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The first thing you should do after you buy your new Tesla

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Hometheatremaven, Oct 29, 2014.

  1. Hometheatremaven

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    The first thing you should do after you buy your new Tesla is have Xpel Ultimate PPF installed on your car. (If your paint needs correction to make it perfect, of course do that before having Xpel installed).

    I had Xpel Ultimate installed 3 days after I got my car. For 18 months it has protected my paint from rocks, bird droppings, runaway shopping carts etc. But 2 weeks ago it saved me a few thousand dollars. My wife was backing out of the garage and had her eye on our truck. Unfortunately she hit the garage wall. This is what the car looked like:

    1.jpg

    I could see a dent in the left front fender. I wasn't sure how much damage was done to the paint and how much was absorbed by the Xpel. I called Evan Rowe of Auto Armour LLC., my Xpel installer, and he came over.

    Fortunately I had the car sitting in the sun and Evan was able to pull off the damaged Xpel without damaging the clearcoat:

    2.jpg

    After all the Xpel was removed from the front bumper and the fender, it looked like this:

    3.jpg

    The Xpel had absorbed 99.9% of the paint damage.

    Unfortunately the front fender was slightly dented:

    4.jpg

    Evan recommended a mobile dent guy, Israel Hernandez of Dent EZ Out. Israel came out and worked on the dent:

    5.jpg

    After he finished the dent was gone:

    6.jpg

    But there were a few scratches that got through the Xpel:

    7.jpg

    I took the car to Wes Walz at Elite Finish Detailing and he tried to buff out the scratches:

    8.jpg

    When that didn't work, I bought some Tesla touch-up paint and Wes applied it.

    This is the result after he let it dry and smoothed it out:

    9.jpg

    It looks new again and I'm going to Evan on Monday to have the Xpel reapplied.

    If I hadn't had the Xpel I would be facing a BIG painting bill. You can't take it to MACCO. And the chances of matching the existing paint exactly?

    You can't make a better investment than to install Xpel Ultimate.
     
  2. breser

    breser AutoPilot Nostradamus

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    100% agree. I got a rock strike the day I picked up the car from having XPEL Ultimate and Opti-Coat Pro put on it. It looked really bad, turns out it didn't penetrate the film and removal and replacement of the film made it go away. I posted about this on this thread here:
    Already Got a Rock Strike
     
  3. bareyb

    bareyb Active Member

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    I thought about having it done, but I wasn't a fan of how it looked. Paint looks a lot deeper and shinier without it. It was a trade off I wasn't willing to make. In YOUR case it sure seemed like a good idea though. I guess the moral of the story is, don't let your wife drive your Tesla. ;)
     
  4. MoeMistry

    MoeMistry Local Vendor - SoCal

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    Great thread...like the chronological photo process as well. Glad it worked out for you.
     
    • Like x 1
  5. Vitaman

    Vitaman Member

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    Good photographic documentation.
    Was on the fence about a wrap.....no longer.
     
  6. kennybobby

    kennybobby Member

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    The other first thing you should do is have the wheel alignment checked and get a printout. You could offer to pay if it is within spec, but it is on them to fix if it's out. Now you have a solid reference for future claims if tires prematurely wear (e.g. rear camber/toe-in).
     
  7. randompersonx

    randompersonx Member

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    Has anyone actually attempted this path with Tesla?
     
  8. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    You sure about that? My black Model S with Xpel Ultimate has an incredibly deep shine. The film has a top clear coat layer and you can apply your wax/sealant of choice on top of that.

    That, coupled with the fact that it is 100% completely swirl free even after nearly two years (which is impossible otherwise on black), makes it look like glass.

    DSCF3019.JPG
     
  9. TampaRich

    TampaRich Member

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    Tampa, FL
    This photo sold me on it. How much money are we talking about for Xpel? What body panels should it be applied to?
     
  10. breser

    breser AutoPilot Nostradamus

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    Costs vary on installer by quite a bit. Some installers do a lot more prep work than others. Older cars generally cost more than brand new cars because they need more prep work. Car needs to be perfectly clean or you're just sealing the dirt in. Moe will probably pop up here to explain how important that prep work is. There is also a lot of variation in how the wraps are done. Some are pre-cut and then applied, some apply raw film to the car and then cut to fit. Some installers do some disassembly in order to wrap things without any visible seams. Others will avoid disassembly and leave some seams in places that are hard to notice.

    Some owners do only the front of the car, some do the whole thing. Me personally I did the full front (basically everything in front of the doors), side mirrors, door edges, and the bumper area where you might set things going in and out of the car.

    I'd look for installers in your area, ask them what they charge and then look at their work. Decide what you'll be happy with from there. But you should realize this isn't super cheap. Then again fixing the paint isn't very cheap either.
     
  11. Hometheatremaven

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    You might want to look at this thread when I originally had the car Xpelled. It will answer many of your questions.

    Photos of XPEL Ultimate install on Multi-Coat Red
     
  12. morbot

    morbot Member

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    Due to concerns about micro-swirls and my tight parking spot, I really want to get full body XPEL ultimate done as soon as possible when I take delivery. But man, it's really expensive in the Seattle area. $7k-$8k
     
  13. Vitaman

    Vitaman Member

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    Not only is it expensive, but when you go to sell or trade your car, that may be valued at a few hundred dollars...... if that.
     
  14. medved

    medved Member

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    This Model S has also full body wrap in XPEL ultimate.

    IMG_3974_C.jpg

    IMG_4135_C.jpg

    IMG_4204_C.jpg

    IMG_4207.jpg
     
  15. PlanB

    PlanB Banned

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    Talk to Danny Melville at the Seattle Service center, he's a good friend and will send you to the right place.....that price you listed is insane.
     
  16. Noahas

    Noahas Member

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    Another person here to vouch for a full car wrap. Having my last 6 cars be black I know they can look great when clean, but otherwise... As much as I almost always hand wash the car, there are a few times in the middle of winter where it is tough. All it takes is one time through the "slapping machine" wash and you have swirls on black.

    It wasn't cheap, about $6k, but no swirls and just like the OP, my wife hit the side of the garage 2x while pulling in. Peel off the section, $100 to the installer for a replacement section, and it is good as new.

    By the way, the installer did Xpel, but only because I asked for it. He recommended Suntek saying it also had the self healing layer, but the optical clarity was better.
     
  17. MoeMistry

    MoeMistry Local Vendor - SoCal

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    In the end, the marketplace will dictate what an installer demands. Not all clear bra installs are alike. It's like having 5 different chefs make you an omelet. Something very simple can, and will, vary on price based on many factors such as location, chef, culinary model, etc. You're not just paying for the eggs and ingredients, you're paying for an experience as well. As it relates to clear bra, Someone who's mobile and has no overhead and is new to the game, will charge much less. Someone who ONLY does clear bra, may charge less because they may not do the prep work that another shop does who does specialize in detailing as well.

    The most important thing to do, if you're not primarily concerned with the economics, is find out WHAT you're paying for. You cannot call around and ask "I have a tesla...how much to clear bra my front end?" It's like saying to a doctor, "I have a headache...how much to make it go away?" There will be a "doctor" that'll give you some Advil and send you on your way and collect his money. That may work, but what if you're headache is a symptom of something bigger? What if another doctor says, "I'm not sure, I'll have to see you and run some tests if necessary, then we can get a better idea of the CAUSE of your headache." Obviously, you'll pay more with the second physician, but he also is giving you better VALUE.

    At our studio, the primary focus is quality and workmanship. I'm not concerned about getting the next "deal" to pay my rent or beat a competitor to "close the deal"...we simply don't participate in that game. You come to GP to get solutions to your problems in a manner that we lovingly call "GP Style". We don't say NO to our clients...we make their visions a reality. One of our recent projects with the steel grey MS was a great example. Client made several request, and some he thought were a little unique and wasn't sure if it could be done. We did the project and it exceeded his expectations. The only way that can be done is passion, ingenuity, and unrelenting desire to make our clients happy and solve their problems. For that, we demand a premium because we've earned the right to do so over the past 20 years we've been in business, and we'll continually perfect our craft by learning and listening to our clients.

    I hope this helps in understanding this side of the table. There are lots of great installers out there and they will do great work and charge a fair price. But there are some clients that want the envelope pushed, are passionate about their cars, and express themselves with their cars. They come with requests and desires that not all professionals can materialize. It's comforting to know, there are places like our "asylum" that can make those dream come true. We also offer many services to those demanding perfection, but also keeping the budget in mind. But no matter what, focus is on quality.

    And if a job is done with this level of integrity and technical ability, wouldn't you pay extra when that car comes on the market for resale? I believe someone mentioned you'd only get $200 for a job that someone spent thousands for...I respectfully disagree. This isn't a cd player you install that a new model comes out in 6 month, or we no longer use cds and are now using iPods...this is a service done by a skilled craftsman protecting an amazing vehicle. Sure, it may degrade over time, but, if cared for properly, the film will last for many year and save you from many unfortunate accidents. We've worked hard to build brand equity, and when the cars we've worked on are passed on to another owner, the cars always demand a premium, and they do fetch the higher dollars. Outside of excellent mechanical condition, cosmetics is a huge portion of the resale value. So, someone that has spent thousands on paint correction and perfecting the paint under the clear bra, applying the film by a true artist, can demand a premium, because the day anyone decides to remove that film, they've revealed a paint that is beyond factory-new and a paint surface that has been frozen in time. That is pretty cool in my book...and one of the reasons we do it.
     
  18. yobigd20

    yobigd20 Well-Known Member

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    mine has crazy shine and reflections but I topped my XPEL Ultimate with 2 coats of 22ple.

    DSC_0795.jpg

    DSC_0811.jpg
     
  19. scott jones

    scott jones Member

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    I'm sure it's already been mentioned, but I didn't notice:
    WHY WOULD YOU LET YOUR WIFE DRIVE IT!!! :scared:
     
  20. Vitaman

    Vitaman Member

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    Regarding spending thousands for clear bra and getting back hundreds on trade in....that's been my experience with several cars.
    The Dealer or private party looks at overall condition, year and mileage to value the car. Exotic wood interiors, $6,000 stereos, and Xpel and OptiCoat just don't count for much at resale time.
    I'm sure exceptions exist...... but I've never seen one.
    That being said, I plan to do either a 3/4 or full wrap within a week of when my car arrives. The benefits are real but not for investment purposes.
     

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