Do you really want cheap coatings?


faded paint


In any industry, especially the automotive industry, something cheap comes at a lower price and a higher risk. A lower price tag comes with a compromise somewhere. In this post, we are going to talk about some of the compromises some of the detailers tend to make to achieve a lower price point. These compromises sometimes lead to irreparable damage to the paint, which would often require a repaint.

Inadequate Preparation


The end result after the application of a coating depends on the preparation before it. Proper preparation includes but is not limited to a thorough clean-up, decontamination, and paint correction. Good preparation requires intensive labor and the use of quality products, it makes up a huge part of the cost. A compromise in preparation can lead to the coating not lasting as long, having diminished effectiveness and gloss. 

Improper Preparation

improper techniques can cause buffer swirls

Improper preparation can sometimes come at a huge cost, as using wrong techniques or products can lead to the paint being cut. This would require a repaint of the panel. We’ve seen brand new Harriers, Seltos’, Sonnets, Audis, BMW, and Porsches being brought to us for a repaint after a preparation, compounding, or correction gone wrong. This is something you don’t want to compromise on, so make sure the detailer has a good reputation and ample experience and understanding before opting for a coating application.

Wrong application techniques

improper application causes coating high spots

Entry-level coatings don’t have very specific application techniques, they just require you to use an applicator pad and bob’s your uncle. But when we’re talking about premium coatings, the ones that last a long time, give you adequate protection and make your vehicle look awesome. They require very specific and difficult-to-master techniques to make the most of it. Improper techniques can lead to the formation of patches and uneven coverage, high spots, haze, and more such defects that are difficult to repair. These look really bad and drastically impact the effectiveness of the coating. Improper application of some premium coatings like Maxprotect’s Pro-Elite and UNC-R require the use of heavy abrasives to remove them. By getting an expert to install the coating, will give you much better results and pay off in terms of durability, effectiveness, and other positive results in the end. 

Using cheaper products

cheap ceramic coatings

With many Chinese alternatives coming up in the market, newer detailers choose to go with them in the spirit of saving a few bucks. We’ve tested a few of these products (on our vehicles), and they caused irreparable damage to the surface and sometimes required a repaint or intensive correction. We wouldn’t touch these so-called “cheaper alternatives” with a ten-foot pole and advise everyone to stay away from them.

Using cheaper coatings

There is always someone who charges less.

We’ve all seen the meme, someone always does it for cheaper. This perfectly fits into the world of coatings. In our testing of these cheap coatings, we found that the coatings lost their effectiveness after just a few washes. You would be better off getting a sealant or even a wax on your car rather than these cheap coatings. 

We have heard enough funny statements from untrained technicians offering low-quality coatings in the market. 3h coatings applied 3 times is 9h is just one of the many stomach-churning quotes that we have heard apart from 12 layers, 14 layers, permanent bonding etc.

Nothing beats the quality and finish of premium products we use at ReflectOn, it may come with a higher price tag but will pay for itself down the road in terms of durability, results and satisfaction.

How to identify the cheap stuff?

example of a failed ceramic coating

There’s no foolproof way of spotting it. Find a reputable detailer near you, read their reviews and talk to them, ask questions. If they’re passionate about it or have a very good reputation, they wouldn’t damage it by trying to save some money. 

There are a lot of untrained technicians who have recently opened outlets only with the intention of making a quick buck, they are not really in for a long term goal and will vanish quickly by offering dubious warranty, guarantee schemes that are irresistible in the beginning and vanish before you even realize. Our suggestion would be to stay away from people who claim – 10h, 12h, etc…, several layers, Hybrid Ceramic Spray Coatings, Claiming to be manufacturing their own coatings, or brands that do not have a presence anywhere else in the world, apply once and forget and such sorts. Another thing to look out for is people claiming that a ceramic coating gives shine to the paint, it’s the intense preparation that goes before it that gives the paint the shine and gloss, not the coating itself.

Opt for a professional always who has a good reputation in the industry, ask technical questions to know whether they know what they are doing and a bit of homework would put you in a better position.

A famous quote from Warren Buffet.


It may seem attractive at first, to go with a cheaper coating, but if protecting the paint is your goal there’s no sound alternative to a good product. These usually come at a higher price but often provide better value and do an amazing job protecting the paint on your vehicle. 

Call us on 9980668119 to know more about the expert detailing and protection options available with us.

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