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October 03, 2023 3 min read
In recent years, permanent ceramic coatings have gained popularity in the automotive industry. These coatings promise to provide long-lasting protection and enhance the appearance of vehicles. While the idea of having a vehicle that always looks brand new is appealing, there are significant drawbacks to consider. Many consumers that have permanent ceramics applied do not realize that they may be doing more long-term damage than they think.
All ceramics are not created equal. Many of ceramic coatings may have a strong marketing backing that makes several bogus claims and the user ends up paying big for believing those claims in the long run. Professionals and DIY enthusiasts must realize that there are drawbacks that you should look out for when using ceramic coatings, especially ones that claim to be a permanent ceramic. After all, your vehicle is one of your biggest investments and taking precautions to protect that investment should not worry you or cause issues.
One of the primary drawbacks of permanent ceramic coatings is their lack of flexibility. Once applied, they form a rigid, protective layer on the vehicle's surface. While this layer is excellent at repelling water, dirt, and contaminants, it is also susceptible to cracking and chipping when subjected to impacts or flexing of the vehicle's body. This inflexibility means that the coating may not hold up well under real-world conditions, such as driving on rough roads or in areas with extreme temperature fluctuations. That’s why we stress that claims of ceramics with a hardness of 9H or more is usually a bogus claim. The ideal hardness is around 7H, so the coating may flex and prevent chipping or cracking away.
Permanent ceramic coatings require professional application, which can be quite expensive. Moreover, the process of applying these coatings is labor-intensive and time-consuming. If you ever decide to remove the coating for any reason, the process is equally expensive and time-consuming, often involving abrasive techniques that can damage your vehicle's underlying paint.
While permanent ceramic coatings come with warranties, these warranties often have strict conditions and limitations. Many warranties only cover the product for a certain number of years or miles, and they typically require strict maintenance procedures to remain valid. Deviating from these procedures can void the warranty, leaving you with little recourse if the coating fails prematurely.
To maintain the effectiveness of a permanent ceramic coating, owners are required to follow specific maintenance routines. Regular washing and detailing with specialized products are typically necessary to preserve the coating's appearance and protective properties. This can be both time-consuming and expensive, making it less appealing for those who prefer low-maintenance vehicle care.
If a permanent ceramic coating becomes damaged or starts to degrade, repairing it can be a challenging and costly process. Unlike traditional wax or paint sealants, which can be easily reapplied at home, fixing a ceramic coating often necessitates professional intervention. This not only adds to the cost but also inconveniences vehicle owners taking countless hours or costing thousands of dollars to perform the repairs.
Perhaps the most significant drawback of permanent ceramic coatings is their "permanent" nature. While they may last for several years, they give vehicle owners a false sense of invincibility. Owners may neglect basic care practices, believing the coating will protect their vehicle indefinitely. This complacency can lead to severe damage to the vehicle's paint and finish over time.
While the concept of permanent ceramic coatings for vehicles is enticing, it's essential to weigh the pros and cons before investing in such a solution. The drawbacks, including limited flexibility, high costs, warranty limitations, demanding maintenance, repair difficulties, and a false sense of permanence, may outweigh the benefits for many vehicle owners. Instead, consumers should consider alternative options like traditional waxes and sealants, which provide effective protection without the same level of commitment and expense. Moreover, consumers may utilize ceramic coatings that are proven to be DIY formulations that are do not claim to be permanent. Ultimately, the choice should align with your specific needs and expectations for vehicle maintenance and appearance.
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