PPF Wraps vs Ceramic Coating: Which is better?

A bentley continental gt parked in a garage.

There is nothing better than Paint Protection film (PPF) or Ceramic coating when it comes to car paint protection in the UK. But Which is better? Should you get paint protection film (PPF) or ceramic coating?

Which one’s more effective? Are they durable? What about the cost? These are some of the many questions that come along with the two simple options.

Today, through our post on PPF Wraps vs Ceramic coating we will help you answer all the above questions. And make sense of the very answer “It depends”.

BMW IX PPF installation


What are PPF Wraps?

PPF wraps or Paints Protection Film wraps are simple, transparent protection films that are installed over your car exterior. You can take it as simple lamination just with certain properties.

Also known as ”clear bras”, PPFs are thermoplastic polyurethane films with hydrophobic nature and also have self-healing capacity. So not only do these films protect your car paint against water marks, dust, and grim but also against rock chips and debris that you might encounter daily.

What makes PPF even more amazing is that they are UV rays repellent meaning they reflect UV rays protecting your car paint from dulling down. At the same time, PPF also adds a natural shine to your vehicle exterior. Not only does this protect your paint but also keeps your car always looking new for years to come.

Having PPF over your car also means an easier cleaning routine. Since these wraps prevent any sort of dust or dirt from sticking to your paint, water is all that is needed to wipe your car clean.

Bentley having Paint Protection Film (ppf) installed.

What is Ceramic Coating?

Ceramic Coating just like PPF is a paint protection coating. The basic difference between them is that one’s a film while the other is a coat. So while PPF can later be peeled such flexibility does not come with ceramic coatings. Though you can add a new layer of ceramic coating over older ones.

Similar to PPFs, Ceramic Coatings offer a certain level of paint protection. They are very hydrophobic in nature so the liquid does not stick to the body. Ceramic coatings also provide anti-UV protection, preventing the sun’s harmful rays from dulling your paint.


At the same time, they add gloss to your paint similar to PPF but better, making your car always feel like new.

Since the ceramic coating is a transparent solvent that bonds with the paint, it prevents anything from making direct contact with your car’s paint. Meaning no watermarks, no dirt, grease, or grim and very less chance of rusting. Them being hydrophobic also means that a microfibre cloth is enough to wipe your car clean.

But while the ceramic coating and PPF wraps provide similar kinds of paint protection, the level of protection has some major differences.

PPF vs Ceramic Coating: What’s the difference?

Bentley having Paint Protection Film (ppf) installed.

 

Protection:

  • Against Debris: Both PPF and ceramic coating offer protection from dirt and debris from scratching the car’s paint. However, PPFs being a lot thicker than ceramic coating is very effective in that regard.
  • While ceramic coatings do provide a certain level of protection against dirt and debris, PPFs are physical layers that act like a shield protecting your paint from debris, bugs and leaves. Since these coats are also self-healing, if bigger gravel does cause a scratch on the PPF, a little exposure to heat will fix them. However, with ceramic coats, you will have to apply another layer.
  • Against Watermarks And corrosion: If there is one thing that ceramic coating does the best is protection against water. Water being the reason behind water marks, mud, corrosion and contaminants are all prevented by the use of ceramic coats.
  • Because while PPF does offer some hydrophobic properties, the very composition of ceramic coating is hydrophobic, which makes them extremely effective at protecting your car’s exteriors against water.
  • Against UV rays: Paint Protection compounds are made to be UV repellent. Sunlight being the biggest reason behind fading of car paint over time, needs to be reflected so your paint does not get dull over time.
  • Though Ceramic coating and PPF both add a great level of protection against the sunlight, over time PPF wraps tend to get yellowish. Whereas Ceramic coats stay the way they are.
    Durability:
  • Regarding durability, Ceramic coats usually last between 2-5 years before needing to be reapplied. In comparison, PPF wraps are more like a one-time thing as they last well around 5-7 years given they are of good quality.

Since these wraps are much thicker and self-repairing in nature they can take more beating while maintaining the same level of protection. However, with ceramic coating, continuous contact with dirt and debris especially around the bumpers causes them to get thinner over time, losing their ability to offer enough protection to the paint.

Bentley having Paint Protection Film (ppf) installed.


Glossiness:

One of the biggest worries people often have with paint protection layers is whether they will kill the shine of their vehicle’s paint. Fortunately, that is not the case with PPF or ceramic coating. In fact, they add even more gloss and shine to your paint.

Bentley having Paint Protection Film (ppf) installed.


Cost:

The cost related to PPF and Ceramic greatly depends on their level of application. With PPFs the cost mainly depends on the quality of the PPF and the areas they are needed to be applied on.

Whereas the price of a ceramic coat is dependent on the amount used. Usually, you have a 30ml bottle that’s enough to be applied all over the car irrespective of the size or the brand.
This simple factor makes ceramic coating a lot cheaper than PPF wraps.

Bentley having Paint Protection Film (ppf) installed.

PPF vs Ceramic Coating: Conclusion

Both PPF and Ceramic coatings are very effective in protecting your paint against all kinds of adversaries. However, it’s the difference between them that makes one better than the other depending on the type of need.

If you are somebody looking for a cheaper yet effective paint protection solution then a ceramic coating is for you. Given that you are daily driving your car in the city and moving around cities on highways.

However, if your driving includes gravel roads with more contact with dirt and debris, the ceramic coating will be a waste of money. Instead, even if a bit expensive, you should consider PPF wraps.

Another scenario in which PPFs are better is when you have an expensive car with an expensive paint job. In such cases, PPFs would prove better value than ceramic coating any day. Also, if you are worried about PPF getting dull over time or losing gloss, Auto Wrap Manchester offers PPF + Ceramic coating so that you can get the best of both worlds.

Request a Free Quote

If you are interested in increasing your’s paint protection with the use of clear self-healing vinyl then feel free to request a free quote from us via our form below and our sales team will be in contact as soon as possible.

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