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11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone... I've got my black Prius being tinted and coated as I type this message. I've got Pkg 9 so I went with non metallic tinting (no interference with the GPS and cell phone). It looks great. Everytime I walk into my garage (where the tinting guy is currently working on the car) my car looks cooler.

I chose an installer that does X Pel and window tinting. Its not going to be cheap... about $700 (combined). I figured that I only have a few weeks before the front end of the car may get a chip so I decided to do it. I personally suggest that you don't try to put the X Pel coating on yourself. It looks like a hand full. I went to the X Pel website and found an installer that would come to my house.

By the way, I am producing totally custom car mats for my Prius. If anyone is interested let me know. I use a photographic process that allows me to reproduce pictures and add text. It is a full bleed process (I'm not talking about the cost now). I can do a good job matching the carpet color and adding some interesting images (all up to you!). These are polyester fiber mats not plastic or rubber. I'm also going to produce a Prius car flag that says Prius Hybrids for America.

I'll take a picture when all the work is done.

Thanks for being here, I appreciate reading your postings.

25 Posts

I have been trying to find a local installer for Xpel or StonGard here in Anchorage with little success. Only paint protector with clear material seems to be Invica-Shield from a source that operates out of home and doesn't advertise except on company web site (not in local yellow pages).

Since you watched the install, I am interested in how difficult the Xpel was to complete and whether you think a novice could do a credible job.

Did you go for the complete package (hood, grille, and mirrors)?

Looking forward to your pictures.

11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Window tinting and X Pel... update

Ok... here is the latest.

The window tinting went very well. My black Prius looks hot! I went with a medium tint that is non metallic so that it will not interfere with GPS or cell phone reception.

I watched part of the X Pel installation. It is definitely NOT for the faint of heart. If you are a window tinting expert you might be able to try it. I would not touch it with anybody's 10 foot pole. The installer spent 8 hours straight putting on the tint and X Pel. It cost $700.

Having said that I must say that I am not YET satisfied with the X Pel installation. I was told to leave the car out in the sun for up to a week for the minor water bubbles to disappear. Sometime in the second week of December I will take my car in to be "reviewed". There are some very visible scratches on the X Pel. The manufacturer said the they should be able to be polished out by hand.

Get this... toward the end of the installation I became somewhat concerned with the bubbles and scratches so I called X Pel... no answer...duh... the holiday. Being concerned about forking over $700 for a job I wasn't satisfied with I called the President of X Pel... at home. His name was on the website and I looked him up on He said that X Pel uses only 3M products and that they do not force installers to buy 3M products. X Pel sell the custom design/cutting software and designs. The installer can use any material they choose. This installer did use 3M material but X Pel can not force them to use it.

What I've learned so far...
1. Black is the hardest car to work on with X Pel...everything shows up.
2. The Prius kit (especially the bumper) is difficult to install.
3. Don't even think you might be able to do it.
4. There are currently installer made scratches on the coating... Very noticable especially when you fork up major cash.
5. I was told it will not look perfect (after the fact... why don't they tell you before you buy it). I can easily see the line across the hood. Unless the scratches can be removed I will not be happy and would not recommend the product.
6. My installer tells me he'll make it right if I'm not happy... we'll see...
7. This is a sacraficial product. It will not last for ever.

In conclusion the jury is out on the product. I can tell you that the installer worked hard at putting it on. I chose an installer that was recommended by X Pel. X Pel will not stand behind the installation process. To quote the President of X Pel "that's between you and the installer".

I hope this helps. I am going to hold final judgment on the product based on the dissappearance of the bubbles and the elimination of the scratches.
Without this happening I would tell you to walk away from X Pel.

Good Luck...

Hi California Hotrod:

___Is this covering on the hood edge, bumpers, and mirrors of your 04 Prius the same thing that goes by the name of 3M Clear Bra here in the Midwest? I saw this applied to an 02 Red Rock Pearl Acura MDX last summer and it looked excellent. I cant think of another color (Red Rock Pearl is really a bright Red) other then black that would show even the most minor application mistakes any better. I inspected this MDX closely and didnt see a single bubble or blemish across all the surfaces it was applied to.

___Thanks again and I am looking forward to your pics as well.

___Wayne R. Gerdes
___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
___[email:x8rr1km4][email protected][/email:x8rr1km4]
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