Ceramic Coating Care and Maintenance
Ceramic coating care and maintenance is important! If you’ve already had a ceramic coating package installed on your vehicle by Siramic Detail then we would like to extend a congratulations on protecting your vehicle! We also extend our sincerest thank you for choosing us to protect your investment! Our staff is glad to have you here checking up on keeping your coating operating in its prime! Your new coating is not like a wax or sealant, there’s a ton of chemistry behind what we do so please read carefully! This article will help us give you the best experience possible.
If you haven’t had a ceramic coating installed yet but you’re doing your research, then Welcome to Siramic Detail! This article describes how you will care for your new ceramic coating. It does not apply only to coatings installed by Siramic Detail. It can be used as a guide for any ceramic coating from any company or manufacturer.
After initial installation and vehicle pick up
Unlike a wax or sealant, a ceramic coating requires some curing time. We hold the vehicle until it is safe to get wet so you don’t have to worry about driving in the rain or parking the vehicle outside overnight. There are 2 parts of the curing time that you as the vehicle owner need to keep in mind: cure to wash and full cure.
Cure To Wash
After you pick your vehicle up, you do not want to wash it or wipe it down for 2 full weeks. This initial 2-week time is called “cure to wash”. Cure to wash allows the coating the time it needs to cure to be able to better resist chemicals and pressure found in washing. Do not under any circumstances wash or wipe down the vehicle before this 2-week time frame. Washing can potentially cause problems with the bonding and curing process. Should you have an encounter with paint or splatter from harsh chemicals during this 2-week process please call us immediately. Do your best to bring the vehicle in as soon as possible for us to assess the situation. – DO NOT try to remove it yourself.
Ceramic Coating Full Cure
True ceramic coatings like the ones we install from Holy Grail Ceramics take 30-45 days to reach “full cure”. The coating we have installed will increase in gloss and hardness over the 30 days. During this time, wash and maintain gently as the coating will be more susceptible to swirling before it reaches full hardness. Siramic Detail never recommends drive through washes. Especially during the first 30-45 days drive through washes are one of the worst decisions you can make.
Ceramic Coating Care and Maintenance Washes
Ceramic coatings keep your vehicle cleaner longer than waxes or sealants but they do still get dirty eventually. Road oils and other sticky stuff can still sit on top of your coating causing it to get dirty. You will still need to wash your vehicle – no you can’t just spray it down with a hose. You’ve seen all of those “just spray it down and it falls right off videos”. Those videos are misleading and not an accurate representation of coatings. You will still need to actually wash the vehicle. The good thing is your wash time will be drastically reduced and the dirt that is on the car will come off much easier!
Foam Cannon Wash – 2 Bucket
In order to do this you would have a foam cannon, a wash mitt, 1 bucket for clean wash solution, 1 bucket for dirty wash solution and a couple of grit guards. This is definitely the more difficult wash option. It also requires the most equipment. This is not our recommended wash method but it will work if you’re used to the process.
Our recommended wash method is using a waterless wash with Opti-Coat No Rinse solution and the big gold sponge. We keep both of those items in stock at our Katy location so please feel free to stop by to pick them up! This single-bucket method requires a bottle of Opti-Coat no rinse, big gold sponge, bucket, grit guard and a drying towel. You’re not using a ton of water so this wash can be done easily in a garage. Call our Katy location to go over the process and what’s needed / recommended for this type of wash. 281-829-7600
Other Considerations For Ceramic Coating Care
Beading: Most people love the performance and beading feature of ceramic coatings. This, however is not an indicator as to whether or not the coating is still present. Ceramic coatings form a covalent bond with the vehicle so when it is properly installed, the only way to remove it is by heavy compounding, sanding or polishing. Any coating of any brand can lose its hydrophobic properties especially if the vehicle is stored outside. What happens is, contaminants sit on top of the coating preventing water from touching the coating, thus, preventing beading. If this happens, give us a call and schedule a maintenance wash. Once we remove the contaminants that are in-between the coating and the water, the beading will come right back!
At the top of ceramic coating care and maintenance is a professional inspection. Some coating brands will even go as far as to void or shorten the warranty if it is not inspected annually. Holy Grail Ceramics does not require any “reloads” or “annual topper” to maintain the warranty. At Siramic Detail, we do, however, recommend scheduling an appointment for an annual inspection. During this inspection we usually perform an iron removal, clay treatment and decontamination. This process helps to boost and/or maintain the performance of your coating.
Basic Ceramic Coating Care and maintenance Do’s and Don’t:
- Hand wash only (after initial 2-week period)
- Use automotive safe wash products (ask your coating installer about the benefits of using coating-specific wash and maintenance products for at-home use)
- Immediately contact us with any questions, concerns or issues
- Report any accidents or repainted sections to Siramic Detail
- Enjoy your vehicle!
- wash, rinse or wipe-down your vehicle within the first 2 weeks of coating installation-rain and dirt is okay!
- use automatic washes or brushes
- “hose down” your vehicle and allow to air dry
- dry-wipe a dusty or dirty vehicle without the help of a quick detail spray or no-rinse solution (especially on black paint)
- polish, compound or sand on the vehicle
- use heavy solvents, abrasive cleaners or abrasive waxes
- try to “fix” or repair any issues on your own
- sweat the small stuff!