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By Daniel Bencun, CEO of PPG Advanced Surface Technologies
The paint and coatings industry plays a pivotal role in empowering body shops to thrive in the future. From innovative product solutions to sustainable application processes, the paint and coatings industry revolutionises how autobody repair professionals operate to meet evolving needs. In response, PPG has joined forces with entrotech, Inc. to establish PPG Advanced Surface Technologies, a joint venture dedicated to delivering cutting-edge paint and clear film solutions for automotive and industrial customers. With the commercialisation of paint films, autobody repair professionals now have unprecedented possibilities to achieve exceptional results while catering to the changing expectations of their clientele.
New era of paint films
Paint films have witnessed remarkable advancements in quality, sustainability and performance in recent years. The era of vinyl-based coatings, which fell short of high-quality paint film standards, is now a thing of the past. Today, thanks to the ongoing innovation of paint and coatings suppliers, paint films offer multilayer applications with at least one layer of paint, providing a wide spectrum of vibrant colours, including solid, metallic and pearlescent finishes. These colours are meticulously matched to automotive paint standards, ensuring seamless integration with the original paintwork.
While predominantly utilised in automotive applications, the versatility of paint films extends to various industrial sectors. Leading car manufacturers in North America and Europe have embraced PPG’s paint film products for their vehicles.
Paint films vs. wraps: Unveiling the distinction
While both paint films and wraps can swiftly transform a vehicle’s appearance, paint films outshine wraps in terms of durability. Unlike wraps, paint films provide long-lasting colour and protection for vehicles. This higher-quality aesthetic ensures greater value for customers seeking durable and reliable solutions for their cars.
Sustainable application process
One of the notable advantages of paint films lies in their sustainable application process. Installation involves precise cutting of clear protective layers and paints to cover specific areas, resulting in a flawless, professional finish. By eliminating the need for spray guns, brushing, and rolling, paint films reduce the release of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the environment. Furthermore, applying paint films requires no heat, contributing to reduced energy consumption for body shops.
Closing the body shop labour gap
Paint films present a promising solution to address the skilled labour shortage in the body shop industry. Although the installation of paint films requires a different skill set, it is often a more efficient process compared to alternative methods. Paint films ensure consistent quality by eliminating the variability associated with individual painters’ techniques. Strict control over film thickness guarantees precise and uniform application. Consequently, body shops can streamline operations and maximise productivity by embracing paint films to counter ongoing labour shortages.
A glimpse into the future
With their outstanding durability, sustainability and low maintenance, paint films offer a superior solution to the global refinish industry. However, it is crucial for body shops to collaborate with reputable paint film providers to achieve optimal results. For example, PPG Advanced Surface Technologies, a partnership combining PPG’s coatings and speciality materials expertise with entrotech’s technological prowess in film solutions, is poised to revolutionise the paint film market. Through this joint venture, body shops can unlock greater innovation, exceptional performance and enhanced sustainability benefits.
Daniel Bencun is the CEO of PPG Advanced Surface Technologies, a new joint venture formed with entrotech, Inc., a provider of technology-driven film solutions. PPG established its paint films capabilities in 2021 by acquiring Wörwag, a Germany-based coatings supplier that provides film products for various automotive parts and panels. To learn more, visit www.ppg.com