Ceramic coatings are a synthetic chemical-based product that is made of a Quartz-Silane-based compound or Silica. These coatings are considered permanent coatings since they can’t be removed unless by polishing or compounding. Alternatively, you can get rid of them by neglecting them purposely.
Authentic ceramic coatings are durable exterior auto paint protectants that are applied in liquid form. They cure to form a solid or tough glass-like layer on your car’s paint. Ceramic coatings create a self-cleaning, slick, and solid transparent protective layer once they cure.
Nano-coatings are sealants that boast better chemistry thus forming stronger bonds at a molecular level. These last longer with a durability of more than 12 months. Ceramic coatings tend to be challenging to apply but last the longest.
Typically, they are harder and more long-lasting compared to a clear coating on your car. If yours happen to be swirled or scratched, you need to compound and polish just like with a normal clear coat.
Of great importance to note is the fact that ceramic coatings are chemical resistant and with excellent UV resistance that prevents oxidation from forming on the paint.
Ceramic coatings feature different formulations. However, all of them create silicone coating on the car’s surface once cured.
What Is Ceramic Coating Made Of?
Typically, and as aforementioned, ceramic coating NJ consists of silicon dioxide that is sourced from natural ingredients like sand and quartz. Some brands and types utilize titanium dioxide as an extra hardening agent.
Once applied to the paint of a car, the two create a strong chemical bond with hydrophobic also known as water-repellent properties. These properties are not only hard but also resistant to normal real-life scratches.
Most ceramic coating can be layered well. This layering is handy at helping achieve an even layer of the coating and more thickness. It is possible to attain a maximum of 3-4 layers.
More layering beyond this level might not make much sense. It could prove to be a waste of product.
The good thing is that there’s a new generation of coatings available today. These boast the ability to achieve better thickness even in one layer.
Ceramic coatings can last between one to ten years. It all depends on factors such as the coating, process of application followed as well as maintenance.
Tips To Maintain Ceramic Coating
Maintaining your car’s ceramic coating shouldn’t be a challenging task. By following these steps, you’ll not only maintain the ceramic coating but also extend its lifespan;
Avoid Washing Your Car For Up To 7 Days After Application
One of the greatest mistakes that many owners make is washing their rides too soon after ceramic coating application. Of great importance to note is the fact that ceramic coatings usually take some time to cure.
Unless you want all the hard work to go down the drain, you should avoid washing the car at least one week after application to allow the coating to cure properly.
Wash Using the Two-Bucket Method
Washing your car using the two-bucket method is proven to not only produce the best results but also does wonders in reducing swirl marks. For those not aware, this method utilizes one bucket for soaking the wash mitt while the other bucket cleans the wash mitt after every section of washing the car.
The bucket that is used to ‘rinse’ is filled with clean water. Having grit guards, this bucket is used to rinse any debris or dirt from the wash mitt after an individual section.
Wash the Car Fortnightly
Whether you prefer driving your car only during the weekend or are a daily driver, it is highly recommended that you wash the car on a bi-weekly basis. This goes miles to reduce any excess accumulation of contaminants.
Even if you utilize a car cover on the car, always remember that car covers usually collect dust that can penetrate below microscopic levels.
Avoid Washing in Direct Sunlight
Direct sunlight, particularly in dark vehicles, creates heat that is kryptonite to ceramic coatings. For good results from your maintenance, ensure you wash your car under a shaded area. If outdoors, make sure it is out of direct sunlight.
To be on the safe side, wash the car when the sun is on its lowest levels, early evening or morning. This helps avoid streaking and water spots. If your car ends up with water spots, you should consider utilizing a specialized water spot remover to get rid of spots.
Utilize PH Neutral Car Shampoo
Using a high-quality PH-neutral car shampoo without added polish or wax is highly recommended. Just settle for a straight and good old shampoo to wash from top to bottom. Rinse every section as you complete it.
Utilize Separate Mitts and Wash Buckets for Wheels and Lower Areas
Wheels and brakes tend to collect carbon deposits and brake dust. Carbon deposits are simply microscopic metal shavings. The last thing you want to use is a wash mitt with small metal pieces to wash ceramic-coated paintwork.
Always utilize separate wash mitts for the lower parts of the car including sills and wheels.
Avoid Taking Your Car To An Automated Car Wash
This is another maintenance tip that you should keep in mind. An auto car wash usually utilizes a brush to clean the car. The brushes might cause grave damage to the ceramic coating which ultimately will degrade it. The prudent thing to do is to visit a touchless car wash when your ride needs to get some cleaning.
Make Use of Maintenance Boosters
Maintenance products normally fill up scratched parts of the coating to not only offer protection to the paint but also restore its hydrophobicity. Often, maintenance boosters are applied after washing the car immediately. This needs to be done every 3 – 4 months.
Always remember that you should strictly use specific ceramic coating maintenance products. Avoid using wax or any other sealant on the coating as it hinders its functionality.
Always Get Rid of Contaminants Immediately
Contaminants like tree sap, bug splatters, and bird droppings can damage your car’s ceramic coating due to their acidic nature. For this reason, once you notice any of them on your car’s surface, remove them immediately.
While at it, remember to blot and avoid wiping to reduce the spread of contaminants on the paintwork.
Annual Maintenance Checkup
Every year, take your car to a professional car detailer. Detailers utilize their skills and experience to rejuvenate the ceramic coating and restore the vehicle’s shine and protection.
The Importance Of Maintaining A Ceramic Coating
Due to the ‘self-cleaning’ attribute of ceramic coating, many car owners do not find maintenance necessary. For starters, it is important to note that a ceramic-coated car doesn’t clean itself per se.
Once the coating hardens, it is flat which makes the topmost part slippery which is way better compared to normal car wax. When this happens, it produces a hydrophobic effect where tree sap, dirt, dust, and water among other items slide off with minimal effort.
Although this is the case, residual contaminants can still be able to stick to the car’s coated surface. Ultimately, more and more particles will stick and start to a layer which causes the car to be dirty.
For this reason and others, maintaining your car’s ceramic coating is important.
Consequences Of Not Maintaining Ceramic Coating
Failing to maintain ceramic coating via proper washing and using other maintenance tips such as applying maintenance boosters, your ceramic coating will suffer big time. The following are some of the things that can happen because of proper maintenance;
Among the best attributes of a ceramic coated ride is how contaminants such as dirt, mud, and water, fall off effortlessly from the coated surface because of hydrophobicity or low surface energy.
If you do not maintain your ceramic coating properly, your car will suffer from harmful elements like UV rays. Ultimately, it will lose its hydrophobicity.
Loss of Shine
Cars with ceramic coating tend to shine from a distance. If well maintained, the shine is long-lasting. However, without proper maintenance, the ceramic coating will wear out and the car will lose its polish and shine.
Damage to Paintwork and/or Wearing Out
If you do not wash and maintain ceramic coating as necessary, it is chipped off by contaminants like bird droppings, sunlight, and debris. Over time, the car’s factory paint is exposed to the environment. Eventually, it’ll get damaged.
Ceramic coating NJ isn’t bulletproof. You have a role to play after installing it. Maintenance is necessary if you’re to retain not only its shine but also overall functionality.