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Discussion Starter #1
I got a new car and my first ritual is to wash and wax it but I have been seeing ads for ceramic coatings instead of wax. Is that a better idea? If it will protect and shine for a year or more and easy to clean does that make it better than wax? One downside is that if you later on want to add a second coat or even add wax the ceramic coating won't allow it. Which way to go? Is more coats of wax at a time good enough?

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Ceramic is great, but requires a lot of prep before you apply it. Paint correction, surface decontamination, etc, and the cure time is typically several hours.

There are coatings you can put over ceramic coatings to make them last longer, but you're right - you can't simply 'wax' a ceramic coated vehicle.

Wax is very old school. If you can't afford the real ceramic coating process (or don't have time to do it) You have a lot of options in SiO2 coatings. Much stronger than wax and in most cases easier to apply. Meguiars has an entry-level product that is a spray. They market it as "ceramic" but it's an SiO2 coating.

Everybody's got some version of it now. Adam's, Griot's, Chemical Guys, etc etc etc.
 

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I ceramic coated my 2010 myself and I highly recommend it. The finished product is beautiful, washes very well, and repels water nicely.



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I'll study up on coatings to get a better idea of what's it all about. I know I need to clay bar first. At my age I want the best results possible and may consider having someone do it for me.

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At my age I want the best results possible and may consider having someone do it for me.
That's a good idea. Ceramic is "permanent" so any flaws that exist before you coat it, will be there until the coating is gone/removed.
 

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Chemical Guys just came out with a SiO 2 wax... so dont need the prep work before, but also does not last as long.
 

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That's a good idea. Ceramic is "permanent" so any flaws that exist before you coat it, will be there until the coating is gone/removed.
I'm afraid that I might get too wrapped up in the process that I might do something wrong and when you start counting dollars and cents it's better to just let someone else do it. Think of the hours it might take me plus the uncertain whether conditions. I noticed that the detail shops offer a variety of packages until you get to a 5-years or lifetime guarantee so then a decision has to be made on "how much for how long".

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I'm afraid that I might get too wrapped up in the process that I might do something wrong and when you start counting dollars and cents it's better to just let someone else do it. Think of the hours it might take me plus the uncertain whether conditions. I noticed that the detail shops offer a variety of packages until you get to a 5-years or lifetime guarantee so then a decision has to be made on "how much for how long".

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Chemical Guys has 3 versions of a "ceramic".

C9 which is a 3+ years coating. Hydro Charge a spray thats a 1 year lasting and now the wax.

For the C9 and the Hydro Charge you should at minimum wash and claybar. Depending on the paint you may want to do some paint correction with cutting and polishing compounds. If the quality of the paint is fine for you after the wash and claybar then its just applying the product.

The expensive stuff is getting the swirls or the paint correction completed before the ceramic product gets applied. Then depending on the care their after with the correct types of washes and such will determine how long it will last.
 

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Chemical Guys has 3 versions of a "ceramic".

C9 which is a 3+ years coating. Hydro Charge a spray thats a 1 year lasting and now the wax.

For the C9 and the Hydro Charge you should at minimum wash and claybar. Depending on the paint you may want to do some paint correction with cutting and polishing compounds. If the quality of the paint is fine for you after the wash and claybar then its just applying the product.

The expensive stuff is getting the swirls or the paint correction completed before the ceramic product gets applied. Then depending on the care their after with the correct types of washes and such will determine how long it will last.
I'm game for doing it my self. I have some leftover claybar and I don't have to do all in one shot-hood here, top there and fenders and tires. I really want to make sure I put on the best quality and as many coats as I can before it starts repelling everything.

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My thoughts to ceramic coatings= great for ppl that don't want to deal w/ waxes/sealants, the vehicle is outside & want a very low maintenance product. You'll never get it to pop as a pure polish.... http://autogeek.com
 

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My thoughts to ceramic coatings= great for ppl that don't want to deal w/ waxes/sealants, the vehicle is outside & want a very low maintenance product. You'll never get it to pop as a pure polish.... http://autogeek.com
Thats why the wife's car is getting the ceramic coating at somepoint once I get off my butt and prep the car. My foci dont have it yet, but the wax in interesting and likely will coat the wheels to help with cleaning off brake dust.
 

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My thoughts to ceramic coatings= great for ppl that don't want to deal w/ waxes/sealants, the vehicle is outside & want a very low maintenance product. You'll never get it to pop as a pure polish.... http://autogeek.com
That's what I want. I don't want to constantly work at it, I want a mirror finish for years to come. From the infomercials I see on YouTube there isn't any comparison between waxes/sealants and ceramic. Now finding the product for me will be about learning about quartz, ceramic, glass, etc. Most of the hard work is in the preparation such as clay-baring.
Another issue I've discovered is how many coats can be applied for a longer lasting shine? Later coats might be repelled by the first coats.

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Dont have a huge knowledge on the subject, but dont think you can do multiple coats of the good stuff. the other "easy" stuff you may be able to.
 

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Dont have a huge knowledge on the subject, but dont think you can do multiple coats of the good stuff. the other "easy" stuff you may be able to.
That's good to know. Also, a carnauba wax can be used after the ceramic has cured but must be redone in about three months.

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I'm more of a wax, glaze, or sealant type of guy.

Don't worry about clay barring a car it's extremely easy use plenty of lube.

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That's good to know. Also, a carnauba wax can be used after the ceramic has cured but must be redone in about three months.

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Whats the point of adding a carnauba wax to a ceramic coating? Totally different products for different ppl......Like I mentioned before a ceramic coating is great for ppl that want a very low maintenance product & don't want to deal w/ sealants/waxes. There's a product for everyone from ppl that want to do very little to ppl that like to collect wax pots in a few refrigerators. Most ppl would be surprised of the different flop you'd get from using different waxes on their clearcoat...
 

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Whats the point of adding a carnauba wax to a ceramic coating? Totally different products for different ppl......Like I mentioned before a ceramic coating is great for ppl that want a very low maintenance product & don't want to deal w/ sealants/waxes. There's a product for everyone from ppl that want to do very little to ppl that like to collect wax pots in a few refrigerators. Most ppl would be surprised of the different flop you'd get from using different waxes on their clearcoat...
You shouldn't apply wax to ceramic coatings.

What you can do is apply "boost" type products that enhance the ceramic's natural properties and increase shine. These types of products will ultimately allow you to enjoy the benefits of a ceramic coating longer than if you just set it and forget it.
 

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I think that's why Chemical Guys came out with the Hydro Charge spray on Si02 product and the Hydro Slick which is the wax with additional Si02 in it. They recommend using both for the extra shine and depth you get.

But I find it therapeutic detailing my car so will stay with the Glaze, Sealant, Wax approach for my vehicle, but on others it makes sense.

One thing I am really drawn to on the ceramic / SiO2 stuff is the beading that occurs. I have more cars than garage space. And have hard water and the sprinklers while tuned as good as they can be still get some spray on the car. if a SiO2 treatment can help reduce the hard water spots that would be HUGE motivation for me to try a ceramic / SiO2 type product.
 

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I wouldn't park near a sprinkler...At least I'd figure out when they come on.
 
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