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Ceramic coating vs PPF

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Old 06-04-2018, 02:50 AM
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Default Ceramic coating vs PPF

Hi guys, new member!

I registered because I am considering getting my car protected… My house is linked to the road by a track, and every day I have to drive through that, I was ok with it until I noticed that my car got scratches because of the stones.

I went online and talked to friends to try and find a solution and I came up with 2 ideas:

First: get some protection film on my car (called PPF for “paint protection film”): the idea is to wrap your car in a thin layer of plastic to protect it from scratches. It is said to give a decent protection against scratches and some of them are even self-healing. However this is expensive and it can alter the shine and looks of the car.

Second: ceramic coating, from what I understood it is a liquid coating that is applied by detailers, it is cheaper, gives a shiny look and good protection (9H pencil-scale seem to be the highest one), it is also hydrophobic (meaning water won’t stick to it) which makes the car easier to clean. For the downsides: the final result depends on how well the guy who applies it works and it the protection provided is less good than for films.

So my question for you today is, which one should I go for? My heart goes to PPF by a tinny margin but I’d like to hear your thoughts on this.
Thanks in advance!

PS: I searched on the forum a bit and I could not find an existing thread on this topic so if that's the case I am sorry about it.
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Old 06-05-2018, 10:13 AM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

Hey welcome to the forum!

I've been doing a bunch of research on this as well so I can give you my thoughts on it. I actually have ppf on the main abuse areas of my car (front bumper, hood, a-pillers, etc) where stone chips usually occur, and believe me in Canadian winters there are a lot of stones being thrown up by other vehicles. It's actually really good and easy to clean. I've seen other cars that have the whole car done and if I wasn't told I wouldn't of known there was ppf on it without having a really close look. From what I've noticed when there is a rock that hits it kind of deforms and absorbs the impact, there's a bit of a bump there for a day or two but it eventually flattens back out (self-healing). It is a bit more expensive but for the price will keep your car looking new for a long long time. Just make sure your paint finish is perfect before putting it on, any existing chips/scratches will show through if you don't.

On the other side is ceramic coating, which is much cheaper and easier to apply, almost like applying a wax (but a little more tricky). I'm getting my car vinyl wrapped in the next couple weeks and am planning on applying a vinyl specific ceramic coating afterwards, the same benefits will apply to paint. Again make sure the paint is perfect before applying. Ceramic coating is good for preventing micro scratches and really easy to clean as you mentioned it's hydrophobic, so dirt and water don't want to stick to it. But as opposed to ppf which is soft, ceramic is very hard, so stones will still chip it and if someone were to key your car for example it wouldn't prevent that, although I'm not sure ppf would completely prevent that either.

From the sounds of your situation I would say if you can afford it ppf would be the best option. Ceramic would be better than nothing but stone chips would still happen.

Hopefully that helps a bit, I'm sure others will have additional comments.
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Old 06-05-2018, 09:47 PM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

Hi KrisM,
Thank you for your reply that's a lot of science you delivered!

Do you think it would be possible to apply a coating on the top of a PPF?...

Maybe the way to go is to put the PPF on the most vulnerable areas like you suggested and then apply a ceramic coating on top of it plus on the rest of the car. Thanks to this I'd get a good protection and a sick look!
I need to find a harder coating just to make sure the areas where there is no PPF are still well protected, something 10H would be nice if it even exists ahahah.
It would be expensive but still less than having to have a paint job every year because of bad chips on the bodywork.
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Old 06-06-2018, 12:04 AM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

Ya you could definitely do that, I know there are ceramic coating products specifically designed for vinyl, I assume they would work on ppf as well. From what I understand they are formulated different because the vinyl/ppf is a more porous surface than just paint. But you would get the benefit of having ppf and the hydrophobic properties of ceramic which would help keep your car cleaner for longer, and easier to clean in general.
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Old 06-07-2018, 09:59 PM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

Hi Jkyra!
Welcome aboard!
Nowadays most ceramic coatings are PPF-friendly so you can definitely go for it!
Most coating company would tell you that there is no such a thing as 10H so they call it 9H+, but here is the thing, if a coating is left untouched by something that should damage a 9H coating, doesn't it make it 10H?
Anyways, there are only a few 10H ceramic coatings available on the market! I know this company from where I live, it is called IGL Coatings and they have this 10H ceramic coating called Kenzo! Maybe you can go for them!
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Old 06-16-2018, 10:09 PM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

I had 2 layers of 9H installed on my SQ5 and the only thing it did was make my wallet lighter.
get the film.

do NOT get ceramic snake oil.
not impressed at all with the results.

The only good thing I’ll say about the ceramic coating is that it makes for faster wheel cleaning.
Would never do another vehicle again.
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Old 06-18-2018, 04:07 AM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

Thanks to everybody for your answers,
Slingshot, would you mind telling me what brand you used for your coating?
Noted for the snake oil coating ahahah
Ceatom, I checked this facebook page, it this them? Do you have any particular opinion on them?
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Old 06-18-2018, 07:31 AM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

I’m in Ottawa.
I usually do all my own polishing/waxing, so I don’t mind the work and that way I keep my car in immaculate condition.
My wife parks in a garage with birds, and leaky pipes, so I made the decision to have her Mazda coated, and then talked myself into getting my SQ5 done as well.

Paid for paint correction (got billed way more than the hours they even had possible to do that amount of work)
paid for 2 coats of 9H Ceramic Pro treatment
paid for glass to be protected
paid for wheels to be coated with one coat

total ligntening of my wallet - $1700.00 after taxes. For 2 vehicles CX-3 and SQ5

what a colossal waste of money.
I got taken.
I admit it.
don’t get taken.
They didn’t even wipe down the goddamn door jambs.
I had words with the shop owner - but instead of continuing the argument - I just told the 8 friends who also were going to get this done, to save their money.

good luck with your choice.
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Old 06-20-2018, 01:30 PM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

I actually just did ceramic coating over my fresh vinyl wrap. One of the things I read about vinyl is it is porous compared to paint and will stain more easily so I wanted to give an layer of protection. I have a friend who does detailing so I paid for materials and his time and I helped out. Having gone through the process it's actually really easy, like anything preparation is key. This was pretty easy in my case as I picked up my car from the vinyl wrap shop and drove directly to his garage, all we had to do was a quick clean to get rid of any dust and bugs I hit on the way. But normally you would do a more thorough job; clean, clay bar, polish, etc to make sure your car is perfect.

This is something you could do yourself but having someone help you would be ideal. What we did was the first person applied the ceramic coating, the second person came behind and after it flashed buffed out the excess. We did 2 base coats (cquartz uk 3.0) and then a top coat of Reload. From start to finish it took about 3 hrs, including prep time and quick detailing.

My wrap was matte and having done the ceramic coating it changed to more of a satin finish which looks really good. It deepened the colours and so far seems easier to clean, once I've had it for a bit more time I'll give an update on how it's lasting.

But overall I spent $260 on materials and time and can say for me at least it was well worth it. I'm planning on doing my glass and rims as well.
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Old 06-20-2018, 01:31 PM
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Default Re: Ceramic coating vs PPF

Here's the car now;

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