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Pollux

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Jul 16, 2013
1,560
1,176
Merry land / District of Confusion
A birdie hinted that wrapping my upcoming S in Xpel is NOT recommended because it would somehow interfere with the sensor suite. And here I am planning to do a full body wrap on my new S in December, plus tinting on all glass -- sunroof, rear window, side windows and, if Maryland will allow it, some on the windshield as well.

I'd've thought that:
+ cameras aren't wrapped
+ holes in wrap allow parking sensors unfettered sensing
+ and besides which, why would the ultrasound parking sensors care about plastic wrap?
+ if there are fancier ultrasound sensors with greater range than the parking sensors, again: why would they care?
+ the radars shouldn't even notice a layer of plastic wrap

Does anyone have any data confirming or refuting this contention?

Thanks,
Alan
 

XPEL

Vendor
Mar 13, 2013
314
299
San Antonio, Texas
We've wrapped multiple Tesla's without any reported issues with the sensors on the vehicle. The parking sensors are cut out with our pre-cut kits. When the installer plots the film, it cuts a perfect circle out of the film to go around the parking sensors. The other sensor's, to our knowledge from our customers, haven't had issues reported
 

azdryheat

Member
Jul 6, 2016
405
597
Mesa, AZ
I have front in Xpel. No sensor issues, but I have had issues with the film lifting. Have one more spot to be fixed next week and hopefully the last one. Went to a very experienced installer and he has had more issues with my car than any others.
 

Dstrohl

Member
Oct 13, 2016
232
151
Seattle Area
A birdie hinted that wrapping my upcoming S in Xpel is NOT recommended because it would somehow interfere with the sensor suite. And here I am planning to do a full body wrap on my new S in December, plus tinting on all glass -- sunroof, rear window, side windows and, if Maryland will allow it, some on the windshield as well.

I'd've thought that:
+ cameras aren't wrapped
+ holes in wrap allow parking sensors unfettered sensing
+ and besides which, why would the ultrasound parking sensors care about plastic wrap?
+ if there are fancier ultrasound sensors with greater range than the parking sensors, again: why would they care?
+ the radars shouldn't even notice a layer of plastic wrap

Does anyone have any data confirming or refuting this contention?

Thanks,
Alan

Thoughts (unproven):
  • Dont cover the cameras, this is probably not a problem as you would not be tinting under the windshield camera housing anyway, the side-back cameras push out, so you probably would not want to wrap them anyway (unless you are doing a chrome delete or something), The only thing I can think of as a potential problem would be if your wrap included the "B" pillars and covered the new cameras there. even there its *probably* OK (as long as it is clear), but I would suggest cutting it out or not wrapping the "B" pillars at all.
  • Dont cover the ultrasonic sensors, I dont know if it would cause a problem, but to be fair, I dont know, and I could see it changing the characteristic of the returned sound, therefore messing with them.
  • I cant see any problem with covering the radar, it's been covered by many a wrap on other cars and I have not heard anyone complaining about it.
Just curious, who "hinted" at this? (not necessarily a name, but was it a Tesla SC person? or someone else?
 

f-stop

Active Member
Jul 31, 2015
1,483
1,432
Vancouver BC, Canada
Thoughts (unproven):
[...]
  • Dont cover the ultrasonic sensors, I dont know if it would cause a problem, but to be fair, I dont know, and I could see it changing the characteristic of the returned sound, therefore messing with them.
Disclaimer - my Model S is not wrapped, and I don't know if wraps can affect the ultrasonic sensors.

but I offer the following data for reference:

After I took delivery of my 70D I noticed left front sensors were frequently giving false proximity alarms when there was absolutely nothing near the car. Brought the car in for service and they said there were some cars coming out of production with too much paint on some of the sensors, causing this problem. They tested all my car's sensors and measured the paint thickness. Their findings as indicated on the service invoice:

"LF outer sensor = 155um, LF inner = 160um
all other sensors approx 135-140um

LF inner and LF outer exceeded specifications and were replaced"

So... it seems proper operation of the ultrasonic sensors can be affected by a variation in paint thickness of perhaps >10~15%. Just a guess, but perhaps *if* there's any variation in wrap thickness covering the ultrasonic sensors, that could cause similar issues? (i.e. variation in thickness more important than whether covered by wrap or not)
 
  • Informative
Reactions: Fiddler

Pollux

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Jul 16, 2013
1,560
1,176
Merry land / District of Confusion
@Dstrohl - thanks for the suggestions. Sorry, will not share further birdie info. :)

@NewJerseyMS, @b00st3d - thanks for the data points!

@f-stop - wow! first solid indication of a potential issue. I would wonder also about differences between plastic wrap and paint for proper ultrasound transmission and operation. But I'm thinking the holes cut in the wrap should eliminate any issue. Paint too thick! Good story.

Thanks all,
Alan
 
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Reactions: Fiddler

Pollux

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Jul 16, 2013
1,560
1,176
Merry land / District of Confusion
Dear friends,

My S is in the middle of being wrapped by Brett Miller of All American Paint Protection, located near the Rockville SC. Brett is very careful about all the details. My conversation with him over the phone and again in person convinced me that he cares about and thinks about every possible aspect of his work.

Wednesday night, my co-pilot and I drove our new S over to AAPP immediately after taking delivery. The car was exposed to the world for five minutes or less. :) Brett and I did a thorough walk around the car and discussed every aspect. Brett immediately realized that he was looking at AP2.0 cameras that were new to him.

If I have them down correctly, I believe the cameras are these:
+ 3 forward-looking, mounted on rear-view mirror
+ 1 backward-looking, mounted on rear bumper
+ 2 side/backward-looking, mounted on little flanges on the side of the car
+ 2 side-looking, mounted on the B pillars roughly at head height behind driver's head

Wrapping is a non-issue for the cameras mounted on the rear-view mirror (although windshield tinting might be an interesting issue) and the rear-bumper mounted one. None of these get wrapped anyway.

The ones mounted on the side flanges are located in such a way that a body wrap will go around the flanges and never involve the cameras. So hopefully no issue there.

Finally, there are the two mounted on the B pillars. It's tempting to wrap them as there will be a single piece of plastic protecting that pillar. Cutting holes in that plastic means that there will be edges around the cameras... and stuff could accumulate at those edges, fingers could snag on them, etc. So it'd be nice to just do a single piece of plastic.

Out of an abundance of caution, Brett researched the issue. Here's what a birdie told him (in Brett's words):

I spoke with [redacted], and although those 2 cameras on the b-pillars are not active currently they will be in the next few months with the updates for the vehicle. They are in fact high def cameras and will distort the vision of the cameras therefor making them not operate properly. They will NOT void any warranties whatsoever.

I believe the translation of this report is: (1) a layer of plastic over the camera may well result in distortion and (2) even so, no warranty will be voided.

In any case, the upshot is that Brett is recommending that we NOT wrap the B pillars at all, to avoid the problem of cutting holes in it. Instead, he's going to apply a bunch of extra layers of Ceramic Pro. As the B pillar is rarely if ever involved in the kinds of incidents for which one purchases Xpel, I think it's a reasonable compromise. So I guess I'm getting a 95% body wrap. :)

Thanks,

Alan

P.S. From yesterday: front has been undergone paint correction, whatever other prep needed; wrapped in Xpel. I think this photo looks like something you'd see in an advertisement in an automobile magazine.

IMG_0162.JPG.jpg
 

Fonz100D

Member
Apr 4, 2017
7
2
New Mexico
I had the same question, I just took Delivery of my 2017 100D , took straight to shop to get xpel clear wrapped and chrome delete (also bought from Brett miller) but wrapped it locally we also clear wrapped over the bumper sensors ( not any cameras) and i was a little concerned about that But these are only parking sensors right? I only have 49 miles on it but was worried because my auto pilot wasnt working right im thinking cameras and sensors need to calibrated IDK .
New to auto pilot my other Tesla is 2014
 

Fonz100D

Member
Apr 4, 2017
7
2
New Mexico
We had a custom full Xpel Ultimate wrap on ours and they didn't cover the sensors.
We had our installer cover the whole bumper with xpel clear wrap so theres no break in the wrap to avoid any dirt or future peeling . So checked the sensors and they seem to be working fine.
Anyone else clear wrap over the parking sensors?
 

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