Ceramic coatings – do they last forever?

Each year, global car sales for passenger vehicles reach around 80 million. That’s a lot of people changing their car for something newer, more powerful, more shiny, and generally better suited to their needs. If you are one of the lucky ones, trading in your previously loved wheels for something with more all-round pizazz and bang for your buck, you may have already looked into treating your paintwork to a protective coating. Many of us don’t know much about this type of thing right up until the point of sale, where the salesperson at the car dealership will surprise us with the option to add a protective coating as part of the deal (read more at avalonking.com). 

Upon carrying out a little research, you will come to the same realisation that we all come to after looking into the matter. And that is that there are three main options, and that there is a clear winner from the main three choices. First, there are wax coatings. They don’t last long… maybe 6 months. Then, there are sealants. These can last up to a year and offer a sort of mid-range layer of protection for your car’s paintwork, making them not a bad investment, but certainly not the primary choice of protective coatings for anyone serious about paying for top results. For the best results, we need to turn to ceramic coatings.

Why are ceramic coatings so durable?

The answer to this very good question comes down to the chemical makeup of the materials used in ceramic coatings. Unlike waxes and sealants, the ‘nano’ (or truly microscopic) aspect of the particles used in ceramic materials means that the protection is able to bond with the paint at much more thorough depth. Whereas waxes and sealants may wear off more readily when faced with the abrasive effects of the elements and the knocks and bumps of everyday life, ceramic coatings are more likely to stand their ground. 

Perhaps a good analogy might be a dinner table that has been set ready to receive a dinner party. The table, plates, and cups represent the pits and spikes in the molecular surface of your paint work. Now, where waxes and sealants are equivalent to laying a blanket loosely over the table to protect it, a ceramic coating would be more akin to individually wrapping each item in a layer of bubble wrap. See how it works? That’s why ceramic coatings are so much more durable.

So, how long will it last?

If your paintwork has been properly prepared and if your ceramic coating is applied properly, you can expect the results to last for years. Depending on the weather conditions and the daily bumps and scrapes that the paintwork may experience from pets and children, for example, the protection should be expected to last anywhere from 1 – 3 years, or even longer if precautions are made to help keep the car out of harm’s way (including out of direct sunlight, as sun damage can affect the coating’s long-term performance).

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