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  1. #1
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    What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    What Happened To My Ceramic Coating


    Back in March of this year- exactly about 3 months ago— I put the CarPro TIO2 Ceramic Coating on my car. I have a black 2012 Civic Si coupe. I washed thoroughly, clayed the car, did my paint correction, applied 2 coats of the coating, then applied CarPro Reload. Over the course of the few days I did all of this, the car never left my garage.


    When the coating was first put on and for about 2 months afterwards, I could actually somewhat “see” the coating. It looked like a very thin layer of “glass” over the paint. I could tell by smearing my finger on the car, and seeing the oils from my fingerprint on the coating, rather than the paint itself. It looked like the oils were on top of the paint- if that makes sense.


    Fast forward to today, my car has lost a significant amount of water beading capabilities, feels actually quite rough to the touch, and I can not “see” the coating like I used to. To the touch, the paint feels “grabby” and not slick or even really that smooth. It feels like it could honestly go for a clay bar and coat of wax to make it better or back to normal. I genuinely feel like it’s no longer there.


    My maintenance includes washing one time per week with CarPro Reset and a detail afterwards with CarPro ECH2O dilution. I recently reapplied the CarPro Reload- which helped a little bit really not much.


    I spent a lot of time and hard work putting this on and had high expectations, but to see the performance of my coating after 3 months, I feel disappointed now. I’ve driven the car maybe a few hundred miles since I put it on. The car also remains outside in South Florida (rain, heat, grass clippings, etc.)


    Is there something I did wrong? I can provide extensive detail on my processes if necessary. Is this normal?

    Thanks for any input!

  2. #2
    Senior Member acuRAS82's Avatar
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    Obvious question here: you did prep the paint after your correction? What did you use to remove the oils?

    The only other thing I can think of is that pollen or something could have clogged the coating’s pores, but seems like your regular washing with Reset should prevent it? What dilution do you use for Reset?

    Disclaimer, I’m not a coating person but I know some of the questions to ask and things that could go wrong from using ceramics. Others with real experience will be on there way to help soon, I’m guessing.

  3. #3
    Senior Member BSoares's Avatar
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    If I had to guess I'd say it's Reload. That spray sealant will reduce the performance of the coating, I don't even understand why CarPro still tells people to put that over their coatings.

    Wash it really good with Reset, it won't take more than a few weeks for Reload to be gone, it doesn't last very long. Once it's gone the coating should be back to working well. If you want to top it at that point, then use Elixir, maybe once a month.

    The coating will feel a bit grabby, that's normal. CarPro came out with Gliss to address that. But feeling grabby doesn't mean it won't perform, it will still work well.

    As for being able to see the coating, it's hard to understand how. The coating is so thin, I don't think one could see it without a microscope.
    Bruno Soares


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  5. #4
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    Quote Originally Posted by acuRAS82 View Post
    Obvious question here: you did prep the paint after your correction? What did you use to remove the oils?

    The only other thing I can think of is that pollen or something could have clogged the coating’s pores, but seems like your regular washing with Reset should prevent it? What dilution do you use for Reset?

    Disclaimer, I’m not a coating person but I know some of the questions to ask and things that could go wrong from using ceramics. Others with real experience will be on there way to help soon, I’m guessing.

    Hello, after polishing/correcting, I did not prep the paint any further. I honestly was not aware that this was a step. I just finished my polishing, wiped off residue with microfibers, then let the car sit until the next day when I began applying the coating. I had no idea that oils had to be removed prior to applying the coating.

    What product should be used in order to do this?

    For Reset, I use a 1:25 dilution. 1 oz Reset with 25 oz water.

  6. #5
    Senior Member The Guz's Avatar
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    It is time for a decon wash. CarPro recommends it. One thing to keep in mind is that coatings are not contaminant proof. Give it a go and that should help.

    Reload also has the tendency to mask the coatings behavior.

    From their site.

    Coating Maintenance:

    The best thing to do is start using CarPro Reset to wash with regularly. Other soaps can leave residue that temporarily messes up the beading and allows dust and dirt to stick more readily.
    Wash Mitt:

    Microfiber Madness Incredimitt (Recommended for daily drivers and most cars - This mitt is easiest to maintain and is extremely durable as well as washing out most easily)
    Merino Wool Wash Mitt (Recommended if car has extremely soft paint or car does not get extremely dirty)
    Drying Towel: CarPro or Microfiber Madness.
    Quick Detailing
: CarPro ECH2o Concentrate and Microfiber Madness Crazy Pile towels (need about 3-6 towels)
    Occasionally (every 3 to 6 months) decontaminate surface with CarPro Iron X. Use during wash cycle (after Reset) and as directed.
    If using CarPro Reload as topper: use every 3-12 months, for special occasions or any time you like.


    I also see you did not use Eraser or some sort of panel prep after polishing. That could also be affecting the coating as the paint has to be clean.

    If contamination exists, CarPro Iron X and clay your vehicle before polishing.
    To gain the most from Cquartz your vehicle should have all surfaces 100% clean and paint polished to a high level.
    Use CarPro Reflect to achieve an incredible high gloss finish in less time with no fillers.
    Use CarPro Eraser to remove any oils leftover after polishing - This is critical to ensure durability of CQuartz.
    We recommend coating removal towels: CarPro 2 Face (No Lint) 16" x 16" - Blue/ Orange 10 Pack, Microfiber Madness Slogger (16" x 16") or Edgeless White Polish Towel - 16" x 16".
    We recommend extra suede applicators if applying more than 1 coat - CarPro Suede MicroFiber Applicator 4"x4" 10 PACK.
    Finding the right time to "level" (wipe off) excess coating after it flashes:
    Start with a single 2ft x 2ft test section to determine flash time before applying coating to entire vehicle. Flash time will vary depending on temperature, humidity, air movement, paint type, how thick it is applied, and more.
    If coating is applied thick then the coating will take longer to flash. If applied thin it will flash faster. Hot temps will cause it to flash faster, cold temps will cause it to flash slower. Air movement will cause it to flash faster.
    When it starts to flash you will see colors that will make the coating look like a rainbow or oil slick.
    Remove too soon and it will be oily with no grab to it when wiping. If you wipe off too soon it will not give the coating a chance to bond.
    Remove too late and it becomes hard to remove.
    The time to remove is when you feel just a little push back or "grab" against your towel but it is not difficult to remove and it is no longer oily. It may leave some streaks at first but with the second wipe of a fresh clean side of the towel, the streaks should wipe off and the paint should be nice and clear.
    Lighting - Lighting is key to make sure you wipe off completely when you do wipe off. You don't want spot lighting like you would use on paint correction, but ambient lighting. Look at the paint from different angles to make sure none of the coating is missed. Spot lighting will "wash out" the high spots visually. Think of it like this: when you wipe off a sealant you have hours to go and check it again outside or in other lighting. In this case you need to pay attention as you go rather than wait an hour. Thorough removal of the coating is very necessary as any product left on the surface will harden and require polishing to remove soon after.
    Cquartz Tio2 - Wait between 1-5 minutes depending on temps, humidity, and paint and find the right window to wipe when you’re doing your test panel. Generally in summer temps 2-3 min. Too soon and it will still be oily. Too late and it becomes hard to remove.
    High spots - A high spot is excess coating that was not leveled (wiped off). Most of the time it will look like an application mark. If you discover them within minutes then a bit more product will lift them. Otherwise you would use a dot of finishing polish such as CarPro Essence or CarPro Reflect and rub the high spot off, wipe it down with CarPro Eraser or your IPA of choice, and then re-coat that area and onto the area around it by about 6". Then start wiping off the perimeter immediately and slowly work inwards to feather it until you reach the area you are trying to re-coat at the appropriate time.

  7. #6
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    Quote Originally Posted by BSoares View Post
    If I had to guess I'd say it's Reload. That spray sealant will reduce the performance of the coating, I don't even understand why CarPro still tells people to put that over their coatings.

    Wash it really good with Reset, it won't take more than a few weeks for Reload to be gone, it doesn't last very long. Once it's gone the coating should be back to working well. If you want to top it at that point, then use Elixir, maybe once a month.

    The coating will feel a bit grabby, that's normal. CarPro came out with Gliss to address that. But feeling grabby doesn't mean it won't perform, it will still work well.

    As for being able to see the coating, it's hard to understand how. The coating is so thin, I don't think one could see it without a microscope.
    I think I’ll stop using Reload. What advantage will Elixir provide over just leaving the coating bare? Is it a Reload alternative in some sort? How often should Elixir be applied? Also, does Gliss simply just address the slickness of the coating?

  8. #7
    Senior Member BSoares's Avatar
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dreichler View Post
    For Reset, I use a 1:25 dilution. 1 oz Reset with 25 oz water.
    1oz of Reset to 25oz of water? That's way too much soap, too strong. Use 1oz of Reset in about 4 gallons of water in your wash bucket.
    Bruno Soares


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  10. #8
    Senior Member BSoares's Avatar
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dreichler View Post
    I think I’ll stop using Reload. What advantage will Elixir provide over just leaving the coating bare? Is it a Reload alternative in some sort? How often should Elixir be applied? Also, does Gliss simply just address the slickness of the coating?
    You can certainly use the coating by itself. I suggested Elixir because you said you were using Reload so I assumed you wanted to top the coating like many people do. Elixir actually has some Reload in it. As well as Hydro2 and Ech2o. It's just a better maintenance product if you choose to top the coating but it's optional, not necessary.

    Gliss adds slickness and maybe some additional hydrophobicity to the coating. Maybe even some more gloss. But now that you've topped it with Reload, it's too late, Gliss won't bond well. Next time you you can use that as a top coat and it will give you that slick feeling you were looking for.
    Bruno Soares


  11. #9
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    Quote Originally Posted by BSoares View Post
    1oz of Reset to 25oz of water? That's way too much soap, too strong. Use 1oz of Reset in about 4 gallons of water in your wash bucket.
    I’m sorry, I have it backwards. My ECH2O is 1:25 for use of a quick detailer.
    My reset dilution is about 1 Tablespoon to 3 gallons of water.

  12. #10
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    Re: What Happened To My Ceramic Coating?

    Quote Originally Posted by BSoares View Post
    You can certainly use the coating by itself. I suggested Elixir because you said you were using Reload so I assumed you wanted to top the coating like many people do. Elixir actually has some Reload in it. As well as Hydro2 and Ech2o. It's just a better maintenance product if you choose to top the coating but it's optional, not necessary.

    Gliss adds slickness and maybe some additional hydrophobicity to the coating. Maybe even some more gloss. But now that you've topped it with Reload, it's too late, Gliss won't bond well. Next time you you can use that as a top coat and it will give you that slick feeling you were looking for.

    Thank you! Just to clear up with Elixir and Gliss. Is Elixir meant to be used as a quick detailer similar to ECH2O like I do after each wash? Or is it like Reload where I use it maybe every other month? Same for Gliss, I assume Gliss is supposed to be applied maybe once a month or every other month- rather than on a weekly basis. Is it appropriate to apply Gliss without applying Elixir?

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