PPF vs. Ceramic Coating Part 2: Durability

PPF vs ceramic coating durability

Welcome to part 2 of our 3-part series comparing paint protection film (PPF) to ceramic coating. Last time, we discussed the subject of chemical resistance. Today, we’re talking about durability– how well it stands up to the elements, how easy it is to repair damage, and how long it will last.

What is Paint Protection Film?

Regarding durability, paint protection films are a strong contender. Paint protection films often have self-healing properties, so while they aren’t entirely resistant to damage, many surface-level scratches will dissipate over time. A PPF is also very good at resisting damage from rock chips. On the other hand, if the PPF suffers significant damage, it may need to be removed and replaced entirely. This is far from an ideal situation, and the PPF loses some points in durability for that.

What is Ceramic Coating?

A ceramic coating is a highly durable option for protecting your paint. Ceramic coatings boast 9H hardness for superior resistance to minor scratches and are generally easier to repair than paint protection films. In addition, they form a permanent bond with your car’s paint, so they need only be applied once. Ceramic coatings’ longevity and overall hardiness are unmatched in the paint protection world.

PPF vs. Ceramic Coating

When considering the differences between a ceramic coating and a PPF (Paint Protection Film), evaluating how each option will affect the desired results is essential. First, consider aesthetics. A ceramic coating provides a high gloss finish with enhanced color and clarity. It may be more suitable for owners seeking to show off their vehicle’s paint job or reduce adverse fading effects from sunlight. On the other hand, PPF adds an extra layer onto your car body, allowing you to customize the design by playing around with colors and textures or opt for full-body protection if you’re concerned about potential damages or wear-and-tear. Let’s compare a few common aspects of car detailing.

Aesthetic Appeal

PPF is a polyurethane layer that places a barrier between the elements and your paint job. It’s usually clear in color and won’t change the appearance of your vehicle. If you apply it correctly, it should last many years and provide excellent protection from flying gravity or scratches with a key. Ceramic coating offers protection similar to PPF but also has other optical benefits. This coating gives the paintwork extra shine and luster due to its glossy finish, which cannot be achieved with just PPF alone. It can improve the overall aesthetic appeal of your car significantly; however, ceramic coating is much more costly than PPF, so unless aesthetics are a top priority, sticking with PPF may be best for most cases.


Maintaining a car’s paint job can be time-consuming, but Paint Protection Film (PPF) and Ceramic Coating have made it easier. PPF and ceramic coatings help reduce the upkeep required to maintain your car’s paint job. With these protective films, you’ll only need a few washes to keep your paint in tip-top shape.

Of the two options, a ceramic coating is easier to maintain because of its hydrophobic properties. The ceramic coating acts as a shield over the paint so dirt won’t stick as easily as regular car paint. This means that you won’t have to waste your time or money cleaning your car as often and don’t need to apply wax now and then for protection. By investing in a ceramic coating, you’ll spend less time on maintenance while enjoying a more attractive finish on your car.

Level of Protection

Paint protection film offers an extra layer of potential protection as it has self-healing properties that will quickly repair any damage to your car’s paint job due to light or minor scratches. This technology prevents Water swirl marks from sticking around, making it a great option when deciding which product is best for you.

Also, consider ceramic coatings when giving your car a protective layer. Auto detailing professionals often use ceramic coatings because they create a barrier between your vehicle and the environment outside. This barrier protects against dirt, mud, insect debris, and even chemical reactions like bird droppings decaying on the surface. While ceramic coatings cannot heal themselves from scratches or water swirl marks like paint protection films can, they provide higher levels of protection against exterior elements that would otherwise cause fading and dullness over time if left untreated for too long.


Ceramic coating is an appealing choice for many car owners due to its longevity. PPF must be replaced after only a few years and eventually removed; ceramic coating lasts far longer. It can stay on your car for years – up to the entire life of your car – so you rarely need to worry about reapplication. This significantly lessens the long-term costs associated with ownership and makes it a more cost-effective option in the long run despite the slightly higher upfront cost.

Moreover, ceramic coatings offer superior protection against UV damage and other environmental hazards compared with PPF. They actively repel dirt, grime, and pollutants while preventing scratches, fading, chipping, and more. So, you can rest assured that your paint job will remain in mint condition if the coating remains in place. Consider ceramic coating if you hope to enjoy your vehicle without worrying about maintenance issues for years.

Is There a Clear Winner?

Regarding durability, Paint protection films and ceramic coatings both have their advantages. So, who comes out ahead this time? The self-healing and resistance to rock chips are points in favor of a PPF. With a ceramic coating, you get longer-lasting protection, superior resistance to most forms of damage, and greater repairability. If we had to choose just one, we would award this category to the ceramic coating.

That’s all for this time, but keep your eyes peeled for the final post in our 3 part series, where we’ll talk about hydrophobicity–a fancy word for how well something repels water.

Ceramic coatings offer unmatched durability, and at Details Matter, we are certified installers of both Ceramic Pro and Ceramic Pro PPF. Please contact us today to learn more about our paint protection coatings.

This article was originally published in August 2017 but has been updated for accuracy and freshness.