Paint protection film (PPF) is definitely worth maintaining. Not only does it help protect your vehicle’s paint from rock chips, tar, and other environmental pollutants, but it also makes it easier to clean and maintain a just-waxed appearance.
PPF is an invisible urethane film that is applied to the painted surfaces of a can in order to protect them from chips, scratches, and staining. It’s virtually invisible and bonds strongly to the paintwork. Most professional detailers recommend regular maintenance in order to keep the finish looking its best. Once applied, the film needs to be cleaned and protected just like the paint beneath it.
Why Get PPF on Your Car?
Paint protection film (also known as PPF) is a clear urethane film that is applied to the painted surfaces of a vehicle. Unlike clear acrylic bras or vinyl wraps, PPF is virtually invisible and provides superior protection against chips, scratches, staining and environmental damage.
While PPF will not prevent all types of damage, it is an extremely effective way to keep your vehicle’s paint looking like new. In fact, many luxury car dealerships use PPF to protect the vehicles on their lot from everyday wear and tear.
Paint protection isn’t all you get with PPF either. Good material can also provide additional gloss and depth of colour – making your car look even more brilliant than it did before. Thanks to the film, your car has a barrier between the elements and the factory exterior, which means it takes on all of the wear and tear of the elements and sharp objects in place of your car’s OEM paint job.
Maintenance Tips for Long-Lasting PPF
There are a few tips out there, but the most important thing is to avoid using harsh chemicals or solvents on the film. These can damage it and make it less effective at protecting your paint. It’s also important to avoid getting the film wet underneath. If it does get wet, make sure to dry it off as soon as possible – before any more water seeps further in between the film and your car. Water can cause the film to expand from its underside and peel away from the paint.
In general, be careful not to scratch or damage the film with sharp objects carelessly. If you do end up scratching or damaging it, you can try repairing it yourself or take it to a professional for repair. With too much penetration, the film loses its protection. Here are some quick tips to keeping it maintained.
– Make sure to always wash your car by hand, using a gentle car soap.
– Be careful when applying wax or sealant to the surface or seams of the PPF, as these products can also damage the film. Try to avoid waxing or sealing the edges of the film.
– If you do notice any scratches or scuffs on the film, you can usually buff them out using a soft cloth and some glass cleaner. Just be careful not to wear down to the paint underneath!
– Do not use a pressure washer or power washer on your car, as this can also cause damage.
– Be careful when waxing and polishing your car, as these products can also scratch the film.
– If the film becomes damaged or scratched, you can have it repaired or replaced by a professional.
– Be sure to rinse the film thoroughly after washing.
– Look out for yellowing of the film; your soap or cleaning solution is too harsh if there’s yellowing.
– When waxing or polishing your vehicle, use only products that are safe for PPF. Ask your installer for PPF-safe cleaners or wax.
How Long Can Paint Protection Film Last If You Maintain It?
Just like with any type of car coating, the lifespan of paint protection film (PPF) depends on a number of factors, including the quality of the product, the level of maintenance, how much sharp or blunt object contact it’s been subject to, and total exposure to the elements. In general, however, PPF can last for several years if it is properly cared for.
Maintenance of your paint protection film is important in order to prolong the lifespan and elasticity of the product – so you definitely should consider making it a part of your car cleaning habits. You should regularly wash and wax your paint protection film as you would with your car’s paintwork to maintain its barrier properties against everyday driving conditions. If you’re really worried, take it in to your PPF installer to get cleaners specifically designed for use on paint protection film – and make regular maintenance a lot easier.