SwedeSpeed - Volvo Performance Forum banner
1 - 20 of 40 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Checking for recommendations on current state of products & applications for new car paint. Volvo #6 being built next week, and have used Xpel/3M film on front ends of prior cars for paint protection, but am wondering if some of the recent "poly" treatments might render films unnecessary for normal (non-off road) driving, along with getting the best protection overall for the exterior.

And for a new car, is it still necessary to have a "curing period" for the paints/clearcoat before doing any film or protective coating treatments? And always after clay bar, "paint correction", etc.?
 

·
Registered
2018 Volvo V90CC T6
Joined
·
1,082 Posts
I highly trust PPFs for any Vehicle, mainly because it has protected my V90CC for all these years. So yes, I would recommend getting a PPF (at least full-frontal PPF if not the whole vehicle) as the first thing you do after you take delivery of your vehicle. Of course, any respected detailer will meticulously correct the paint before applying the PPF.

PPFs are the only legit physical barriers to stop damage to your paint. The rest (Ceramic coating, graphene coating, etc.) are more of chemical barriers, making your car look shiny and making it much easier to clean.

As for curing new paint/cc, I do not think I'm qualified to answer that. But I assume it will already be months between the car being painted and you getting the delivery, so working on it shouldn't be an issue. I would still double-check with your detailer, but it would be a go if I were to guess.

If I were you, this is what I would do to my brand new vehicle.

1) Paint-correct and polish.
2) PPF (preferably for all heavy-traffic areas if not the entire vehicle).
3) Ceramic or graphene coating the entire vehicle.
4) High-temp coating on wheels and brake calipers to reduce brake dust damage and build-up as much as possible. (Something like Gtechnic C5)
5) Glassparency or Aquapel treatment on windshield and all external glass.

For maintenance washes,
1) A p-H neutral car shampoo. (I use Chemical Guys, Maxi Suds II)
2) Wheel and Tire Cleaner to remove brake dust and browning of tires. (I use Carpro Iron-X for iron removal and P&S brake buster for wheel/tire cleaning)
3) Sealant to maintain the gloss and shine. (I use P&S Bead Maker)

EDIT: Maybe you already do, but if you don't, check out "PantheOrganizer" youtube channel. That's where I get all my amateur detailing knowledge and know-hows.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,582 Posts
+1
The new coating type solution won't reduce the debris impact anywhere near the PPF, although even PPF won't protect the surface from larger and/or faster debris.

1 downside to PPF is that they need to be replaced after around 5 years. I have 2 vehicles where I left the PPF on for 10 years or so, and the PPF becomes very brittle and difficult to remove.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,451 Posts
+1
The new coating type solution won't reduce the debris impact anywhere near the PPF, although even PPF won't protect the surface from larger and/or faster debris.

1 downside to PPF is that they need to be replaced after around 5 years. I have 2 vehicles where I left the PPF on for 10 years or so, and the PPF becomes very brittle and difficult to remove.
I didn't realize they needed to be replaced after 5 years. Why is that?

We have the 3M PPF on our 2017 and it's done well thus far (front end, mirrors, door edges, bumper). Although I wish I wouldn't have used 3M. Few places around here even sell 3M now, or provide warranty service for it. According to the shop I used on the 2021, 3M screwed installers over and provided faulty film for a long time.

I have Xpel on our 2021. It's clearly higher quality and looks great! 10 year warranty instead of 3M's 7 year warranty.

Not sure if you're considering PPF'ing your whole car. But if you are, washing is a lot easier and waxing isn't even recommended. Just use a spray on detailer or a spray quick wax after washing. Makes the process much easier.

Sent from my SM-G781V using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
2018 Volvo V90CC T6
Joined
·
1,082 Posts
+1
The new coating type solution won't reduce the debris impact anywhere near the PPF, although even PPF won't protect the surface from larger and/or faster debris.

1 downside to PPF is that they need to be replaced after around 5 years. I have 2 vehicles where I left the PPF on for 10 years or so, and the PPF becomes very brittle and difficult to remove.
In my opinion, and from what I've seen, with the most recent advancements in PPF getting 5+ years on them has become more realistic. Mine came with a 10-year warranty. Of course, depending on usage and damage done, you would still want to replace them sooner, but, generally, the new stuff coming out especially over the past couple of years is of much better quality, doesn't turn yellow with UV exposure, and isn't as hard to peel off, than what we saw in the early 2010s.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,582 Posts
I didn't realize they needed to be replaced after 5 years. Why is that?
In my opinion, and from what I've seen, with the most recent advancements in PPF getting 5+ years on them has become more realistic.
This is based on my personal experience, and I was taking the shorter number when I said 5 years. I have 1 vehicle that had PPF applied around 2002-2003, which was a 3M ScotchGard brand at the time (as I understand it, this brand changed names a few times since, and might change formulation too). I removed the film in 2016 (yes, 14 years quite a bit longer than 5) and had a very hard time with the removal because the film turned brittle and every single attempt to peel it off results in about 1 fingernail clip piece coming off (and the rest remain on the panel). Another vehicle, which only had the PPF since around 2010, was equally challenging to have its PPF removed around 2017. That one was an Expel instead of 3M branded (although as I understand it Expel's PPF use 3M-made layers too).

Subsequently, when I bought PPF material for my MY2018 xc90, I asked some of the vendors that sell both raw material and provide installation service. The general message I got was that you should probably replace the film not too far from its rated service life (be it 5 or 10 years, depending on what is stated by the manufacturer).

In contrast, I renewed the xc90's engine hood PPF within 2 years after I installed the original PPF (because I found a source for roll width that covers the entire engine hood cover instead of just ~36inches or so), and peeling it off was much easier. The PPF came off as a single piece without issues.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,360 Posts
I personally never liked them and think they cost far too much for the money. They DO protect the car, but for the price you could really just have the front bumper and hood repainted in 5 years if it's that bad. If you live in an area with major road cinders perhaps it's a better value. I just don't think they look as good as paint does. When I've helped customers get it I've often been disappointed with the look afterwards, but thankfully the customers that get them always have been happy.
 

·
Registered
2018 Volvo V90CC T6
Joined
·
1,082 Posts
Agreed. They do cost a lot. I remember cringing, looking at the $5k bill when I got my V90CC PPFd and Ceramic Coated. Then the very next month, I was off to California and got caught up in a sandstorm somewhere in Wyoming and the sharp, tiny sand particles hitting my Vehicle from all sides at 100+ mph wreaked havoc on my brand new and super-clean Onyx Black exterior.

Magically, after a couple of days, most of the scratches from the car's paint (PPF) healed themselves in the bright sun. With no PPF on the windshield, the sand created a million microscopic pits and scratches on the glass and now my Vehicle looks like a brand new car fitted with a 20-year old windshield, covered in scratches and pitting marks.

Yes. The price was hard to digest, but after this experience, I feel it's definitely worth it, at least for the way I use my Vehicle. I have since started including the cost of PPF into my budget when looking to buy a Vehicle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,451 Posts
Agreed. They do cost a lot. I remember cringing, looking at the $5k bill when I got my V90CC PPFd and Ceramic Coated. Then the very next month, I was off to California and got caught up in a sandstorm somewhere in Wyoming and the sharp, tiny sand particles hitting my Vehicle from all sides at 100+ mph wreaked havoc on my brand new and super-clean Onyx Black exterior.

Magically, after a couple of days, most of the scratches from the car's paint (PPF) healed themselves in the bright sun. With no PPF on the windshield, the sand created a million microscopic pits and scratches on the glass and now my Vehicle looks like a brand new car fitted with a 20-year old windshield, covered in scratches and pitting marks.

Yes. The price was hard to digest, but after this experience, I feel it's definitely worth it, at least for the way I use my Vehicle. I have since started including the cost of PPF into my budget when looking to buy a Vehicle.
Part of me regrets not doing the entire car. My 21 is Onyx Black so it's going to show everything.

Sent from my SM-G781V using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Naive question - with a number indicating they had PPF'd "their entire car", are the clear films a different/more durable material than the whole car "wraps" that allow you to totally change the color of the car?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,239 Posts
I personally never liked them and think they cost far too much for the money. They DO protect the car, but for the price you could really just have the front bumper and hood repainted in 5 years if it's that bad. If you live in an area with major road cinders perhaps it's a better value. I just don't think they look as good as paint does. When I've helped customers get it I've often been disappointed with the look afterwards, but thankfully the customers that get them always have been happy.
I think hood and headlights are wise investments. My headlights look like the moon. And my hood has a fair amount of pitting.

With Halogen lights being $800 each and ABL $2K each, I see the value now in protecting these areas.

Hindsight in my case being 20/20.
 
  • Like
Reactions: rampitup67

·
Registered
'19 XC90 T6 + '19 XC60 T8
Joined
·
127 Posts
My 2cents, living in the PNW as well, and with people sprinkling rough gravel during the winter, your car will get a sandblasting treatment no improved paint can survive.
I think how long the film lasts depends a lot on how much sun it gets. If you garage your car most of the time, especially in the summer, it will likely last 10+ years. I know all my cars to have stayed absolutely perfect for 8 years until the day I sold them. Now I don't remember what film I used anymore but I definitely didn't regret doing it. Strangely, I never felt the need to do my headlights...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,239 Posts
My 2cents, living in the PNW as well, and with people sprinkling rough gravel during the winter, your car will get a sandblasting treatment no improved paint can survive.
I think how long the film lasts depends a lot on how much sun it gets. If you garage your car most of the time, especially in the summer, it will likely last 10+ years. I know all my cars to have stayed absolutely perfect for 8 years until the day I sold them. Now I don't remember what film I used anymore but I definitely didn't regret doing it. Strangely, I never felt the need to do my headlights...
Not had it done to my vehicle but I hear paint correction and a full ppf can set you back 5 to 6k. Sure, your vehicle will look immaculate, but at a hefty cost.

I'd say hood, lights, and mirrors are the frequent impact zones for most stone chipping. Lights costing a fortune. So precting them worthwhike.....Wish I'd done that.

Inconsiderate Jackasses who jam their doors into yours may warrant some ppf or weather stip. Ive got a nice deep clear coat ~10 inch scratch on my rear passenger side door from some idiot.

Then again, car wont stay new forever and will depreciate to the value of that full ppf job in those 10 years.
 

·
Registered
2018 Volvo V90CC T6
Joined
·
1,082 Posts
Naive question - with a number indicating they had PPF'd "their entire car", are the clear films a different/more durable material than the whole car "wraps" that allow you to totally change the color of the car?
Yes. Vinyl wraps and completely different that Paint Protection Films (PPFs). The only similarity being, they both work to cover the whole car. Wraps provide little to no protection due to how thin they are. PPFs are thicker, more flexible and made of a completely different material than Vinyl wraps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,197 Posts
And always after clay bar, "paint correction", etc.?
PPF may hide slight imperfections but definitely not larger ones so correcting the paint is recommended but not required. Clay bar is recommended to remove dirt particles missed from washing and will help the PPF stick and look better. Paint correction is just polishing a scratched clear coat to be mirror-like - not required but recommended for best looks.

The best time to install PPF is immediately after purchasing a new vehicle when the paint has the minimum damage - and don't ever, ever, ever let the dealer "wash" the exterior prior to delivery (or even at service visits). Many use a touch carwash or improper hand wash methods that essentially rub sand and scratch your paint. You will pay hundreds of dollars to correct this. It's best to wash the car using the two bucket method - YouTube it:
. Did I mention to never ever let the dealer wash your car, ever?
think they cost far too much for the money ... I just don't think they look as good as paint does.
Not had it done to my vehicle but I hear paint correction and a full ppf can set you back 5 to 6k. Sure, your vehicle will look immaculate, but at a hefty cost.
I also found the cost of paying someone to install PPF for the whole car to be ridiculous, about $10k+ in my area, so I looked into material costs and installing it myself - about $1k. It has paid itself off in the damage repairs avoided in the first two years. If you can work in a clean enough environment (garage preferably), can clean a car, learn & watch PPF installation on YouTube, and can peel a sticker, then you can definitely DIY! Regarding looks, the self healing surface is remarkable but still needs cleaning and waxing, or ceramic coating (not a fan because of replacement logistics) to look good.
with a number indicating they had PPF'd "their entire car", are the clear films a different/more durable material than the whole car "wraps" that allow you to totally change the color of the car?
Yes, PPF is much more durable, thick, and energy absorbing than car wraps. Car wraps will protect only from low energy strikes.

Good luck deciding!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,360 Posts
FWIW we only hand wash cars. We've talked about putting a auto washer in for the service department but too many township issues at the moment. But there is a huge difference between a car washer and a reconditioned/detailer at a good dealership.
 

·
Registered
'19 XC90 T6 + '19 XC60 T8
Joined
·
127 Posts
Not had it done to my vehicle but I hear paint correction and a full ppf can set you back 5 to 6k. Sure, your vehicle will look immaculate, but at a hefty cost.

I'd say hood, lights, and mirrors are the frequent impact zones for most stone chipping. Lights costing a fortune. So precting them worthwhike.....Wish I'd done that.

Inconsiderate Jackasses who jam their doors into yours may warrant some ppf or weather stip. Ive got a nice deep clear coat ~10 inch scratch on my rear passenger side door from some idiot.

Then again, car wont stay new forever and will depreciate to the value of that full ppf job in those 10 years.
Didn't realize it had become that expensive. I haven't checked recently but if it is this expensive, I wouldn't do it either. I paid about 1k and 1.2k on my 2 BMWs. One was a Z4 with a very long hood and I remember having to look around for a shop which could do such a large surface. I never did my i3 and probably won't do any of my Volvos...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,239 Posts
Didn't realize it had become that expensive. I haven't checked recently but if it is this expensive, I wouldn't do it either. I paid about 1k and 1.2k on my 2 BMWs. One was a Z4 with a very long hood and I remember having to look around for a shop which could do such a large surface. I never did my i3 and probably won't do any of my Volvos...
Yep. So if you got a 250k ferrari or lamborghini, it makes sense. But on a 35-60k Volvo, not so much. In 7-10 years, the latter cars in mint will still command 6 figues. Your Volvo will drop like a rock and the amount of ppf will be a significant cost of the car's value.

Its why most people spend a few thousand tops for high impact areas only (hood, bumper, mirrors, lights, etc).



 
  • Like
Reactions: rafale77

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,239 Posts
PPF may hide slight imperfections but definitely not larger ones so correcting the paint is recommended but not required. Clay bar is recommended to remove dirt particles missed from washing and will help the PPF stick and look better. Paint correction is just polishing a scratched clear coat to be mirror-like - not required but recommended for best looks.

The best time to install PPF is immediately after purchasing a new vehicle when the paint has the minimum damage - and don't ever, ever, ever let the dealer "wash" the exterior prior to delivery. Many use a touch carwash or improper hand wash methods that essentially rub sand and scratch your paint. You will pay hundreds of dollars to correct this. It's best to wash the car using the two bucket method - YouTube it:
. Did I mention to never ever let the dealer wash your car, ever?

I also found the cost of paying someone to install PPF for the whole car to be ridiculous, about $10k+ in my area, so I looked into material costs and installing it myself - about $1k. It has paid itself off in the damage repairs avoided in the first two years. If you can work in a clean enough environment (garage preferably), can clean a car, learn & watch PPF installation on YouTube, and can peel a sticker, then you can definitely DIY! Regarding looks, the self healing surface is remarkable but still needs cleaning and waxing, or ceramic coating (not a fan because of replacement logistics) to look good.
Yes, PPF is much more durable, thick, and energy absorbing than car wraps. Car wraps will protect only from low energy strikes.

Good luck deciding!
Very informative video from chris fix. Sadly, 91000 miles later of 75% highway driving, my car has ample hood pitting, headlights pitted, etc. And the A-hole that scratched a 10 or so inch deep clearcoat scratch.

As a daily driver, most people won't go through this level of detailing and maintenance. I bet start to finish Chrisfix spent half a day or more on process.
 
  • Like
Reactions: likeXC90

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,582 Posts
Naive question - with a number indicating they had PPF'd "their entire car", are the clear films a different/more durable material than the whole car "wraps" that allow you to totally change the color of the car?
Just to add to all the replies between vinyl wrap and PPF, here are the overall thicknesses among them:
  • Vinyl wrap for body panels: 4mil (Note: The 3M brand of vinyl wrap is listed (here) at 110 microns, or 4mil , i.e. 4/1000 of an inch)
  • PPF for body panels: 8mil (Note: rare ones can be had for 12mil)
  • PPF for headlight lens: 20mil or 40mil
I prefer to use the 40mil for headlight and edge guards, although they can be slightly more difficult to install. As far as I know, the vinyl wrap films don't have any layer specifically designed for debris impact force dissipation, whereas the PPFs do.

On my vehicles with partial engine hood cover PPF, upon removal of the old PPF to install new one, I can see clear delineation of an area full of tiny pock marks and the area ahead of it looking practically pristine, this is even more amazing given that the amount and intensity of debris impact gets lessened as you go further aft on the hood (i.e. on the uncovered area). I wish I'd taken a picture of this.
 
1 - 20 of 40 Posts
Top