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Paint bubbling Under PPF?!

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Old 11-13-17, 07:29 PM   #1
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Unhappy Paint bubbling Under PPF?!

Hey Everyone,

So I'm in a not so good situation with a shop that did some work on my '16 IS 300 back in July. They applied 3M Scotchgard Pro on my bumper, full hood, mirrors, and fenders. Everything seemed fine until 3 weeks after the install when I noticed 2 wrinkles that looked like air pockets underneath the right DRL on my bumper. I took it into the shop and they told me it looked liked air under the film and they would try to get them out. When I come back to get my car, the affected area had gotten worse and morphed into a completely different shape entirely(pictures below). The guy tells me that it actually looks like the paint underneath seems to be bubbling. Which I find odd because I had purchased the car earlier that month as a CPO with only 4500 miles and the car was in great shape. So I'm not sure I believe the area would be repainted but you never know. So after 3 months of waiting around to see if 3M would cover the repair, they get back to the shop and say they wont cover it under the warranty because it is not an issue with their product. I don't think this is an issue with the film but rather with the application. The shop hasn't done well by me so far as I had to go back to them 3 times because of issues with my window tint, so I don't necessarily believe 100% that their application was flawless. The owner is telling me that he believes it's pant bubbling and if I decide to have it removed that the film will take the paint with it. I'm stuck with the decision of taking a chance and having them remove it to hopefully find out its not the paint or just to leave it and avoid repainting the bumper. Has anyone ever experienced something like this with their ppf? I personally believe it looks like it was misapplied, but I haven't dealt with something like this before. Thanks for taking the time to read this!
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Old 11-14-17, 07:05 AM   #2
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I'm on mobile, but in the second picture it looks like there's a major color difference between the bumper and fender. The bumper was likely either repainted or replaced and painted. Following the guess of it being repainted, poor prep may be the culprit, or not enough cure time. This may be on the dealer...
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Old 11-14-17, 12:17 PM   #3
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I'm not paint pro by any means, but I don't think this would happen with factory paint. If this is a CPO, it is likely the bumper has been repainted.
Obviously there is a flaw in the paint and the PPF might have exacerbate the defect.
I've half assed spray painted stuff before, and saw those exact same wrinkles in the paint.
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Old 11-14-17, 12:53 PM   #4
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You said the car was fine and perfect when you bought it in for them to apply 3m film. Either they bubbled your paint by applying too much heat when putting on the film or there is air pockets between the paint and film. When you bought it in the second time they probably was trying to squeegee it out and cause it to form a bigger wriggle and they dont want to reapply the film again and told you some bs story. Also paint on a bumper is always going to be a slightly difference in color than your other car panels like fenders and hood.

This is if you want to, you can poke a little hole on that wriggle area and heat it up a bit and see if you can push the air out.
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Old 11-14-17, 05:57 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies guys, I really appreciate it. Fortunately the shop reached out again to 3M and they are going to replace the film. If the film lifts off any paint though from the affected area, repainting it would be on me. I did what a1rh3adsz said and took my nail and tried to slice a hole where the "bubbling" is and it looks like it may just be air after all. I hope thats the case. I'll repost again with updates.
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Old 11-14-17, 07:47 PM   #6
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I see paint variance too, it probably got touched up with just a blow in or a spot repair, not a full repaint and refinish. There are these mobile bumper scuff repair guys that go to dealerships and fix bumper scrapes with mini spray guns. It's a fast repair and cheap to make the car look mint when they are fs but they don't last.

If the repair is lifting, hopefully the rest of the paint on the bumper is oem and you can just get that side fixed, lay new base coat and reclear the rest of the bumper. Do have a pic of the passenger side where the bumper meets the fender in similar lighting conditions and angle as your second pic?
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