You just bought a new car or truck and someone suggested getting paint protection applied (typically the dealer is the first to suggest it). It can seem like one more expense with the dealer or an added step to wait to and see a specailist; so is it really worth your time and money to have a ceramic coating or film applied?
Want to Jump Around?
First Things First – The Two Main Types of New Car Paint Protection
Ceramic Coating chemically bonds to your clear coat. It will provide years of high gloss and easy to clean protection. There is a reason that Kings Valet exclusively installs Ceramic Coating – we know it works! I believe ceramic coating provides the best cost-to-protection ratio in the automotive industry! A professional grade ceramic coating only costs about 2% of the average cost of a new vehicle ($1,000 and $48,000 respectively).
Paint Protection Film:
The ultimate in protection for new vehicles; but with a heavy price tag. As mentioned above – Ceramic Coating on a full vehicle’s paint starts at about $1,000… Paint Protection film from a reputable installer will cost about $6,000 on a full vehicle (sedan sized). Even a third is likely to clear the $3,000 mark. The benefits are worth the investment for some as PPF will stop rock chips and prevent minor scratching; something Ceramic Coating cannot do. Kings Valet does not install PPF – we always refer to High-Def Detailing in Elkhart. He has done my personal vehicles and I highly reccomend his work.
Should I Have New Car Paint Protection Installed?
In one sentence: Paint Protection Film – Maybe, Ceramic Coating – Yes.
Ceramic Coating will almost always be a yes; however, there are instances where it is a no. If you are looking for high gloss, easy to clean protection – absolutely. If you are looking for protection from mother nature (bug guts, bird droppings, UV protection and more) – absolutely. Reasons Ceramic Coating will not be enough? You are looking to stop rock chips or scratches – you will need to upgrade to PPF.
Does PPF make sense for you and your budget? If you are buying a $16,000 new Chevy Cruze, probably not. However, if you are buying a new $116,000 Chevy Corvette that sits low to the ground – I would definitely recommend PPF first, then installing a coating over it. Why not on the Cruze? The cost to repaint panels on a Cruze is significantly less than the cost of installing PPF. Also, the reduction in value caused by rock-chips may be proportionally the same, but because of the price tag on the Cruze equates to very little actually lost (dollar wise).
Should I Install Paint Protection on My Lease?
In one sentence: Paint Protection Film – No, Ceramic Coating – Yes.
You are leasing because you love to always be in something new and shiny right? This is why Kings Valet introduced a five year ceramic coating option that includes a warranty! This also provides you exterior maintenance details at only $50! New and shiny all the time! Other shops in the area offer as short-term as a single year Ceramic Coating – not our style, but may be a great fit for you. A short-term lease is not something I would recommend Paint Protection Film for – because the steep price tag and you will not see a return on your investment. Ultimately the dealer won’t ding you for rock chips on a trade-in unless they are significant in size. In the rare event it was a “massive chip” or ding that the dealership felt compelled to charge for – PPF wouldn’t have stopped it completely anyway.
Should I Install Paint Protection on My New Truck / Off-Road Vehicle?
In One Sentence: Paint Protection Film – Yes, Ceramic Coating – Yes.
Ceramic coating is a great option, BUT you need to know it’s limitations. Driving through thick brush for example – ceramic coating will NOT help to reduce scratching. It will however make it very easy to clean the mud and bugs off when you get home! Run away from any installer who claims Ceramic Coating is “scratch resistant”, “scratch proof” or “a sacrificial layer”. It doesn’t matter if the coating is 9H, 10H, suspended hexa whatever – PPF is the only cure for scratches (and even ppf has its limits). With PPF we always suggest adding a Ceramic Coating on top to improve ease of maintenance (cleaning).
New Car Paint Protection from the Dealership
This is one thing I never shy away from… Do NOT buy any form of paint protection from the dealership. I even suggest shopping and buying from our “competition” before you buy from the dealership. The dealership is a SCAM. When buying a new car the last thing you want to hear is spending more money AND having to do it somewhere else, right? I get it – adding steps to buying your new car is frustrating, but it is WELL worth the time invested.
This topic will be a much longer focus point in its own post at a later date, but true ceramic coating or paint protection film CANNOT be installed in 30 minutes while you are sitting in the finance office. You are being ripped off. In fact, not even a true detail can be performed that fast – so imagine how bad your “ceramic coating” or “paint protection film” will turn out.
Okay, but What if the Dealer Sub-Contracts the Installation of Paint Protection?
Even if a dealer subs out their coatings to a reputable shop – support that shop (and likely save a few dollars) by going direct to them. The shop has a minimum they have to make, then the dealer wants almost a 100% markup to make their money. Meaning a coating that would have cost you $1250 directly at the shop is likely costing you about $2000 from the dealership AND the shop is making only about $800-1000 on it. I hate to say it, this means you are still getting a “volume” job not a high quality protection. As much as it shouldn’t be the case, the shop is going to prioritize their full paying retail clients – versus a dealership that is beating them up on price and forcing a fast turnaround. This “fast and cheap” method the dealerships use is why Kings Valet will never do sublet work.
Kings Valet (nor I) claims to be the only paint protection specialist in Mishawaka / Michiana. I would support you going to ANY of our “competitors” over using the dealer. Three great options available locally (besides Kings Valet) would include; High Definition Detailing (Elkhart), Car Guys (Osceola), and Deluxe Detail (South Bend).
Suppose I want a Ceramic Coating From Kings Valet…
You would want to know the cost and inclusions up front right? At Kings Valet we believe in FULL transparency. Prices are posted all over our website – you can also get an exact number and book in just a couple questions on our Book Now Page. To save you some navigating, a 5 Year Ceramic Coating from Kings Valet will start at $1,000 and a Lifetime Ceramic Coating starts at $1,450. Both of these packages include a Full Exterior Detail, Buffer-applied polish, Decontamination Wash and Application of selected coating to your paint. “Starting at” – real transparent right? The upper end of these two new car coating packages would be $1,250 and $1,750 respectively, for something like an F250 or a Chevy Tahoe.
What about Warranties and Maintenance on my Ceramic Coating?
- Don’t Set Your Hood On Fire
- No Aggressive Wash Methods
- See Kings Valet Every Spring for an Annual Inspection
The only big difference in the two warranties is that the Lifetime Ceramic Coating INCLUDES the annual inspection at no cost. For the 5-Year Ceramic Coating; it is $150 for the Annual Inspection. Annual Inspections Include a full exterior detail and application of a ceramic topper. With the Lifetime Ceramic Coating you also get FREE Maintenance 4x a year. This is valued at $600+ annually; all included at no cost to you.
Why Kings Valet for Your Next Ceramic Coating?
As mentioned prior – we offer an experience like no other. Beyond the Peace of Mind Guarantee; our business is based on philanthropic ideals. Kings Valet donates 10% of EVERY dollar in sales to local causes. These charities include: Center for the Homeless, Cultivate Food Rescue and A Healing Hope (among others). Kings Valet’s Mission Statement is: Instilling confidence – one coating at a time. This is a two prong mission. First “prong” is likely obvious; your coating makes you feel more confident in the longevity of that showroom new look lasting for years. The other “prong” being our donations allow those who are homeless, children who are neglected / lost or those born with incurable diseases to get the help they need to land on their feet as best as possible. This allows a restoration of confidence to them through our work on your vehicle.
In Conclusion: New Car Paint Protection – Is it worth it?
I certainly believe that New Car Paint Protection is worth it – when applied with the proper expectations. Neither Ceramic Coating or Paint Protection Film is bullet-proof, but they both have a unique way of protecting your newest purchase. Have a question that I didn’t cover? I would love to hear from you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org– send our shop a text at 574.777.0033 or call Kings Valet at 574.347.4445.