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Hi all,

I'm a recent M3 owner and have probably one of the worst combos of all time: I'm OCD about paint quality, but I don't have a garage. The car is always outdoors, 50/50 out in the sun, and almost always near pollen. I'm still eager to keep the car in as top shape as I can so I'm curious about everyone's perspective on a few concerns that I have:

- I'm strongly considering scheduling paint correction because I'm noticing some swirls/clear coat scratches on the hood and doors that are really starting to bother me.
- BUT, I'm leaning towards NOT getting coating. I'm extremely paranoid about cure times and I'm not able to keep the car fully sheltered for any period of time, which means that any water splashing or bird poop during cure time will mean the entire job is wasted. Plus if I get a rock chip or new swirl, touching that up would be much tougher with bonded coating. (It's also pretty expensive)
- PPF is overkill and that's definitely out of my league.

Paint correction *without* coating seems to be very rare on this forum... so I was wondering if I'm about to do something terrible. I'm on the fence here because I'm also concerned that paint correction is going to eat away at the clear coat and leave the car with a thin veil that'll be mostly useless.

Do I have any decent options when it comes to protecting a thinner coat (sealant/UV-resistant wax recommendations)? Or is post-correction clear coat not a concern at all?

Thanks :)
 
I would definitely recommend paint correct and coating, if you really care about the paint quality. Assuming you aren't worried about rock chips, etc and primary just want to keep the shine of the car putting a Ceramic coating will make the car a lot easier to clean and put a layer on top of the clear coat so it is less likely to wear down further. Only way to protect against rock chips is to get a PPF or repaint your car every so often.
 
My ceramic coating guy required me to keep it with him for two days. One to apply and another day to cure in his garage. Look for someone like him and you should be good. I can recommend in the Santa Rosa area if you like. He also does a free first car wash in two weeks. He checks for any abnormalities in the coating and corrects them if needed. He found none on mine. I can't believe how clean the car stays. Even pollen blows off in the first few miles. The biggest problem is with fingerprints, they need wiping around the doors and frunk. I went out in the rain we had a couple weeks ago expecting to have to wash. Nope. Bug splatters on the front just hose off, no need to scrub. I was skeptical, but not anymore. Expensive, but worth it.
 

sroh

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Sep 10, 2017
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My ceramic coating guy required me to keep it with him for two days. One to apply and another day to cure in his garage. Look for someone like him and you should be good. I can recommend in the Santa Rosa area if you like. He also does a free first car wash in two weeks. He checks for any abnormalities in the coating and corrects them if needed. He found none on mine. I can't believe how clean the car stays. Even pollen blows off in the first few miles. The biggest problem is with fingerprints, they need wiping around the doors and frunk. I went out in the rain we had a couple weeks ago expecting to have to wash. Nope. Bug splatters on the front just hose off, no need to scrub. I was skeptical, but not anymore. Expensive, but worth it.

+1 if you don't mind the cost. A pro detailer will keep your vehicle inside while it cures.

Other than that, you can still maintain the paint yourself if you are diligent. Have a detailer paint correct as you indicated. Then a semi-annual (in the fall before the rains and in the spring before the heat) coating of a sealant (there are many good ones out there) will do wonders to protect your paint from the environment. Gentle hand washing should limit swirl marks.
 

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