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Paint Protection Shopping Tips: How Well-Informed People Protect Their Investment

Congratulations! If you're here, then you just bought a new vehicle. That's a huge purchase and a significant milestone, so the next step is to protect that investment with paint protection.


There’s a lot to consider when purchasing paint protection. We will show you what to look for when selecting a company you can trust with your brand new vehicle - In short, we will show you how to buy paint protection from a reputable company that respects you and your vehicle.


Now, let’s take a look at some insider secrets so you can buy from the best and forget about the rest. 


Don't Buy Based on Price Alone


Buying on price and price alone is the biggest mistake we see people make.


Unfortunately, you can be wrong here in two ways - first you can pay too much, or you can pay too little. Sounds like a lot could go wrong in the purchase process, right? I know it can, and unfortunately we’ve heard and seen the horror stories. 





And of course, you should find out what paint protection you need. 


The two main types are Paint Protection Film (PPF) and Ceramic Coating. 


PPF: a clear polyurethane film applied over your vehicle to stop rocks and stones from chipping your paint.


Ceramic Coating: a clear solution composed of ceramic that is applied to a vehicle's paint. It makes the car easier to clean, and adds a nice, subtle gloss.


READ OUR FREE BUYERS GUIDE to learn more!



Where Do I Go to get Paint Protection Installed?


Leaving your shopping decisions to luck is a risk not worth taking. Spending a few minutes here and doing your research can pay off big. 


Click here to read our blog on finding a good PPF shop.


Here’s what our experience has shown us over the years. Our shop, and frankly a few of our competitors, turn out really high quality work using premium materials. 


The problem is poor quality shops that will sell low quality work, or worse, overpromise. 



Picture of a white vehicle with incorrectly installed Paint protection film.
Low Quality Paint Protection Film Installation - Clearly Unacceptable

Our experience also shows that there are shops out there that are just downright terrible. How do we know these terrible shops are out there? We have seen first hand poor quality work - when clients come asking us to fix it for them. 


In these cases, the client is typically out on money, or has been back to the first shop multiple times with no fix. In Einstein’s words, “You cannot solve a problem with the same mind that created it” - in other words, the person that did a low quality job is usually not going to be able to fix it. 


At this point, the client is really embarrassed. They got an awesome looking car, took it to a shop and spent a ton of time and money, all for a poor result that they don’t want to show off to friends and family.


Therefore, thoroughly researching the shops you find can be the difference between a well protected car that you feel confident in, and a poor job that you have to spend more money to fix.





In these videos we share some of the insider secrets about Ceramic Coating and PPF.





Trust The Company


It all comes down to trust when selecting a paint protection company. We understand that. You just bought a $50K (or maybe more) vehicle and now you're wisely going to protect that investment. And in a sense, the money is secondary. You and your new car, truck, or SUV should be respected and cared for in the most professional manner possible.


A large percent of our business is repeat - 75% at times. Our clients reward us for hard work and quality services by returning with their next vehicle. 



Blue Ford Maverick.
This Ford Maverick was the fourth vehicle brought in by a client of ours!

So if you have purchased paint protection products and services before and have great experience and high quality workmanship done, return to that shop. That’s the easiest way to know you can trust that company.


A trustworthy shop will provide you with great information and should educate you on the product selection. My high quality shop isn't afraid to lose a sale by explaining the benefits and some of the limitations of the product. (Over promising.)


Watch the first video about points to consider when selecting a shop. We understand that price is important and nobody should be taken advantage of, but we see most of the mistakes made from “low-cost” options.


You know this:

  1. It’s cheap and easy for someone to make a convincing sales pitch with great big promises.

  2. High quality materials are expensive and high quality service is difficult.


Expertise


How are you going to find someone who knows what they are doing? Well, this is a skilled trade. 


High quality paint protection film and ceramic coating companies provide both training and certification. While not an absolute guarantee, this is a good indicator of a high quality.  


My company has been approved / certified by 3 paint protection film companies and 2 ceramic coating companies.


Another indicator of expertise is high quality materials. High quality material providers want to make sure that only high quality installers have access to their material. 



Shelf with Gyeon products.
Here are some of the high-quality materials we use at Immaculate Paint Protection.

If you hear, “it’s all the same material,” or "it doesn’t matter which material you use” - they’re wrong. Double check with the manufacturer website to see if the installer is approved to install the material. Otherwise, you may be getting sold one thing and having another installed. 


And a bonus, our best clients are our D.I.Y guys, meaning they tried it themselves and know first hand how hard it is to install paint protection film. So, they don’t mind spending extra money to get a quality job.


Experience


How long has the company been in business? That’s pretty clear cut on the surface. Naturally, the longer they are in the business, the better they become.


I wish it was as simple as saying “you need this many years before you can become good at this.” But we see people with little experience do high quality work and shops with years - I’m talking 10+ years - turn out terrible work. 


What does experience mean? Here's what we combine with our experience to turn out high quality work. 


  • Passion - we strive to turn out high quality work for every client.


  • Product evaluation - we evaluate and select the highest quality products. Having used multiple products, we can compare products based upon our actual experience.


  • Humble - we have done enough vehicles and dealt with enough clients now to confidently know we can deliver. What we don't need to do is mask our talents with an over inflated ego or lies in the sales process. 



We always offer a wash demonstration for our clients so they can take care of their vehicle for years to come.


  • Communication with our clients before and after - We learn from our clients what is important to them before we start, and then after the sale we want to see our clients again and take their honest feedback.

    • If everything is awesome - which it typically is - then great, let’s keep doing the same.

    • In the rare event something is wrong, we sincerely want to know for two reasons:

      • First, we want to take care of the client from beginning to end. The job is not over until the client is satisfied and raving to their friends and family.

      • And second, we want to learn for ourselves and prevent that problem from happening in the future. 


Authoritativeness


There is not one organization, manufacturer, or shop that is the ultimate authority for paint protection film and ceramic coating. 


Bummer - that makes the purchase decision difficult because you really need to do the research. 


But that’s okay - we’ve found out our clients are smart and they know what they want and why they want it. This is all because they’ve done their research.


Read our other blog post, where we explain in depth and detail the nuance of paint protection film and ceramic coating. 


As business owners, we have the privledge and autonomy to select the highest quality products to protect our clients' vehicles and ultimately to protect our reputation. 


  • Insider tip: Some of the super large PPF and ceramic coating companies demand 100% exclusivity. What does that mean? These companies are really just big time marketing companies that buy PPF and ceramic coating from other off label manufacturers and slap their brand name on the box. 

    • The appeal here is that these companies generate a lot of hype and massive sales funnels, which in the end have shops chasing you down and doing the hard press. (aggressive sales approach)

Does the shop perform the work? This may sound like a trick question, but it goes back to when we recommended asking who will install your paint protection. This is because there are many detail shops and dealerships selling paint protection film and ceramic coating, but they are simply middlemen selling the product and having a subcontractor come in to complete the job. A shop that owns the entire process from start to finish will be in a better position to educate, help a client select the product, and be there in case something goes wrong. 

  • It’s on you to ask the question - “Who will complete the install - your direct employee or a subcontractor?”

  • For fun and bonus, ask the next question - “Can I come watch you work on my vehicle?”



Tesla Model X with ceramic Coating.
This Tesla Model X came into the shop for a Ceramic Coating, and it's never looked better.


Summary


  1. Understand the difference between ceramic coating and paint protection film

    1. Ceramic Coating - makes it easy to clean

    2. Paint Protection Film - stops paint chips

  2. Understand there are a wide range of quality materials and product installations. 

  3. The worst case scenario - you get low quality and high price when buying ceramic coating and paint protection film. But don’t worry you’ve made this far in the article so your on you way to making a good decision.

  4. Act sooner rather than later. People are usually upset and bummed out after they see all the paint damage on their new car. If you are going to spend the money - do it right away. 

  5. Find a shop that will treat your new vehicle like a valuable investment - and will treat you right.

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