One of the first things you see on a new car at a dealership is the fresh, shiny coat of paint on the body panels. A good paint job is what differentiates a new car from an old one. But this paint work does not last forever. Over time, due to weathering, sunlight and rain the paint coatings wear off and pick up dust and dirt. The best way to protect your exterior is to apply either a Teflon coating or ceramic coating. You may ask, which is better? Teflon coating vs ceramic coating. What is the best option?
You can reclaim a pristine paint job with either a Teflon coating or a ceramic coating. The pros and cons of Teflon coating vs ceramic coating are crucial to understand which is the best option for your car.
Ceramic Coating vs Teflon Coating
What is Teflon coating? Why do we need it for our car? Teflon is technically a brand name for a chemical coating, better known as polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). Teflon coating for cars protects the paint by adding a chemical layer that resists dust, dirt and scratches. Teflon coating can be added on all automobiles, and there are special applications for Teflon coating on bikes as well.
What is Teflon Coating?
The Teflon coating process starts with cleaning of the car to remove all dust and dirt from the paint finish. Once it has been washed, a technician wipes down the car to get rid of every last drop of water.
Teflon is applied to the car exterior in a liquid state and then left to dry. The coating is allowed to set for 20 minutes, then it is buffed with a machine to remove any excess Teflon coating and to give a glossy finish.
This takes care of all the minor scratches on the surface. Buffing the car usually takes around 30 minutes.
Pros and Cons of Teflon Coating
Teflon coating benefits include the following:
- It brings back the gloss of a new car, with shiny paint devoid of any scratches.
- New scratches are prevented from occurring.
- Previous scratches are removed by the Teflon coating process.
- Regular follow up after the Teflon coating process ensures the paint remains good as new for a long time period.
Teflon Coating Disadvantages and Drawbacks Are Present as Well, Such as:
- Teflon coating involves a follow up every few months to maintain the finish. Up to 3 Teflon coats can be added in a year for a scratch free, shiny paint job.
- A single session Teflon coating price may be affordable, but several follow up procedures may end up burning a hole in your pocket.
- Sometimes the paint is just waxed and polished, and you have to be vigilant to make sure that the technician is really applying a coat of Teflon to the car. The advantages of Teflon coating vs wax polish vs lamination is that Teflon lasts longer, is more durable and removes minor scratches from the paint
Ceramic Coating on a Car
Ceramic is a non-metallic material that is first shaped and then hardened in a furnace. The main benefits of ceramic coating include corrosion resistance of the paint work. Ceramic coating can be applied to cars and for bikes.
The car or bike first has to be washed to remove all dirt and debris from the paint. All foreign materials are removed. Then the surface is washed with a solution of soap and water to provide a thorough cleaning.
The vehicle is then rinsed completely and dried off so that there is no water or soap solution remaining on the body. The ceramic coating comes in the form of a liquid which is applied all over the vehicle’s exterior.
The ceramic solution is kept for a while on the paint until it cures. The ceramic coating is then buffed using an automated buffing machine by a technician.
Once the buffing process is complete, the paint gets a polishing compound that is applied using an appropriate machine. Finally, the car is wiped off any excess residue and the ceramic coating process is complete.
Ceramic Coating Benefits
Ceramic coating is preferred to Teflon coating for the following reasons:
- It protects a vehicle paint from external contaminants.
- Ceramic coating does not have any adverse chemical reaction with the vehicle’s paint job.
- A car or bike with a ceramic coating is easier to clean because dirt, dust and debris comes right off without sticking to the paint.
- Since the ceramic coating forms a chemical surface bond with the paint, it last longer (up to a few years) and is highly durable.
- It leaves a shiny and glossy finish.
Ceramic Coating Drawbacks
A ceramic coating can make your car look like new, but there are some cons such as:
- The process is much more expensive than a Teflon coating, and is not an affordable option. Ceramic coating price in India can start from Rs.18,000 and can go up to Rs.35,000 depending on the type and size of a vehicle and the ceramic coating treatment package that is chosen
- The process requires the service of trained technicians and only qualified personnel can apply the ceramic coating effectively. Without a professional procedure, the ceramic coating may not adhere to the paint and the finish will be unimpressive
- The ceramic coating procedure takes a few days to complete (almost three days), and alternative travel arrangements must be made when the vehicle is being worked upon
Besides these few drawbacks, a ceramic coating may be the best option if you can afford it. Remember, the exact cost depends on the size and type of the vehicle. So a smaller vehicle or a bike is more affordable to have a ceramic coating applied upon.
- The process is much more expensive than a Teflon coating, and is not an affordable option. Ceramic coating price in India can start from Rs.18,000 and can go up to Rs.35,000 depending on the type and size of a vehicle and the ceramic coating treatment package that is chosen.
- The process requires the service of trained technicians and only qualified personnel can apply the ceramic coating effectively. Without a professional procedure, the ceramic coating may not adhere to the paint and the finish will be unimpressive.
- The ceramic coating procedure takes a few days to complete (almost three days), and alternative travel arrangements must be made when the vehicle is being worked upon.
Teflon coating vs ceramic coating each has its own advantages and disadvantages, and a car owner may prefer one over the other depending on driving conditions, status of the paint, chemical composition of the paint and other deciding factors.
The Teflon coating application process varies on the type of car as well as its size. It can be completed in a few hours in most cases. Ceramic coating has to bond chemically to the paint and may take a few days for application.
A liquid polymer is used in the application of a ceramic coat, which gives the paint a glossy finish. Paint is not likely to peel off after a ceramic coat.
Teflon coating is the cheaper option between the two and lasts from 3-4 months. Ceramic coating on the other hand lasts for a few years, and this kind of durability makes it more expensive than a Teflon coating.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Is Teflon coating good for cars?
Ans. A Teflon coating is good to provide paint protection for your car. Teflon coating on cars not only protects it from scratches and dirt / dust, it also provides a shield from road debris, tarmac chips, rust, corrosive elements and environmental weathering.
Q2. Is Teflon coating safe?
Ans. Teflon coating is not a health concern as it poses little or no harm. Teflon on its own is safe and cannot harm you even if you ingest it.
Q3. How long does Teflon coating last?
Ans. A Teflon coating can last for 6 months and up to one year, depending on the conditions and situations that Teflon coating is subject to, although it is quite durable and long lasting.
Q4. Teflon coating or ceramic coating, which is better for your car?
Ans. Teflon coating protects your car from rust, minor scratches, dust / dirt and road debris. It repels water droplets (hydrophobicity) and enhances the shine of your original paint job.
Ceramic coating has a slight advantage over a Teflon coating because it provides all the protection of Teflon with a few more advantages.
Q5. Is Teflon coating good for a new car?
Ans. Teflon coating is a paint protection film that prevents minor scratches on the car’s exterior surface. Modern cars come with a high gloss finish paint job, so adding a layer of Teflon coating should keep the paint looking in pristine condition for longer.
Q6. How much does Teflon coating cost for a car?
Ans. Teflon not only protects the paint from dust, dirt and debris as well as minor scratches, it also is a preventive measure for rust formation and corrosion. The prices for a Teflon coating start from Rs. 4,500 and can go up to Rs.7,000 depending on the size of the car.
Q7. Is Teflon coating harmful?
Ans. Teflon is not harmful in any way when applied on a car’s surface. It will not get in contact with the driver and occupants since it is applied on the outer surface. Anyway, Teflon poses no health concerns.
Q8. Is Teflon coating good for bikes?
Ans. Rust, dirt, debris and scratches due to general wear and tear are well known to deteriorate the paint work on a motorcycle. A Teflon coating on a bike reduces the effects of weathering, slows down wear and tear and keeps the paint shiny like new.
Q9. Is ceramic coating good for your car?
Ans. Ceramic coating protects the car’s surface, and is a nano-coating that prevents scratches and deterioration from dirt and chemical components. It does not have any side effects on the original paint. Also, it increases the life of a good paint job.
Q10. Is ceramic coating worth it?
Ans. Ceramic coating is worth every Rupee you invest in it. It provides superior protection against corrosion and environmental effects. Your paint will remain like new for a longer time if you invest in a ceramic coating.
Q11. Is wax as good as ceramic coating?
Ans. A ceramic coating provides better protection than wax polish. Ceramic coatings are able to resist heat, UV rays, contaminants, and harsh detergents much better than wax. Wax is just a layer that sits on top of paint, while a ceramic coating creates a chemical bond that is much more durable.
Q12. Should you wax after ceramic coating?
Ans. You can apply wax after a ceramic coat but it hinders the ceramic coating from functioning. Traditional car wax is made of oil, lubricants and carnauba wax that can attract dust and dirt in the long run. The hydrophobic water repelling properties of the ceramic coat are rendered useless.
Q13. What's better, wax sealant or ceramic coating?
Ans. Wax is not durable and can be easily stripped away from the paint surface due to heat and natural wear and tear. It doesn’t provide much protection from acid rain and bird droppings.
Sealant provides a similar protection to wax but it is more durable and can last a couple of months. It provides better protection than natural waxes and can resist acid rain, high temperatures, chemical detergents and dirt.
Ceramic coating is also called nano-coating and makes a chemical bond with the paint. It offers superior protection, durability, and shine to your car.
Q14. Do you polish before ceramic coating?
Ans. Polishing the paint before applying a ceramic coating ensures that it is completely clean and provides the best surface to bond. It also removes any scratches, defects and swirl marks that may be present on the paint.
Q15. Is wax or ceramic coating better?
Ans. While a wax over paint provides some level of protection against weathering, wear and tear and environmental effects, it is just a layer that sits on top of paint and is easily removed by heat and acid rain.
Ceramic coating forms a chemical bond with the paint surface and lasts much longer than wax polish or sealants. Modern paints require advanced solutions like nano ceramic coating which maintain the paint job for longer than wax.
Q16. Can ceramic coating go over wax?
Ans. Ceramic coatings should never be applied either underneath or over wax. Applying a ceramic coating over wax on a car’s paint job will prevent it chemically bonding to the paint surface and will hamper its durability and overall finish. Applying a layer of wax over ceramic coating will hinder the performance of it by attracting dust, dirt and oil and destroy the ceramic coating's hydrophobic properties of repelling water.