“Self-Healing” Paint Protection Films: Everything You Need to Know

A single paint or coat scratch on your brand new car can be quite annoying. It ruins your plans for preserving its mint condition for years to come. Nonetheless, this is something that happens to every car owner. The good news is that self-healing paint protection films can help you mitigate the damage. But what are they, and how do they work?

In this post, we seek to demystify self-healing paint protection films. When you finish reading, you will be a better-informed consumer.

What is a “Self-Healing” Paint Protection Film?

Self-healing paint protection films allow the damaged section of your car paint to self-repair. As a result, you don’t have to take your automobile to a car repair shop for every minor blemish.

A self-healing protection film consists of several layers. The materials that make these films include polyester, adhesives, a clear coat, and polyurethane. They are bonded together to form a self-healing paint protection film through a process known as microreplication.

These protection films not only protect your car from fading and stains, but also respond to heat during the repair process.

How does a “Self-Healing” Paint Protection Film Work? 

Heat is essential to the self-healing mechanisms of a paint protection film. You may think that a paint protection film removes scratches on the surface of your car. However, this is not how the protective layers work. Each component of the self-healing paint protection film plays a distinct role. For instance, polyurethane provides a thick coating that resists impact and scratches. It is 6 mm thick.

The adhesive enables the protective film to stick on the surface of your car firmly. It also provides an allowance for it to be removed without inflicting any damage to the car. The acrylic adhesive is about 1.6 mm thick. The role of the clear coat is to ensure that the film doesn’t accumulate stains or fade. Additionally, it prevents yellowing, which is a common occurrence with many low-quality films. The clear coat layer is 0.5 mm thick.

The self-healing paint protection film also comes with a 3 mm release liner. This one facilitates easy removal of the protective film. When this protective film is scratched, the damage is visible. Use a heat gun to apply heat to the affected area as this enables the layers beneath to rearrange themselves, thus making the scratches dissipate.

If you don’t have a heat gun, you can use hot water. Alternatively, leave your car in the sun to allow the protective film to trap the heat from the sun and repair itself. As you watch the scratches on the surface of your vehicle vanish, you get the illusion that the protective film is self-healing.

What’s exciting is that the integrity of the film remains intact, even when the car film is scratched several times. Although damage may occur on the same area of your car’s surface, the film can still repair it. Even so, there is a caveat. If your car keeps getting multiple scratches on the same spot, the damage will eventually become permanent. However, this is unlikely to happen, not unless you do it on purpose.

Benefits of Applying Self-Healing Paint Protection Film

Applying self-healing paint protection film to your car comes with various benefits, including the following.

  1. Preserves your automobile’s resale value
  2. Helps you save on paint repair work
  3. Provides formidable paint protection

PPF Installation: Professional or DIY

You can opt to install a paint protection film on your car by yourself. There are many videos on YouTube on how to do it. Remember that how well you install it determines how long it serves you. For this reason, experts do not recommend DIY.

So, What do Professional Installers do Differently?

Professionals have high-quality kits that are essential for proper installation. These are tools that you may not have. Also, they possess the know-how to correct any errors that occur during the process. For example, bubbles tend to form when you apply the PPF wrongly. Getting rid of them can be an uphill task.

Professionals tend to apply the PPF faster, while you can spend a whole day trying to do the same. As a result, you may leave the car looking bad and unprotected.

How to Maintain Paint Protection Film

If you want the self-healing paint protection film to serve you well, you have to look after it properly. Start by washing it, since the film only protects your car’s paintwork from scratches, but does not clean it. Ensure that you no longer wash your car in the direct sunshine. Furthermore, do not take it to an automated car wash.

Whenever any chemicals or bird droppings fall on the surface of your vehicle, remove them as soon as possible. Otherwise, they might cause damage to the coating.

Wax your vehicle at least once a month to keep it looking clean and shiny. Besides, it will not have any negative effects on the coating.

Other Rules  to Observe

After you apply the PPF to your car, wait for seven days before you start washing it. Do not spray the water directly on the edges of the PPF. Or else, the edges will lift and undermine the protective qualities.

Before you wipe the surface of your car, ascertain that it is wet.  Doing so when it is dry can damage the coating.

Avoid using abrasive chemicals on the car’s surface when cleaning it. In case you are struggling to remove any dirt from the vehicle, take it to a professional.

Shield Your Car Today

Do you want to take good care of brand-new car paintwork? Adding a self-healing protective film is your best bet. Ensure you select competent specialists to do it for you so that the PPF can serve you for over 10 years.

We have a team of professionals who have been helping car owners like you to protect their vehicles. Note that we only use the best materials on the market. If you are a resident of the Milwaukie and Vancouver area, contact us today.

Kenley Wallis