Paint Protection on the Sunshine Coast is an absolute necessity! The Coast is beautiful and has so much to offer however being located on the coastline, makes your vehicle more vulnerable to water spotting, contamination, and rust. Here are 5 facts you must know before getting dealership paint protection or any professional ceramic coating for your vehicle.
1: Scratches & Stone Chips
In short and simple terms – a ceramic coating will not prevent scratches and stone chips from harming your paintwork. This can be a selling point people can use when trying to convince you to get paint protection, but it is far from the truth. A ceramic coating is super thin and the last thing it will do is prevent stones from chipping your paint. When it comes to scratches, people can be misled by seeing phrases used like “10H Hardness”, “Diamond Hardness” or even “Scratch Resistant Coating” which can give you a false sense of reality of knowing how well the ceramic coating will protect your vehicle. A professional ceramic coating will help reduce light marring and scratches induced when washing, drying, or ‘dry wiping’ your paint but don’t expect it to provide protection against tree branches, children’s toys, and handbags.
2: Ceramic Coatings & Lifetime Warranties
It’s only normal to associate the warranty duration with the potential quality of a product so understandable to think that if the paint protection comes with a ‘lifetime’ or 20-year warranty – it must be good! Therefore, if another ceramic coating has a 5-year warranty, it must not be as high quality as the alternative. This is far from the truth – do not assume the quality of a ceramic coating or paint protection by the length of the warranty or guarantee it possesses. Over the years we have seen ceramic coatings with lifetime warranties rapidly degrade on the paintwork or even disappear from the planet altogether. It’s even worse when the warranty terms were not read through and you realize that the ‘you beaut’ warranty you thought you had has more holes in it than Swiss cheese – and covers nothing.
It’s so important to first read the warranty terms and secondly understand that it’s the preparation of carrying out the service and the ongoing maintenance that really matters. If a vehicle is not prepared adequately and if it’s not maintained as directed, most likely the ceramic coating will not perform as described. Also, if you don’t maintain the coating as directed by the installer, your warranty could be voided due to the lack of care. Do you research online, find videos by multiple installers around the world, and read through reviews so you can understand how superior is that ceramic coating.
3: Ceramic Coatings Don’t Need Maintenance
You only need to rinse down your vehicle with water if it has a ceramic coating, right? Wrong! A ceramic coating still needs to be washed with (pH neutral) car wash and dried down with a drying towel and we recommend this to be done every 2 – 3 weeks. If you do not maintain your ceramic coating, it could lead to the paint being contaminated which may cause the water to stop beading. If a ceramic coating stops beading water like it first did when originally installed, this can be misinterpreted as a ‘faulty install’ however it usually comes down to lack of maintenance. The paint protection is there to preserve the factory paint as a sacrificial layer so that if required, it can be polished away whilst leaving the paintwork in near-perfect condition. If you leave a bird dropping on the ceramic coating long enough, there is a high possibility that it will eat through the coating and into the paint. The dropping must be washed away sooner rather than later to avoid this from occurring.
4: Ceramic Coatings Don’t Prevent Water Spotting
Ceramic Coatings have been portrayed as having the ability to prevent your vehicle from getting water spotting and it can be assumed that this is covered under the coating warranty. However, this is nearly never the case and people can be left bitterly disappointed unless they are properly informed prior to having it installed. A ceramic coating will preserve the paintwork as much as possible but if dirt has been allowed to dry on the surface, a build-up of dirt-filled drops will dry up, forming ‘water spots’. A ceramic coating is normally very hydrophobic which means water should bead off in little droplets, so if they’re allowed to dry up whilst being filled with dirt and other sediments, you’ll most likely have water spots. The myth that a ceramic coating will stop this is far from the truth as it can be the culprit of causing it to happen if you are not washing your vehicle regularly enough.
5: All Ceramic Coatings Are NOT The Same
When you want to get your vehicle protected with a ceramic coating, it’s wise to ring around and get quotes to compare what is best for you. It’s important to make sure you’re comparing apples with apples as ceramic coatings can easily be mistaken to be the same, especially when everyone says that theirs is the best! As an example, you could buy a very well-known branded 70-inch TV for $8,000 or choose another branded TV of the same size for $1,500. They share the same specifications and possibly even warranty terms however there will be hidden hardware and details that are of far better quality in the more expensive TV that you will only be made aware of if you do your research. After you research the ceramic coating online and check out reviews and videos, it’s worth every penny to do the same with the detailing business or dealership that is using this paint protection.
As important as it is to have your vehicle protected so that it stays easy to maintain and looks its best, it’s nearly even more important to do your research prior to getting dealership paint protection or any ceramic coating for that matter. When you are properly informed of what the ceramic coating will and will not do for your vehicle, then you can make a confident decision about what you want for your car. There’s a lot of fancy language and lingo used, combined with eye-catching marketing videos but at the end of the day, doing some old-fashioned research online and visiting the business in person to see it happen is the best way to ensure you’re taking your vehicle to the right place.