How to Clean Paint Protection Film

How to Clean Paint Protection Film

Applying paint protection film is a worthwhile process that can greatly benefit the longevity of your vehicle’s look. But does paint protection film need to be cleaned? What happens if you don’t clean it? And what’s the best method to clean it?

We have all those answers, and more in this blog, as we are setting out to answer the question ‘How to clean paint protection film?’

The UK automotive after market industry is thriving, ranking fourth in Europe and ninth in the world in terms of size, and turning over an annual £21.1 billion.

The sector supports 345,600 jobs and contributes £12.2 billion each year to the economy. And it is growing: the sector’s value is set to rise to £28 billion by 2022.

That’s why we at Car Specialist Customs are here to provide you with all the information you require to get the best car customisation possible, whilst being as informed as possible.

The importance of paint protection film

Paint protection film, also known as ‘PPF’, or a ‘clear vehicle wrap.’ is an entirely optional accessory to add to your vehicle. That being said, along with safe, responsible driving, it can be instrumental in preserving the bodywork and paintwork of your vehicle.

Paint protection film is a relatively thin layer of vinyl that is stencilled and applied over your vehicle. This thin layer of vinyl provides the following benefits…

  • Can prevent damage and marks from light scratches.
  • May reduce damage from heavier scratches than if the PPF was not applied.
  • Reduces the damage caused by UV rays on your vehicle’s paintwork.
  • Maintains a consistent glossy finish (as long as it is regularly cleaned).

What’s the difference between paint protection film and a vehicle wrap?

A vehicle wrap is an overarching category that contains the following options…

  • A custom vehicle wrap. — This may contain various shapes and colours and designs, a popular example is a company logo on a company car.
  • A coloured vehicle wrap. — This provides the benefits of a vehicle wrap, but completely changes the colour of your vehicle. If selecting this option, you must update the relevant authorities of the colour change.
  • A clear vehicle wrap, also known as paint protection film.

How to clean paint protection film

How to clean paint protection film

Paint protection film can be relatively simple to clean, granted you have the time. If you don’t have the time, you would need to find a car cleaning service that uses car wash shampoo that is friendly to paint protection film.

Alternatively, if you are able to clean it yourself, here is all you need to do. First, get the following equipment.

  • A sponge, or a similar cleaning tool.
  • A hose connected to a consistent stream of water.
  • Car cleaning products that are pH neutral, these are sometimes known as car shampoos. Make sure you purchase one that is ‘vehicle wrap’ or paint protection film friendly.
  • 2 buckets of warm water, one of which being mixed with the aforementioned car shampoo.
  • An unused microfibre cloth. Depending on the size of your vehicle, you may need more than one.

Below are the simplified steps in cleaning a vehicle with PPF.

  1. Pre-rinse the vehicle with the hose. The aim is to loosen and remove any loose debris or light stains. Be sure to get every part of the vehicle, even areas where the PPF isn’t applied, like in the wheel arches,
  1. Prepare your sponge and buckets of water. Dip the sponge in the bucket that is mixed with the car shampoo, and then begin to wipe and clean the vehicle. Before applying the shampoo solution again, dip and run the sponge through the bucket of plain water. This will remove any dirt you managed to wipe off the vehicle.

Be sure to wipe your vehicle from the front to back, and top to bottom. Do not forget to wipe clean the awkward to reach areas.

  1. After wiping, you’re almost done! Simply apply the hose over the vehicle again and rinse it through to address any leftover debris.
  1. The final step is to use your microfibre cloth to dry the vehicle, starting from the top to bottom, front to back.

Why should paint protection film be cleaned?

You should clean paint protection film in order to extend its lifespan. If you neglect to clean the paint protection film at all, certain chemicals from specific stains can affect the effectiveness of the film. This can result in the film becoming hard in texture, becoming loose, or even ending up with holes in some instances.

Additionally, The natural glossy shine that comes with applying paint protection film can be compromised if you neglect to clean it.

How often should paint protection film be cleaned?

This is subject to the amount you drive and the amount of dirt it accumulates. You should opt for at least once a month if you use the vehicle regularly. If you frequently drive for long periods, or in muddy areas, then you should clean it more than once a month.

Can I get paint protection film professionally applied?

Can I get paint protection film professionally applied?

Yes. Using established vehicle modifiers is the best way to get your vehicle wrapped with paint protection film. Due to their experience, and the equipment they have on hand, there is less room for error.

Car Specialist Customs holds combined years of experience in wrapping vehicles of various shapes and sizes, Our wraps have a warranty for 3 years, ensuring quality and longevity.

When we wrap your vehicle, we make sure to…

  1. Discuss what kind of wrap you want, and where you would like it.
  2. Measure the vehicle / relevant areas where the wrap will be applied.
  3. Clean the vehicle / relevant areas before applying
  4. Begin our process of application to your vehicle
  5. Inform you of any maintenance / dos and don’ts when it comes to the longevity of the wrap.

What are the benefits of professional PPF application?

  • The PPF is applied correctly.
  • They can safely remove older PPF on your vehicle.
  • They have the space, tools and experience to apply the film correctly.
  • You will get guidance on maintaining the PPF.

Purchase PPF today

Purchase PPF today

Our team members at Car Specialist Customs are extremely passionate and proud of the multiple services and products we provide for the people of Greater Manchester and beyond.

As a fully insured and approved installer, catering to the needs of vehicle owners of Greater Manchester and beyond, we are proud to let you know that we offer services for the following:



Featuring the brands, Pandora, ScorpionTrak, Meta Trak & SmarTrack, we’ve included affordable, and premium products to suit the needs of our customers. With finance options available, and the option of installation, head to our website to get your quote!

We will always go above expectations to make your car feel special to you. With even more services and options becoming available in the future, Car Specialist Customs is the home of making any car unique, secure and special.

See what we can do for you today, we hope the details we shared have helped you decide to take a step forward in personalising your vehicle with our unique service.

In this blog, our aim is to show you how to clean paint protection film. Whilst also providing supplementary information that can help you make an informed choice when it comes to investing in customisation options for your vehicle.

Want to get in touch? You can find us right here:


Unit 30

Caldershaw Centre

Ings Ln


OL12 7LQ


Monday to Wednesday – 10 AM—7 PM

Thursday – Closed

Friday to Sunday – 11 AM—7 PM


07523 971347 (Mon – Fri: 8:30 am – 6:00 pm)


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