Do You Get PPF On Your BMW? (Answered)

Published: 01/20/23 •  8 min read

Do you get PPF on your BMW? Is PPF the proper solution to protect your prized-BMW from minor paint damage and abrasions? If so, what’s the cost associated with it and is it worth the investment? All of those answers and more about protective paint film (PPF), are found below.

Do You Need PPF On Your BMW?

What Is PPF?

PPF, or protective paint film, is a thermoplastic substance that auto painters often apply to a freshly painted new or used vehicle. This is often applied after the final layer of paint has dried on the car and offers an extra layer of protection from paint damage due to rock chips from daily driving, or other minor abrasions – such as dents from road hazards. This also provides protection from bug splatters and light key marks.

PPF is also known as clear paint film or clear film, depending on which country you’re in.

Protective paint film isn’t applied to your entire car, however. It’s reserved for areas that are high-impact. This includes:

Protective paint film is also used on RVs, aircraft, boats, motorcycles, even your cell phone’s back panel and screen will likely have a layer of PPF applied to it.

Professional PPF Installations on your BMW

Protecting your the paint job of your Beamer is one of the top priorities from BMW owners around the world. It’s a beautiful car and should be kept as visually pristine as possible! Getting a PPF, either as a paint correction or as a protective layer should be priority for you.

Paint protection film uses a multi-layered ceramic coating to keep moisture off the vehicle once it’s applied. In addition to ceramic coating, most PPF manufacturers offer a self-healing outer layer that will re-adhere to itself as light damage – such as from rock chips.

While applying PPF is something you can do yourself, there are a few reasons why you might want to hold off on it and get it done by a professional.

The Environment Matters

One of the first reasons you should have your car PPF’d by a professional is because they have the proper environment to allow the chemicals used in the process to adhere properly to the car surfaces. It’s not something you can do in your garage or driveway, as the chemicals used require a clean space that’s temperature controlled to bond properly with the surface.

You Need the Right Tools to Apply PPF on Your BMW

In a professional, PPF is applied using pre-cut film sheets and then polished when its adhered. Pre-cut sheets of PPF aren’t something you can knock up with an X-Acto knife and steady hands. You could damage your vehicle’s paint or the PPF material itself. Not a risk worth taking.

Time to Complete

The process of applying for PPF takes three or four days to complete. During this time, you can’t drive your car, and it must be kept in this controlled environment for the entire time to allow the chemicals to adhere properly to the surfaces of the vehicles where they’re applied.

Things to Consider Before You Opt For PPF on Your BMW

Before you leap into the world of paint correction, ceramic coating and PPF, there are a couple of things to consider:

The Cost

Using PPF as a protective layer for your car’s factory paint is an expensive process. It mostly depends on what you want to do – the rear fenders and the full rear of the vehicle will cost you around $1500! Similar pricing is likely for a ‘full-frontal’, including the rear-view mirrors.

Doing a full coat on your vehicle, including rocker panels and everything else, will likely cost you just under $9,000! This is the price for most smaller BMWs. However, if you have a larger vehicle, like an SUV, expect that price to increase considerably.

Do You Need PPF?

Body Shop

Sure, PPF is nice and all, but do you need it? Are you noticing that rock chips are frequently destroying your paint job? Is other road debris causing damage? Is UV exposure

causing the paint to fade on your Beamer? Are you doing dirt road driving in your BMW?

The real question is: Is PPF something you need because you wish your car had a protective film from all those minor scratches and dents from road hazards that you keep noticing? Or is it something that’s for luxury vehicles that you can make-do without?

If you’ve been planning on replacing your car with a BMW, or replacing like-for-like, then incorporating PPF into your new buy might be something to consider, since you’re making the investment anyway.

Disadvantages of Applying PPF On Your BMW

Beware that PPF isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Here are a few disadvantages of applying PPF to your BMW.

Peeling Film

One of the primary problems that BMW owners can encounter when PPF has been applied to their luxury vehicle is peeling film. The film’s application to the car and it’s adherence is down for a few things: quality of the PPF material used, a competent installer, and mistakes during the application process.

If the film on your PPF begins to peel, your only options are to remove and replace the film or peel it off and leave it as just the vehicle paint.

Yellowing PPF

When PPF was first introduced on the market, it was supposed to be used as a custom paint to resolve issues with paint chips and improve the durability of auto paint. Unfortunately, due to the reaction between UV light and the chemicals used in the coating process, people discovered that the paint protective film would begin to yellow within months of the coating application.

This reaction is known as oxidization – and forced PPF makers to change their coating application and the PPF formula entirely. Now, during the coating process, PPF makers will use an acrylic-based adhesive that is proven to be resistant to ultraviolet radiation.

Blistering Paint Protection Film

Another result of faulty application of PPF is that the paint protection film begins to blister and bubble. Like the discoloration, sometimes the blisters did not appear for weeks or months after the application process was completed. This means that contaminants like dust or microscopic dirt got in under the film during the application and caused micro-gaps in the adherence, which ballooned over time, causing blisters to form.

Advantages of Applying PPF On Your BMW


Despite the aesthetic disadvantages of applying PPF incorrectly on your BMW, if it is done correctly, PPF is a wonderful choice to protect your original paint from rocks, key strikes and other road debris including minor scratches and dents.

However, applying PPF will not protect you from any body damage.

Premium Paint Protection

One of the biggest reasons to apply PPF to your new BMW is to protect the paint of your vehicle. Even if you only apply PPF over specific high-risk parts of the car, to protect the individual paint in that part, that’s still better than no protection at all.

PPF is also a fantastic way to protect custom paint jobs and greatly improves the durability of auto paint. If you’re spending the money on custom paint, you may as well go the whole hog and get a layer or two of PPF applied to offer the best protection possible.

Chemical Damage Protection

Chemicals can damage your car’s paint job too. Whether that’s spilled gas from overfilling your gas tank, or certain chemicals used during car washes (over time) you may see subtle paint damage. Tar is another damaging thing to subject your car paint to.

Likewise, if you’re in any harsh climate driving conditions, salt will eat away at your vehicle’s paint. Salt is great for mitigating ice conditions, but your vehicles eat the cost of being on the road.

PPF provides a fantastic layer of protection against such chemical irritants that would otherwise destroy your paint job.

Easier Car Maintenance

Thanks to PPF’s ceramic coating, you don’t have to work as hard on car maintenance. A simple once-over with soap and water if you’re washing your car at home is enough, or you’ll likely find yourself using the car wash less throughout the year.

Easy to Remove and Replace

As PPF is a film-based adhesive, it is relatively easy to remove and replace if necessary. It is far cheaper to replace and remove than your car’s original paint, that’s for certain!

PPF: The Bottom Line

The bottom line of PPF is that it is a fantastic choice for anyone looking to give their car an extra layer of protection against the dirt, dust, grime, and hard knocks of everyday vehicle ownership. Despite its expense, if you consider your car an investment, it’s worth getting it coated – or even getting certain high-risk parts coated with paint protection film.