From the backroads and off-roads of the Canadian Rockies, to the crashing coastal shores of The Maritimes, protecting your car from the harsh elements of the North is imperative, because the integrity of most vehicles are not as robust as Canadian winters. Stone chip protection has evolved immensely since wax, as wax has a tendency to wear away over time and eventually dissolve and no longer provide any protection at all. Newer technologies for protecting your car include ceramic coating, or paint protection film which is also sometimes called windshield protection film. Choosing which protection your car may need requires a little diligence.
Ceramic coating is a coating that is silicon dioxide based – upon application, the coating bonds with the existing paint to create a glass-like finish and sealant. The ceramic coating protects your car from stains and dirt, and UV rays, but won’t suffice as a protective barrier, or as a car stone guard. Though it is better than no coating or film at all, this option provides the most basic and minimal protection for any vehicle, opting for a ceramic coating may not always be your best bet.
There’s also a wrap-around deflector that fits onto the hood of your car. Higher-end ones are evidently supposed to be made from acrylic glass, but this is not always the case. Essentially the way that the hood deflector works is that it uses aerodynamics to redirect the natural airflow that occurs on your car. There are supposed to be deflector hood shields for every car make and model. There are many complaints however about the design. Reviewers agree that there’s a common flaw which entails that despite its custom specifications, the deflector does not actually fit properly onto some vehicles. This flaw can actually prove to be catastrophic, and end up causing you more harm than good. Specific complaints have indicated that the shield applies so much pressure onto the hood of your car that it causes your headlights to crack, meaning you would have to just go ahead and take the risk of the product not fitting onto your car and waste money and time – this complaint is the most predominant among others. There’s also the added bulk of the hood shield too, and the added bulk alters the natural spatial recognition that you’ve grown so accustomed to while navigating your car; causing you much tighter clearance to pass.
A most modern solution to protect your car against stone chips is a paint protection film. Paint protection film is fitted onto your car like a thin, sleek shield of modern-day armor. The film is a durable nano-ceramic film layer that is applied using a heat application process. The protective film is virtually unseeable to the eye and protects your car’s paint and body surface. To date, no other existing technology is able to provide a better or stronger barrier for your car. In addition to protection against UV rays, debris and stains, paint protection film can also withstand impact with small rocks and serves as a protective barrier against salt corrosion and climate imprints – even those imprinted in Canada. Small scratches are easily removed with a heated treatment that is quite similar to the application process, leaving the coating as fresh as new as you maintain the care of the film throughout the years. Paint protection film withstands physical batter whereas ceramic coating and hood deflectors do not, instead they are at best designed to repel the sun and liquid contact.
PPF provides maximum coverage for your vehicle and protects against damage. While a cheaper alternative may seem like a good option, keep in mind that they provide minimal protection and serve no purpose in protecting the vehicle occupants from hazards, or the car from physical damage. PPF also helps maintain the value of your car and in the long run can save money as you evade unnecessary auto body shop visits for knicks and scratches that can be outrageously costly to repair.