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Why Does Ceramic Coating Cost So Much?

Updated: Mar 3, 2022

Ceramic Pro 9H is applied to create a "glass-like" layer over your vehicles paint.

This is not an easy question to answer quickly, but one we get very frequently here at Shade9! If you are still researching the product, we hope that this article makes you feel confident of the quotes you have received.

1. Vehicle Size Will Affect Pricing

One understandable reason why pricing varies by vehicle is the size of the vehicle. This is important in pricing because the size of the vehicle determines the amount of product we will need. Also, larger vehicles require more time in terms of paint correction and coating application.

2. Paint Correction is Often Needed

Depending on your vehicle's color, and overall attention to details on your vehicle you might be aware of the paint correction needed. Darker vehicles are generally easier to spot imperfections in, while lighter vehicles generally hide these more. When receiving your free estimate it's always important for the installer to point out imperfections you may not notice on the day to day.

3. Calculation of Labor

Every shop should have a labor rate, our labor rate for ceramic coating is $85/hr. Below are the steps required in quoting a vehicle, to show you the time needed to complete an average job.

  • Visual Inspection for Damage (20 minutes)

  • Remove License Plates and Place Screws into Bag (5 minutes)

  • Clean Engine Compartment (20 minutes)

  • Clean Door Jambs, Trunk Jambs, Gas Tank (20 minutes)

  • Clean Wheels, Wheel Wells, and Tires (30 minutes)

  • Foam Cannon Pre Wash (Bug Sponge Front Windshield, Wheel Arches, Brush Grills, Underside of Rocker Panels, and brush hard to wash areas) (5 minutes)

  • Rinse Vehicle (3 minutes)

  • Thoroughly Wash Vehicle (10 minutes)

  • Remove All Bugs (5 minutes)

  • Clay Bar Vehicle (30 minutes)

  • Clean Exhaust Tips (10 minutes)

  • Towel Dry Vehicle (5 minutes)

  • Blow Out All Cracks, Crevices, and Jambs (20 minutes)

  • Double Check Prep Wash (10 minutes)

  • Panel Wipe Vehicle (20 minutes)

  • Remove Tar (Especially from lower part of vehicle) (20 minutes)

  • Tape Off Any Sensitive Trim and Molding (30 minutes)

  • PAINT CORRECTION (10-40 hours)

  • Polish Hard To Reach Spots With by Hand (30 minutes)

  • Deep Clean & Dress Exterior Plastics/Grills (5 minutes)

  • Wipe Down Door Jambs, Trunk Jambs and Gas Tank Compartment With Spray Wax (10 minutes)

  • Wipe Down Wheels/Dress Tires (10 minutes)

  • Metal Polish Exhaust Tips (10 minutes)

  • Panel Wipe Paint( 2 times) (45 minutes)


  • Clean Exterior/Interior Windows (20 minutes)

  • Double Check/Final Inspection (30 minutes)

If you factor in 20 hours of paint correction and 3 hours for the ceramic coating application, that’s another 23 hours. In total between prep, exterior detail, polishing, and ceramic coating, your detailer could be spending 30 hours. If we multiply 30 x 85 that equals $2,550.

Now, these are just labor hours and are not factoring in any material costs. Generally speaking, a job of this nature could involve as much as $500 in material costs.

With all of that said, we have calculated the price range to be from $2,780-$2,950 for a multi-stage correction at 20 hours with a professional ceramic coating applied on top. If you get a quote for much less, chances are corners will be cut and you may not get the result you want.

In closing, if you are wanting to know how much it costs to have your vehicle ceramic coated, I would strongly advise contacting your detailer and making an appointment for an inspection. As you can tell, there are many factors that go into pricing and a lot of work that goes into preparing a vehicle for ceramic coating.

If you are located in the WEST VIRGINIA / OHIO / PENNSYLVANIA region and would like a quote, feel free to contact us to set up your FREE estimate.

We are West Virginia’s exclusive installer for Ceramic Pro Ceramic Coatings

Contact: 304-710-0380

1867 E Pike Street, Clarksburg, WV

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