Ceramic Coating Maintenance: Everything You Need To Know

ceramic coating maintenance for red car at beach

Do Ceramic Coatings Need Special Maintenance? 

Applying a ceramic coating on your car might seem like an easy endeavor. But what about its maintenance?

Ceramic paint coatings are the equivalent of giving your car a face-lift. After using them, your vehicle will be left looking shiny, clean, and like new. But although the aesthetic aspect plays a huge role in why car owners choose to use detailing products, ceramic coatings can do much more than keep your vehicle looking new always.

Ceramic coatings are designed to protect your factory clear coat from the elements and are the latest technology in car paint protection. With powerful hydrophobic properties, and an ability to withstand UV rays and nasty contaminants such as bird droppings or tree salp, ceramic coatings help preserve your vehicle’s paintwork while making washing your car easier too. 

It’s easy to see why if you are looking to get that head-turning new car showroom shine, this type of detailing product might be your best bet. But when it comes to ceramic coatings, what matters most is how you care for them after completion. The proper maintenance of a ceramic coating product is essential if you wish to maximize its effects and ensure your investment is long-lasting. 

So if you wish to learn how to maintain ceramic coating and look after a ceramic coated car, keep reading! In this post, we’ll tell you what to do and what not to do once the curing process is complete. 

How To Maintain Ceramic Coating?

Depending on what brand you used, some have stronger shine than others.  All brands have more gloss after the full cure time which is usually 24-48 hours cures to the hydrophobic properties. After 7-10 days the product cures to the “hardness” level.  Some are even a bit “tacky” to the touch for a few days. So the shine should come around a bit more after a week.  

Do not wash your car for at least a week after the ceramic coating has been applied.   

High quality ceramic coating products offer strong protection for a car’s paintwork. But this doesn’t mean that they are not invincible, especially when not cared for adequately.

Here are some handy dos and don’ts when it comes to ceramic coating maintenance:

  • Do Clean Your Car Regularly

Although a ceramic coated vehicle will not get dirty as fast as before, this doesn’t mean that you should stop washing your car altogether. If you prefer to do it yourself, make sure that you use a mild car wash shampoo that is pH neutral, as well as soft, clean sponges, brushes, and microfiber towels. If you prefer your vehicle to be washed professionally, make sure to stay away from an automated car wash that uses hard brushes or cloths. Both of them can be equally damaging to your car, acting like sandpaper and damaging both the coated surface and the paint.

  • Do Take Care Where You Park 

Bird droppings, tree sap, or the sticky film falling from lime trees are all corrosive and increase the risk of scratching your vehicle when you remove them. A ceramic coating will ensure a protective layer over the paint, but you should not allow bird droppings, sap, or pollen to sit too long and bake in the sun. 

  • Do Remove Water Spots

An essential aspect of proper ceramic coating maintenance is to remove water spots. Water spots are a potential hazard, and sometimes, the mineral deposits can become so severe that even a thorough washing will not remove them. That’s why you must remove them before they dry on the vehicle’s surface. Always wash your car in a shaded area to avoid the potential of water spots.

  • Do Use PH Neutral Soap

Although your ceramic is strong enough to protect against different soaps, detergents, and chemicals, it’s best to use a PH neutral soap, as this type of soap will not eat at the coating, making it last longer. Soaps on the market are specifically designed for ceramic coatings, and are worth the additional cost.

how to maintain ceramic coating by washing car

What Should You Not Do After Ceramic Coating?

  • Don’t Wax Or Polish The Coat

Ceramic coatings are as shiny as it gets, so you don’t need to polish them or use gloss enhancers to get an extra spark. The super glossy finish, clear reflections, and slippery-smoothness to the touch come from using consumer-grade polishes or compounds, which work solely on clear coats.

  • Don’t Wash Your Vehicle In The Sun

Avoid washing in direct sunlight to minimize streaking and water spotting. Keeping this in mind, to keep your coated car looking great, make sure to wash it and top-up the coating every two weeks.

  • Don’t Get Your Vehicle Wet For 24-48 Hours.

The ceramic coating takes time to cure.  Different ceramics have shorter or longer curing times.   During this time, water can be detrimental to the curing process.  Give your ceramic time to bond correctly with the paint and avoid the rain or washes.

How Often Do You Need To Apply Ceramic Coating?

As seen above, ceramic coatings can keep your car cleaner, safer, and shinier for the long term compared to traditional wax and polish products. Thanks to their hydrophobic properties, dirt and water have a more challenging time adhering to the car’s surface.

But there’s a question we often receive from those looking to learn how to maintain ceramic coating, and that is “How often do you need to apply ceramic coating?”. 

Since not all ceramic coating brands and products are created equal, my answer regarding maintenance practices is a bit more complicated and depends on many factors. High-quality products like Nexgen ceramic spray (on sale for 40% off here) or Torque Detail offer better surface protection and last longer than similar ceramic coatings on the market. This means you don’t need to apply them as frequently. With this being said, if you’ve read our car care reviews and are ready to choose the best product for your car, keep in mind that ceramic coating maintenance will also depend on the climate you live in and the way you look after your vehicle. We recommend revitalizing your coating in some shape or form every few weeks for optimal results. 

To find out more about how to provide proper care and the importance of car detailing, have a look at some of our other posts:

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