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What Should I Look for in a Paint Protection Professional?

I wish I could tell you that all paint protection installers were above board. They’re not. Here’s what to look for in a shop:

An established business: Installing paint protection film (PPF )and ceramic coating is an art; look for an installer with many years—not months—of experience.

A well-known PPF brand: Recommended brands include STEK, 3M, Suntek, and Xpel. (Check the company’s website for the authorized installer; if the installer is not listed on the company’s website, consider that a red flag.)

Using a CNC plotter to cut a pattern for the paint protection film PPF: A PPF plotter costs $10,000+; it’s a large capital investment, so an installer who has one is likely to be more experienced. My company uses our plotter to cut out patterns in the PPF, and then we carefully wrap the film around every possible edge of your vehicle. Firms that don’t use patterns cut each piece of PPF custom. They cut the film on your vehicle! To do custom work, many parts such as headlights must be removed. (If you’re ok with your brand-new car being disassembled, fine! I don’t see any value added by taking a car apart to apply PPF.)

A warranty: The warranty is actually provided by the manufacturer—not the installer. Look for a 10 or 12-year warranty, which will have an increased topcoat and look better for longer. Some films have a life-time warranty, but remember that’s a warranty, not a guarantee.

Overselling: A good shop will not push you. They will listen to you and help you make the best decision for your vehicle.

Trust your gut! If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.

For paint protection film and ceramic coating packages, pricing, and more visit us at

About the author: Bill Fetter’s passion for cars started at an early age, as he loved anything with wheels. Through his childhood, Bill observed his dad’s work as a mechanical engineer turned marketing manager and proud lifelong employee of General Motors. During high school, Bill honed his passion for cars by hand-washing and detailing his neighbors’ vehicles. Knowing he wanted to be in the automotive industry, Bill earned a degree in Industrial Engineering from Kettering University in Flint, Michigan. He’s worked as an engineer in the automotive manufacturing, medical device, steel industry, and pharmaceutical manufacturing fields.

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