It is crucial that the paint is protected on any car. However, a common question is “what is paint protection?” There are various different forms of protection available on the market. The oldest and most common is a wax. In more recent years, sealants have also started to become more widespread.
In the past five years, a new trend has become incredibly popular when it comes to protection the paintwork; ceramic coatings. These are a bit harder to apply than waxes and sealants. However, these last for a lot longer, so it is a balancing act. The end result is always the same, though. By protecting the paint, it is adding a barrier between the clear coat and the outside world and the various factors, listed below. In addition to protecting the car, it actually makes it look better as well!
Why does car paint need to be protected?
This is a really common question, and it’s a really important topic. Most people think that as long as the car isn’t hit, then the paint will be fine. The best way to think about this is the paint on the car is like the skin on your face. It is constantly exposed to the elements. In the summer, sun tan lotion is applied to the skin. In the winter, moisturisers are applied. The same is true for the paint on a car.
By adding a layer of protection, be it glaze or polish, wax, sealant or ceramic coating, it will bond to the clear coat. This has numerous results. The first is protection. It’s not uncommon for bird droppings to sit on a cars paintwork for a long period of time. In the summer especially, this can be damaging to the paintwork. If there is not protection in place, it will start to etch into the paintwork and damage the clear coat.
Protection is also needed in the winter. During this time, road salt and grit is used to prevent the buildup of ice on the roads. Road salt and grit can cause corrosion if left on the paintwork, so adding a barrier between the paint and the grit is a necessity.
Likewise, industrial fall out such as iron deposits can also, over time, damage the paintwork. Similarly, road dirt can over time start to stain the body work, depending on what the colour of it is.
Another great reason to protect the paintwork is that it can make it easier to clean in general. The reason for this is that since there is a protection layer on the paint, contaminants will stick to it instead of the paint. Tied to this is that since there will be protection, and dirt and grime can be removed more easily, it will also reduce the potential for scratches and swirls to be installed on the paint.
How long does paint protection last?
This is dependent on what form of paint protection is used. Generally speaking, waxes do last the least amount of time when compared to sealants and ceramic coatings. However, a factor which impacts this is how well the body work is prepared before hand. The paint must be properly decontaminated. Also, if the form of protection is not applied properly, it will greatly reduce its overall longevity.