that area in front of the rear tires was clearly marked up.
And you are right, the trim gets really thrashed.
 

techmagnetic

Member
Sep 29, 2020
93
59
Boston
Try the PPF for that area, I'm using the Tesla mudflaps, and they seem to have helped. But our winters aren't any where as bad here as where you are at. I just drove once on some snow prepared roads, and that area in front of the rear tires was clearly marked up.
And you are right, the trim gets really thrashed.

I'm surprised about the trim being so dainty. When the car is clean (which mine usually isn't lol), it really sticks out.
 
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googlepeakoil

Member
Mar 6, 2015
311
206
England
For the first two months of owning my MY I drove without any mud flaps on. In Feb 2021, I installed mudflaps from ZL1 Addons. After about ~1.5k miles of driving in a Northeast winter, there's some pretty nasty paint and trim damage. The trim is most surprising. At the time of installation, I saw no paint damage of note.

Today I replaced them with the EVMudflaps which should provide more coverage, but honestly idk if mud flaps in general really do much after all with these specific cars. I just posted it on Twitter, so might as well just drop that thread here since it has pics.

What size mudflap did you have on that would still allow this damage? The small Tesla ones, the extended ones, the taller ebay ones? Or was this done before the fitting of the mudflaps?
 

bozer

Member
Jul 13, 2020
101
41
NJ
I just added the PPF myself yesterday. I don't love it to be honest and I'll be happily surprised if it makes much difference. Sort of like when grandma puts plastic on the couch. The rockers (Plastic under the door) is getting it the worst. I wonder what it would cost to just replace those at some point, if I even care to.
 
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android04

Member
Apr 1, 2016
457
461
Crete, Nebraska
I'm not familiar with the ZL1 flaps, but I'd say that in general flaps do make difference. I've had a few different kinds over 2 years and 40k miles and have kept the paint looking good. After the first year and 20k miles I started noticing some damage in the rocker panels right behind the front tires and decided to get flaps. I'm glad I did and would recommend them to anybody that cares about their paint and about not getting rust. Keep in mind that the lower they are to the ground the better, but you want them to be somewhat flexible for going over speed bumps. Also keep in mind that if you use aftermarket wheels with a lower offset that the +40 stock (depends on wheel with too) or use wheel spacers to pop the wheels out that it will cause more damage.
 
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android04

Member
Apr 1, 2016
457
461
Crete, Nebraska
The Rally Armor seem to be very similarly sized to the EVMudflaps, so should be good there. PPF is next on my list for sure.
It depends on which size of EVMudflaps they got. The North Edition ones are bigger and probably comparable to the RallyArmor. The Midwest Edition are smaller but still good (they are the size I would get for me and comparable to my TSolutions flaps). The RallyArmor flaps are also adjustable in how much they stick out. They have elongated holes for the mounting hardware so one can slide them in and out a little.
 

2101Guy

Active Member
Jan 6, 2020
2,058
2,564
USA
Black plastic textured trim. From past experience (various cars with UV damaged/faded/almost light grey look), the fix has been easy.
1)Wash with Dawn
2)Dry
3)Wipe down with rubbing alcohol
4)Mask off surrounding areas
5)Spray with rattle can flat (or matte, your choice depending on vehicle) black paint.

Key is taking your time, and doing it in a non-windy area, and when temps are optimum (instructions on can). End result will have black trim looking like brand new.
 

PNWLeccy

Active Member
Jul 11, 2019
1,192
971
Seattle
Has anyone tried to use something like VRP or 303 aerospace on the plastic rockers to restore the plastic? I've used these on the interior plastics that looked a bit scratched up and they look almost new afterwards.
 

2101Guy

Active Member
Jan 6, 2020
2,058
2,564
USA
Has anyone tried to use something like VRP or 303 aerospace on the plastic rockers to restore the plastic? I've used these on the interior plastics that looked a bit scratched up and they look almost new afterwards.
From my experience, when it comes to faded plastic? Anything less than painting, is temporary. Admittedly I cant speak to rock chipped plastic, but Im guessing a bit of light sanding added to my steps above would address nicks.
 

LionelHutz

Member
Jan 12, 2019
238
229
CA
From my experience, when it comes to faded plastic? Anything less than painting, is temporary. Admittedly I cant speak to rock chipped plastic, but Im guessing a bit of light sanding added to my steps above would address nicks.

I'm a bit of a cynic when it comes to ceramic sealants for paint, but they're actually terrific for exterior trim. CQ UK leaves a dark satin finish that will last for 6+ months. But I don't know that it will address the sandblasting issue--the problem there isn't that the trim is fading, it is physically abraded.
 

techmagnetic

Member
Sep 29, 2020
93
59
Boston
It depends on which size of EVMudflaps they got. The North Edition ones are bigger and probably comparable to the RallyArmor. The Midwest Edition are smaller but still good (they are the size I would get for me and comparable to my TSolutions flaps). The RallyArmor flaps are also adjustable in how much they stick out. They have elongated holes for the mounting hardware so one can slide them in and out a little.

These are the flaps I'm using now 4 Garde-boues Tesla Model Y - I had some clips that my ZL1 flaps came with that I used to attach them instead of drilling into the trim. Worked perfectly. Also, only using in the front. I should have gone with these from the start as the ZL1's were too sleek (looked more minimalistic), not deep enough or wide enough.
 

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E_R_N

Member
Jun 16, 2020
155
137
Vancouver
My car is exactly the same. Mud flaps don’t seem to help, the plastic trim isn’t faded it is more sandblasted. The PPF on my rear doors are pulverized and I am regretting only doing the lowers. I should have done the whole door as the chips go basically all the way up.
 
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techmagnetic

Member
Sep 29, 2020
93
59
Boston
My car is exactly the same. Mud flaps don’t seem to help, the plastic trim isn’t faded it is more sandblasted. The PPF on my rear doors are pulverized and I am regretting only doing the lowers. I should have done the whole door as the chips go basically all the way up.
Yep. Totally sandblasted. I'm actually bringing it in to the service center this week to have them look at something else unrelated. They already told me to just go buy PPF and mud flaps to keep the paint damage from happening. Let's be honest the only true fix is to drop another $6k to fully PPF the thing. Not an option for me right now.

I then asked them wtf I'm supposed to do about my deteriorated trim that can't be retouched or protected. They actually might be replacing that, which I'm guessing will end up a yearly thing since it only took a few months after being brand new to make it look like it's 10 year old trim.

I'm pretty fired up about this and still can't believe Tesla is getting away with telling us to go buy PPF and mud flaps to barely fix their poor design and material quality. Might have to let some steam off on my next video. lol
 

E_R_N

Member
Jun 16, 2020
155
137
Vancouver
Reply back here with what they say. I feel like that lower trim should have a little half round wing that runs the full length of it at the top and sticks out an inch or so to try and deflect the road debris away from the paint.
 
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ratsbew

Active Member
Mar 3, 2012
1,289
957
O'Fallon, IL
I guess I don't know that the expectation is with other new cars. Is this somehow uniquely a Tesla Model Y problem? I never expect something to stay pristine forever.

Does anyone with new car experience from other brands have comments on how those cars hold up?
 

techmagnetic

Member
Sep 29, 2020
93
59
Boston
I guess I don't know that the expectation is with other new cars. Is this somehow uniquely a Tesla Model Y problem? I never expect something to stay pristine forever.

Does anyone with new car experience from other brands have comments on how those cars hold up?
Here's our 2015 Subaru Crosstrek as an example. Has the same type of plastic trim (different finish/material it seems) in the same location. After six years and over 100k miles it has zero marks on it. Just some schmutz that I wiped away towards the bottom to show the surface but no damage whatsoever.
PXL_20210425_160927382.jpg
 
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