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Glidecoat Ceramic Coatings Maintenance Guide

Christian Westhorpe
APPLICATION SPECIALIST

Ceramic coatings have become increasingly popular in the boating world over the past few years, but even with the popularity of ceramic coatings there is still a lot of misinformation about coatings and what they can do.

Ceramic coatings are one of, if not the best product to protect and preserve the integrity of your surface, far superior to traditional wax and sealants (especially in the marine market). One of the most common misinterpretations of a ceramic coating is that they are almost maintenance free, or your boat will not get dirty if it has a ceramic coating. That is simply not the case.

While ceramic coatings are extremely durable, they require ongoing maintenance to ensure that you are getting the full benefits and protection out of your ceramic coating. With that being said, the main benefit of having a ceramic coating is that your ongoing maintenance is much easier and more effective (with less effort) than using a traditional wax or sealant.

In this guide we will explain how to properly maintain a ceramic coating on your boat to ensure you are getting the most out of your ceramic coating, and properly protect your investment.

INITIAL APPLICATION MAINTENANCE

After the application of our Marine Ceramic Coating, it is important to let the coating fully cure before getting the boat wet or putting the boat back in the water. A full cure of our ceramic coatings is between 24-48 hours. If the boat gets wet or rained on during the curing process, dry the boat as soon as possible, and avoid leaving the boat to air dry to prevent potential water spots on the surface.

Allow a minimum of 48 hours before washing the boat to ensure the coating has fully cured.

ONGOING MAINTENANCE

After the coating has fully cured, we recommend the ongoing maintenance of rinsing (and drying) after every use, bi-weekly washes, and spot cleaning as needed.

Ongoing maintenance is an important factor in ensuring that you get the most benefits from your ceramic coating. If a coating is too dirty, this layer of contamination (salt, dirt, bird droppings, water spots) will diminish the stain resistance and hydrophobic properties of the ceramic coating, making your boat more difficult to clean, defeating the main purpose of a ceramic coating.

Here are some general guidelines for ongoing maintenance of your ceramic coating:

  • Rinse your boat after every use to remove contaminants from the surface. We highly recommend drying your boat after rinsing, and avoid letting you boat air dry, which may cause water spots. If your boat is on a lift and you cannot access the hull to dry, we recommend using a stream of water (not a spray nozzle) down the hull sides to remove contaminants while not leaving excess water on the surface that could cause water spots.
  • Bi-weekly washes (every two weeks) with Glidecoat Nano Wash or Glidecoat Ceraglo. Avoid using high pH soaps such as Dawn dish soap, or soaps that contain heavy cleaners of degreasers. These soaps won’t harm the coating after a few uses, but continual use of aggressive soaps and cleaners will expediate the wear of the top layer of coating. This will diminish and reduce the protective qualities of the ceramic coating, as well as reduce the longevity of the coating. Glidecoat Ceraglo is the perfect after care soap for you ceramic coating. Ceraglo is a polymer infused soap designed to increase the gloss of the surface while leaving a layer of protection on top of the ceramic coating to promote the longevity.
  • Avoid using stiff bristled brushes or abrasive washing tools.
  • Use a microfiber wash mitt or a soft bristled brush when washing.
  • Dry the boat with a microfiber drying cloth or a clean chamois.
SPOT CLEANING MAINTENANCE

In between your bi-weekly washes you may need to do some spot cleaning. Whether it’s salt build up on the hull, water spots from the rain, or bird droppings, we recommend cleaning them as you see them to make your ongoing maintenance that much easier.

Here are some general guidelines for spot cleaning:

  • For excess salt buildup on your hull we recommend using Glidecoat X-Salt to safely remove the salt without harming the ceramic coating. Simply spray X-Salt on the surface, allow it to dwell for 5-10 minutes, then rinse it off. X-Salt can also be added to your wash bucket with Glidecoat Nano Wash or Glidecoat Ceraglo to help remove stubborn salt buildup while you wash.
  • If you are in an area without salt water and/or are having issues with hard water spots we recommend using Glidecoat WaterSpot Remover to safely remove hard water spots without harming the ceramic coating. Simply spray Glidecoat WaterSpot Remover onto the surface, wipe it in with a microfiber cloth, allow it to dwell for 2-3 minutes then wipe it off with a clean microfiber cloth.
  • When spot cleaning bird droppings or small stains we recommend using a waterless wash of Glidecoat Surface wipe with a microfiber cloth. Avoid using excessive force when removing stains.
QUARTERLY MAINTENANCE

In addition to ongoing maintenance and spot cleaning, ceramic coatings benefit from a maintenance spray every 3-4 months in southern states or once a season in northern states, such as Glidecoat’s Marine Shine and Shield. Marine Shine and Shield will enhance the shine and hydrophobic effect of the surface, while adding an additional layer of protection on top of the ceramic coating to promote longevity.

Marine Shine and Shield is a simple spray on, wipe off application.

Here are some general guidelines for applying Marine Shine and Shield for quarterly maintenance:

  • Shine and Shield can be applied as needed to add gloss and water beading to the surface.
  • Do not apply Shine and Shield to a dirty surface, always clean/wash the area first before applying.
  • Shine and Shield can be applied to a wet surface, allowing you to dry the surface while leaving some protection behind.
  • We recommend using two microfibers when applying Shine and Shield, using the first microfiber to buff the surface while using a second clean microfiber to ensure the surface is smooth and uniform.
  • Shine and Shield can be layered with multiple coats for enhanced protection, allow a minimum of 30 minutes between each coat.
ANNUAL MAINTENANCE

An annual maintenance typically consists of a decontamination wash with Glidecoat Iron Remover to remove contamination from the surface that could be impacting the hydrophobic properties of the ceramic coating. After the Iron Remover, the boat should be washed with Glidecoat Nano Wash or Glidecoat Ceraglo. Inspect the coated areas to ensure that the ceramic coating is holding up as expected. If any areas are not beading water, but still have a good shine, apply Marine Shine and Shield to restore the hydrophobic activity on the surface.

If any of the high sun exposed areas have significantly diminished in gloss it may require a light polish to restore the shine and have one additional coat of the ceramic coating applied.