DIY PPF protection?

  • SUPPORT THE SITE AND ENJOY A PREMIUM EXPERIENCE!
    Welcome to Tesla Owners Online, four years young! For a low subscription fee, you will receive access to an ad-free version of TOO. We now offer yearly memberships! You can subscribe via this direct link:
    https://teslaownersonline.com/account/upgrades

    SUBSCRIBE TO OUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL!
    Did you know we have a YouTube channel that's all about Tesla? Lots of Tesla information, fun, vlogs, product reviews, and a weekly Tesla Owners Online Podcast as well!

garsh

Dis Member
Moderator
TOO Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2016
Messages
11,749
Location
Pittsburgh PA
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#1
Is anybody else considering applying PPF themselves?

I'm considering it. Having it professionally installed seems about as expensive as having a bumper repainted. I'm wondering if the price would come down enough to make a re-application every few years reasonable if I were to do it myself.

Thoughts? Tips? Am I insane? Precut or not?
 

JWardell

Legendary Member
Joined
May 9, 2016
Messages
3,873
Location
Boston
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#3
I actually hope some vinyl folks offer some Model 3 specific DIY kits.

You can buy direct from XPel, but it's almost as expensive as getting it installed.

I would like to add a bit myself to the rear bumper and behind the rear wheels.

I've applied PPF to headlights on a few cars, and that's very easy to DIY. It's curves and edges that take skill.

You can certainly get rolls and cut yourself...search eBay for paint protection sheet.

I'm sure Kenriko is tired of me paging him, but someone with vinyl cutting equipment could easily make and sell aftermarket kits
 

Mesprit87

Top-Contributor
Joined
Oct 29, 2017
Messages
407
Location
Sainte-Anne-des-Lacs, Québec
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#5
Pre-cut makes it worse, if you stretch in the wrong direction, that's it...
I'm planning on giving it a try, I've installed much thicker pellicules, it can't be that bad.
I'm not looking to make my car win prizes, I just want to protect it. These PPF are not eternal anyway and having it professionally installed is more than expensive.
Link to the rough material:
https://paintprotectionfilm.ca/collections/all
Canadian site.
I like to see before I try something and here are the pros at work on a very curvy car:)
https://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&sour...BMAF6BAgLEAU&usg=AOvVaw2Fg6rOkfzEPUagDRUqPabD
 

garsh

Dis Member
Moderator
TOO Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2016
Messages
11,749
Location
Pittsburgh PA
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#7
So pre cut kits are available on ebay if you want to go the DIY install route.
I don't know if I'd trust a pre-cut kit. I think I'd rather cut it myself. Installation involves a good bit of stretching, so I can't see a pre-cut being very precise as people stretch things a bit differently. It also sounds like many of the pre-cut kits don't go all the way to the edges.

But I'd love to hear personal experiences that people have had using a pre-cut kit. I might be off-base.
 

JWardell

Legendary Member
Joined
May 9, 2016
Messages
3,873
Location
Boston
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#8
Precut typically does not wrap around the edges, so you will just have to touch up often in those exposed places. Typically only the best PPF places with lots of experience know exactly which dimensions to add where to to the kit dimensions for each car.

DIY will range from fairly simple for small or flat sections (Hood, lights) to near impossible for complex large curved surfaces like the bumper. You can also just add it to the most forward/flat sections and leave edges and some parts unprotected.

The other problem I saw especially on eBay films is they may be super thick which means super noticeable.

It all depends on your situation and what you want.
 

scaots

Tesla Pilot, Owner, and Shareholder
Joined
Sep 12, 2017
Messages
372
Location
PA
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#13
I'm doing wife's car this week. If it goes well I will be doing mine full front. I ordered precut kit because I don't want to have to get it positioned and cut a nice straight edge, that would be tough. Bumper would be awful to cut yourself, but I can see doing the hood. The hood I ordered with wrapped edge so should be nice over the edges there. A good template should be perfect and it will stretch a little so should be able to position just how you want it. You probably don't want to go all the way into the seams because that rolled edge can be a spot that is tough to get to stick and can start to lift. All the shops I see use templates. My quote was pretty expensive. I should save almost a grand doing it myself.
 

scaots

Tesla Pilot, Owner, and Shareholder
Joined
Sep 12, 2017
Messages
372
Location
PA
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#14
DIY PPF on the "test vehicle" went OK. Not perfect, but it is ok. It was extremely hard to do a huge hood that even on a stool I had a hard time reaching to center, but Model 3 won't have that issue. The bumper was complex and took some time, but went smoothly because no complex curves. I want to do full front PPF. I am concerned about the model 3 bumper curves because some stretching will definitely be needed to get a smooth install and PPF doesn't stretch very well. I am going to see how DIY ceramic goes on the other car and get some quotes for the 3 before I decide on DIY vs spending quite a bit more money. Mostly if I am shelling out for pro install I expect it to be perfect and I have a hunch that it will never be perfect so what am I wasting my money for.
 

garsh

Dis Member
Moderator
TOO Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2016
Messages
11,749
Location
Pittsburgh PA
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#15
This looks like a useful video for DIY PPF installation.
It's only a partial front hood, but it's real-time, and shows all the steps. It shows how to handle difficult curves.

 

Tchris

Well-known member
TOO Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2017
Messages
290
Location
Goodyear, Arizona
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#16
Is anybody else considering applying PPF themselves?

I'm considering it. Having it professionally installed seems about as expensive as having a bumper repainted. I'm wondering if the price would come down enough to make a re-application every few years reasonable if I were to do it myself.

Thoughts? Tips? Am I insane? Precut or not?
Sounds like a train wreck to me.
 

Sandy

One obsession to the next
TOO Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
989
Location
Ontario
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#17
DIY PPF on the "test vehicle" went OK. Not perfect, but it is ok. It was extremely hard to do a huge hood that even on a stool I had a hard time reaching to center, but Model 3 won't have that issue. The bumper was complex and took some time, but went smoothly because no complex curves. I want to do full front PPF. I am concerned about the model 3 bumper curves because some stretching will definitely be needed to get a smooth install and PPF doesn't stretch very well. I am going to see how DIY ceramic goes on the other car and get some quotes for the 3 before I decide on DIY vs spending quite a bit more money. Mostly if I am shelling out for pro install I expect it to be perfect and I have a hunch that it will never be perfect so what am I wasting my money for.
If I was cost constrained and had to pick one thing only to do it would definitely be :

- Professionally wrapped full front bumper/headlights (preferably one piece custom rather than a pre-cut kit)

In my personal experiences with my last few vehicles over 95% of paint chips/wear have been on my bumper covers along with gradual sandblast effect on the plastic headlights. REALLY regret not having the bumper on my ‘14 Escape PPF’d. Probably have touched up 30 paint chips.
 

SoFlaModel3

@Teslatunity
Moderator
TOO Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2017
Messages
9,875
Location
Florida
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#19
Because.....?

You've tried it yourself and found it difficult?
You think lots of training is required to do it correctly?
Inquiring minds want to know.
Here’s one way to think of it. If you went to a brand new shop and they told you it was their first car would you:

A) Run for the hills?
—or—
B) Move forward with it?

When it comes to things like this, I generally go for experience. Let them learn on someone else’s car :)
 

garsh

Dis Member
Moderator
TOO Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2016
Messages
11,749
Location
Pittsburgh PA
Tesla Owner
Model 3
Country
Country
#20
When it comes to things like this, I generally go for experience. Let them learn on someone else’s car :)
See, I'm a bit of a DIY kind of guy. These installers have more experience than me, but the tools required are simple and cheap, and the material cost is about 1/10 the cost of having a professional install it.

I'm happy to learn on my own car. I've pretty much convinced myself that I won't ruin the paint by trying. :)