This article is here to dispel the misinformation that is all over our markets regarding ceramic coating application and products. You see ceramic as a hot button word all over the place now. It’s a buzz word in almost every product line and even tunnel washes are starting to offer “ceramic coatings”. The thing is, you’re being lied to. They are using the term ceramic to lure you into purchasing a product that is likely just a sealant and not a hardened layer of protection, but why?
Well, sadly, ceramic coating has not been defined by Webster’s Dictionary. I joke, but the truth is…there is no requirement to prove what you install is a true ceramic, because true ceramic is such a broad term. These products likely have some level of SiO2 in them which allow these liars to sleep at night convincing themselves that they are selling something better than wax. The truth is, these spray on products don’t last any longer than 3 or so months and they simply are NOT a hardened layer of protection.
There is a reason these tunnels have to use sensational marketing, unbacked claims and colorful soaps and lights! You’re paying for the show of what the tunnel is. I remember going through them as a kid. It was incredibly entertaining and we loved it as children. The fact is, it is time to grow up now. It is time to accept that if you want you’re vehicle to have that show room shine, it does not come at the “deluxe wash price” for $24.99. You’ve been lied to your entire life. These washes use acidic cleaners, dirty brushes and cheap chemicals to produce a cheap wash that leaves you wanting every …single….time. Go ahead, look thoroughly at your vehicle if you frequent the tunnel wash. You’ll find water spots, missed spots, contamination and lack of true shine.
You simply cannot drive through a car wash and achieve adhesion on a true ceramic coating. The coating needs to bond to contaminant free paint. These drive through washes are not claying the vehicle or polishing the vehicle. They are tossing a sealant on top of an alkaline cleaner that simply defeats adhesion. The goal of a drive through car wash is to create the need for regular use. It is how they profit. They damage your paint and the protection they offer doesn’t even come close to true levels of protection.
The ceramic coating process includes heavy prep work that prepares the surface to bond with the ceramic coating that is going to be applied. Then the coating itself requires a cure time of at least an hour and upwards of twelve hours depending on what product is being used. If you are looking for a hardened layer of protection and all the benefits of true ceramic coating, there isn’t an easy way. Stop fooling yourself into thinking that $35 can solve your ceramic coating need. You will be left disappointed and wanting.
Check out the ceramic coating process here.
If you love water spots, swirls, scratches and a mediocre product, than follow all the hype in the market. If you’re looking for a beautiful finish, hardened protection and a super easy to maintain exterior, you’ll want to hire a professional ceramic coating installer.