Over the last couple of years, ceramic coating earned quite a reputation as one of the most popular car-detailing options currently available on the market. This fame is not unwarranted. This sealing layer is affordable, provides a great level of protection for both old and new, expensive cars, and lends the vehicle a beautiful polished look. However, such fame rarely goes without a couple of misconceptions, half-truths, and a genuine lack of knowledge.
We are here to solve this problem and help you determine if this popular detailing option fits your current needs. Here are the top five things to know before you get ceramic car coating.
The level of protection you are getting
As we briefly mentioned in the introduction, ceramic coating is a popular sealant that provides a strong protective overlay. The extent of protection you are getting after applying the treatment is probably one of the greatest misconceptions related to this product. Let’s clear things up for you. A ceramic layer offers the following perks:
- Resistant to twigs, chips, dirt, and smaller pieces of debris
- Scratch-resistant (minor scratches)
Also, these products do an excellent job in protecting the paint from the acid that can be found in bug and bird droppings. That is a lot. But, ceramic coating is not all-powerful. In spite of its durable ceramic-like look, the layer won’t be able to keep the paintwork safe from bumps, hits, and other physical damage.
How does ceramic coating compare to car wax?
Ceramic coating is one of the most popular car-detailing options but it is hardly the only one. The other popular option is car wax. How do these two compare to each other? Well, car wax is more affordable and easier to apply – wax on, wax off, you know the drill. However, wax lasts only four to six weeks. On the other hand, high-quality nano ceramic coating creates a far more powerful and better looking overlay that successfully seals the small pores in the paintwork and can easily last two or more years. You also get good UV protection and excellent hydrophobic properties. So, the price is more than warranted.
What are the available ceramic coating options?
Of course, not all ceramic coatings are made the same. Much like all other products, these sealants are divided into different price classes all of which feature varying quality and different sealing properties. For instance, the options that sit close to the $500 mark are reasonably potent but don’t last as long and require quite a lot of prep with a clay bar. On the other end of the spectrum are the $2,000-products that offer the best quality but need to be installed by professionals. Most of the available ceramic coatings sit between these two, marrying the strength of the latter group with the convenience of the first.
How does ceramic coating factor into the maintenance?
Up until now, we have established that ceramic coating offers a reasonable level of protection against physical damage. Does this neat sealant have its effect on maintenance? The short answer is yes. The highly reflective surface you get at the end of the treatment is not there only for looks. In the end, the surface of the car becomes highly hydrophobic so it easily repels water but also other small particles that easily latch to the car paint. Because of that, you need to put much less effort into maintenance and cleaning, although the regular 2-4 week visits to a car wash are still highly recommended.
Can you apply ceramic coating treatment on your own?
Unless you are buying some highly potent product that can permanently damage the paint if not used by a professional, this chore can be easily performed even in your backyard. Although the level of prep you will need to perform before the treatment will generally depend on the quality of the product, the standard procedure is to thoroughly clean the vehicle and remove as many dirt particles as possible. The vehicles that have sustained heavier damage may require a paint correction that ranges somewhere between $375 (regular multi-step polish) to $1,800 (removing the original factory peel).
We hope these few considerations provided you with some general info about ceramic car coating you wanted to know but didn’t know where to ask. We all know these products are very popular. But it is always good to learn as many things as possible about a product before you make your final decision. Well, now you know all the basics – see how this popular treatment suits your needs.