New car care right out of dealership - how to protect paint?

For a new car straight out of a dealership - what can be done so the paint is protected for long?
I keep reading about sealants, ceramic coatings and paint protection films - are they worth it? And which one to go for? There's just so much contradicting information on the interwebs on this. The other questions around this on the forum are talking mostly about this for (slightly ?) older cars. Any other things that can be done from the get go so the car is better protected inside out - appears neat and well taken care of?


  • +11

    Really depends on you. Happy to spend the time at least twice a year to properly detail the car yourself then a quality sealant/wax will be fine. Prefer to just wash it once a month then ceramic coating is OK. Disregard the scratch and stone chip BS on ceramic coatings. This is pure fantasy. One downside many don't consider with ceramic coatings is they can't be paint corrected later without removing the coating which takes longer and therefore costs more and in an accident repair the coating is again removed and you'll need to pay more to have it reapplied.

    Whatever you choose to do, someone at the car park will slam their door into it within the first month of you having it.

    • the other downside to ceramic coating is that if it has not been properly cured after application you will continue to have scratches and stone chips.

      • +5

        You'll have scratches and stone chips regardless. Cermaic coatings can not stop this despite their fanciful claims. PPF has a chance of stopping much of it but has a limited life and is expensive to do a whole vehicle.

    • +1

      Whatever you choose to do, someone at the car park will slam their door into it within the first month of you having it.

      Exact reason why i never buy new vehicles, because If they get damaged I get hurt a lot

  • +11

    Keep it garaged, protected from the elements and accidents.

    • +14

      you mean don't drive it.

      • +1

        don't forget to bubble wrap it

  • Bought a 10 year old car that had ceramic protection from the factory I think, paint still looks amazing.

    I think some sort of protection was applied to the leather seats as well, still looks amazing too.

    I'm sure the owners also took good care of it.

    • +9

      I'm sure the owners also took good care of it.

      I can guarantee you this is the sole reason it still looks good. Cars don't age if they're looked after. I have a 24 year old car that still looks fantastic and the original leather is perfect.

    • +7

      Never heard of factory ceramic protection.

      The dealership most likely had it applied.

      • Yeah that's probably what happened. It was part of the original purchase price.

  • +3

    What car OP?

    Hyundai i20 - wouldn't bother
    Golf GTI - sure, why not
    Macan GTS - hell yeah

    • What about Hyundai Iconiq 5

      • +3

        Just rub it with a satin cloth. Generates static electricity which will charge the battery at the same time.

  • +1

    Put it in the garage and never take it out.

    But seriously, if you do a lot of driving it might be worth getting a clear vinyl wrap over the front of the car at least.

  • +2

    This thread might help

    Garage it, and touch it as little as possible when washing it. 2 bucket system with prewaah and blow dry. Don't eat in car

    Anyway after 6 months you wont care as you will get bumps, kerb rash, trolley scratches as you use it everyday

    Enjoy it while it's new

  • +4

    Didn't the ming moll help you out?

  • -1

    are they worth it? NONO

  • +2

    Get a screwdriver and scratch it. Then you don't have to stress about it getting scratched anymore

    • We did something similar (by accident obviously).
      Scraped a new car in the first week on a gate post; not worth getting fixed so left it as it was.

      • +1

        that first ding or scratch hurts the most, after that it's character

    • +1

      Totally agree with this! Cars are tools, they need some character and a scratch here and there doesn’t hurt.

      • +1

        Cars are tools,

        So are most of their drivers.

  • I'd get it done externally through a detailer.

    PPF if it's worth it to you. It will fail over time.

    Ceramic coatings will make it easier to clean, reduce risk of light marring and defects. Some offer good hydrophobic qualities.
    Ceramic coatings will generally need appropriate paint correction (yes, even if brand new) proper application and curing. PH neutral washing, maintenance with si02 coatings.

    I've detailed a number of my cars and I've finally had a go at doing my GR Yaris Rallye myself and I am pleased with the results and I know it had proper paint correction and application. The product is usually $120 but will cost about $200 all up if you buy a new buffing pad, towels, prep cleaners etc etc.

    Overall, worth it pending the money.

    For me, it's easier to clean. Hydrophobic qualities are great, I managed to correct the free pre-delivery swirls.

    Also to further inflame discussion, not all ceramic coatings are the same. I have had the 'premium ones' on my previous cars and funnily enough some of the normal ones have better workability, application and retention.

  • contradicting information on the interwebs on this.

    no there is no contradicting info about this. you should look up what each type is protecting.
    PPF protects from light scratches/rock chips, very expensive and is used on supercars/very expensive cars. ceramic coating bonds to the paint to repel dirt for easy washing not for scratches.

    for your tiktok lambo, i strongly recommend a full paint correction then PPF protection and with a ceramic coating applied on top.

  • +1
    • the clear coat was more expensive than that there shit box


  • +1

    Don’t bother wasting the money, it’s not worth it !

  • Depends on how much you want to spend.
    Have a conversation with your local detail-er and see what options they offer.
    Usually, you will still need to get the paint corrected (even if its a new car) and then you will have an option to choose from wax / ceramic coatings / ppf.
    Ceramic coating are more durable. but waxes offer a better gloss/shine for darker colors.
    PPF can provide protection against light scratched(finger nails etc).
    Also you will still need to maintain this.
    It is not a one time solution.

  • +1

    What car? As long as you don’t buy whatever snake oil the dealer offers you’ll be pleased with the results.

    IMO it’s not worth the money, except if you are going to continue to invest time and $ into maintaining it. Even then, maintaining paint without extra ‘protection’ will Give you a good result. Eg regular wash, park under cover when possible.

  • Ferrari?

  • +2

    I would use one of the over the counter Hybrid Ceramic Spray such as the Turtle Wax or Meguiars. I just used the Jay Leno's Radiant on my brand new car and it apparently last 6 months. i used a 1/5th of the bottle to do the whole car so it wasn't bad value and was really quick to apply. Super Cheap have a sale on the Turtle Wax etc at the moment.

  • +1

    Meguiars Ceramic spray in the blue bottle!
    Follow instructions…
    Then wash and follow again each time after the next wash!

    Get on the front foot, and look after it from the start - and your all set…

    The end!

  • I'd go with something cheap, quick, and easy so you actually bother doing it every few months. Because car's already shiny just do a liquid or spray on wax (easy to apply, 15 mins to do whole car then wipe off once dry) every couple of months and wash with wash and wax. Good liquid or spray wax = $20. Good wash n wax = $20. If it's cheap and easy you'll be motivated to do it every few months for minimal effort, good protection, and nice shine which is better than an expensive treatment that isn't mantained because too $$$ or time consuming. Doesn't have to be too complicated.

  • -1

    Contact a car specialist whom may provide you the right answers.

    • Or talkntou into an expensive waste of money.

  • Need to define what protection means to you " what can be done so the paint is protected for long? "

    • You should inspect the paint at the dealership irrespective on delivery
    • Then a simple wax (Meguiar, Bowden, Mothers, AutoGlym) will do the trick - follow the instructions do yourself no machine is need it
    • If you need pain correction (before wax) get a professional to do that.
    • That will protect the car against the weather, bird poo ( which must be removed), acid rain etc…
    • Than again if the car is outside you may need to do that every 2 months, if it is undercover, every 6 months

    As said before here, scratches, stone chips, if you need to protect against that, wrap may help to a point.

    Enjoy the car

  • My first ever brand new car came home with me at the end of last month.
    I've found myself buying a foam canon, two buckets, drying cloths, wash and wax, and a heap of other seemingly must haves for car washing properly.
    Just put Xpel PPF on the door sills.
    2 complete wash and full details since handing over that bank cheque.

    All my other 4wds previously, I've just sprayed with CT18 Truck Wash from a Bunnings garden sprayer, let sit and then a pressure wash when ever I remembered and could be bothered, after beach camping, mud slinging, bush exploring….

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