Installing XPEL Paint Protection Film Must-Have Tools

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With the growing popularity of paint protection film (or PPF for short), more people are looking into the advantages of installing it on their automobiles.

Reason Auto Films specializes in the installation of paint protection film and has installed film on hundreds of automobiles over the last 20 years.

The advantages of PPF far transcend the initial expenditure, and XPEL PPF capabilities enable our customers to keep their vehicle’s value for years to come.

We’ve developed our own set of tips, tactics, and tools to help ensure a seamless installation process based on our years of experience and specialized training. We don’t tolerate failures in our film installations, and we employ several methods to achieve this.

This post will go over the many types of tools we use to apply XPEL paint protection film to automobiles that come into our shop.

Squeegees

The squeegee is, without a doubt, one of the most important instruments in the PPF installer’s toolkit.

Squeegees are available in many different forms, sizes, colors, and hardness’s. The differences in squeegees provide the installer more control over the installation, reducing seams, wrapping edges, and overall visibility, as well as the likelihood of the film, failing.

Turbo squeegees are the squeegees that we use. They’re used to tack the ppf into place by removing the slip solution (which we’ll go into further down). The ppf’s adhesive sticks to the vehicle because of this, in combination with 99 percent isopropyl alcohol.

We recommend starting with a gentler squeegee and working your way up as you gain more experience with the instrument.

The squeegee that we propose can be found here.

Bar made of clay

A clay bar is a paint detailing tool that is used to eliminate defects from the paint’s surface.

Before applying paint protection film, it is critical to remove any pollutants or flaws from the surface. Otherwise, the installation will be more complex and may fail in the future.

It’s also possible that the impurities will be visible through the coating, which would be ugly.

Solution for Slippage

To lessen the friction of the ppf during installation, a slip solution is a mixture of soap and water. Both the painted surface of the vehicle and the top of the film is treated with a slip solution.

This permits the film to be placed without adhering too quickly. The wet edge or squeegee can slide along the top of the film without dragging it out of position because of the slip solution sprayed on the top.

Pre-made slide solutions are available from a variety of sources, but we prefer to use Johnson’s Baby Shampoo combined with water.

You can play about with the mixture and see what works best for you. For applying paint protection film, three liberal drops into a sprayer that is subsequently filled with water should be enough.

Sprayers

A sprayer is another important tool in the arsenal of the ppf installer.

Sprayers come in a variety of shapes and sizes, the most common of which are trigger and pump sprayers.

We usually use a slip solution in a pump sprayer and isopropyl alcohol in a trigger sprayer. This allows you to distinguish between the two and avoid spraying the wrong solution.

The sprayer’s size will be determined by the size of the panel you’re working on as well as your capacity to maneuver it throughout the ppf installation.

The many sprayers we utilize can be found here.

Wet Edge” or “Hard Card”

The hard card, often known as a “wet edge,” is a tool for wrapping the edges of the film around the panel to be installed. We wrap the borders of all of the ppf kits we install on our automobiles to prevent dirt buildup and failure at the film’s margins.

The wet edge has a foam-lined side that you would use to roll the edge along the film surface. The one we use can be found here.

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