If you want to learn about applying ceramic coating to your wheels at home, well, stay tuned on wowracer.com. Because we’re going to go into all of the details you need to know to do it yourself.
As I said, we are here today to basically put together a definitive how-to guide on ceramic coating your wheels. There’s a lot of information out there about it we just want to cut through some myths and bring you the exact information you need to do it right and get the most out of your coating.
Why should I do ceramic coating to wheels?
Brake dust not only does it look bad but it can be corrosive on the wheels by applying a ceramic coating to it. It makes cleanup much easier. Particularly, you get some of the German brands that produce a lot of brake dust but it’s also easier on the wheels less chance of any of that corrosive material itching down into the finish.
What kind of wheels need to be coated?
It can be an aftermarket wheel, it can be an OEM wheel, it could be something brand new, it could be something used, you want to coat it to make cleanup easier. That’s why we put coating on wheels.
Supplies needed for ceramic coating:
- Wheel cleaning agents — Make sure they are not acidic and safe to use for your wheel type.
- PH Neutral Car Shampoo — It is used after cleaning the wheels, to remove these contaminants.
- A microfiber glove – used in the final phase of washing after removing all brake dust and waste from the wheels.
- A soft bristle brush – for cleaning the wheels (especially inside).
- A washing bucket dedicated to clean wheels.
- Microfiber drying towel – The versatile towels will work well for drying the wheels.
- IPA surface preparation spray (this is for final cleaning before applying the coating). If you do not have a specific spray, mix 99% isopropyl alcohol in a ratio of 1 to 2 distilled water. So, basically, it will be 1 ounce of IPA mixed with 2 ounces of distilled water.
So, we established why we want to coat and the supplies needed for coating. Let’s talk a little bit about the process and everything you need to do it at home.
Process of applying ceramic coating to wheels
Take your wheels off the car
First things first, the best way to coat your wheels is completely off of the car. So, you have full access to the inner barrel. You can do it on the car with just the faces. But the inner part is what gets the dirtiest. So, if you have the ability to safely take the wheels off that’s the best way most people are going to be doing it. One wheel at a time and while you have them off if you’ve got to finish your painted brake caliper.
You can coat the brake calipers the exact same way that you’re doing the wheels and with the exact same tools and chemicals.
Speaking of chemicals, let’s start off with the cleaning process. Because one of the most important aspects of coating is cleaning the wheels. And we need to get these things squeaky clean. The cleaner the surfaces, the better the bond. The better the bond, the more durability, more performance that we get out of the coatings. Make sure that you spend plenty of time on cleaning.
So, you’ll start off with a normal wash on your car and then go into wheel cleaning and you need to start using something like Jeon iron here. it helps neutralize decontaminate in a chemical fashion any of the iron deposits that may be on the wheels.
- Use Tar remover
So, now that you’ve got that deep clean you may be left with little pieces of rubber or tar inside the wheel. That’s where you need a tar remover. Go in there, let that soak, clean all that stuff off. Once again, we want to try to keep it as clean as possible and we’re doing this both to the face of the wheel and the inner barrel.
- Apply Jeon prep
Now that we have all that done, we’re going to go with something like Jeon prep here. What that does? That does a final finish to make sure any residues of any cleaners are off of the surface. And even if it’s a brand-new wheel, we still want to go in and use something like prep.
- Apply ceramic coating
When the wheels are clean like glass, you are ready to apply the ceramic coating. The only thing you need to remember is never to apply to direct sunlight. It is normal to do this outdoors, only in the shade and when it is less than 80 degrees and above 50 degrees outside is better.
Also, DO NOT apply the coating inside the nut or bolt or hub holes. When reinstalling the wheels, you do not want a ceramic coating to cause “slip” or create an inaccurate torque. Leave the coating inside the wheel and outside. Simply keep it away from lug nuts or where it attaches to the hub.
The application of ceramic coating on the wheels is no different from the way it is applied to paint, glass or plastic ornaments. However, here are some tips.
Cover the inside of the wheels first
By following the instructions found in your ceramic coating kit, take (1) suede applicator fabric and wrap it around the applicator block (logo up).
Place 10 to 15 drops (a little more than you would do on the paint because the wheels are quite porous) and apply it from left to right, then top to bottom on a two-foot section.
Let the coating blink for a few minutes, then polish with the included microfiber cloth. Once you have finished the back, place the wheel on a large towel or blanket and cover the front and corners and cracks.
Here are some useful tips for different types of wheels:
When finished with each wheel, do everything again. Alloy wheels like a second coating and tend to absorb brake dust like crazy. The “additional” coating will ensure full coverage, making it easier to clean.
Chrome or Mag Wheels
When you finish all the wheels for the first coating, put them in direct sunlight for an hour or two before replacing them in your vehicle. A second coating is always a good idea, but it’s more important to let them “cook” a little — because the chrome-magnesium coating is harder — and the coating takes a little longer to “heal initially”. Direct sunlight will help.
- Put the wheels back and do not drive for at least 24 hours
When everything is done, slapping these wheels in the vehicle. When tightening the clamping nuts, be sure to tighten the wheels to factory recommended settings. Do this before the wheels are completely in contact with the ground. Then lower the vehicle to the ground and tighten them once again.
Again, when finished, do not drive for at least 24 hours. If the sun is outside, park the car outside and let the sunlight cook.
Watch a video guide on how to apply ceramic coating to wheels.