• Ben Runkel

PPF vs Ceramic Coatings - What's the Difference?

First, let's define PPF and Ceramic Coatings.

Paint Protection Film (PPF), also referred to as clear bra, is a thick protective film that adheres to your vehicle's painted surface providing physical protection from rock chips, scratches and other damage.

A Ceramic Coating is a chemical product applied to your vehicle's painted surface that bonds at the molecular level to provide long lasting looks, ease of cleaning, and protection from the elements.

There are several differences as far as how these two products are applied, and also the benefits that they provide. PPF is applied wet, similar to window tint, and sticks to the surface by squeegeeing the moisture out. The surface needs to be thoroughly prepped and contaminant free before installing PPF. Ceramic coatings are applied in a very meticulous manner, often in small sections at a time. The surface needs to be thoroughly prepped as well, but also polished to a level agreed upon by the detailer and customer.

Benefits of Paint Protection Film

- Prevents rock chips

- *Self-healing (more on this below!)

- Gloss, Matte, Color, or Pattern finishes available

- Physically protects your paint from the elements

- 10 year warranties available

*Self-healing means that the film can get scratched, and then those scratches will disappear with a bit of heat or from sitting in the direct sun

Benefits of Ceramic Coatings

- Incredible looks, shine and gloss

- Vehicle stays looking cleaner longer

- Ease of maintenance/washing

- Slickness



Paint Protection Film

  • Prevents rock chips

  • Best physical protection available for your vehicle

  • Enhances vehicle's finish

  • Lasts up to 10+ years

  • Every install has the potential for small visible blemishes under the film (dust/dirt/etc)

  • Price - more expensive than a ceramic coating

Ceramic Coatings

  • Looks incredible

  • Repels dirt and water, keeping your vehicle looking cleaner

  • Easier to wash and maintain

  • Great resistance to harsh chemicals and UV rays

  • Can be applied to multiple surfaces: wheels, glass, plastics

  • Will not prevent rock chips or scratches

  • Can lose performance if not maintained well

To Sum It Up

If you are all about LOOKS and want your vehicle's paint to look absolutely amazing, then a ceramic coating with a fair amount of paint correction is for you.

If you are all about PROTECTION and you want to keep your paint free of stone chips and physical damage, then PPF is for you. PPF still provides amazing looks though too. 😎

Can I have the best of both worlds!?

Absolutely! One of the most popular services for new vehicles is to get PPF on the front end (where rock chips are most susceptible), and to ceramic coat the rest of the vehicle. You can even ceramic coat over the PPF to add more slickness and water and dirt repellency.

This truck received a full front end PPF + Drivers Package AND the Level 3 Ceramic Coating Package

Ben Runkel


Gtechniq Accredited Ceramic Coating Specialist

STEK Paint Protection Film Accredited

(574) 333-9976

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