Ceramic Car Coating /Glass Coating / Car Wax. 12 Important topics.

Marko Luhamaa
13 min readJul 7, 2019

For a start, in this article, I write mainly practical side that is based on my own experience. I’m not trying to go in chemical details too much. There are really many nano protection products available on the internet. I’m going to discuss 12 topics that you might need to consider before making a final decision which nano protection you would like to cover your car. This time won’t discuss whether to do it yourself or use professional service.

It is clear that you as a customer (car owner) would like to know as accurately as possible, what you get, to make the choice.

There are really many good products in the world and also not so good products. But, have you ever seen any commercial or product description that says: “Sorry guys, our product is not very good, but would you like to buy it anyway”. No? Haven’t seen? On the contrary, many of them advertise their product sometimes even stuffing keywords in every line they write, like that: 9-15H-hardness-super-nano-forever-superhydrophobic-super-easy-to-apply-hard-like-stone-scratchproof- self-healing-fireproof-etc-etc-coatings are available.

If you read this, it sounds like a “forever young serum”. Isn't it?

Not to mention, such videos usually are playing fast forward and there is no additional information that can prove their claim. I personally would prefer to take another look after someone had got my attention. Don’t you?

All this world’s best technology costs just 15 USD. Hallelujah. Can you believe that? I’m not. Why? Find some topics below and you might agree with me.

Table of Contents

  1. 9H hardness ceramic coating and Liquid Glass Coating. What does this actually mean or what they want you to think of it.
  2. Beware of clickbite videos. 9–15H hardness-nano-super-forever-superhydrophobic-super-easy-to-apply-stonehard-scratchproof- self-healing (well, couldn’t fit even to one line :) )
  3. Does super water-repellent effect show us, whether the auto nano protection is working?
  4. 5 most common factors that impact the longevity of car protective coating.
  5. Physical hardness and scratch resistance.
  6. Does nano-ceramic coating (or glass coating) have a better gloss, than regular car wax?
  7. Withstanding tar soaking and other car chemicals.
  8. The thickness of the coating. Does it make sense to apply multiple layers of car wax or nano coating?
  9. Is there anything better than liquid glass or ceramic coating?
  10. The difference of the gloss. One of them also cleans other only covers the surface when applied.
  11. Manufacturer reliability. “Now we have also 9H hardness nano-coating”.
  12. The price of the product. Does cheaper one have the same quality
  13. Summary.

1. 9H Hardness ceramic coating and liquid glass coating. What does this mean or what they want you to think of it?

A lot of car nano coating manufacturers are emphasizing the hardness of H9. Some manufacturers are announcing they have now 9H coating available. Well, Echelon did it already more than 10 years ago. By the way, I believe in Echelon Zen-Xero nanocoatings, because they have concentrated on this topic already 20 or more years. A lot of manufacturers that have entered the market a couple of years ago just don’t have the knowledge. I am quite confident about it.

In the case of Echelon Zen-Xero, I had to ask from the manufacturer whether their coatings are also H9 hardness. They said they produced 9H coatings already 10 years ago. But still, they don’t have marked on the product bottle any sign of 9H hardness.

To be honest, in nanocoatings characteristic, the hardness is only one of them. For comparison. Is the most important indicator of a car just power of the engine (kW)? I guess you agree with me: definitely not.

I truly can’t believe that these products, that are sold in 10–15 bucks, are full science, high-quality (often more expensive) raw materials, contain the necessary patents or day-to-day product development to stay on top.

Of course, I haven’t tested all the coatings that are available in the internet. Also, I’m not a chemist or a scientist. However, I’m telling you everything according to my personal experience. I have been in car chemical business, as a reseller, already for 12 years. Partly because of this I have a lot of contacts among small car wash owners and also major car brands official dealers on different levels.

Do I believe blindly everything that Echelon Zen-Xero nano-hybrid glass coatings manufacturer says? Certainly not. But I have made a lot of experiments on my own.

As I mentioned previously, I’m putting this article together based on my personal experience. I have been car detailing products reseller for more than 10 years. So I have personally talked to many-many car washes and car owners.

2. Beware of clickbait videos. I’ll line up a couple of topics that are cool to show in online video but the truth is somewhere out there.

2.1. Let’s pour muddy water over the car. We can see, how easily it runs off and the car remains totally clean. What can we learn from that? The actual scenario is much better described in the blog post about Echelon Zen-Xero nano liquid glass coating. This is a real case study where I literally polished and coated half of the car to see the difference in real conditions.

2.2. Apply this coating and in the future, you’ll need to rinse your car with a pressure washer. If you have any analytical thinking you might doubt on that.

2.3. Well-known “lighter scratch proof test”. Back then, 10 years ago, I made this type of videos as well. Why? Because was upset when many of my customers had seen videos on the internet and asked if I have also that scratch-proof car wax. I was really tired of explaining to them how this actually works. Then I made also a video. In the video, I showed how you can prevent stripes. In the video, the CTA was something like this: “Hey, take a look, how this *** wax protects your car. Ask for more information HERE”. That is because I don’t want to lie nor did I tell the whole truth right away in the video.

What is the whole truth? The truth is, that you can show such a trick with any kind of car wax, whether it is really hard nano coating, simple carnauba hard wax or some water-soluble spray wax. It really doesn’t matter.

I agree, this kind of videos must make an emotion, but it would be fair if you have the next step for refinements in your sales funnel. It looks to me, if someone promotes such videos and ask for purchase right away, it sounds like a scam to me.

2.4. Fast forwarding explainer videos in social media with CTA — BUY NOW! 60% OFF. The comment is similar to the previous point. To give a piece of information at high speed and ask for purchase on limited time. A couple of items left in stock (always). LOL.

3. Water repellency shows us that the car is protected? Nope. That is certainly not the case. The truth is, we tend to trust and believe things we can see in our own eyes. And if we can’t see it right away, probably there is nothing in there. The truth is, the protected car can be not water-repellent and well the surface with water good water beading can be unprotected or really weakly protected relatively the first case. How can we be sure whether the surface is properly protected by nano coating or car wax? The problem is that we actually can’t measure the thickness of the coating on that scale. Well, it is possible, but in some special laboratory. It is kinda mission impossible in car detailing workshops. Also, you won’t be able to see the obvious difference unless you have a comparative surface. So what other options do we have left? Well, That topic may even need a whole separate article, but shortly, I can give you a parallel example with car motor oil. When the manufacturer recommends changing the oil in 15000 km, we shouldn’t try to taste it or test it in some other way. Just change it. You should act the same way with coatings. If the recommended durability has passed, then just reapply the new nano coating.

4. The most common factors that impact the longevity of the protective coating of the car. For how long does it last before it wears off. What aspects can affect the durability of glass or ceramic coating?

4.1. Mileage. It is the real difference whether you drive a lot or just visit the grocery store.

4.2. Where are you mainly driving? Highway or small town. Southern countries or northern countries. Whether the studded tires are allowed or not etc. Environmental factors: This one just makes too much sense. If a car is exposed to the elements — car wax is going to wear out sooner. By storing the vehicle in a garage or even covering the vehicle, the lifespan of wax applications will naturally be expanded. Other environmental factors such as salt, pollution, road grime, and acid rain can shorten the life of wax or glass coating applied.

4.3. How often do you wash your car? If a car wash is done correctly, it does not matter how many times you do it. What actually hurts your car protective coating whether it is nano-ceramic coating, glass coating or even wax, is the too concentrated acidic or strong solvent based prewash substance.

4.4. What substance do you wash the car with? Look at the previous paragraph.

4.5. Where the car is stored usually (temperature is involved)? Many ceramic coating manufacturers claiming their products survive even hundreds of degrees (Celsius) of heat. How can the sun then hurt the coating? The sun does not actually hurt the coating layer. It is the acidic contaminant ( bird droppings and bugs) on the surface. In the high school chemistry lesson, we probably remember where it was explained, that one of the accelerators of a chemical reaction is heat. So, to put two pieces together the acid and heat together hurt the paintworks and protective coating as well.

4.6. Depending on the color of the car. Consequently, form the last paragraph, black cars get hot much more than white or silver cars. As measured, on sunny days, the black car surface could heat up to 75 degrees or even more (the air temperature was 25 degrees or something). In case of a white or silver car, the temperature rises approx up to 30–40 degrees.

5. Withstand tar soaking. Ceramic coatings and liquid glass coatings that we have chosen are with great resistant to proper tar soaking chemicals. It should be noted, that tar soaking substance should be petroleum based and not to mixed with solvents.

I have made a home test. I have immersed the piece of fully hardened piece of liquid glass coating product( Echelon Nano-Fil and Echelon Zen-Xero Dynamic) in tar soaking liquid for 1 year. The result is: nothing happened to the piece of nano glass.

To make a comparison, what is the contact time with a protective coating when we wash the car. It is a question do minutes (5–10 minutes) These pieces didn’t get hurt even on the contact time of tar soaking liquid for approx 525000 minutes.

6. Hardness and scratch resistance of Echelon glass coating. Just take a look at these videos but these videos are Estonian from one of my business, the small car wash ( in Estonian: autopesula) workshop in Tartu Estonia.

In result in damaging the surface, it looks that liquid glass is damaged as well but the overall look is totally different. It clearly shows us, the hardness of the Nano-fil itself. If take a look really closely I saw scratches on the Nano-fil as well but the overall look at the end of video … (no comment).

Totally cured liquid glass hardness test with a hammer. Tip: put the sound on, and without even understanding the Estonian language you’ll get the idea.

  1. A car remains cleaner when the superhydrophobic coating has applied. Actually, it can also be achieved with “Fast Liquid Glass” or some superhydrophobic spray.
  2. What the professional reviews telling. So far I have found only such reviews, that have affiliate referral links. In other words, these are usually pure marketing content sites, but not directly from manufacturers. Well, actually I understand that it is part of nowadays online business. My concern is that in many cases they don’t have any proof for their claims.
  3. Is there anything better than liquid glass or ceramic coating available?

Yes, it is. The better protection is 170 microns thick. It survives basically any solvents and acids. It is also self-healing, so it heals even car wash brush scratches. Protection durability is 5 or more years. I’ll write about it in August 2019. If you would like to get a notification for the post of this topic, please subscribe here.

6. Glossiness. Does ceramic coating or nano glass coating have better gloss than regular wax? Yes and no. But of course, it depends on the specific product. In general, I could point out that usually car wax and nano protection has almost the same level of glossiness. The main difference is that nano liquid glass coating has the ability to improve the gloss by applying multiple layers. In the case of car wax, it doesn’t matter if you make 1 or 3 applications, the glossiness and thickness of protection remain the same.

7. The thickness of the protective layer. In general car wax layer, the thickness is approx 20 nanometers. The thickness of the liquid glass layer is ca 5 microns (5000 nm). That means the thickness of nano liquid glass is approximately 200 to 250 times thicker.

8. Whether car polishing is essential before applying liquid glass coating, ceramic coating or waxing? Well, I have had hundreds of clients for car nano coating or waxing. All they are kinda different. Some of them have said, that their car doesn’t have to be 100% scratch free and there is no need to get the car shiny as possible. For them is most important to get the best protection to the car. And that’s it. Sometimes it looks, that there is even no question of the price of prep work. They just don’t care.

9. The possibility of fixing mistakes. In the case of car waxing, there is a relatively easy way to fix mistakes. You can just reapply partially and that’s it. In the case of car ceramic coating or nano liquid glass coating, it is mission impossible. For instance, in case of a partial mistake on the hood, you’ll need to polish off and reapply protective coating on the whole hood. Here you can take a look, how does it look like, if the coating has applied in a hurry. Truth is, that this job was not done by us. But to get it done properly, we had to polish this car one more time and reapply the nano-ceramic coating.

These mistakes were noticeable all over the car. Since it was a black car the mistakes were totally annoying and there was not a part of the car without such a mistake.

To point out the look of these mistakes on the car were seriously worse. To get it all on the picture needs some skill already.

10. The price of the product/service. In general, it is understandable that all nano coating manufacturers have their own marketing strategies. Some of them use multiple parts of the supply chain. Some of them try to make sales directly via the internet and reach the whole world.

Everything is possible these days. But still, it looks to me that there is a logical boundary somewhere.

For instance, talking about car wash or detailing workshop in parallel, those who are not able to ask for the worthy price, their business won’t last long or they won’t have progressed in time. I have seen them coming and going over time. Looks like many of them think that car wash business is simple — all you need is water and shampoo. It’s costs nothing. Very soon they will find them in trouble. And then starts marketing: “let’s make discounts”. In result it ends up more or less like this:

  • Most probably they don’t have time and money for proper marketing/advertising.
  • Most probably they don’t have funds to learn and try new things.
  • Most probably they don’t have funds to find a motivated workforce.
  • Most probably they don’t have funds to buy professional tools and chemistry.
  • According to the weather, sometimes they have to work like crazy.
  • Most probably they don’t make money to cover mistakes that happen.
  • In stressed out most probably they make more mistakes.
  • Most probably they don’t make money, so they are not happy with their business or job.
  • Etc, etc …

So, would you prefer the cheapest service?

Sum up: don’t lose your reason when looking for the cheapest and best nano protection for your car.

I do understand that every car owner has different budgets for car maintenance. Also, cars are different with different price itself ( there are usual everyday cars, hobby cars, middle-class cars, premium brand cars, etc) and different emotional value. Usually, you don’t make such expenses to an older car but … I have had a customer who ordered full polish and nano coating service for 1000€ but the car price was back then est. 5000–6000€. So, let’s make a conclusion: the personal value of the car is not only the current market price of the car.