Best Shampoos for Ceramic Coated Cars

Best Shampoos for Ceramic Coated Cars

One question I get asked all the time by email is “How do I wash my car after I get a ceramic coating applied?” Since this seems to be a common question people have, I thought it would be worth my while doing a little blog post on the topic, to help clear up some of the confusion and help people get the best out of their ceramic coating application.

One common myth about Ceramic Coatings is that once they are applied, you shouldn’t need to do anything else to make sure your car is protected.

This is not completely true, and in fact, there are several things you can do to help prolong and get the best out of your coating.

Ceramic Paint Coating

What happens if you don’t Maintain Your Ceramic Coating Correctly?

Loss of Gloss on the Paintwork

One of the best things about ceramic coating is the brilliant shine it produces. However, if you neglect the coating, eventually the protective layer will wear thin – which will gradually decrease the shine of your cars paintwork. That “wet” look you may have become accustomed to, will be gone.

Reduced Hydrophobic (Self Cleaning ) Effect

If your car remains unwashed or allowed to soak up harmful UV rays frequently, it will increase the surface energy and reduce the hydrophobic properties of the ceramic coating. The beading and sheeting effect of the ceramic coating will be diminished, and you will absolutely notice your cars paintwork picking up dirt more easily.

One of the best tips I can give people for maintaining their ceramic coating and making sure it is performing at the best possible level, is to make sure they are using the correct shampoo on their car’s paintwork.

As you all are well aware, there are many different shampoos available for your car these days, so you must be using the right one for the job when it comes to a coated car.

In fact, you may be using a product that is actually harming and deteriorating your coating.

Let’s take a look.

What you Don’t Want to Use on Ceramic Coating

Although Ceramic Coating is tough and durable, it will degrade over time ( Some coatings claim to last years – but this is the best-case scenario provided you look after them properly ).

There are certain chemicals and compounds in harsh cleanings products that will shorten the life span of your coating in the long run if you don’t use them correctly.

Products Not To Use On Ceramic Coating

1.Harsh Shampoo / Strippers

You May or May not be aware, but certain car shampoos are designed to strip off any waxes or LSP products on the car’s paintwork. Some of these products you might pick up by accident, not knowing what they are intended for. Some of these which come to mind are Meguiars Car Wash Plus Or Chemical Guys Clean Slate Shampoo

These types of shampoos are intended to be more aggressive in the wash stage and are harsh enough to strip waxes and sealants, so I would strongly recommend you stay away from these products if your car has a coating applied to it.

2.APC ( All-Purpose Cleaners )

The ingredients that make up all-purpose cleaners can be very different, but in general, they are basically medium to light degreasers. They are not as strong or effective as an engine bay cleaner or traffic film remover, but they are stronger than shampoo, partly because they work differently.

Most regular cleaning products (such as shampoo) are designed to remove common types of dirt effectively without affecting the protective layer. An APC is designed to remove the most common types of dirt as best it can, even if it affects the protective layer.

You don’t want your shampoo affecting your protective layer!! For a non coated car then these are OK, but I don’t recommend their use if you have a ceramic coating.

Now you know what types of shampoos and cleaners to avoid, let’s take a look at Shampoos that are actually beneficial to your coating and which help to increase their effectiveness and longevity.

Best Shampoos for Ceramic Coated Cars

When you are buying a shampoo for your coated car, you should make sure that it is a pH Neutral product. This will ensure that it is gentle on your paintwork ( most importantly on the protective later! )

pH neutral car cleaning products, such as pre-wash snow foam or wash and shampoo, won’t affect these pre-existing layers of wax and sealant that protect your car as they’re chemically neutral and gentle.

The best pH-neutral shampoos I usually recommend for coated cars are.

Gyeon Q2M Bathe

Gtechniq W1 G Wash

These shampoos are some of the best in the market, and a perfect for washing your coated car with. Both Gyeon and Gtechniq manufacture their own Ceramic coating ranges, so you can be sure these companies know best when it comes to maintenance.

The above two products are great, but did you know that you can buy shampoos that actually enhance and prolong your ceramic protection? These are shampoos that include Si02 in the product. These Shampoos are the daddy when it comes to washing a ceramic coated car.

What is Si02 Car Shampoo?

Sio2 Wash shampoos were formulated for the unique cleaning requirements of vehicles that are coated with a paint, wheel, or glass coatings. Not only are they pH neutral, but since they contain Si02, they will also act as a “Top Up” protective later for your ceramic coating. I have used many of these personally in the past and I can confirm that they make a big difference to the hydrophobicity of the paintwork.

If you have noticed that your coating is not beading or sheeting like it was when you first had your ceramic coating installed on your car, you should really try one of these shampoos and see what happens.

Although these products can be used to give stand-alone protection on non coated cars, they really stand out when used in conjunction with a good ceramic coating.

There are a number of these shampoos on the market but some of my favourites and go-to’s are

1.McKee’s 37 Sio2 Auto Wash


2. Gyeon Q2M Bathe+


3. Angelwax Enigma


All of the above products are pH neutral and have the added benefit of Si02 added to their formulas which make them the perfect shampoos for using on your ceramic coated vehicle.

If you have used any of these products, or have a favourite shampoo that you like to use on your car, please let me know in the comments I would love to hear about it.

Until Next Time,

Happy Detailing!

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About the Author – Darren O Hara

Darren is the founder of the DriveDetailed blog and is a keen detailing enthusiast living in the rainy south of Ireland. When he is not cleaning his car he is always researching ways he can improve his techniques and enjoys testing out out new products.

Darren currently drives an Audi TTRS and is a big fan of performance cars.

You can follow Darren on Instagram @darrenoharacork

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