Ok, a big question that most many prospective clients want to know the answer to, but are much too courteous to ask openly, is: What are some of the problems that can come with Ceramic Coatings?
At Visual Pro Detailing, transparency and honesty is everything. Are ceramic coatings invisible force fields, that can never have any problems? Absolutely not!
What you will find however, is that most problems related to ceramic coatings can be rectified by having a professional detailer that makes you aware of these possible issues, educates you on how to prevent them, and explains why they exist.
Issue #1: Upfront cost.
Yes, ceramic coatings are expensive, and that upfront cost is difficult for many prospective clients to wrap their head around. $500+ for a 2 year coating? $1,000+ for a professional grade coating?
The best way to break down this issue is the following: how much lifetime value will the coating add to the vehicle? If the coating does what it says (and is guaranteed if you are purchasing from a certified detailer that offers a warranty), and your vehicle looks very similar to the way it did when you first purchased it, the increase in overall value is going to easily surpass that up front cost of having the coating applied.
Either in resale or trade in value, simply the protection it self will cover the up front cost of the coating, not to mention the much reduced price of having a detailer or detail shop wax and/or seal the vehicle 2, 3, 4 times a year. If you are paying $150 to have the vehicle waxed 3 times a year, in as little as two years you have recouped the cost of a professional grade coating, while receiving much better protection!
Issue #2: Water Spotting
Yes, ceramic coated vehicle can be susceptible to water spots, but so is every other type of vehicle. The key here is taking proper care to dry the vehicle, or if using automatic car washes, making sure they have a spot free rinse at the end of the wash.
This is where proper education is invaluable. If you were to decide to rinseless wash the vehicle, the chance of water spots falls to none.
If you were to two bucket wash the vehicle, washing it in the morning or evening during hot months, then drying it completely, the chance of water spots is very minimal.
While this can be an issue, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Issue #3: Premature failure
Ouch, this is a scary one. I'm going to pay all of this money for this coating, and is can fail on me? Yes, coatings can prematurely fail. That being said, in the hundreds of coatings I have applied, I have never had to reapply a professional grade coating. The only re applications I have done were on coatings that had got to the end of their life cycle (such as two year coatings).
How does on prevent this? There are a couple of ways...
1. Use a reputable detailer that you trust, that uses products that are trusted. A good detailer will not only stand behind his or her work, but will be completely transparent about the products and processes they use. There will be no mystery or subterfuge involved, you will be completely informed about what you are purchasing, how it works, how the process works, and your responsibilities once the product is applied.
2. Use a detailer that offers a warranty or guarantee on the coatings they sell. A guarantee is a powerful thing. While there are often requirements in order to keep or uphold a warranty, it does provide peace of mind to the consumer that is something goes wrong with the product or service provided, they will not be responsible for paying to fix it later on. While warranties are not always 100% guaranteed protection against risk, they do offer you a "second layer" of defense when combined with a professional detailer that conducts him or herself with the highest level of integrity.
Hopefully this article will shine some light onto you about the issues that can come with ceramic coatings. In my opinion as a professional, the long term benefits to your vehicle far outweigh the risks, especially considering a majority of the risk comes from the detailer hired to apply the coating, not the product itself.
Owner, Visual Pro Detailing