What is Nano Coating?
So you’ve been hearing the words nano or nanoparticle coatings lately, maybe around the cooler at work or from a friend who’s just picked up a shiny new car, and you don’t know what that means. But you do know that it’s an exceptional new protective coating that keeps literally anything clean and safe, without any more work from you.
But what are nano coatings? Well, it’s literally a very thin optically transparent plastic polymer film that coats whatever you’ve treated with it with a surface measuring literally atoms thick. Measured in nano-meters, or one billionth of a meter, nano coatings are completely invisible to look at and almost undetectable to the touch.
Each application of a nano coating lasts a long time, with products that are designed to be used with electronics lasting months, and sprays and waxes for cars lasting in the region of years
Nano coatings are also completely safe. They contain no harmful chemicals, no volatile organic compounds, nothing that’s going to hurt you and your family. Because of how they work, they’re also incredibly efficient to use, with just a few grams of protective fluid coating anywhere up to a square meter of surface.
How do nano coatings work?
When you treat something with a nano protective coating, you’re covering the surface in a tiny surface of nano-protectant that’s atoms thin. Every surface, no matter how smooth it might feel to the touch, has tiny little dents and holes in it. Even something like glass, when looked at under a microscope, has tiny little holes in the structure. These little irregularities are what let dirt and water bond to it, because they increase the surface area, and so the surface tension of whatever’s touching it. It’s like a handhold for the dirt to grab hold of.
Because nano particles are so small, they easily fit into all of these irregularities, and their structure keeps them stable, levelling out the surface and making it almost completely flat. The particular make up of these nano-particles keeps them all flat and uniform, which causes the surface to become incredibly smooth at a microscopic level.
Unable to bond with the surface, water, dirt, oils and fats just ball up and slip straight off of whatever has been treated with the nano coating, making cleaning it as simple as a quick wipe with a cloth.
It’s called the ‘lotus effect,’ and it sounds ridiculous, but this technology was first discovered when scientists looked at a bunch of flowers.
The lotus flower has a peculiar quality to its blossom which keeps the leaves absolutely clean. Dust and dirt just sit on top of the leaves, and then whenever it rains, the water beads off of it exactly like we’ve just described, keeping the lotus flower perfectly clean.
Close examination under microscopes taught us how this works, and we’ve found ways to replicate it in the lab. Now, nano coatings are available for pretty much everything that we use, from the products in and around our homes, to the clothes we wear and the cars we drive. Read on to find out how nano coatings can benefit you.
Nano coatings for cars
When you’re talking about nano coatings, the first thing that comes to most people minds, especially if they know what they are, are the special protective coatings you apply to cars to protect and enhance their paintwork.
First developed for top tier racing teams to reduce drag and keep the cars running at peak performance, the technology has slowly filtered down to luxury cars, then finally become widely available enough and cheap enough that your average man on the street can get access to it.
But what do they do, and why are they better than your standard paint coating?
First, the level of protection you get from a nano based coating over your cars standard paintwork is hard to overemphasize.
- Because nano coatings are massively water repellent, a nano coating applied to your car offers huge protection against the elements. Water will just run straight off of it, keeping your car clean and preventing pooling and water damage.
- The vast majority of nano coatings are also chemical, dirt, oil and salt resistant, especially nano coatings designed for wheel protection, so any chemicals and harsh agents your car might pick up from the road surface is ignored.
- Nano coatings have a UV resistant effect. One of the biggest factors when it comes to paintwork on cars wearing out and looking tired is ultraviolet damage from sunlight. A nano coating filters out some of the UV, helping to alleviate this damage every single time you take your car out to drive.
- Nano coatings are incredibly tough, and hard to damage. It’s another level of protection over your car, and considering some nano coatings have a 9H hardness rating, which is harder than all but the toughest industrial tools and some gemstones, it’s going to protect your paint against scratches and chips.
- Because nano coatings shrug off dirt and water, once you’ve applied a nano coating to your car, keeping it clean is much easier. And if it does happen to get dirty again, it’s much simpler to clean it down. Most nano coatings are also more temperature resistant that standard paint finishes, which has a huge effect in winter. Have you ever wondered why cleaning your car seems much harder in winter? It’s not just in your head. Lower temperatures affect the make up of your cars paint, which makes dirt and grime bond to it more heavily, so cleaning it is harder. Specific temperature resistant coatings are good to minus 50 degrees C, so unless you’re driving in the arctic, you’re good.
- Nano coatings are easy to apply, taking only a couple of hours with some good preparation, and once they’re on, they last for literally years. 3 to 5 years is the average, which means one afternoon’s work every few years keeps you protected and safe.
- The chemical make up of a nano coating catches the light differently than standard paint. Because it’s so smooth at an atomic level, there’s less light refraction, which means your cars paintwork looks more vibrant and eye catching. Some products are even designed to enhance specific colors or paint finishes.
If you care about protecting your car, having it look as good as possible for as long as possible, and saving time and money on car washes and valet services, then there’s literally no reason not to buy and apply a nano protection treatment to your car.
We’ve looked at all the options out there, and narrowed them down to the best few. If you want to read our lists of articles on nano care for cars, go here [LINK]
Nano coatings for the home
If there was a way to keep all the surfaces in your house glisteningly clean, shining, and protected against bacteria and other dangers with no more work than you already do, would you take it?
Of course you would. You’d have to be mad not to.
As they become cheaper and more commercially available, use of nano coatings is becoming far more widespread. You’ll find nano coating products used everywhere now, including industrial furniture factories where they treat and finish upholstery, your local butchers or supermarket, where it’s used to keep food prep areas clean, and even window cleaners!
That’s because surfaces treated with nano coatings are proof to pretty much anything. Fluids, including water, oil and fats, just bead straight off, and nano coatings are also a natural antibacterial, so whatever you treat is going to be much safer and healthier for your family to use, ideal if you’ve got new additions to the family, especially if they’re at that point where everything’s going in the mouth!
Nano coatings in the home can be used for …
- Furniture: Nano coating products can be found that cater for fabrics, so you can treat your couch, rugs, curtains, even carpets. Once treated, they’re going to shrug off liquids without absorbing anything, rebuff dirt so cleaning is a whole lot easier, and all without looking or feeling any different.
- Wood: Tables, chairs, sideboards and cabinets benefit hugely from a nano coating. If it’s regularly used, the extra level of protection will keep your furniture looking newer longer. There’s also options for older wood, to protect and enhance the finish of even the most delicate antique, protecting and bringing them back to new.
- Stone and brick work. Because nano coatings fill in microscopic holes on whatever you treat, nano coatings are ideal for exposed stone and brick work, especially on particularly porous stone, preventing water damage. Inert and breathable, nano coatings are safe to use on any building quality stone, including marble, so don’t worry about damage. Most nano coatings are also chemically resistant, so if you’re worried about acid wear from rain or exhaust run-off, a nano coating will keep it safe.
- Windows: The same properties that make nano coatings ideal for protecting the paintwork of a car make them fantastic at keeping windows clean and sparkling. One treatment on a set of windows keeps them protected for up to six months, makes them much easier to clean, and causes fingermarks and other dirt to just wipe off with water.
- Kitchen surfaces: As an antibacterial and surface protectant, nano coatings are ideal to treat kitchen sideboards with. In fact, they’re so good at this job that one of our recommended products, Nanotol, by CeNano, is used in industrial food production.
Whether you need it for indoors or out, nano coatings can keep your home clean, safe and protected for months at a time. Check out our lists of recommended products for the home here [LINK]
Nano coatings for clothes
More and more clothes are being advertised as waterproof or water resistant, but you know as well as I do that most of them are anything but.
However, if you treat anything fabric with a nano coating spray, it instantly becomes waterproof, shedding water without absorption, including on materials as sensitive to water damage as suede! More importantly, it looks, feels, and breathes exactly the same, so there’s no need to worry about damage to your pricey clothing.
So why don’t companies do this as standard? Simple. Price. Whilst nano coatings aren’t expensive on a per unit basis, you do this across a whole line and it adds up. But for you and me, buying one can and treating everything that we need is going to cost the same as coffee for a couple days.
- Ideal for protecting work clothes. Whether you work in an office and want to keep your dress shoes and winter coat clean, or you work outdoors and need another layer of protection on work boots, nano coatings will keep you dry.
- Any hobbies where you’re exposed to the outdoors benefit massively from nano coatings. If you sail, play golf, tennis, ski, snowboard or anything else, one treatment keeps you safe for weeks on end.
- Existing waterproof clothes slowly wear down and become more porous over time. Rather than buying new, expensive clothes again, just treat them with a protective nano spray and get them good as new once again.
Our list of articles on nano treatments for clothes and shoes can be found right here [LINK]
Nano coatings for electronics
Ever since the world saw the first oleophobic (oil-resistant) electronic coating on the iPhone 3, the world has gone mad for nano-coatings on electronic devices, and it’s only getting more advanced. Coatings like this now come as standard on almost any electronic product, keeping screens clean, shiny and fingerprint free.
So if most devices already come with a coating like this, why would you apply another one? Easy…
- The first and most obvious is that these coatings don’t last forever. I’m sure you’ve experienced the same thing I have where after a few months screen clarity goes down, fingermarks and dirt start to appear on the screen more often, and it just gets muddy and harder to see. That’s the protective coating wearing off, and it’s a sign that you need to treat it again. All it takes to keep your phone or tablet in tip top condition is regular treatment with a nano spray or wipe.
- Nano coatings are another layer of protection for your device. Some coatings can have up to a 9H hardness rating, so it’s going to be that much harder to scratch or damage whatever you treat.
- Nano coatings are hydrophobic, repelling water from the surface and causing it to bead and run off without sinking in. We’ve all seen a phone after it’s been dropped into water or had a drink spilled on it, leaving it a pretty little paperweight. Hydrophobic nano make this a much less likely proposition.
- Some manufacturers either don’t treat their devices with a nano protective coating or use a low quality coating that doesn’t offer good protection. If this is the case, it’s easy enough to treat it yourself and make sure that your tech is safe.
- Nano coatings are safe for use on anything with a screen. Phones. Laptops. Tablets. Even televisions.
We’ve got reviews on the best nano sprays for electronic products right here [LINK]
So no matter where you live or what you do for your work, you’ll benefit from introducing a little bit of nano love into your life. Click any of the above links to find the best products on the market, and start your nano revolution today!