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A few months ago we were contacted by a client to prep his brand new Porsche GT3RS before a full car PPF/clear bra application.  While it’s a brand new car, it definitely suffered from bad swirl marks, buffer holograms and even sanding marks left over from the factory.  By performing a very thorough paint correction, we were able to make the paint look like it should have for a brand new Porsche.

After we were done with it, the Xpel PPF was applied to the entire vehicle for the best protection.  Finally, 22PLE protective coating was applied for added gloss, ease of maintenance and extra protection.  Check out the video below showing the process we performed on this gorgeous GT3RS.

 

It seems that 95% of the time we are doing some level of paint correction and applying a protective coating to a vehicle.  That is our specialty and what most clients need for their vehicles.  However, we also do quite a few additional services.  These include interior detailing, headlight restoration, paint protection film (PPF), etc.

In this case, we were asked to bring back to life some old and weathered headlights on a client’s Chrysler Pacifica.  The car came in dirty, so we were hoping most of the haze on the headlight would wash off.

LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(1)Unfortunately, much of the haze was in the actual headlight lens and would need to be thoroughly corrected.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(2)

A close up shows the damage from regular driving and road debris.  This not only looks bad, but can greatly limit the light output of your headlights and be a huge safety concern. LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(3)

LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(4) We decided that in order to correct these headlights, we needed to fully sand the plastic lens and then polish them to perfection.  First, we masked off the adjacent paint to protect it.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(5)

We then completely sanded the lens leaving a very hazy finish.  This was required in order to remove the deep scratches, chipping and faded layer.  LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(6)

Sanding was followed by two stages of machine polishing in order to correct the haze and bring back perfect clarity.  We were extremely pleased with the results as the lens looked almost brand new.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(7) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(8)

Even up close, the headlight was near perfect and improved greatly over the previous condition.  The fade was gone and light output was now 100%. LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(9)

We normally apply a protective coating after a headlight restoration, which keeps the lens from fading for up to a year, sometimes more.  This time though, the headlights turned out so well that the client decided to have us apply some protective film before we put the coating on, for even better protection and preservation.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(10) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(11) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(12)

The protective film (PPF) is only visible if you’re a few inches from the lens and looking around the edges.  Otherwise, it’s invisible to the naked eye and looks great on the headlights.  Not only does it allow light through easily, the film helps to protect the lens from UV radiation as well as daily road debris causing damage to the headlights.

headlight restorationNeedless to say, our client was extremely pleased with the results and we were as well.  The photo clearly show the huge improvement made by correcting the headlight.  These headlights are now protected for years to come and only maintenance will be to replace the film for under $100 after a few years depending on how it wears.

For these headlights the protective film investment may not have been a “must”, but when you consider most cars these days come with HID headlights and many luxury manufacturers charge well over $1000 per each headlight, it becomes a great investment.

You can see some a full list of our car detailing and additional services on our Services page.  Don’t hesitate to call or email us with any questions or to schedule your appointment today.

This Audi A7 belongs to a regular client, who comes roughly once every 1-1.5 years for paint correction and protective coating application.  In this case we also replaced the Xpel PPF/clear bra on the hood due to it being fairly worn after almost 2 years of use.  The car required two stages of paint correction to achieve a nearly perfect finish, which we then protected with the 22PLE paint protection coating.  The A7 came out extremely glossy and is now well protected for 1-2 years with the paint coating.  We apply the 22PLE paint coating on top of the Xpel PPF both to make it look glossy and offer great protection, making it much easier to clean going forward.  For the complete article, please visit Audi A7 Paint Correction Detail & 22ple Paint Coating Application on the Detailed Image Blog.

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We recently performed a 2-stage paint correction detail and applied the durable 22PLE glass coating to this gorgeous BMW M5.  Since the client planned to drive the car daily, including winter, we decided to go with a 2-stage paint correction to clean it up well before the coating was applied.  The detail was scheduled and were looking forward to the job, however, the car suffered an accident only a week or so before we were to get it.  Since it had a good amount of front end damage, we had to postpone the detail job for a couple months.

Fortunately, the body shop did a good job fixing it and overall the paint wasn’t in horrible shape as the car was only a few months old.  We were able to get pretty much perfect results from the originally planned two stages of paint correction with a bit of additional spot polishing in a few locations.  As you can see in the photos below, after the thorough paint correction and the application of the 22PLE paint protection coating, the color and metallic flake now show up very nicely in the sunlight.  The car looks freshly waxed after a wash and stays clean longer and the coating helps resist swirl marks and other damage much better than clear coat alone.

Anyway, enough chit chat and onto the photos!

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Vehicles go through a lot of abuse year round, especially in climates like here in Chicagoland, so the paint is constantly exposed to contamination like bird droppings, rail dust and road debris. This results in more embedded contamination, swirl marks appearing sooner and overall gloss of the paint quickly diminishing. The need for enhanced durability led to manufacturers producing long lasting paint protection coatings, which act as a secondary clear coat, creating a protective barrier between the outside elements and the vehicle’s paint. These coatings create a hydrophobic surface that is easier to clean than factory paint and stays cleaner longer by preventing dirt and other contaminants from easily sticking to the paint. When treated with care, these coatings offer protection anywhere from 1-1.5 years to upwards of 2 years. All this leads to having a vehicle that is easier to care for, stays protected for a longer time and maintains a glossy paint finish.

Long term protective coatings have become extremely common over the past few years for their great looks and amazing durability.  Many manufacturers are producing these coatings to compete with each other, thus the options available get better and better.

22PLE

As most of you know, we’ve had great success with the impressive 22PLE Glass Coatings over the past couple of years. 22PLE has easily lasted over a year on some clients’ vehicles and kept them in great shape overall.  Not to worry, we are surely not planning on eliminating 22PLE from our services in the foreseeable future.  Rather, just like with all of our car detailing services, we always strive to improve and offer various quality options to our diversified clientele.  When it comes to coatings, these additional options will include two of the best products available: Optimum Opti-Coat and CQuartz Finest. We believe these two coatings will greatly supplement 22PLE due to their quality, looks and durability.

CQuartz Finest

CQuartz Finest is an updated and improved version of the original CQuartz, featuring better durability, gloss and scratch resistance.  This coating option is very similar to 22PLE that we currently offer, but will carry a higher price tag due to the more involved application process and warrantied install for up to two years.  This warranty states that Finest will not bubble, yellow, peel, oxidize, or lose any more than 20% of gloss over the course of two years.  We believe this will be a nice option for clients looking for something that is guaranteed to last for two years and makes the paint look rich and glossy.  More info and specs on CQuartz Finest can be found on the CQuartz Finest website.

Optimum Opti-Coat

Optimum Opti-Coat, aka Opti-Coat Pro, has been around for a while now and is well-known for its great durability, which is the main reason we have decided to add it to our coating lineup. While 22PLE has been known to easily last anywhere from 1-2 years, Opti-Coat has an indefinite life span when maintained properly and is known to last upwards of 3-4 years. This coating option is best for those daily driven vehicles looking for the longest durability and protecting the factory clear coat from the elements. Opti-Coat does add gloss to any painted surface and offers great resistance to swirlmarks, environmental fallout and general dirt attaching to the surface.  More info and specs on Optimum Opti-Coat can be found on the Optimum Car Care website.

All of the paint protection coating options will protect the original paint finish for well over one year, which is a remarkable step up from the typical paint sealants and waxes that last anywhere from two to six months.  We’ve decided to use the three coatings mentioned above because as a whole they provide great looks, protection and scratch resistance, and individually each has a set of quality characteristics that separates it enough from others in terms of value and versatility.  With that, we look forward to fulfilling all your coating needs!