Ceramic Coating. To coat or not to coat?

Should I get ceramic coating on my Mach-E?


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Mockstang

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Does anyone have anything good or bad to say about ceramic coating? My Mach-E should be here in a couple weeks and I thought the ideal time would be as soon as I get it.

Recommendations and suggestions would be appreciated.

I wanted to add this question: Should I keep using the brushed car wash I use on my ICE vehicle without a coating? I’m on the 25$ monthly unlimited and use it at least once a week. Will I not have the need or would the touch less offer better results?

 
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Scooby24

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There's really no major negative to be said other than it's expensive to pay someone to do, takes practice if you DIY with a good product, and is difficult to navigate the good stuff from the bad if you're researching which one to buy.

You need to do some paint prep prior...and after it's applied you will need to be aware of some gotchas with it such as many quick detailers becoming a streaky mess all over it due to the lack of bonding between the SiO2 and waxes. There are some products designed to be used as a quick detailer though which work great, like Carpro reload.
 

jaycake

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I've read that if you do your own ceramic coating it's best practice to do it indoors....Since neither I of any friend of ours has one I'm going to have a detail shop do it
 

Scooby24

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100% needs to be done out of sunlight. Doesn't have to be indoors but needs to be in a garage
 

BalsaDust

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I have read a bit about this ceramic coating and still do not understand the need for it. I have owned cars for almost 50 years and have always hand washed and waxed my cars as therapy. Mr. Miyagi had the right idea, "wax on wax off"
In the beginning I used Turtle Wax and it held up great. About ten years ago I made the switch to Meguires products and still use them to this day. While my current vehicle is lacking a good clean and wax, it will happen as soon as we get some decent weather BELOW 90 degrees! Need to make it look pretty for the trade in when my MME arrives!
 

ZuleMME

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I have read a bit about this ceramic coating and still do not understand the need for it. I have owned cars for almost 50 years and have always hand washed and waxed my cars as therapy. Mr. Miyagi had the right idea, "wax on wax off"
In the beginning I used Turtle Wax and it held up great. About ten years ago I made the switch to Meguires products and still use them to this day. While my current vehicle is lacking a good clean and wax, it will happen as soon as we get some decent weather BELOW 90 degrees! Need to make it look pretty for the trade in when my MME arrives!
Wax lasts 3 to 6 months if that. Ceramic lasts years. That’s about it. They do the same thing otherwise. I did my own on the BMW X3 I have and will be doing my own on the Mach-E when it comes in about a week. Bottle of Armor Shield IX sitting on my shelf waiting… :)
 

abr

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If you don't want to spend a lot of money, you can easily do it yourself with a quality product and about 4-6 hours of your time. Definitely need to prep and don't skimp.

Wash and dry car.
Strip off any wax or other coatings.
Clay bar.
Clean.
Ceramic Coat.

You can use a number of quality DIY products. I used Ethos, but Adams, Avalon King and a few others are all good products.

$150 in products and your elbow grease!

I've had it for about 6 months now and still beads water beautifully and the shine is great.
 

dgipson

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I took mine in for ceramic coating. The original factory paint had TONS of swirl marks (black MME) and the shop had to do paint correction first (extra $$$). Now the paint actually LOOKS new and it is so easy to clean. The water just beads on the paint now. You can take your leaf blower to it for a few seconds after a wash and the water just runs off to dry it. So nice.
 

DaMeatMan

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I took mine in for ceramic coating. The original factory paint had TONS of swirl marks (black MME) and the shop had to do paint correction first (extra $$$). Now the paint actually LOOKS new and it is so easy to clean. The water just beads on the paint now. You can take your leaf blower to it for a few seconds after a wash and the water just runs off to dry it. So nice.
You guys do realize where those swirl marks come from right??

It comes from rubbing the paint (for any reason). Be that hand washing, or rubbing in "protective coatings" or otherwise.

I'm really sorry but the best thing you can do for your paint is NEVER touch it. Just do touchless washes, and just leave it alone. These "protective coatings" basically start you down a path of creating micro scratches ans swirl all over your cars paint, that are particularly noticeable as your protective coatings wear off.

If we're being real here, the paint needs more protection from the consumer than it does from the elements!

If you ask me, these products are all snake oil, just keep your paws off your paint and there will be absolutely nothing to scratch it. It's not rocket science guy's, it takes physical abrasion to create those micro scratches, and that physical abrassion comes from THE USER!

I know we all like to wash and wax our vehicles for "therapeutic" reasons, but at the end of the day your doing more harm than good, and you'll spend thousands on a never ending cycle of paint correction, and reapplying these coatings. Just leave the car alone! Lol
 

highland58

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I had full front XPEL done, then I did Armour Shield IX on the rest of the car. I went back recently and did the Armour Shield IX on the glass, including the roof, also over top of the XPEL in front. I also did my wife's LEAF, which has lots of scratches, but very shiny. I use Griot's Ceramic Speed Shine over parts of the car periodically, so my hood has XPEL, Armour Shield, and Speed Shine in layers. The Armour Shield IX is easy to apply, but the prep is key. I did hours of polishing on my wife's LEAF, but for the new MME I just used Iron-X, clay bar, and alcohol wipe. I did the Armour Shield on my glass in the driveway on a cool still morning. I found a few bits of dust stuck to it after, I rubbed those off with my fingernail and buffed over it, no problem.

The leaf blower blows 98% of the water off, just a few bits to wipe off plus the door edges and sills.

I absolutely recommend the DIY ceramic, easy to do on a new car. I had the XPEL done on the front first as the ceramic will not prevent rock chips, but the ceramic over the XPEL has better hydrophobic properties than XPEL alone.
 

Scooby24

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You guys do realize where those swirl marks come from right??

It comes from rubbing the paint (for any reason). Be that hand washing, or rubbing in "protective coatings" or otherwise.

I'm really sorry but the best thing you can do for your paint is NEVER touch it. Just do touchless washes, and just leave it alone. These "protective coatings" basically start you down a path of creating micro scratches ans swirl all over your cars paint, that are particularly noticeable as your protective coatings wear off.

If we're being real here, the paint needs more protection from the consumer than it does from the elements!

If you ask me, these products are all snake oil, just keep your paws off your paint and there will be absolutely nothing to scratch it. It's not rocket science guy's, it takes physical abrasion to create those micro scratches, and that physical abrassion comes from THE USER!

I know we all like to wash and wax our vehicles for "therapeutic" reasons, but at the end of the day your doing more harm than good, and you'll spend thousands on a never ending cycle of paint correction, and reapplying these coatings. Just leave the car alone! Lol
With all due respect, every word of this post should be disregarded.

Silicon dioxide, once cured, is harder than the paint and absolutely, 100% does provide additional protection over the traditionally very soft clear coat that is now using water based paints. The hardness varies from manufacturer to manufacturer but no clear coat I've experienced has the same hardness of a "ceramic" coating.

Touchless washes fail to remove all the contamination from the paint. If touchless washes are all that's ever used, your paint will be riddled with settled in contamination in the clear coat that dull it. Additionally, touchless washes usually are using either a high PH or low PH wash as a chemical means of cleaning the paint. This can have unintended consequences for piano black finishes and black plastics (fading, oxidation)

Swirl marks can and will be introduced just by driving your vehicle. Swirls are just micro scratches that appear in a swirl pattern due to the way light reflects. Those micro abrasions will occur from the simplest things as you drive including dust and dirt in the air.

Your safest way to wash your car to prevent damage IS to physically touch your car, but using gentle mediums like microfiber sponges, using a two bucket method or foam cannon where you do not reuse the wash medium with the rinse medium, and cleaning in straight lines so in the event you do introduce scratches, they are not in circular patterns.

SiO2 coats DO in fact help prevent the buildup of these swirls with that added layer of hardness. SiO2 WILL also be capable of taking on swirls of its own as well, but it's a sacrificial layer. You can correct and instead of removing microns of damaged paint with your correction, you're removing the microns of coating.

It's not snake oil, it's chemistry.

 
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DaMeatMan

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I'm sorry, but swirl marks do not come from just driving around your vehicle, and it's not just the result of how the light reflects off the paint.

https://www.carwise.com/blog/2018/10/09/why-does-my-cars-finish-have-swirl-marks/

Please think logically for a moment before making claims like the ones you just made. You claim the coatings dry harder than the surface of the paint, yet these surfaces inevitably wear off after months, and some years, but they wear off just the same.

Does your clear coat or painted surface of the vehicle just wear off in months, or a few years??

What does that tell you?

These coatings can and do act as sacrificial coatings over top of the original paint. But that doesn't change the fact that all that rubbing and buffing while applying the stuff is actually doing harm to the paint that sits under that sacrificial coating. When that sacrificial coating wears off, what your left with is a cycle of never ending applications in an attempt to hide the damage you are unknowingly causing to begin with.

Abrasions on painted surfaces come from PHYSICAL ABRASION. The most logical thing to to do is therefore avoid PHYSICAL CONTACT with the paint. It ain't rocket science.

Soft rags or micro fiber cloths no matter how often they are changed are inevitably going to pick up a few pieces of debris, and that debris is going to be ground into the paint BY YOUR HAND as you rub the vehicle down.

In any case I don't want to get into a whole big debate about this, but just wanted to share a common sense point of view which happens to be free by the way. Of all the vehicles I've owned I have never touched the paint, and even the 15 year old Mazda 3 that I just replaced with my MME had immaculate paint with no swirl marks whatsoever.

By all means though you do you and buy whatever makes you happy, and rub your vehicle down with whatever makes you feel good. At the end of the day it's your car to do what you want with. Just sharing what has always worked for me and has cost me nothing at all besides a bit of self control in keeping myself from touching the paint.
 

Scooby24

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I'm sorry, but swirl marks do not come from just driving around your vehicle, and it's not just the result of how the light reflects off the paint.

https://www.carwise.com/blog/2018/10/09/why-does-my-cars-finish-have-swirl-marks/

Please think logically for a moment before making claims like the ones you just made. You claim the coatings dry harder than the surface of the paint, yet these surfaces inevitably wear off after months, and some years, but they wear off just the same.

Does your clear coat or painted surface of the vehicle just wear off in months, or a few years??

What does that tell you?

Abrasions on painted surfaces come from PHYSICAL ABRASION. The most logical thing to to do is therefore avoid PHYSICAL CONTACT with the paint. It ain't rocket science.

Soft rags or micro fiber cloths no matter how often they are changed are inevitably going to pick up a few pieces of debris, and that debris is going to be ground into the paint BY YOUR HAND as you rub the vehicle down.

In any case I don't want to get into a whole big debate about this, but just wanted to share a common sense point of view which happens to be free by the way. Of all the vehicles I've owned I have never touched the paint, and even the 15 year old Mazda 3 that I just replaced with my MME had immaculate paint with no swirl marks whatsoever.

By all means though you do you and buy whatever makes you happy, and rub your vehicle down with whatever makes you feel good. At the end of the day it's your car to do what you want with. Just sharing what has always worked for me and has cost me nothing at all besides a bit of self control in keeping myself from touching the paint.
I'm not going to argue with you. I'm just going to say you're wrong. I know that's a harsh statement to make and I'm sorry for that but this is something I have enough experience in to know it to be absolutely true.

I have years of experience detailing, using these products, having customers return, measuring paint depth before and after corrections, seeing my ceramic coatings left in containers dry out to their hardened state, doing my own scratch tests on them.

I've bought and restored vehicles, owned 28 of them. I'm certain I could take my halogen and/or sun lamps to your Mazda and show you the swirls that you didn't see. Lighter colored vehicles will be exceptionally good at hiding the concerns.

Watch the video above with an open mind and then re-read your post.

For additional posterity:
 
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