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  • Paint Protection, not Perfection

Does PPF look perfect once installed?

This is an extremely popular question. We completely understand it. You want to protect your vehicle but you also want it to look as perfect as possible.

The honest answer is, NO. PPF is not a 100% flawless process. No matter who you choose, all installs will include some very minor, visible flaws in the process.

What are the most common flaws on a fresh PPF installation?

Installing PPF is a highly challenging, time-consuming, intricate, and expensive process. Common issues encountered during installation include air bubbles, lift lines, water trapped under the film, and lifting edges. Lift lines occur when a section is laid and then lifted to eliminate air bubbles or specks of dirt. Water under the film will naturally evaporate over several days or weeks, depending on the weather and exposure to heat and sunlight.

A skilled installer ensures that any residual water between the film and the vehicle’s body is free of air. While water left between the PPF and body will eventually cure, any remaining air bubbles can lead to imperfections that can be avoided with proper care before returning the car to the client.

Edge lifting is a common occurrence when the film has not fully cured and bonded to the paint, often affecting the film’s edges due to tension. This can usually be addressed by trimming or reheating during a follow-up visit to the installation shop. Clients should be aware that these issues are to be expected in a fresh PPF installation and should anticipate them happening shortly after the installation process.

As a client, you should expect these imperfections right after a PPF installation.

What contributes to PPF not achieving a flawless appearance?

Reputable PPF shops strive for perfection, but unless PPF is installed in a completely enclosed space with a NASA-like air filter to eliminate dust, some degree of contamination is inevitable.

Pre-existing paint flaws, such as rock chips, debris in the clear coat, scratches, swirls, and misaligned body panels, become more noticeable and may even feel magnified after PPF application. Specks that appear to be dust or debris under the film could be nibs in the painted clear coat. Regardless of the manufacturer, every vehicle has some existing flaws, even from the factory. While PPF protects the vehicle, it also tends to highlight these pre-existing imperfections.

What measures can be taken to ensure the best possible PPF installation?

The three most crucial factors for improving the quality of a Paint Protection Film install are using quality film, relying on an experienced technician, and working in a clean environment.

An ideal PPF installation area is clean, well-lit, and equipped with temperature control and a filtration system. While achieving a perfect PPF installation is impossible, applying PPF in environments such as a garage, a non-enclosed shop, or a dealership is not recommended. Working in a clean environment is an often overlooked factor when installing PPF.

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