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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Given that winter will be here soon, I decided to get the annual coat of wax applied to my Charger so I took it to the detail center at my local dealership yesterday. Detailing can be bittersweet, because through the process of cleaning her up, new damage is revealed.

I had two spots on my car in particular that I was disappointed with after the detailing was complete. The most noticeable was an area on the front bumper they told me was damaged due to bug residue. The spot was not noticeable until they applied the wax, which turned it white. This was surprising to me because I always try to get the bug splatter cleaned off my car as quickly as I can because I know it can damage the paint. Anyway, I was told that this could have been prevented had I opted to have an aftermarket protective body film applied to the front fascia. I was told this film is cut specifically for my car and would protect the paint from bugs and other damage.

The second area I was concerned about was the rocker panels. The rocker panels have been rather beat up from rock chips, even though I try to avoid gravel roads at all costs. The rocker panel damage is the reason I opted to purchase the mud guards a while back. The guy at the detail center said that there is a body-colored, spray-on rock chip guard that could be applied to un-damaged rocker panels that would prevent getting the damage in the first place.

I have attached pictures of the bumper and rocker panels to this post for reference.

This was the first time I had really heard about protective measures such as these for bugs and rock chip damage. If there are such things available, it is too bad that I was not made aware of them at the time I bought my car, because now I am looking at having to spend a chunk of change at a body shop to have it stripped and repainted if I want it to look pristine again.

What is your all's take on this? Are you aware of body film and spray-on chip guards, and if so, do they work? Thanks for any input.
 

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Dude! Is that the way they gave your car back to you??? Holy crap!

Here was your first mistake. You took your car to a dealership to get it detailed. In case no one has ever let you in on this, dealerships hire some of the worst hacks with a buffer that you can find. I mean the absolute worst. Some of the people working on your paint know less about detailing than you do. I shudder at the thought of how much money you spent. You definitely got robbed because from what I can tell by looking at your pictures, that stuff could have been fixed. Of course when a hack is doing the job, maybe not.

You should take your car to a real detailer OR watch my videos and learn how to do this stuff yourself. Stealerships are nothing more than that: a place you go to get robbed. You got robbed.

As for that textured rocker panel protection, the stuff is real similar to Rhino Liner or something that they spray in truck beds. You can even get it in a rattle can now from a paint company called SEM. I wouldn't use a rattle can on my car but I have used their stuff to paint things that I needed to have a textured look and feel. It helps protect from chips.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Here was your first mistake. You took your car to a dealership to get it detailed. In case no one has ever let you in on this, dealerships hire some of the worst hacks with a buffer that you can find. I mean the absolute worst. Some of the people working on your paint know less about detailing than you do. I shudder at the thought of how much money you spent. You definitely got robbed because from what I can tell by looking at your pictures, that stuff could have been fixed. Of course when a hack is doing the job, maybe not.

You should take your car to a real detailer OR watch my videos and learn how to do this stuff yourself. Stealerships are nothing more than that: a place you go to get robbed. You got robbed.

As for that textured rocker panel protection, the stuff is real similar to Rhino Liner or something that they spray in truck beds. You can even get it in a rattle can now from a paint company called SEM. I wouldn't use a rattle can on my car but I have used their stuff to paint things that I needed to have a textured look and feel. It helps protect from chips.
Perhaps I have been lucky so far, but this is actually the 3rd time I have visited this dealer's detail shop, and only the first time that I have been disappointed. The first time was for my wife's Mustang, then once for my Charger. Both of those times they used a buffer... this time they did not because I opted to make use of a discounted rate agreement offered through my employer.

The manager there has detail experience from his own shop, has always treated me with courtesy & respect, and takes the time to talk to me about maintaining and taking care of my car. He shared the information with me about body film and rock chip protection, which is the reason I started this post in the first place. I never got the idea that they were trying to take advantage of me or ripping me off... if they had, I would never go back and I would spread the word.

In an ideal world, I would have all the time I need to wash, wax, detail, and immediately tend to any anomoly that happens with my car. In reality, I am married, have a toddler, job, and a life, so unfortunately hobbies or interests that I have for myself usually get put on the back burner. The main reason I take my car to get it detailed is because I feel that it is important to have a fresh coat of wax put on every year, but I don't always have the time to do the time-consuming job myself.

I don't doubt that there are detail shops at dealerships that do sub-standard work, but couldn't this be said about ANY shop out there? It should be up to the consumer to be informed and make decisions on a body / repair shop based on reviews, word of mouth reports, or past experiences. Making the assumption that all dealership body shop employees are "hacks" is as big of a mistake as assuming that all non-dealership affiliated body shops will tell you the truth.
 

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...Making the assumption that all dealership body shop employees are "hacks" is as big of a mistake as assuming that all non-dealership affiliated body shops will tell you the truth.
I offer you one shining example. Your car. :beerchug:
 
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