Thinking of applying a ceramic coating to your car? This protective and cosmetic treatment offers car enthusiasts a number of notable advantages. It helps to protect against harmful UV rays and chemical stains, making it a great solution for preserving your car’s paint job. The chemical compound also ensures ease of cleaning and gives your car a glossy look. However, without proper maintenance, your ceramic coating will not serve the intended purpose or last long. So how can you extend the lifespan of your car’s ceramic coating?
Here are some tips to help you.
TIPS FOR MAINTAINING YOUR CAR’S CERAMIC COATING
If your ceramic coating is not well maintained, it will degrade prematurely. This will cause it to lose its shine and luster, and reduce its hydrophobic properties. The end result will be ceramic coating failure and damage to your paintwork.
On the other hand, active maintenance of your car’s ceramic coating will go a long way in adding value to your vehicle. This is why it is important to learn how best to care for the protective surface. Below are ways to make your ceramic coating last as long as possible.
1. ALLOW THE CERAMIC COATING TO CURE PROPERLY BEFORE WASHING YOUR CAR
Applying a ceramic coating does not eliminate the need to clean your car. However, you should avoid washing the vehicle for at least one week after the application. Getting the ceramic coating wet before it cures will destabilize the cross link bonds and affect its protective potential.
Because a ceramic coating makes for a significant investment, you will want to get value for your money. The seven-day period will allow the coating to cure properly so that it can effectively protect your paintwork.
2. AVOID TAKING YOUR CAR TO AN AUTOMATED CAR WASH
Once you have invested in a ceramic coating, you should never take your vehicle to an automated car wash. Most automated machines have harsh brushes and mop-type cleaning rags that can damage your ceramic coating. Also, the soaps used tend to be pH aggressive and the washing media materials are not built for soft cleaning.
To ensure your ceramic coating lasts long, you should clean your vehicle at home. This allows you to use the right cleaning solutions and techniques.
3. MAINTENANCE WASHING
So how exactly should you clean your car to prolong the life of the protective layer? Below are a few things to keep in mind.
WASH YOUR CAR EVERY TWO WEEKS
The hydrophobic property of a ceramic coat makes it difficult for smudges and water-based dirt to cling onto the surface. However, other contaminants can get attached to the ceramic coating. This can not only damage the coating but also reduce its hydrophobicity. A bi-weekly car wash routine will help to keep your ceramic coating in mint condition.
DO NOT WASH THE CAR IN DIRECT SUNLIGHT
Extreme sunlight generates heat that may over time cause your ceramic coating to crack. This is particularly true for darker vehicles. To keep your ceramic coating in tip-top shape, you may want to clean your vehicle in the garage, in the morning, under a shade, on a cloudy day or close to sunset.
USE CERAMIC COATING FRIENDLY CAR SHAMPOO
Dedicated car wash products are pH neutral and wax-free. They do not contain corrosive ingredients that could damage your ceramic coating. Using a ceramic coating specific car shampoo will preserve the protective layer, rejuvenate its properties and add shine to the surface.
USE THE TWO-BUCKET CAR WASH METHOD
The two-bucket method makes for a great way to prevent swirl marks. Just as the name suggests, two buckets are used in this method: the wash bucket which contains a solution of water and car wash product and the rinse bucket which contains pure water. This allows you to decontaminate your wash mitt after cleaning each section of the vehicle, effectively reducing the chances of smearing contaminants across the surface.
WASH YOUR CAR FROM TOP TO BOTTOM
To keep your ceramic coating in good condition and achieve the best hand-wash results, consider washing the car from top downwards. This should be done one section at a time to avoid cross-contamination. After cleaning each section, rinse your wash mitt before proceeding to the next section.
USE A SEPARATE BUCKET AND MITT FOR THE WHEELS
Due to their location, tires and wheels collect contaminants such as brake dust, road grime, deicing salt and carbon deposits. Because such abrasive debris can damage your ceramic coating, you should always use a different bucket and mitt to clean the wheels and lower areas of your vehicle. This will reduce the risk of the particles spreading to other parts of the vehicle.
DO NOT AIR DRY YOUR CAR
If your vehicle has a ceramic coating, the drying technique you use matters. When you air dry your car, the minerals in the water will remain on the surface. This could leave water spots and stains that may be hard to remove. For optimum results, always use a clean microfiber towel to dry the surface.
4. REMOVE CONTAMINANTS FROM THE CERAMIC COATING IMMEDIATELY
Contaminants such as tree sap, bug splatters and bird droppings are acidic. When they come into contact with your ceramic coated paint, they can ruin the surface. This is why they should be removed immediately. To prevent these contaminants from spreading on your paintwork, be sure to blot and not wipe.
5. REGULAR REINFORCEMENT TREATMENTS
You should apply maintenance boosters on your ceramic coated paint every few months. This will help to restore the hydrophobic properties and protective abilities of your ceramic coating. It is important to find the right maintenance spray or ceramic boost and use it consistently. This will go a long way in increasing the longevity of the ceramic coating.
6. ANNUAL INSPECTIONS
Annual inspections play a critical role in helping to extend the useful life of your ceramic coating. During the maintenance checkup, a ceramic coating installer will assess the protective layer to determine its condition. They may also reinforce or reapply the coating and recommend the right kind of upkeep to help maintain its durability.
Proper maintenance will help to prolong the life of your ceramic coating and keep your vehicle looking new for a long time. At SET Auto Care, we are your one-stop shop in Vaughan for vehicle protection. We offer a wide range of quality auto-detailing services that include car ceramic coating. Contact us today to learn more about our services and to request a quote.
Latest posts by Ceejay Velarde (see all)