How to Remove Ceramic Coating – Easy Step by Step Complete Process

You will most likely want to remove ceramic coating at some point. There is, however, likely to arise a problem in your attempts to remove the ceramic coating. This is mainly occasioned by the fact that some of the components used to manufacture the ceramic coating are the same as those in the making of pottery glaze.

Removing the ceramic coating is a puzzle. While sealant and wax can be removed with just clay and finishing polish, ceramic coatings mostly require a medium polish at least to be removed.

Failing to remove the old layer of ceramic coating will most likely deter the new product from bonding with the surface properly, and apparently, affect its durability negatively.

How to Remove Ceramic Coating
Remove Ceramic Coating

It is, therefore, suitable to remove the worn layer of ceramic coating completely before embarking on the application of a new protective product.


This article will focus on the best ways of removing the ceramic coating.

The Best Ways of Removing Ceramic Coating

Chemical removal
Chemical removal

1. Chemical removal

Using chemicals to remove ceramic coating can be considered one of the most effective ways. Even though ceramic coating might be resistant to some chemicals, its strength is reduced significantly by using alkaline products. It’s not known whether the alkaline product is capable of removing the whole old coating. They are however said to have an impact on its performance and sometimes harm the exterior coating of your vehicle.

The product has enough chemical properties to be able to remove the ceramic coating. It is strong enough to remove the paint work underneath. Best chemical remover I found “Chemical Guys GAP_619_16 Black Light Hybrid Radiant Finish Color Enhancer

When using a chemical to remove the ceramic coating, below are the steps to be followed:

  • Put about 20 to 30 drops on the applicator to prime the pad for application
  • Spread out your product in the middle of your section
  • Use a Cross hatch overlapping pattern
  • Pay attention to the hedges and body lines; this is where high spots are most common
  • Make 3 to 4 full cross hatch patterns applying in each section
  • Use long smooth strokes
  • Once you have complete coverage of your section, it’s time to level and remove excess
  • First, wipe firm pressure and straight lines
  • Always begin and end each section with edges and body lines
  • Wipe, flip towel, small circles of the wrist
  • Use a low pile towel again for the third wipe
  • Always keep your hand as flat as possible; don’t bunch the towel in your hand.
  • Once you prime the pad, it should only take 6 to 8 small drops to do each panel or section
  • Spread the product over the entire section on your first 4 strokes
  • Go back and work the product into the entire section
  • Try to make long even strokes with consistent and balanced pressure
  • Laying out the product evenly and quickly is important
  • Press the fingertips into the cracks and tight spots
  • Spread the product evenly over an entire section

2. Claying

In as much as claying may be insufficient, it still has some effect on the coating. Especially if the coating seems quite eroded, one is advised to get rid of a big portion of the coating from the layer.

Compositionally, clay is an adhesive composite and is used to rid chemicals off the exterior surface of the car’s paint. Given that it is abrasive, it removes contaminants when the clay bar is burnished through the surface.
Contaminants stick to the rod since the clay is sticky. These include scratches and marring.

However, using claying as a way of detaching ceramic coating has its own demerits; the most pronounced one being that it doesn’t get rid of iron contamination.

claying to remove ceramic coating
Claying to remove ceramic coating

Considering using claying in removing ceramic coating? Follow the steps below:

  • Slide the clay rod from one side to the other side of the exterior of your vehicle paint, passing by anything that projects on the surface.
  • To protect the vehicle from being damaged by the unattached debris, use grease to make the surface wet during claying.
  • Clean the surface using a loose cloth in order to get rid of the debris and get it ready to be able to apply a new protecting coating.

3. Polishing

Polishing is the most popular and widely used method of removing coating from the vehicle. This is instrumental in preparing the exterior for the application of the new ceramic coating and in removing any contaminations. The following steps should be considered in polishing.

polishing to remove ceramic coating
  • Step 1: Drive your car to a shaded area, and wash it by hand. Rinse, but don’t dry it! Please note that the wheeling process can get messy, so ensure that pets, cars, and walls are covered to avoid soiling them.
  • Step 2: Get a slightly damp and clean pad, apply some little compound on a section of the body panel. Spin the pad parallel to the surface of the car is trying to avoid swirl marks. Constant pressure should be applied, while you work back and forth throughout the panel’s surface. Do the same to other panels.
  • Step 3: Where necessary, it’s highly recommended that the foam pad should be rinsed off. This prevents it from saturation and gumming up with the compounds.
  • Step 4: When finished, washing and rinsing of the car by hand for another time is recommended. This should be done on the trunk, hood jambs, and doors. They should be dried thoroughly.
  • Step 5: Apply a coat of wax to mask the swirl masks and remaining imperfect surfaces.
  • Step 6: The other areas of the car like windows and interiors should be cleaned while waiting for the wax to dry. Use a microfiber towel to remove unwanted wax. The car should then be moved to sunlight.

To achieve a high gloss, perfectly smooth finish, engage the use of a coarse polish during polishing to get rid of water spots, swirls, scratches, and surface dirt that is underneath.

The above are just the most commonly used ways of riding off ceramic coats. There are, however, other methods such as subjecting the ceramic coating to an aqueous solution of ammonium bi-fluoride, preferably with a wetting agent.
Ideally, it is recommended to combine all the above methods for a perfect output.


Safety Measurements of Ceramic Coating

Removing ceramic car coatings from your vehicle is not as hard as you may have thought, provided you understand exactly the kind of surface that you are intending to have the coating removed from.

Also when undertaking the removal of ceramic coating, it is important to take into consideration safety measures to ensure that the process does not pose a risk to you.

Safety Measurements of Ceramic Coating
Safety Measurements of Ceramic Coating

Some of these safety measures include, but are not limited to, the ones listed below:

  • Always wear gum boots. These are essential in protecting your feet and legs from getting into contact with the chemicals in the process.
  • Always wear gloves. To protect your hands from the dangers posed by the chemicals, it is important to wear gloves, preferably leather made.
  • Always wear goggles. This will ensure your eyes are protected from the negative effects posed to the eyes. Chemicals can even cause blindness and this risk can be avoided by putting on protective eye goggles.
  • Put on reflector jacket. Since this is a job that is mostly done in the workshop, reflector jacket is important to enhance visibility. Other technicians and workers in the workshop should be able to spot you.
  • Avoid smoking. Chemicals are mostly flammable and so smoking in the area of work can have a detrimental effect that is so dangerous; it can cause fire, damaging properties and possibly death.
  • Put away sharp objects. Sharp object can easily cause injuries, and so should be kept away from the area of work A multi-stage paint correction should be undertaken. This involves cleaning the vehicle, claying, buffing and keeping it unspoilt.

So, thinking of putting another protective product on your vehicle? You must take the process of removing ceramic coating as seriously as the process of applying the new protective product to your vehicle.

Wrapping Up

Nobody wants to have a process that will end up in losses, injuries or deaths. Your property including the vehicle is so precious to you and so measures to prevent any possible damage should be put in place.

Using the above process properly to remove the ceramic coating from the surface of your vehicle should enable you to achieve the desired results.

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