Ceramic Coating, What is it? Is It Necessary?

Ceramic Coating, What is it? Is It Necessary?

In the automotive industry, Ceramic coating has become extremely popular among car enthusiasts. However, the general public has no clear understanding regarding to what it is. This post is intended to be informative regarding how the clear coat works.

NOTE* These products are meant to be use after the vehicles had completed the paint correction process. It is highly recommended that a detailing professional work on or supervise the whole process.

What are Coating? And Why is it better than Waxing. 

Think of it as another layer of clear coat, which will protect your car from the harmful environment. These products now allow the transfer of particles from one surface to the other so that the nano coating becomes inseparable from the car’s paint surface. Automotive coating manufacturers claim their formulas “bond” chemically and physically to the paint surface, however, their bond loosens over time.

Over the recent years, Coating technology had improved tremendously.In the near future, we might be able to save water by not washing cars. Please click for more information on the coating technology.

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What are its benefits?

Many of these coatings require an authorized detailer to apply them for you. That means that they have experience in prepping the paint for application. This is a huge bonus for car lovers. The paint may never look that good again because of how much work goes into preparing the car (paint correction) for one of these coatings.

The coating durability, whether you adhere to their guidelines or not, is impressive. They last a long time and protect your paint from naturally acidic contaminants, UV damage, and may even add a little cushion room in terms of light scratches.Other than that, Coating is not much different from the poly sealants.

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What are the downsides to consider?

Before you can even apply the coating, the surface has to be 100% free of surface blemishes, which applies to even brand new vehicles. A multi-stage paint correction involves washing the car, claying, buffing, and keeping it pristine while applying the coating. That last step is particularly difficult for anyone who isn’t working in a clean indoor facility.

Moreover, when you have a coating that is unlikely to lose it’s bond with the paint, when a paint correction is needed (and believe me, it will be), you lose the coating and all the money that went into it as well.

Different Types of Coating

Currently, there are three type of car coating products. Polymer coating, Fluorine coating and Glass coating. Among them, glass coating is the new kid in a block in the US market but already very popular in Europa and Japan.This is because of the technology that it uses. Liquid glass and other compounds enables this product to give your car a liquid glass effect which will protect it against weather, natural situations like bird droppings, scratches, dust, spills and all those things that just no ordinary wax can fix. Most of all, it can last from 6 months to a few years.

What are the steps?

Paint coatings need to be applied to surfaces that are free of above and below surface contaminants.  Like a car wax or paint sealant, if the surface isn’t properly prepped, the paint coating won’t properly adhere, yielding less-than-desirable results.  With a little bit of knowledge from the previous blog posts and the right products, prepping your vehicle’s paint for a coating is easier than you think.

First and foremost, you’ll need to remove above surface contaminants.  Above surface contaminants can consist of rail dust, bugs, industrial fallout, airborne pollution, and paint overspray.  You have a couple options to remove above-surface contaminants. (see previous blog post for the steps).

Next step is polishing  The polishing step is just as critical as the claying step.  Polishing your paint with an abrasive polish or compound removes swirls, scratches, water spots, and below surface contaminants, creating a perfectly smooth, high-gloss finish.  Using an abrasive polish, like Wolfgang Total Swirl Remover, if your goal is to create a flawless finish.

Applying the Coating. Once you’ve clayed and polished the vehicle, it’s time to apply the paint coating.  Paint coatings are available in syringes, small glass bottles, conventional cylindrical bottles with sprayers and traditional bottles with flip caps. Apply the coating gently on the paint using a microfiber pads; repeat the steps if necessary.

Note: Once a paint coating has been applied, the vehicle should be kept in a cool, dry environment for at least a couple hours.  You want to avoid moisture, rain and humidity.  It’s best to keep the vehicle parked in a garage or, if it’s not too humid outside, let it sit in the sun.  The sun will accelerate the curing time.

Here’s a video of a step by step guide of coating application

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How to remove scratches?

How to remove scratches?

Removing scratches from auto paint is a multi-step process that starts with leveling the paint surrounding the scratch and ends with restoring the shine. The number of steps depends on the severity of the scratch. This general guide to scratch removal will describe a typical scratch removal process. There are many techniques and tools available and you may find your own variation of this process that works for you.

This guide describes how to remove random isolated deep scratches. For overall swirl removal or fine scratch removal, you would use a polisher and a compound. If you have isolated scratches that are too deep, sanding maybe required. Saying should not be done by amateurs, if you are not an expert, proceed with cautions (at your own risks).

Note:

  1. Factory baked-on paint is usually thin and hard, that’s two HUGE negatives working against you should you be in a position to want or need to sand on factory paint. Always do a Test Spot to a small section and make sure you can get 100% of your sanding marks out before sanding further.
  2. Only sand enough to remove or improve the defects you’re trying to remove.
  3. Remember that sanding removes paint as does the compounding and polishing process.
  4. If possible, use a Paint Thickness Gauge to measure the film-build before sanding.
  5. Don’t sand too close to edges or hard/sharp body lines.

Here are the steps

  1. Start by soaking your sanding papers for at least 15 minutes in a solution of water and a couple drops of carwash solution. For very small scratches, you can also cut your sandpaper into small postage stamp size squares and use your fingertips as the backing pad. Start the process with 2000 grits sand papers. Be sure to feather out from the scratch, easing up the further you get away from the scratch. You want to sand-out the scratch which would mean removing most of the paint directly near the scratch, which is a void of paint, but feather or taper the depth of your sanding marks as you move away from the scratch as you blend the area with the surrounding paint. This will create a level appearance. Back to the backing pad. Turn the pad with the sandpaper at an angle so you’re sanding across the scratch, never straight up and down. Use the water bottle with clean water and a couple drops of shampoo to generously wet the paint you’ll be sanding. Continuously spray the paint while you work to help the sandpaper glide easily.
  2. Resand each section with the 2500 grit sandpaper wrapped around your baking pad. Keep the paint wet and work with the pad angled. Take care not to over-sand the paint. You only want to eliminate the deeper 2000 grit scratches. Wipe off the slurry and inspect the results. The sanding scratches should be finer and less distinct.
  3. Resand each section with the 3000 grit sandpaper wrapped around the backing pad. Same rules apply as with the two previous rounds. Wipe off the slurry and inspect the results. You know when you’re ready to compound by looking at the area you’ve sanded.Reflections of the overhead light  should be blurry and dull with no obvious deep sanding scratches.
  4. For the compounding and polishing steps, attach the polisher (Makita) to a portable cable and apply Wolfgang Total Swirl Remover 3.0 across the yellow cutting pad. Operate the Makita polisher at a speed of 6 and work back and forth and then up and down across the sanding scratches. If you’ve sanded more than one area, make sure you duplicate this process on every spot so the results are uniform. Wipe off the paint with a clean microfiber polishing cloth.
  5. Apply an X of Wolfgang Finishing Glaze 3.0 to the white foam polishing pad. Operate the Porter Cable Makita at speed 5 and repeat the previous step.
  6. The final step. Once the paint is polished and scratch-free, apply your favorite wax or paint sealant.polishing-before-after-photo-521529-s-original

 

Here is a video guide of a step by step of how to remove the scratches.

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