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Cosmetic Maintenance (Wash, Wax, Detailing, Body Repairs) Wash, Wax, Details, Repairs


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Old 02-04-2017, 12:36 PM   #1
zkahle
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XPEL Ultimate Film Four Year Review

Dear Everyone,

I thought that I would take some time to write a long needed review about XPEL and their clear bra (film). I am not sponsored by XPEL nor have I been asked to write this review. I am just another happy customer that has been using their services for the past 8 years and felt it was about time I showed them some love.

Four years ago I purchased my FRS and the absolute first thing I did after purchasing it was drive it over to XPEL to get my car wrapped and protected from nasty rock chips as well as anything else that could scratch and or damage the new paint on my car. Originally I purchased a half hood, half roof, as well as half fender kit for my car. Four years later and my paint still looks like the way it did the day I got it. I recently visited my local San Antonio XPEL shop to get upgraded to a full hood wrap, something I should have done the first time around.

I am no expert when it comes to their film and how exactly its manufactured. All that I needed to know before purchasing their film was that it is "self healing". This meant that whenever I would get smaller scratches or swirl marks in the film that they would dissipate after letting the car sit out in the sun for a little bit. I have to admit I was a bit skeptical of this but after three years my film had collected less scratches and swirl marks than the areas of my car without film. As you would expect their film is incredibly thin in addition to being durable, to be exact their ultimate film is something like 0.2mm thick(). So yea, unless you are really looking for it, its pretty much like its not even there.

Lastly theres XPEL's 10 year warranty that protects you and your film against yellowing, discoloration, peeling, cracking and hazing. So essentially if the film isn't performing the way it should they will replace it! This in my opinion is very important in that some of our body panels (front bumper) are very contoured and require a great deal of effort to properly install the film. So if for some reason your film comes loose one day or you happen to notice a air bubble under the film your local XPEL dealer will replace it.

Overall I would consider XPEL's film one of the most important and valuable mods I have done to my FRS. My only regret was not getting the whole car wrapped.... $$$.... But if you plan on owning your car for the long haul like I do XPEL's clear bra is a must for protecting your cars paint!
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Old 02-04-2017, 01:47 PM   #2
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When the BRZ first came out I was the guy who bugged their headquarters in TX and found local donor BRZ owners for them to measure out templates and release this product.
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Old 02-04-2017, 02:54 PM   #3
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I had XPEL professionally installed on my front bumper, mirrors and headlights a couple of days after I picked up the BRZ brand new, and those areas still look brand new. I also bought some XPEL film to do the rear bumpers behind the wheel wells, and other places like the kick panels myself. It's an awesome product, and if I ever buy a new car, that's the first thing I'll have done again. It makes so much more sense to protect the car with clear bra and have it look great the entire time the film is on, rather than let rock chips build up until you have to repaint the bumper.
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Old 02-04-2017, 11:23 PM   #4
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Have you had issues with the film tearing from rocks?

I have had XPEL Ultimate installed on my car for close to 20K miles of daily commuting on the highway (full bumper, partial hood, partial fenders, and full mirrors), and the Northeast winter has recently put a beating on my film on mostly my hood and bumper. My hood has at least 5 tiny tears from rocks impacting, and my bumper has scuff marks from rocks impacting as well.

I didn't expect the durability of XPEL to be this low. At this rate, I am planning to have my installer replace the film eventually with new.
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Old 02-05-2017, 03:14 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Si_Chris View Post
I have had XPEL Ultimate installed on my car for close to 20K miles of daily commuting on the highway (full bumper, partial hood, partial fenders, and full mirrors), and the Northeast winter has recently put a beating on my film on mostly my hood and bumper. My hood has at least 5 tiny tears from rocks impacting, and my bumper has scuff marks from rocks impacting as well.

I didn't expect the durability of XPEL to be this low. At this rate, I am planning to have my installer replace the film eventually with new.
What kind of magic material do you think this film is made of? It's still just vinyl at the end of the day. You sound upset that after 20,000 miles, the XPEL wrap isn't in pristine, just-installed-yesterday condition. A big rock is still a big rock. This isn't a deflector shield. It's a super thin wrap designed to minimize the damage caused my small debris. Large rocks will still damage it. I've had my XPEL wrap on for over 40,000 miles, including three winters, and tons of road trips, and while it has a few small nicks from some larger bits of debris, it's in amazing condition, and the front of the car still basically looks new.
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Old 02-05-2017, 02:56 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Si_Chris View Post
Have you had issues with the film tearing from rocks?

I have had XPEL Ultimate installed on my car for close to 20K miles of daily commuting on the highway (full bumper, partial hood, partial fenders, and full mirrors), and the Northeast winter has recently put a beating on my film on mostly my hood and bumper. My hood has at least 5 tiny tears from rocks impacting, and my bumper has scuff marks from rocks impacting as well.

I didn't expect the durability of XPEL to be this low. At this rate, I am planning to have my installer replace the film eventually with new.
In my opinion these tiny rips in the film are to be expected if the road debris is large enough. After running the half hood on my car for three years I only managed to bet 3-4 rips that were about 1-2mm in diameter. Now despite having the film rip i'm happy that this only affected the film and not the underlying paint, heck we all got the film in the first place to protect the our paint. In the end I upgraded to a full hood "something i should have gone with originally". Im sure your local XPEL distributer would be more than happy to take care of the rips in your film.
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Old 02-05-2017, 02:58 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by switchlanez View Post
When the BRZ first came out I was the guy who bugged their headquarters in TX and found local donor BRZ owners for them to measure out templates and release this product.
I think we were probably contacting XPEL at about the same time lol. When I brought my car in they told me I was the first in the SATX area to come by. Despite being the first their fit was spot on.
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Old 02-05-2017, 03:11 PM   #8
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What kind of magic material do you think this film is made of? It's still just vinyl at the end of the day. You sound upset that after 20,000 miles, the XPEL wrap isn't in pristine, just-installed-yesterday condition. A big rock is still a big rock. This isn't a deflector shield. It's a super thin wrap designed to minimize the damage caused my small debris. Large rocks will still damage it. I've had my XPEL wrap on for over 40,000 miles, including three winters, and tons of road trips, and while it has a few small nicks from some larger bits of debris, it's in amazing condition, and the front of the car still basically looks new.
I did my research before choosing XPEL. I looked at 3M, Suntek, and Avery Dennison but came back to XPEL mainly due to its self healing properties at the time, as other brands didn't have this. For the amount of money you pay for paint protection film, especially XPEL, and what the product planners at XPEL market to potential customers/clients as the "best" paint protection film on the market, why wouldn't you be upset if the film is not living up to what the product planners make it out to be?

I would expect the film to hold up better than it has in my situation. I did not expect it to get scuffed, and marred from basic daily commuting on the highway. And, I keep my distance as well from other cars when driving.

And it's not made of vinyl, it's made of polyurethane, which has been proven to be more durable, and even more flexible than vinyl.

Overall, the film has kept my front end rock chip free for the most part. The durability of XPEL is just not what I expected it to be.
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Old 02-05-2017, 03:16 PM   #9
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In my opinion these tiny rips in the film are to be expected if the road debris is large enough. After running the half hood on my car for three years I only managed to bet 3-4 rips that were about 1-2mm in diameter. Now despite having the film rip i'm happy that this only affected the film and not the underlying paint, heck we all got the film in the first place to protect the our paint. In the end I upgraded to a full hood "something i should have gone with originally". Im sure your local XPEL distributer would be more than happy to take care of the rips in your film.
My installer has told me tears/scuffs in the film are not covered, I would have to come out of pocket for film replacement. I also looked at my XPEL pamphlet I received at the time of install and it states XPEL is only warrantied against staining, yellowing, and cracking.
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Old 02-06-2017, 12:31 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Si_Chris View Post
My installer has told me tears/scuffs in the film are not covered, I would have to come out of pocket for film replacement. I also looked at my XPEL pamphlet I received at the time of install and it states XPEL is only warrantied against staining, yellowing, and cracking.
I'm guessing that this will come down to the discretion of the individual XPEL installer whether or not they would consider the rips to be apart of their warranty. For me, the warranty has come in handy in that the film on my front bumper decided to come loose a couple months back after washing the car with a foam cannon/bucket wash combo and i quickly called them up and they replaced that section of the film. I had a feeling this was eventually gona happen since the front of our cars are very contoured. In the end loose film is not explicitly stated in the warranty but they still covered me since it probably resulted from installation issues. I was told that their film should not come loose from hand washing the car. I would just recommend stopping by one day and asking them what they would consider to be covered in their warranty.
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Old 03-06-2017, 06:31 PM   #11
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Would you mind saying how much you spent? I was quoted $2500 for a full front of XPEL Ultimate. That seems like a lot compared with the cost of the car.
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Old 03-07-2017, 01:55 AM   #12
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Would you mind saying how much you spent? I was quoted $2500 for a full front of XPEL Ultimate. That seems like a lot compared with the cost of the car.
That is a bit much. I would try to find other installers. Each installer will be priced differently. Some more expensive, some cheaper. The key is to find an installer that does quality work, and if they use XPEL film, that they use templates cut with a graphic plotter, and not cutting film on the paint.

I had my full front bumper, half hood, half fenders, and full mirrors done for $800 through an authorized XPEL installer here in Connecticut. I did ask my installer at the time how much it more it would cost to cover the full hood, fenders, A pillars, and part of the roof. He quoted me in the low to mid 1K range.
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