A well-maintained ceramic coating can last anywhere from three to five years, with some of your higher-end coatings lasting up to ten years or more.
Ceramic coatings are liquid polymers that are applied to a vehicle's exterior surfaces to protect the paint from environmental damage and normal wear and tear. It creates a hydrophobic (or hydrophilic) layer that repels water and contaminants, in turn keeping the paint cleaner longer.
Ceramic coatings are made from nanoparticles that bond with the paints surface and create a protective layer that is typically 2-5 microns thick. They provide durable protection against bird droppings, acid rain and other environmental contaminants that can cause damage to a vehicle's paint. One of the main purposes of ceramic coatings are to create a deep, glossy finish that can enhance the appearance of the vehicles paint.
Its best to apply coatings when you car is new, but they can be applied to most vehicles at nearly any point in their life... however, prep cost can be expected to be much higher in these cases. Ceramic coatings can be applied to most exterior surfaces of a vehicle, including paint, glass, wheels, and trim (there are rubber coatings available but in our experience, we do not recommend these as they do not allow for the rubber to breath and the potential for dry rot is high). Installation of any coating on any surface requires a thorough cleaning and preparation process before application, and the process may take several hours (to days) to complete. After a deep chemical decontmanation to remove bonded contaminants and any waxes and sealants, a physical decontamination (claybar) will be done to reveal the condition of the paint. At this point, we can determine how much paint correction is necessary to imporve the paint finish before locking in the final results with the ceramic coating. Once the coating is applied, we spend several hours infrared curing each panel to solidify the coating and ensure a proper bond (this could be the single most important stage of your ceramic coatings durability).
How Long Will My Coating Last?
The lifespan of a ceramic coating can vary depending on factors such as the quality of the coating (professional vs consumer grade), how well it was applied (did it have the proper flash time before removal and was the preparation done properly), and the conditions that vehicle is used and stored. Normally, a well-maintained ceramic coating can last anywhere from three to five years, with some of your higher-end coatings lasting up to ten years or more.
However, it's important to note that a ceramic coating is only a long term solution for proteciton not necessarily a permanent solution for protecting a vehicle's paint. Over time, the coating will degrade and lose its effectiveness, especially if the vehicle is subjected to harsh conditions or poor maintenance. To ensure the longest lifespan for your ceramic coating, it's important to follow the installers recommended maintenance guidelines and avoid exposing the vehicle to extreme conditions, such as car washes and poor quality wash materials.
It's also worth noting that a ceramic coating is not a replacement for proper washing and detailing practices. They need to be maintainted in order to see the full effect and benefits of your coating. While it can make your vehicle easier to clean and help protect against environmental contaminants, it won't prevent scratches, chips, or other physical damage that can occur during normal use. For that, you'll need to consider paint protection film.
Ceramic coatings are a popular choice for vehicle owners who want to protect their paint and maintain the appearance of their vehicle for years to come.