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Bad driver-Model 3

Bad driver-Model 3

Some idiot scratched my rear fender. Oh wait, that was me. A momentarily distracted driver cut it too close backing into my garage scratching the rear fender.

I have taken it to the body shop, and while The car is in the shop I asked them to look at several rock chips on the front hood, front bumper and front fenders. I probably have about a half a dozen chips, all about one or 2 mm after 10 months and 11,000 miles here in the high desert of New Mexico. I have beautiful red paint, and I asked them for a quote on fixing those. It was suggested that if I went through the expense of fixing the rock chips, I ought to get a paint protection film, and I agree with that.

So I have a couple of questions for the forum:

Do other people have problems with rock chips? Maybe it’s because I live in the desert and there’s lots of sand and dust and rocks on the roads, or is it because the paint is not too durable?

Also, do other folks have experience with repairing these tiny rock chips? Any ideas as to a reasonable price? Also any general guidelines on the cost of applying paint protection film over the front of the car? I am using the only Tesla certified body shop in the state. I have used them before and have been very satisfied with their service.

In hindsight, I would recommend considering paint protection film when the car is new, if you care about this kind of stuff and live in the desert.

M3phan | 27 July, 2019

On windy days, it must be like a sandblaster?!
I do have the red paint, have had the car for 13 months, just under 12,000 miles, City driving, pretty much stone free around here for some reason, for which I’m thankful… I have counted during my washes four tiny little chips (not obvious unless you know where to look), but I plan on using the Tesla touch up paint kit. Since this is all that I have found after a year of driving, I’m not going to get paint protection film at this point. The cost of that doesn’t make sense for my situation. If after five years the touch up paint gets tiring for me to execute, I might re-paint since this is all that I have found after a year of driving, I’m not going to get paint protection film at this point. The cost of that doesn’t make sense for my situation. I’m planning on doing myself an annual touchup.

Bighorn | 27 July, 2019

Dr Colorchip seems a popular choice for DIY.

M3phan | 27 July, 2019

… Wow, still early, pre-breakfast, my above post ends pretty shaky. Hahaha. Caffeinnnnnnnnnnne.

gballant4570 | 27 July, 2019

No rock chips here in 14k miles.....

TexasBob | 27 July, 2019

I just repaired a small but very noticeable chip in the A-Pillar using the Tesla touch-up kit. Pleased with the results. Not sure I would do it I had lots of chips, but worked well for me on the black car. https://shop.tesla.com/us/en/product/vehicle-accessories/model-s_x_3-pai...

Bighorn | 27 July, 2019

I understand that Tesla has adopted a more Dr Colorchip approach to their kit.

jim | 27 July, 2019

I have a Red multi-coat M3, that had several small to moderate chips. Fixed them myself using a kit from Chipex.com. It was my first time using one of these kits. It was not difficult and I was very pleased with the results. I've also heard good things about drcolorchip.com, but haven't tried their kit.

martinbogo | 27 July, 2019

I have found that the aerodynamics of the Model 3 have resulted in shallow "ding/scrape" window damage on the front windshield. They don't affect my day-to-day driving, but are also unrepairable since they are on the top surface of the glass... essentially shallow scratches.

There's nothing than can be done about that particular problem, and it's just something to keep in mind.

I recommend using XPEL for the front of the car, headlights, wing mirrors, as well as the rear quarter panels ( especially down by the wheel well arches, where the design of the car allows rock chips to jump up )

Foottraffic | 27 July, 2019

There’s more than a dozen on the front bumper now. It’s pretty much unavoidable on my daily 40-50 mile commuter on a freeway where there is a lot of big truck traffic. My plan is to just touch them up with some matching paint and put some clear coat over the area.

numrich | 27 July, 2019

I'll second the rec to use XPEL for ppf for the full front of the car. I had it done for $2K in the Vegas area after getting the same 2K quote for a couple other places I looked into. May have gotten 10% off as a returning customer at one spot, but the 1K quote mentioned by another poster was not found (maybe a partial front ppf).

I also had ceramic coasting done afterwards, and I was able to negotiate that price down from $2000 to $1200 due to the ppf portions not needed paint correction since already done for ppf (plus I argued the full glass roof would mean less paint correction as well).

dmanincali | 27 July, 2019

+1 for Dr. ColorChip. My Model 3 has been no worse than any other car I’ve owned for chips but I do like fixing the ones I get and Dr. Colorchip is solid.

FWIW, looking at the paint repair kit in the Tesla store it looks like they just offer a rebranded version of Dr. ColorChip.

myerrored | 28 July, 2019

For the paint chips: https://shop.tesla.com/us/en/product/vehicle-accessories/model-s_x_3-pai...

For future protection: Get XPEL, front only if you want to save money. I did the full wrap for $4,400. Only regret is that I didn't do it when I first got my car. I live in Dallas, and had about 4K miles on my car before I did it... but by then I had over a dozen paint chips and pits on my beautiful car.

4barkie | 28 July, 2019

My M3 is 1 yr old now and has about 15,000 miles on it. No chips but I do have the ppf and the front. Best decision ever.

As of right now there is no paint repair for the white and Dr Color Chip says that their product is not an exact match. I hope that changes in the future, just in case I need it!

XPEL | 29 July, 2019

Thank you to everyone for the kind words about XPEL!

"So I have a couple of questions for the forum:

Do other people have problems with rock chips? Maybe it’s because I live in the desert and there’s lots of sand and dust and rocks on the roads, or is it because the paint is not too durable?

Also, do other folks have experience with repairing these tiny rock chips? Any ideas as to a reasonable price? Also any general guidelines on the cost of applying paint protection film over the front of the car? I am using the only Tesla certified body shop in the state. I have used them before and have been very satisfied with their service.

In hindsight, I would recommend considering paint protection film when the car is new, if you care about this kind of stuff and live in the desert."

Yes, rock chips are a common problem for every make and model. Paint Protection Film is the best way to protect and maintain your factory finish.

General guidelines for applying the PPF - make sure to have it professionally installed and to protect all of the high impact areas of your car. Typically for any TESLA we see owners protecting the full front end and rocker panel areas.

Check out this video from Engineering Explained on YouTube (2.3 million subs) on how PPF Works. https://youtu.be/ND4vE9vmQWE

Be sure to find an installer you can trust and ask to see examples of their work. This will let you gauge their workmanship, and customer support quality.

Good luck!