Many people go to great lengths to protect their cars. One popular method in recent years is ceramic coatings. Ceramic coatings give your car an extra layer of toughness and can protect it from impact and weathering damage.
Ceramic coatings are also favored because they provide a shiny, aesthetically pleasing gloss to your vehicle. Overall, you can expect to pay approximately $3,000 for a professional-quality ceramic coating.
The typical range is between $1,000 to $10,000, depending on your car’s make/model, its size, and your mechanic’s location. DIY ceramic coating kits can cost between $100 to $300.
To help you out, we put together this guide on ceramic coating costs. We will cover the costs for professional applications and also cover the cost of various DIY coating kits.
- What is Ceramic Coating?
- Ceramic Coating Cost
- Factors that Affect Ceramic Coating Costs
- Advantages & Disadvantages of Ceramic Coating
- How to Apply Ceramic Coating
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Words
- Other Interesting Guides
What is Ceramic Coating?
A ceramic coating is a special polymer coating that you can apply to your car. Ceramic coatings are popular because they create a more or less impermeable barrier between your car and the rest of the world.
A good ceramic coating can protect your car from minor abrasions, UV damage, and paint fading. Ceramic coatings are also known for their brilliant sheen, and many car owners get them for aesthetic purposes.
Generally speaking, the industrial compound is applied to your car by hand, although it can also be applied with a spray. There are also spray bottle ceramic kits you can buy for DIY application, although these coatings tend to be lower quality than a professional coating.
Ceramic coatings are a big car modification, so they can cost a pretty penny. If you are thinking of getting a coating, then make sure you go to an auto body shop that has experience working with ceramic finishes.
Ceramic Coating Cost
The costs of ceramic coating can vary widely, depending on your car and your mechanic’s location. Some mechanics can do a quick job for around $900, but others can charge up to $10,000.
The typical range is between $1,000 to $10,000, with most people paying around $3,000 for a professional ceramic coating.
Costs vary significantly because different cars require different work. It also depends on how much work your mechanic has to do to prepare your car. Among other things, prep work for a ceramic coating can include:
- Visual inspections
- Cleaning car components
- Removing license plates and other fixtures
- Washing your car
- Buffing small scratches
- Cleaning vehicle trim
- Paint correction
- Ceramic application
- Final inspection
The total time it takes to completely coat a car is about 36 hours of labor. Assuming an average hourly rate of $85, that comes out to just over $3,000 for professional application.
Keep in mind that this figure is average and does not include any extra costs or fees your mechanic may charge.
Ceramic Coating Kits
If you are on a budget and do not want to pay a professional to apply the coating, you can buy a kit and do it on your own. Ceramic coating kits are not as high-quality as professional coatings, but they should give you a gloss that lasts between six months to a year.
The typical cost of a DIY ceramic coating kit is around $70. The typical price range is between $20 on the low end and $100 on the high end. In general, we do not recommend buying a kit for less than $20, as it will likely be low quality.
The table below shows the average cost for various popular ceramic coating kits.
|Amigliore Stgrata Coating: High Gloss SiO2 Ceramic Coating||$90|
|Adam’s UV Graphene Ceramic Coating||$80|
|Gtechniq CSL Ceramic Coating||$110|
|Meguiar’s G 190532SP Hybrid Ceramic Was||$22|
|Nexgen Ceramic Spray Silicone Dioxide||$35|
|CARPRO CQUARTZ Ceramic Coating Kit||$90|
|Nano Bond Ceramic Coating Car Care Kit||$40|
|PROJE 500 ML Ceramic Coating for Cars||$40|
|Chemical Guys-WAC23316 HydroSpeed Ceramic Detailer||$25|
|HydroSile Recharge Car Ceramic Coating||$35|
|Color N Drive Power Car Ceramic Coating||$80|
Generally speaking, ceramic coating kits are daily cheap. However, they are not very high-quality. A DIY ceramic kit will only last about six months before you need to apply it again.
So we only recommend getting a DIY kit if you don’t have the money for a professional application and you don’t mind recoating your car about twice a year
Factors that Affect Ceramic Coating Costs
Before applying the coat, your mechanic will have to prepare your car’s main surface. They may have to sand down rough edges and polish the paint.
In some cases, they will need to reapply your topcoat so the ceramic achieve the strongest possible bond. Preparation work can add a significant amount to total costs.
All other things being equal, the smaller your car, the less it will cost to apply the ceramic coating. Larger cars require more ceramic, which makes them more expensive to coat.
Vehicle coloring also affects costs. Darker cars will require more coating to get an attractive, shiny finish. In contrast, lighter colors will require less coating.
However, any defects in the coating will be more noticeable if you have a lighter paint color.
Car paints come in different hardnesses. Hard topcoats are ideal for ceramic coating applications because they do not require as much preparation work.
With a soft coat, your mechanic will have to spend more time preparing the surface before applying the ceramic.
Advantages & Disadvantages of Ceramic Coating
Here are the main advantages and disadvantages of getting a ceramic coating for your car.
Protect Car Body
The main reason to get ceramic coating is to protect your car from scratches and impact damage. Ceramic coating can shrug off small rocks and scratches from the road without marring the overlying layer.
Ceramic coating can also protect your paint from fading due to UV damage. Ceramic has excellent heat absorption properties, so it will protect your topcoat and paint layer from harsh sun rays.
Easier to Clean
A ceramic coating will also make your car easier to clean. Ceramic is highly resistant to staining and excessive build-up. Your car will not only be easier to clean but it also won’t get as dirty as quickly.
No Wax Required
A high-performance ceramic coating will also remove the need to regularly wax your car. The ceramic coating will perform all the typical functions of a wax overcoat. So you no longer have to spend time waxing your car after every wash.
Improve Resale Value
Many car modifications will make it harder to sell your vehicle. However, a ceramic coating can actually increase the resale value of your car by maintaining its integrity.
Takes Time to Set
It can take about three to four days for a ceramic coating to fully set and harden. You need to keep your car completely covered and away from anything that could mess up the coating while it dries.
Requires a Lot of Labor
Applying a ceramic coating also takes a lot of work. If it’s not done by a professional, then it might not look very good. Your mechanic needs to be very thorough and precise when applying the coat so it is even and dries correctly.
Ceramic coatings vary widely in price and can be very expensive compared to other kinds of car modifications. While you can find a good coating for around $1,000, you will most likely pay upwards of $3,000 for a professionally applied ceramic coating.
Depending on your car and your location, you could pay up to $10,000 or more for a ceramic coat.
Ceramic coating can protect your car from minor abrasive damage, but it won’t protect it from everything. Notably, ceramic can still be scratched by rocks and sufficient impacts can crack the layer and leave a dent.
However, it will protect against a lot of smaller impacts.
How to Apply Ceramic Coating
Here is a quick guide on how to apply ceramic coating to your car.
First, you will need to prep your car. Car prep is a crucial part of any kind of coating as the material won’t bond if there are imperfections in the lower layer.
Remove all surface dirt and grim and wash your car, making sure to hit all the spots on the body. Afterward, wipe down your car with a microfiber towel to remove all smudges and stains.
This next step is optional, but you can use a special clay cleaner to remove hard-to-see imperfections and grime. We recommend using a clay mitt or clay towel rather than a clay bar.
We highly recommend doing this part as it removes all contamination from your car. Then, you will have to correct paint imperfections and polish the vehicle.
Ceramic coatings do not get rid of existing imperfections, so you need to remove any scratches, paint fading, peeling, and other flaws. You will also need to polish your top coat so it is smooth and ready to accept the ceramic.
Wipe down your car with isopropyl alcohol afterward. Now it’s time to apply the coating. Apply the ceramic coating directly to the application tool and start to swipe it back and forth across your car’s surface.
Focus on one section at a time, moving from the hood to the back bumper. Let the coating sit for however long it needs to, then you can buff away any residue left with the microfiber cloth.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does ceramic coating cost?
The actual costs depend heavily on the kind of car you have and what kind of ceramic coating you want. But you can expect to pay about $2,000 for a high-quality ceramic coating for most models of car.
The typical range is between $1,000 to $10,000 for a high-performance ceramic coating.
What are the advantages of ceramic coating?
The main advantage of ceramic coating is that it provides impact resistance against scratches and dents. It will also protect underlying paint from UV damage and repels water.
Lastly, ceramic coating can help regulate your car’s interior temperature on hot and cold days.
How long does a ceramic coating last?
With proper care and maintenance, a professional ceramic coating should last between three to five years. Generally, you want to refresh the ceramic coating on your car about once every six months to keep the coating in top condition.
Can I apply a ceramic coating myself?
Yes, there are ceramic coating kits that you can apply yourself at home if you have the right equipment. However, these kinds of kits are normally cheap and will only last a year at most.
If you want a coat that will last, you will probably need to take your car to a professional.
Should I go to a professional or should I coat my car myself?
It depends on how much work you are willing to do. Coating a car is a relatively straightforward process but it does require a lot of labor. It is also relatively easy to mess things up if you are unfamiliar with detailing a car.
Additionally, professional coatings will last longer. So we would recommend going to a pro unless you have experience working with cars.
Is ceramic coating worth it?
It depends on your wants and goals. If you want a high-performance coating to protect your car, or you want to protect against minor scratches, then it can absolutely be worth it.
The main drawback is the price. The “right” answer ultimately comes down to your personal preferences.
Ceramic coatings are becoming more popular as a means to protect cars. So if you don’t want to worry about dirt, muck, and grime, you should consider looking into ceramic coatings.
Your options are to have a pro do it or buy a DIY coating kit. The choice is up to you. If you go with a professional, make sure to get several quotes from different mechanics. so you can get the best price.