As car enthusiasts, we all strive to keep our vehicles looking pristine and protected from the elements. Over the years, advancements in automotive care have given rise to various protective measures, two of which have gained significant popularity: ceramic coatings and paint protection film (PPF). While both serve the common goal of safeguarding your car’s paintwork, they differ in their application and properties. One question that often arises is whether you can apply a ceramic coating over PPF. So, can ceramic coating and PPF be used together?
In this article, from the expert team at Infinity Auto Styling in Bismarck, ND, we’ll explore what ceramic coating and PPF are, highlight their differences, and finally address the possibility of combining the two for enhanced protection.
What is the ceramic coating?
Ceramic coatings, also known as nano-ceramic coating or glass coating, are a liquid polymer applied to the exterior surfaces of a vehicle. What sets ceramic coating apart is its unique ability to form a chemical bond with the vehicle’s factory paint. Unlike traditional waxes or sealants that merely sit on the surface, the liquid polymer of the ceramic coating penetrates the microscopic pores of the paint, creating a strong and permanent adhesion. This chemical bond ensures that the protective layer does not wash away or break down easily, offering extended durability and longevity compared to other forms of paint protection.
The hydrophobic properties of ceramic coatings add another layer of practicality to their benefits. Once cured, the coating forms a water-repellent surface, causing water and other liquids to bead up and roll off the car’s surface effortlessly. This characteristic not only makes washing and maintenance a breeze but also aids in preventing water-induced damage, such as water spots and mineral deposits, which can harm the paint over time. Additionally, the hydrophobic nature ensures that dirt and contaminants have a harder time adhering to the surface, reducing the frequency of cleaning and preserving the car’s shine for an extended period.
What is paint protection film?
Paint Protection Film (PPF), also known as a clear bra, is a revolutionary protective solution designed to shield a vehicle’s paintwork from physical damage caused by road debris, stones, bugs, scratches, and other abrasive elements. Made from high-quality urethane, PPF is transparent, allowing the beauty of the original paint color to shine through without altering the vehicle’s appearance. The film’s thickness may vary depending on the level of protection desired, but it is generally designed to be self-healing, meaning minor scratches and swirl marks on the film can disappear with the application of heat or exposure to sunlight.
One of the primary advantages of PPF is its strategic application to high-impact areas of the vehicle, such as the front bumper, hood, side mirrors, and fenders. These areas are more susceptible to damage from rocks kicked up by other vehicles, road debris, and bugs while driving. By protecting these vulnerable regions, PPF acts as a sacrificial barrier, absorbing the impact and preserving the underlying paint.
Differences between ceramic coating and PPF
Ceramic coating and Paint Protection Film (PPF) are both popular methods of protecting a vehicle’s paint, but they differ in their application, coverage, protective properties, and benefits. Let’s explore the main differences between the two:
Ceramic Coating: It is a liquid product that is applied to the vehicle’s exterior surfaces. Once applied, the ceramic coating chemically bonds with the factory paint to form a protective layer.
PPF: Paint Protection Film is a physical film that is carefully applied to the car’s surfaces. It requires precise cutting and positioning to cover the desired areas effectively
Ceramic Coating: It offers chemical protection against environmental contaminants like dirt, bird droppings, tree sap, UV rays, and minor scratches. It also enhances the car’s hydrophobic properties, making it easier to clean and maintain.
PPF: PPF excels at providing physical protection against road debris, stones, bugs, scratches, and other abrasive elements. The film acts as a sacrificial layer, absorbing impacts and preserving the underlying paint.
Ceramic Coating: It covers the entire painted surface of the vehicle, including areas not prone to physical damage. However, it doesn’t add substantial thickness to the paint.
PPF: PPF is strategically applied to high-impact areas, such as the front bumper, hood, fenders, and side mirrors. Other parts of the car can also be treated with PPF depending on the requirements of the driver.
Ceramic Coating: It can provide protection for several years, depending on product quality and maintenance. However, it may require reapplication after a few years to maintain its effectiveness.
PPF: PPF is known for its excellent durability. Many high-quality PPF products come with warranties that last for several years, offering long-term protection without frequent reapplication.
Ceramic Coating: It enhances the paint’s appearance by adding depth and gloss, making the car look freshly waxed for an extended period.
PPF: High-quality PPF is designed to be nearly invisible, allowing the original paint color and finish to shine through without altering the vehicle’s aesthetics.
Can you apply a ceramic coating over PPF?
Absolutely! The combination of ceramic coating over paint protection film (PPF) offers a powerful and comprehensive protective solution for your prized vehicle. This winning duo creates a formidable defense against various elements that can mar your car’s appearance and diminish its resale value.
Benefits of Applying Ceramic Coating over PPF
By adding a layer of ceramic coating over PPF, you fortify its protective properties further. Here is a summary of the main benefits of applying a ceramic coating over PPF
Chemical and Environmental Resistance
One of the standout benefits of ceramic coatings is their chemical resistance. The hydrophobic properties of ceramic coatings repel water, preventing water spots and mineral deposits from adhering to the car’s surface. Additionally, ceramic coatings create a barrier against environmental contaminants, such as bird droppings, tree sap, bug splatters, and industrial fallout, effectively shielding the underlying PPF and preserving its pristine appearance.
When properly applied and maintained, ceramic coatings can offer long-lasting protection for several years. Combined with the durability of PPF, this dynamic duo ensures that your vehicle’s paintwork remains in excellent condition throughout its life. Regular maintenance, such as washing with pH-balanced car shampoos and avoiding harsh chemicals, can extend the longevity of the combined protection even further.
The hydrophobic nature of ceramic coatings makes washing your car a breeze. Dirt and grime are less likely to adhere to the coated surface, allowing you to clean your vehicle more efficiently and with less effort. By applying a ceramic coating over PPF, you can enjoy a double layer of convenience when it comes to car care.
A well-maintained ceramic coating enhances the depth and gloss of your vehicle’s paint, making it look fresh and glossy for an extended period. Combining this with the nearly invisible appearance of PPF ensures that your car maintains its original aesthetics without compromising on protection.
Another advantage of this combination is its adaptability. You can apply a ceramic coating over any areas not covered by PPF, providing comprehensive protection for the entire vehicle. This flexibility allows you to tailor the protection to your specific needs, ensuring that every inch of your car receives the attention it deserves.
Premium ceramic coating services in Bismarck, ND
If you’re in and around Bismarck, ND, and are looking to give your car the ultimate protection, Infinity Auto Styling offers premium ceramic coating and PPF services. With a team of experienced professionals as well as top-quality ceramic coating and PPF products, we can help your vehicle maintain its showroom shine for years to come. Whether you want to protect a brand-new car or restore the luster of an older vehicle, Infinity Auto Styling can cater to your needs with our expertise and dedication to customer satisfaction.
Schedule your service with us by calling +1 701-426-6715 or coming to our location at 2049 71st Ave NE Unit 4, Bismarck, ND 58503, United States.