What are the Potential Downfalls for PPF?
After being properly applied, Paint Protection Film is invisible to the naked eye and does not inhibit the depth and clarity of your factory paint. But what about over time? If you’ve done some reading around the Internet, you may have encountered individuals documenting defects that have appeared in their Paint Protection Film after a certain amount of time. In particular, some people who have purchased an after-market Paint Protection Film have noted yellowing, blistering, and peeling. For you to make an informed decision, it’s important to know what’s behind each of these de generations and what you’ll need to do to avoid them.
An early complaint against Paint Protection Film was that after time it began turning yellow, which, of course, has a significant impact on the look of a vehicle’s paint, especially for white cars. This complaint was particularly prevalent when Paint Protection Films first started being applied to consumer automobiles. After researching the matter, film manufacturing companies found that the yellowing effect came from the adhesive that was used to bind a film to the body of a car. UV exposure was oxidizing the adhesive, which lead to discoloration.
Upon this discovery, companies began researching alternative adhesives, and began using the acrylic adhesives that are found on most Paint Protection Films today. This newly developed adhesive is UV resistant, and will not oxidize or discolor. This effectively resolved the discoloration concern for Paint Protection Film. Today, if you put a sub-standard film on your car, it may use an inferior adhesive and lead to discoloration. But all quality professional film manufacturers uses a more recently developed adhesive that does not discolour due to UV exposure.
A Paint Protection Film is said to “blister” when small air bubbles are found underneath the film. The blistering effect has everything to do with the quality of application. Typically, an air bubble occurs because a contaminant is trapped under the film, creating separation between the body of the vehicle and the Paint Protection Film.
Overtime this can lead to growing bubbles under the film. A proper application process includes hairsplitting attention to the vehicle’s surface before any film touches paint. This includes washing, claying, and polishing. Moreover, a professional application center creates a controlled environment where the air can be filtered to remove contaminants that could potentially get trapped underneath the film. Thus, a sub-par film and unprofessional application can lead to blistering. But when a quality film is properly applied by an experienced technician, the risk is at most very minimal.
Peeling is, of course, when the edges of a film begin to peel away from the paint. It can result from a sub-standard film or unprofessional application, but it is often the result of improper care. Specifically, if you are using a pressure wash to clean a car with Paint Protection Film, it is important to stay at least 12 inches away from the film, and particularly from any exposed edges. If a pressure washer is directed at the edge of a Paint Protection Film, it can begin lifting the film, which leads to peeling.
In sum, the complaints against Paint Protection Film do arise from real-world situations. However, as we have outlined, these situations have specific causes that can be averted. If you purchase a high quality film (like Xpel, 3M, CrystGard), have it installed at a reputable shop, and properly care for your protected vehicle, then the risk of defects like yellowing, blistering, or peeling are next to none. And if any of those things do occur, you will be covered by a ten year manufacturers warranty.
Summing It Up: Drive Protected
So when it comes to keeping your new vehicle looking new, Paint Protection Film is the most comprehensive and longest-lasting solution.
If you have additional questions, look over our Frequently Asked Questions(Coming soon) or browse some of our Paint Protection Film blog posts.
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