Review: IGL Poly Ceramic Coating - 2018 Chrysler 300s Detail by Mike Phillips
IGL Poly Ceramic Coating
What is it?
ecocoat poly is IGL's original REACH compliant high solid ceramic coating which is synthesized with our proprietary modified active material, carrier and nanotechnology to be free from any carcinogenic chemicals. The result is an increase in the paint’s reflectivity and also resistance against harsh chemicals, micro marring and dullness that last up to 1 year.
REACH is an acronym for Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals, which are regulations enforced by the European Union since 2007. The primary objective of REACH is to improve human health and to offer better protection to the environment by identifying both physical and intrinsic properties of various chemical substances.
What does it do?
Seals and protects smooth surfaces. Creates a hydrophobic finish that beads-up water to make future washing and drying faster and safer. Adds incredible gloss and shine. With proper care and washing this coating can last up to 1 to 2 years.
When do you use it?
After doing any necessary paint correction to remove swirls, scratches, water spots and oxidation and after wiping the paint clean using the IGL Precoat. IGL ecoat poly can be used on all paints, exterior PPF and vinyl graphics.
Why use IGL POLY over other options?
IGL has a great reputation for professional grade car care products that are user-friendly no matter what your experience and skill level. You can trust the IGL brand to provide products that deliver the performance claimed and advertised by IGL. IGL focus on creating high quality products that are also human-safe and environmentally safe.
Below is my review for my experience using this ceramic coating for the first time. After my review you can read the full write-up I share for the actual detail work I performed as a part of installing this ceramic coating. If you're new to detailing in general and ceramic coatings in particular - my write-up can serve as a guide to the steps to follow to duplicate my success.
This is a super easy ceramic coating to apply, level and seal the surface of any vehicle after first doing any paint correction and then prepping the paint for the installation of the product. It has a long flash time, up to 3-4 minutes, which is way longer than anyone realistically needs. I only waited 45 seconds to a minute before leveling the treated panel and then giving the panel a final buff and had zero negative experiences with the wipe-off.
I found zero high spots after installing the coating but I also focus intently on thoroughly wiping treated panels to ensure there are no high spots after the fact.
After wipe-off the treated or coated paint had a much slippery feel than undercoated paint and to me this is a nice feature as some coatings leave the paint feeling rubbery or tacky. This is important when using a ceramic coating because if the paint is not slippery this means the things you use to touch the paint in the future will tend to grab onto the paint instead of glide over the paint. Not a huge problem for a seasoned, experienced detailer with high quality microfiber towels, but for the average car owner, having paint that is sticky, grabby or tacky will make washing, drying or wiping the paint in the future difficult and even frustrating.
After washing, claying and then machine compounding and polishing the paint, of course the paint was shiny, especially under our diffused lights in the AutoForge Garage. The application of the IGL ecoat poly took the gloss and shine to a dramatically higher level. To describe how the metallic Redline Tricoat Pearl factory paint looked after installing the coating, I would use the words,
INSANE GLOSS!Yes, it really looks that good. I also coated all the side glass and the sun roof glass as well as the rims.
Easy to use and great value
If you're new to ceramic coatings and what to be assured that the coating you choose for your first time installing a ceramic coating is easy and mistake-proof - you can't go wrong with the IGL ecoat poly. With a retail price of $120.00 for the kit shown in the pictures, which includes a bottle of the Precoat and the Premier maintenance sealant, it's a great value for your hard-earned dollars.
My good friend Danny has been building a Pro-Street 1955 Chevy Bel Air for a few years now and I'm doing the sanding, buffing and ceramic coating once it's completed. While it's being built Danny drives this custom 2018 Chrysler 300 S that he keeps in really good shape but it's been a few years since it was properly polished and waxed so he asked me if I could do a full paint correction and ceramic coating.
Here she is parked and ready for washing.
Wheels & Tires First
The right way to wash a car is to always start with the wheels and tires first. These are custom rims and like the car, they were in pretty good shape. By this I mean, they were not like a lot of my clients cars with wheels that have had zero care since they were new. Now days, if the rim doesn't have baked-on brake dust and traffic film, then I like to take the safe approach and use a safe wheel cleaner with quality brushes. I would rather use a weaker but safer wheel cleaner on someone else's custom rims and rely on quality brushes with a little elbow grease versus grab a powerful wheel cleaner and let the chemistry do the cleaning and hope nothing goes wrong.
Pictures below are my go-to brushes for rims in decent shape. From left to right,
Big EZ Detail Brush (Red)
Machine scrubbing tires
Nothing wrong with a hand-held brush, but if you've ever wanted a great reason to purchase the FLEX Cordless Rotary Polisher, besides being the nicest rotary polisher on the market, it's also the best tire scrubber you'll ever use. Being cordless, you don't have to worry about getting shocked when doing wet work.
To make reaching the outer edges of the tires under the wheel well and the flat spot, I like to use a 3" rotary extension. This also moves your tool away from the action, which helps to keep it cleaner too.
To use your cordless FLEX rotary polisher as a machine tire scrubber you'll also need to get a Lake Country 4 3/8 Inch Flexible Rotary Backing Plate and a AutoForge 5 inch Rotary Machine Scrub Brush.
Topical Glass Polishing
Topical glass polishing removes water spots, traffic film and drizzle stains off the surface of the glass. I always try to do the topical glass polishing before washing the car this way any splatter around the inside of the window frame, plus any polish residue on the glass or surrounding body panels will wash off when I wash the car.
I'm using the FLEX CBEAST with the optional 6" FLEX Backing Plate but you can use about any orbital or rotary polisher.
When detailing a daily driver, I like to test and use an iron and fallout remover to deep clean the paint surface in-case the paint is contaminated. Sometime the paint is NOT contaminated but the only way to find out is to use an iron remover.
In the pictures below I'm testing out the IGL Coatings Ecoclean Iron, which is a low odor Neutral Rust Remover. For most cars, it's the horizontal surfaces that get the most build-up of contamination but it can happen to vertical panels too. In the pictures below I spray the IGL IRON onto the hood of the car and allow it to dwell for a few minutes but never let it dry on the surface.
After a few minutes, I don't see any color-changing effect. That is I don't see the product turning a dark purple or red color and this tells me this panel is not contaminated with iron or industrial fallout. This is a good sign. It's always better to use an iron remover and test the paint only to find out that it's not contaminated than it is to test the paint and find out it is contaminated. If the product turn red or purple and looks like the paint is bleeding, this means your car's paint was being corroded by iron contamination and knowing how thin the clearcoat layer of paint is - it's never a good sign.
Blast off the iron remover with a strong spray of water
Towel drying the car
I was able to remove all the water off this larger passenger car using only ONE McKee's 37 Glacier 1100 Drying Towel, the 20 x 30 Inches size. This thing holds tons of water and because it's microfiber, it's gentle to the delicate clearcoat finish.
The car is completely dry and the towel still has room for absorbing more water.
One towel dried off the entire car PLUS the wiper arms and blades!
IGL BLIZZARD Car Wash Soap
The car wash soap I used to wash the car is the IGL BLIZZARD.
This soap was formulated to be used as either a prep wash soap or a maintenance soap. For both types of washing, you want a soap that is formulated to wash well, rinse completely off the car without any extra chemicals or ingredients besides those necessary for cleaning the car. It smells great and did a really nice job of getting this car clean and ready for paint correction.
After washing and drying the car I moved her into the AutoForge Garage where I then opened up all the doors, hood and trunk lid so I could wipe the door jambs down so they'll be as clean and shiny as the exterior paint. Professional detailers call this stretching because it looks like you when you spread your arms out to stretch.
The Baggie Test
The baggie test is where you place your clean hand inside a clean sandwich baggie and then gently feel the paint on your car. Clean paint without any type of surface contamination should feel smooth like new glass. If you feel a rough texture, like little bumps or a grainy sensation - this is a sign the paint on your car is contaminated and you need to use detailing clay or a clay mitt to mechanically decontaminate the paint.
Buffing will not remove contamination
Some people think they can skip the claying step as they think machine buffing or even hand polishing will remove bonded contamination but this is incorrect. The best way and the most effective way to remove contaminants that have bonded so tightly to your car's paint that they don't wash off during the washing step is via a dedicated step using either detailing clay or a clay substitute.
Inspecting for swirls and scratches
After you clay the vehicle, the next thing you want to to is inspect the paint using a strong light. In this example I'm using the ScanGrip Multimatch R Detailing Light. This is a powerful light and you can use it to inspect the paint before doing paint correction, after doing the paint correction step and also to inspect for any high spots after installing the ceramic coating. SCANGRIP is the leader and innovator in swirl finder light technology - everyone else is just trying to copy their success.
As you can see, the swirls are not bad at all in the paint on this 2018 Chrysler 300 S. I will still need to machine polish all the paint to meet my expectations plus the owner's expectations for a fine finish.
Machine Paint Correction
For most of the car I was able to use the FLEX Supa BEAST, which is an 8mm gear-driven orbital polisher with a new polishing I'm testing out plus some 6.75" Redline foam polishing pads. There were a few deeper scratches on the hood and for these I used a wool cutting pad with a compound I'm testing out using the FLEX Cordless Rotary Polisher .
IGL ecoat poly
Just to note, the IGL company appears to use lower case letters to start the first letter in a word in some of their branding and as a semi-professional write, I try to respect each brands uniqueness when ti comes to their brand messaging.
The IGL ecoat poly kit comes with everything you see in the pictures below. The kit includes the
- 50 ml Ecocoat Poly
- 100 ml Ecocoat Precoat
- 100 ml Ecocoat Premier
- 4 Cloths
- Applicator Block
- Pair of Latex Gloves
To install the coating you'll first use the IGL Precoat to wipe down all the body panels to be coated. Precoat chemically cleans and preps the paint for the coating by removing any trace oils left by compounds and polishes to ensure the coating can form a proper and strong bond to the paint.
Down the road, you can use the IGL Premier as a type of ceramic coating "booster" to maintain the coating. Premier will maintain protection as well as water beading, shine, gloss and slickness. Then moving into the future you can purchase the Premier in a larger 500 ml bottle, which is like a regular 16 ounces bottle in U.S. Standard measurements.
Here's a full bottle of the IGL Precoat, which I already have from other ceramic coating job. Next to it is the IGL ecoat poly ceramic coating kit.
The kit comes with installation stickers to document the date you installed the ceramic coating and to let future owners know the IGL ecocoat poly ceramic coating is installed on the car.
There's a QR code on the inside of the box lid. When you scan it with your smart phone it will take you to more information about the IGL poly ceramic coating plus a video on how to use it.
With everything you need to install the IGL ecocoat poly ceramic coating.
The coating bottle comes from the factory sealed with a plastic insert to maintain product integrity. Inside the the box is a cover flap with the application insert that you'll want and need to place into the glass bottle in order to use the product.
After you remove the plastic stopper, simply insert the pour spout into the bottle.
Press firmly in place.
The foam block applicator has slits on both sides where you can use a knife or even a credit cart to press the microfiber suede cloths into to hold them in place.
The slit works well to hold the suede patch onto the block so you don't have to worry about or focus on keeping the suede patch wrapped onto the block and you're installing the poly ceramic coating. Genius idea.
Should look like this after installation.
Next, place some drops of poly ceramic coating onto the microfiber suede cloth and you're ready to start installing the ceramic coating.
In most cases you want to move the block in a back-n-forth, crosshatch pattern over a section about 2' by 2'. I normally look at each body panel and then use the natural raised body lines and edges to decide how to divide up larger panels into smaller sections.
Rainbow appearance under good lighting
The coating itself is a clear liquid and as the solvents or carrying agents evaporate off the surface, this is called flash time or flashing, you will often see a rainbow of colors in the film of ceramic coating.
As you can see, when you apply the coating it lays down a very thin layer of ceramic particles refereed to as the solids component of the product.
Level and wipe off
After waiting about a minute, you want to wipe the treated section using a clean, uncontaminated microfiber towel. When you first start wiping, this is called leveling the coating because what you're doing is spreading the coating around, which acts to ensure every square millimeter is covered and thus protected with a uniform layer of the ceramic coating. As you continue to wipe the treated section, after leveling the coating the towel will pick up and remove any excess coating.
Avoid high spots
It's vitally important that you remove any excess ceramic coating off the surface. If you accidentally leave some coating on the surface, once the coating dried it is referred to as a high spot and in most cases you will not be able to simply wipe it off. In most cases you will in fact have to polish or compound the high spot in order to remove it.
This why anyone installing ceramic coatings should invest in a high quality swirl finder light so you can inspect the surface to be sure all trace amounts of excess coating are removed before moving onto the next section.
After repeating the process of applying the IGL ecocoat poly to the entire car, panel by panel, section by section, and carefully leveling the coating and then wiping off any excess to avoid high spots, here's the final results.
Oh so glossy!
And of course - completely swirl free!
Check out the insane gloss and shine!
Here's everything I used...
I didn't have any pictures for when I clayed the car, but below is what I used.
For a tire dressing I used the McKee's 37 Tire Shine SiO2 Enhanced
Besides the McKee's 37 Tire Shine SiO2 Enhanced, I also ceramic coated the rims to make them faster and easier to clean and remove brake dust in the future.
This 2018 Chrysler 300 S is ready to cruise to the next Mopar Car Show!
Big EZ Detail Brush (Red)
Do you have questions about how to install a ceramic coating to your car? Feel free shoot me an e-mail or give me a call during normal business hours 9-5 Monday through Friday Eastern time as I live in beautiful South Florida.