Clear Bra & Ceramic Coating Q&A
Are car bras bad for your car?
No, clear bra is not bad for your car! On the contrary, it preserves your car's paint and protects it from stone chips and other damage. Having a clear bra on your car's hood, fender, bumper, rocker panels, door edges, side view mirrors, and other commonly chipped areas will keep your vehicle and its paint looking good for a long time to come! Armored Clear Bra PPF is happy to discuss paint protection film and how it can be the best automotive decision you ever made! Get started on your path to automotive paint protection by giving us a call at (801) 896 9538!
What is the best vehicle clear bra?
3M, Xpel, Ceramic Pro, and Avery Dennison all make terrific automotive paint protection films, with hydrophobic properties to repel bug splatter and water spots, resistance to yellowing under UV exposure, improved impact protection, enhanced durability, self-healing properties, and more. All are variations of highly engineered urethane film or polyurethane film designed for automotive applications. Here at Armored Clear Bra PPF, we prefer the paint protection products manufactured by Solargard over other amazing options such as Xpel Ultimate, 3M Scotchgard, and others. Why Solargard protective film? We find it equivalent to the competition in every area that matters, superior in a few aspects, and very easy to work with and apply. It's suitable for a wide variety of surfaces and applications, whether you want paint film over your entire vehicle or the front end only.
Can clear bra be patched?
Here at Armored Clear Bra PPF, we don't recommend trying to patch paint protection film, or clear bra. There are several reasons we don't attempt patches. The first reason is that you NEVER want to cut into your vehicle paint (Armored Clear Bra PPF always precuts our clear bras prior to installation, using a template). The second reason is that any patch would still have visible edges and would never look quite right. That's why we always remove and replace the damaged section. For example, if a bumper clear bra had some damage, we'd remove it from the bumper, cut a new paint protection film to match, and reapply it to the bumper. Good to go with new paint protection film! If you have any issues with your existing paint protection film, call Armored Clear Bra PPF at (801) 896 9538 for a free estimate on replacing it!
When asking whether you can polish paint protection film, you first need to realize that there are many different brands of paint protection film on the market with different performance profiles. Some would respond better than others to buffing. Additionally, there are different degrees of buffing, so a gentle approach may be fine on many clear bras while an aggressive polishing would not. So, when thinking about buffing a clear bra, you should study manufacturer recommendations.
Self-healing paint protection thing, a hot market trend right now, is designed to be restored to the right type of finish with the proper type of buffing, but this type of restoration is best done by a paint protection professional certified in working with that specific clear bra brand.
Above all, if you're going to try buffing your clear bra, test it on a small, unobtrusive section of your vehicle paint protection film to see how the clear bra responds!
Xpel, a popular paint protection film manufacturer, says on the Xpel website that its Paint protection film can indeed be detailed with clay bar, the same as one could do to automotive paint. If anything, in our experience, Xpel clear bra responds even better to clay bar auto detailing than paint does!
Can you polish a car with paint protection?
Most manufacturers of paint protection film say that polishing the clear bra will void the manufacturer's warranty. Therefore, proceed at your own risk!
If a paint protection film is designed to be self-healing, however, than it is intended to be abraded lightly and in a very specific manner to stimulate the polyurethane healing process. This clear bra self-healing stimulation should only be done by an auto detailing professional trained in the methods of that specific paint protection film brand.
Can you wax a car with paint protection?
Can paint protection film be waxed? It depends on brand of paint protection film, and on the type of vehicle wax as well. Check the manufacturer's Q&A page: 3M, Xpel, Avery Dennison, and other major clear bra manufacturers have answers to this question in their FAQ section on their websites.
Generally, though, as far as Armored Clear Bra PPF is concerned, there should be no need to wax paint protection film, as a quality paint protection film should hold up extremely well on its own. The rugged polyurethane that most clear bras are made of stays glossy for a long time, and many clear bra manufacturers have released self-healing paint protection film that can be restored with specific types of brushing or other procedures by trained clear bra professionals.
Do modern cars need paint protection?
Yes, modern cars need paint protection film as much as any other car. Vehicle paint still chips, and the rugged polyurethane of paint protection film is designed to withstand small rocks and road debris.
Does clear bra damage paint?
A clear bra should never damage the paint of a vehicle. If installed by a trained Paint protection film professional, and if properly maintained, the paint protection film should preserve and protect the paint, never damage it. However, avoid using cheap, off-brand, or unproven clear bra brands and materials, and do your due diligence when considering Paint protection film!
Does paint protection stop scratches?
Paint protection film is designed to stop light scratches; stopping scratches and rock chips is the entire point of having a clear bra! That's not to say that paint protection film will stop EVERY type of damage that the world will seek to inflict on your vehicle. Obviously, a serious blow or scrape or accident will go through the polyurethane membrane that is the clear bra. So, when asking whether paint protection film will stop scratches, the answer is that it depends on the severity of the scratch and how it's being inflicted.
How can I make my car paint last longer?
The best way to make your car paint last longer is to protect it. When considering paint protection, there are two types of "attack" on your vehicle paint that you may want to protect against. Substances such as bird droppings, hard water deposits from sprinklers, tree sap, and the like, can attack the surface of your paint and eventually degrade the finish. Then you have chipping and scratching from an external object impacting or scraping into the paint. For the first type of attack, a ceramic coating is the best paint protection. For the second type, Armored Clear Bra PPF recommends a clear bra (the common term for Paint protection film).
Clear bra covers your bumper, fenders, mirror caps, and all or part of your hood. Clear bra or Paint protection film is constructed of an ultratough polyurethane membrane that is designed to withstand small road debris and gravel that would otherwise chip your paint.
By protecting your vehicle paint with some form of Paint protection, either ceramic, paint protection film, or both together, you can extend the lifespan of the paint finish and keep it looking good for a very long time!
How can I protect my new car?
If you have a new car, you definitely want to get paint protection film on before anything has a chance to damage your vehicle paint. Once scratches and paint chips start accumulating on your hood, bumper, fenders, etc, you've missed a valuable window. So, get a clear bra installed as soon as you can after driving your new car off the lot, and if Armored Clear Bra PPF can help you do that, give us a call to set up your paint protection film installation!
How do I remove paint protection from my car?
If you need to remove paint protection film, or clear bra, from your vehicle, Armored Clear Bra PPF recommends outsourcing the task to a clear bra professional. Removal is usually clean, but it's not necessarily as easy as peeling a banana.
That said, if you want to tackle your paint protection film removal yourself, you'll want to use a heat gun or blow dryer and CAREFULLY heat the clear bra in one area at a time, being careful not to burn the car's finish. As the warmed-up Paint protection film loosens its grip, you should be able to use a scraper underneath it to gently ease it off of the underlying Paint.
Keep in mind, though, that different paint protection film brands use different adhesives that may perform differently from one another during a clear bra removal. Further complicating the picture, the amount of UV that the clear bra has been exposed to, and the length of its tenure on the vehicle, will both influence how easily (or not) it loosens its grip on the paint.
How do I protect my car from rock chips?
A quality paint protection film is your best defense against rock chips. Clear bra, as paint protection film is often called, is a rugged polyurethane membrane that protects your hood, bumper, fender, and other high-exposure areas of your vehicle. Armored Clear Bra PPF is happy to give you a free paint protection film estimate anywhere in the greater Ogden area—just give us a call at (801) 896 9538!
How do you clean clear bra edges?
Ideally, your clear bra edges will be just fine. However, depending on what brand or manufacturer made your paint protection film, and which auto detailing shop installed it, you may get some buildup of dirt or grime on the edges. Not to worry! You can always take it to an expert auto detailing Armored Clear Bra PPF to be professionally detailed. Or, if you want to try cleaning it yourself, use a toothpick to gently work dirt and grime away from the edge of the paint protection film (don't shove the toothpick under the clear bra) and then use a Q tip lightly dipped in Isopropyl alcohol to clean along the edge!
How do you install a clear bra?
If you're thinking of installing a clear bra yourself, read the instructions from the manufacturer or brand of that particular type of paint protection film. Each will be slightly different.
All clear bra or Paint protection film applications involve wetting the surface with soapy water or a water and Isopropyl alcohol blend, and using a squeegee to push excess liquid (and air bubbles) out from under the paint protection film. Always start in the center and push out toward the edge until the clear bra is smooth and wrinkle-free.
A true paint protection film professional will never cut the clear bra on the vehicle, as this introduces the risk of cutting into the paint. Instead, a professional clear bra installer will either use knifeless tape, or will pre-cut the clear bra out with a template specific to your make and model of vehicle.
For these reasons, it's always better to leave paint protection film installation to professionals who are trained and certified by the brand or manufacturer whose paint protection film they are installing. Armored Clear Bra PPF precuts our paint protection film prior to installation, so you never have a blade in contact with your Vehicle.
If you really want to go for it though, follow manufacturer instructions carefully...and make sure not to cut into your paint! Good luck!
How do you remove scratches from PPF?
Many of today's high-tech clear bra brands have introduced self-healing polymers into their paint protection film. What this means is that light scratches or scuffs on the surface of the clear bra can be healed, either automatically or by a trained professional manipulating the surface of the paint protection film to induce healing.
However, all paint protection film is fairly thin, so any aggressive scratch that punctures through the film will probably necessitate removal of that particular section of Paint protection film and a new replacement section installed.
How do you maintain paint protection film?
Paint protection film is made of rugged, durable polyurethane and doesn't need a tremendous amount of maintenance. With most brands of paint protection film, regular washing and drying of the car and its clear bra is enough. Use a microfiber towel to rub the clear bra dry (just like you do with your vehicle paint). Avoid using aggressive cleaning or polishing products.
How much does a PPF cost?
Most paint protection film shops charge between $600 to $1000 for a clear bra (PPF for the front of the Vehicle, where most of the paint damage occurs), and more than that if the car owner wants paint protection film over more of the vehicle. Usually, that $600 to $1000 range involves several levels of paint protection film, with the bumper, mirrors, and hood being a lower level, the full hood costing a bit more, and so forth.
Again, every Paint protection film shop will have their own variation on this, so take this with a grain of salt! Also, be very wary of a PPF installation shop charging below this price range, as they could be using cheap vinyl film that does not afford the same protection as the trusted name brands. Additionally, they could be cutting corners by trying to cut the film on your vehicle, skipping important preparation steps, or other time-saving measures.
For a free paint protection film estimate, call Armored Clear Bra PPF of Ogden, Utah today at (801) 896 9538!
Is clear bra protection worth it?
In most cases, automotive protective film is absolutely worth it. When considering whether it is worth the money, it's important to consider the Kelley Blue Book value of your vehicle and the condition of its paint.
If we assume for a moment that the clear bra will cost $700 (a fairly average cost for Paint protection film), and you drive a $70,000 car, then the marginal cost of 1% of your car's worth will definitely pay off in the long term in the resale value of your car. On the other hand, if you drive a $700 car, paying the value of your vehicle to protect your vehicle doesn't make any sense at all.
In between these examples, you have to factor in how long you plan to keep the vehicle, how many freeway miles you log (more paint chips happen at high speeds, which happen on a freeway), and how good or bad the paint currently is (more worthwhile to protect pristine paint than already-chipped paint).
Should I get paint protection for my new car?
The best time to protect your car is when it's new. Your car's paint will only go downhill from there, and a clear bra will preserve your paint and mitigate future damage. The payoff in resale value alone is huge, not to mention the satisfaction of having your car look great several years down the road!
How long does paint protection last?
Paint protection film is made of durable Polyurethane and can last a long time when properly cared for. Ceramic Pro warranties its Kavaca Paint protection film for the life of the vehicle, while 3M offers a 10-year comprehensive warranty on its pro series of Scotchgard Paint protection film. Like 3M, Xpel offers a 10 year warranty on its stealth paint protection film. Avery Dennison, in turn, claims 10 years of UV resistance for its Supreme Protection Film clear bra product.
So the simple answer is: clear bra lasts a long time. How long? It depends on the brand of paint protection film, the care and upkeep, and other factors such as amount of sun exposure.
How much does it cost to get your car ceramic coated?
For an exact quote, please contact Armored Clear Bra PPF and we can give you a free, no obligation estimate. We will say that Ceramic coating is far from cheap, but it is well worth it for a fine car. The protective layer of nano ceramic will extend the life of your car's paint job tremendously.
How long does a ceramic coating on a car last?
Depending on the type of ceramic and how thoroughly you perform proper maintenance and upkeep, a nano ceramic coat can potentially last the life of your vehicle! It offers unmatched protection and is far more durable than ordinary vehicle waxing.
Ceramic offers diamond level hardness in a thin, clear, protective layer that has hydrophobic properties. Pretty cool? We think so.
Why is ceramic coating so expensive?
A nano ceramic coat is a highly-engineered paint protection product applied by a trained professional in a controlled environment.
Ceramic is a high-grade product
Most professional ceramic coating products are not even sold to the general public, as the manufacturers want to ensure that their product is applied correctly.
In order to become an officially-recognized applicator of Ceramic Pro, Geyeon, or other high-grade ceramic coating products, a tech must receive appropriate training on use of these professional grade products.
Ceramic coating is an expensive product
Finally, the product itself is quite expensive.
In summary, when you pay good money for a ceramic coat, you're paying for a) the ceramic kit, b) paint correction on your vehicle to remediate swirl marks and microscopic imperfections prior to the ceramic application, c) the labor of the applicator, d) the training and expertise the applicator possesses to get your ceramic car coating perfect, e) the shop overhead.
Is it worth getting a car ceramic coated?
When asking if it's worth it getting a car ceramic coated, the answer is that it really depends on the car. Ceramic coating isn't cheap, so if your car is worth a few hundred dollars, then no, it's not worth it.
On the other hand, for a high-dollar car, ceramic is absolutely worth it.
Given that the condition of a car's finish is a huge aspect of its resale value, ceramic coating for cars can pay for itself many times over when applied to expensive vehicles and subsequently maintained.
Having this durable, diamond-hard layer of protection shields the paint layer from corrosion, UV rays, bird droppings, and other undesirable substances. So yes, for a nice vehicle, a professional grade ceramic spray coating is most certainly worth it.
Can you mess up ceramic coating?
Yes, you can easily mess up ceramic coating, which is why most of the professional grade products are reserved for experts who have completed the manufacturer training for a given product. When it comes to ceramic coating for cars, it's probably not worth attempting it yourself, especially if your car is a nice one.
Can I apply ceramic coating myself?
Attempt DIY coating with ceramic at your own risk. There are so many ways to get a ceramic clear coat wrong, which is why professional applicators are certified via manufacturer trainings.
What happens when ceramic coating wears off?
When a ceramic coating wears off, it will happen very gradually over a long time, until eventually you'll be back down to your car's factory paint clear coat finish. That said, some of the best ceramic coatings are designed to last the life of your vehicle with proper care and upkeep.
How do you maintain ceramic coating?
Each manufacturer will have specific guidelines for maintaining their ceramic car coating. Talk to your ceramic installer after the application process is complete and get detailed upkeep instructions based on the specific product applied to your factory paint.
Does ceramic coating prevent rust?
Ceramic coating is not guaranteed to prevent rust, per se, but it does create an additional layer of protection that's even better than your factory paint sealant. Its hydrophobic properties will bead water off better than anything else, so it certainly reduces the likelihood of rust ever occuring.
Is ceramic coating better than wax?
Ceramic coating is far better than wax. Like wax, it is a hydrophobic coating.
Unlike wax, it contains ceramic nanoparticles that provide an ultrahard additional layer of defense that lasts for a very long time and offers unmatched protection against water spots, harmful UV rays, acidic contaminants, most hazards.
The protective barrier of ceramic is so far beyond that of wax that they're not even comparable. Ceramic really is the ultimate protection.