• Matt Pedrick

BMW 420D Ceramic Coating

Updated: Jun 29, 2020

And why drive through car washes aren't good....

Recently I received a call from a new client asking for some help with his newly purchased BMW.

Your bog-standard car wash at the local supermarket, or even the place up the road which offers a bargain-price hand-washing service is going to be a heavily used by hundreds of vehicles every week. So what car went through just before you, a muddy truck a white van? All the dirt and grit rubbed off with those long brushes is now being scraped and slapped all over your nice paint work. That's exactly what had been happening to this BMW on a regular basis.

Fortunately, the new owner understands this and won't be putting the BMW through that anymore. But with the good weather and sunshine we've been having, all those scratches and swirls were really visible and made the paint work look horrible.

Here's where MCP Detailing came to the rescue - by removing all these imperfections and sorting out the damage done from the car washes.

Day 1

As always we kicked off this job with our safe wash process we removed all the loose grit and dirt on the surface. Using the two bucket wash system, we shampooed all surfaces of the car. Using Autogylm liquid clay we decontaminated the body work, glass and wheels. Once all this was completed, it was time to get the vehicle inside, dried off and ready to remove all the road tar stuck to the paint.

The next step was to clean the paint to remove anything the naked eye can't see. Firstly we removed any tar using Autosmart Tardis, after this we used a clay bar and water to take off any iron fallout that was stuck to the paint. This makes the surface feel very smooth, you can only achieve this through this staged method of cleaning.

After the safe wash, decontamination and clay bar treatment it was time to inspect the paint work.

Using artificial light to see every imperfection I noticed this car was very scratched on every single part of the paint. I knew then this job would extremely hard as BMW paint is notoriously hard.

The cutting stage took 9 hours!

A soon as I started I knew using a Dual Action polisher just wasn't going to work. That's why I went straight for my Dewalt rotary polisher and sheep wool cutting pad. This combined with Koch Chemie 9H heavy cut polish and lots of my patience, eventually removed all heavy swirls and scratches. Using the sheep wool cutting pad leaves minor swirls, but these were easily removed using the same machine but with a sponge pad and a medium cutting polish.

A total of 13 hours went into this car the first day!


Time to refine the paint and give it a better shine. Improving the gloss and enhancing the look of this car, was nearly as challenging as removing the imperfections. Using my AutoBrite Direct Dual Action polisher to refine the paint took 5 hours - but it was worth it. The BMW now looked like new again and it was finally ready to lay down the Gtechniq Ceramic Coating.

After putting all that polish on to improve the look, it was now time to remove it all again. This was done so the ceramic coating can bond directly with the paint and not the polish. However, this doesn't change what the car already looks like.

Gtechniq is our ceramic coating of choice, firstly we applied Crystal Serum Light and let that cure for 3 hours. Then we applied EXOv4 for a hydrophobic top coat which cured overnight for 12 hours. Both of these products applied together gives the car a slick glossy finish. More about the process here.


Then final details to make the car look pristine to match the new ceramic coated paintwork. Glossing the tyres, polishing the glass and cleaning the door shuts. These are just the little touches which we think make our service stand out. Then we give the car a final check over and it's finally ready to be handed back to the client.

Having a ceramic coating applied is an investment. Working flat out on your car for two-days will completely change the look and feel of it - and hopefully you'll love having a car that looks almost showroom new again! And applying the ultimate protection of a ceramic coating will give you ongoing low maintenance for looking after your car. Or you can always ask us to set up a regular maintenance plan for you.

Here's a gallery which shows the transformation of the BMW's paintwork. If you'd like to know more about ceramic coatings, get in touch for a no-obligation quotation.

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