Most things need maintenance to last, and ceramic coatings aren’t an exception.
After spending money, time, and effort to get it done, it will be quite disappointing if it doesn’t last as long as it should.
The good thing is that maintaining ceramic coatings is very easy.
As a whole, you can maintain a ceramic coating by keeping the car clean and rid of dirt, grime, and contaminants, using a maintenance spray, and taking it for inspections at the auto shop.
A ceramic coating isn’t a permanent solution, and your job isn’t done just because it’s on your car.
You need to maintain the coat. This article contains helpful tips to keep a ceramic coating on your car for a long time.
How Do You Maintain A Ceramic Coating?
Having a ceramic coating on your car is a great thing.
Apart from adding beauty to the vehicle, it also protects it.
However, your car could kiss that goodbye if you don’t maintain the ceramic coating on it.
As a general rule, you can maintain a ceramic coating by doing the following:
A ceramic coating protects your car’s paint from harsh elements while ensuring it looks good.
You may not know that the ceramic coating needs protection as well; therefore, abandon the idea that the coating has self-cleaning attributes and you don’t need to do much.
Instead, here are what you should do:
Don’t Wash The Car Seven Days After The Application
You just got a ceramic coating on your car, it looks better than ever, and you’re in the mood to drive it around town.
Maybe you should pause and wait till after seven days.
The vehicle may get dirty when you drive it, and you’ll be tempted to wash it, and doing that will let you wash the ceramic coating down the drain.
You should leave the car to cure for about seven days before you wash it.
Wash The Car Every Two Weeks
Contrary to popular opinion, a ceramic coating isn’t self-cleaning.
You need to wash your car to maintain the coat.
Leaving it unwashed will let grime, tree sap, dirt, and other contaminants settle on it and ruin the coat.
Therefore, ensure you wash your car every two weeks to keep it clean and glossy.
This will also keep the ceramic coating defenses and hydrophobic properties up for a long time.
Wash The Car Using The Two-Bucket Method
Washing your car every two weeks isn’t enough to maintain a ceramic coating; how you wash it matters also.
Experts recommend that you wash your ceramic-coated car using the two-bucket method to maintain it.
This will help prevent and reduce scratches and swirl marks on the car.
One bucket should contain the car wash soap solution, while the other should have plain water for rinsing.
Then ensure you wash from top to bottom in circular moves since the bottom is usually dirtier than the top.
Furthermore, you might want to get a separate bucket and washing supplies for the wheels and tires because they collect dust, grime, and road salt that can contaminate the other parts of the car.
Wash them first before getting to the other parts.
Avoid Washing The Car In Direct Sunlight
You can maintain a ceramic coating by washing your car beneath a covered structure, like your garage.
Washing in direct sunlight will get the soap to dry on the car and leave water spots.
If you have no covered structure available, another alternative is to wash the car early morning or evening when the sun is low.
Use Ceramic-Coating Specific Shampoo
Generally, you shouldn’t wash your car with any cleaning agent, and it’s even more pertinent to avoid that if you have a ceramic coating on the vehicle.
Many cleaning agents like detergent, dishwashing soap, and hair shampoo contain abrasives that may strip the ceramic coating or leave scratches, swirl marks and water spots on the car.
Therefore, you should wash with ceramic coating-specific car shampoo.
It contains lubricants and cleaners that will be gentle on the coating.
In addition, it has low pH levels and rejuvenating abilities that will help the ceramic coat even look better.
Dry Car With A Microfiber Cloth
Drying matters when it comes to ceramic coating.
It’s different, and you shouldn’t let water sit on the car for too long, dry up itself, or worse, use the wrong drying technique.
You must be careful to avoid leaving scratches, swirl marks, or water spots on your car.
Therefore, you should dry the vehicle with a microfiber cloth. They gently dry, soak water, and won’t affect the coat.
Use A Maintenance Spray
You can also maintain a ceramic coating by using a maintenance or boost spray.
They will help maintain the coat’s protection and gloss and are like boosters.
However, a few rules apply to using maintenance sprays on ceramic coatings.
For instance, you need to apply the spray after washing the car.
Some maintenance sprays can be used on the car when wet as a drying aid or when dry.
The most important thing is to read the manufacturer’s instructions.
Then, you shouldn’t apply the maintenance spray in direct sunlight because some contain concentrated ingredients and polymers that may leave streaks on the vehicle if exposed to warmth or sunlight and can damage the paint.
Lastly, you should apply it using an applicator to ensure consistency.
You can also maintain a ceramic coating by going for an annual inspection.
If you got a professional to do it for you, they might offer warranties lasting between two to five years.
You can get the ceramic coating to last by taking your car there for the professionals to inspect.
During the inspection, they may notice some high or low spots, uneven coverage, and other imperfections and apply a top coat to strengthen the coating.
In addition, they check whether there’s an issue with your maintenance wash process, like scratches, fix them for you, and advise you on what to do better.
Remove Contaminants From The Car
A ceramic coating can’t prevent contaminants from getting on the car; those contaminants aren’t going anywhere until you remove them.
You should wash dirt, grime, road salt, tree sap, and other contaminants off the car immediately after seeing them.
Moreover, you should also wash your car after a downpour to prevent contaminants from the rain from affecting the car or leaving water spots on it.
Don’t assume that rain will wash the car dry; it does more damage than you think.
Thankfully, a ceramic coating makes it easy to get contaminants off cars.
Don’t Go To An Automated Car Wash
Washing at an automated car wash is easy because you don’t have to do any heavy lifting.
While it might save you time and effort, it doesn’t do much good to the ceramic coating on the car.
Some washing with the tools and soap at automated car washes can be bad for your vehicle.
They can strip the ceramic coating, cause scratches and swirl marks and leave water marks and streaks on the vehicle.
The soaps can also be aggressive, and the washing media may not be gentle on the car.
What Happens If You Do Not Maintain A Ceramic Coating?
You need to maintain the ceramic coating on your car; otherwise, it might be gone before you know it.
Doing otherwise has its consequences.
In total, what happens if you don’t maintain a ceramic coating includes:
Not taking care of the ceramic coating will make the car lose its gloss, luster, and shine.
The beauty will wane, and your car will return to its old look. However, you can remedy that by using ceramic coating boosting products to rejuvenate it, but if the coat is already years old, it may not work.
Ceramic coating will also lose its hydrophobic properties if not maintained.
This will deteriorate its protection and leave the clear coat vulnerable to the elements.
Then, your car will have standing water instead of sliding off, leaving water spots on it if it dries up.
Eventually, a ceramic coating will fail if you fail to maintain it. It may hold out for a while, but not for long.
Then, you will need to remove the ruined ceramic coating and reapply or just paint it over.
Maintaining a ceramic coating on your car is important to make it last and protect the vehicle for a long time.
This varies from washing your car correctly, drying it, and boosting the coating with a maintenance spray.
If your car has lost its shine or luster, take it to the professional who installed the ceramic coating, and they can help you out.