Waxing your vehicle protects the paint from harmful UV rays and environmental contaminants. The following guide offers tips, suggestions and other information to make the most of your investment.
Benefits of Wax for Black Cars
Protection from harmful sun rays. The number one cause of paint oxidation is direct sunlight. A brand-new car left out in the sun for a handful of years will oxidize faster than a 10- to 15-year-old car that’s been garaged all its life. Wax serves as sunscreen for your car to keep it from degrading quickly.
Maintain your investment. For all the money spent on vehicles, it’s important to maintain them both internally and externally so they retain their value. Routine waxing is part of such a maintenance schedule, even though it may not be suggested by the manufacturer directly.
Remove light surface defects. Depending on which application method you choose, waxing can actually remove light surface scratching on your vehicle’s paint. Since black cars show defects more clearly than any other color, it helps to take care of those scratches as you wax.
Get better results than with a general wax. Though waxing your vehicle is the same basic process no matter what color car you drive, some generic or basic waxes won’t achieve the same results as waxes meant for a black-colored car. If you’re looking for a better result, look for waxes meant for black vehicles.
Types of Wax for Black Cars
Synthetic.Most car waxes these days are synthetic. Like the compounds detailers and body shop experts use to correct paint defects, synthetic waxes are specially-blended to get the best shine from your vehicle’s paint. The alternatives to synthetic wax are natural and carnauba, though many manufacturers offer blends of these three as well.
Carnauba.A lot of auto enthusiasts swear by carnauba wax, mostly because it provides a deeper shine and better protection. However, it won’t last as long as a synthetic wax, so you’ll end up having to reapply it more often. Carnauba wax isn’t necessarily a higher-quality product either, as you can achieve similar results with both carnauba and synthetic waxes. Both paste and liquid waxes can contain carnauba.
Spray.The ultimate quick-detail method, spray wax is the type of wax you’ll want to have at your side if you’re looking to get the most cleaning power out of a single product. Spray wax should be used as a final step before the car is ready to go. You won’t get superior protection from a typical spray wax but it’s better than leaving dirt and grime to eat away at your paint.
Paste.Paste wax is much harder to apply than liquid or spray wax, although some people swear by it. Although liquid wax is the most widely-used, it requires a bit of heat to sink down into the paint pores, while paste wax relies on elbow grease to remove the top layer of paint to reveal the shiny layer beneath.
Liquid.Liquid wax is the most common form of wax on the market. It’s usually applied with a dual-action (DA) polisher or a rotary buffer. You can also apply it by hand. Some liquid waxes will be slightly scented to make the waxing process more enjoyable, even though the smell has no effect on the end results.
Wipes.For a wax on the go, check out wax wipes. They’re a convenient solution to removing surface contaminants and applying a thin, protective layering of wax. However, they won’t last as long as a liquid or paste wax. Most wax wipes come in a resealable package that’s easily stored for your next use.
Simple Preparation.It’s never a good idea to just slap some wax on your vehicle. Doing so will seal in harmful contaminants that can eat away at your paint and cause lasting damage. Some vehicles will require more preparation before waxing than others, but you shouldn’t have to spend hours prepping the paint before you’ve even begun waxing it. The best waxes will only require a thorough washing before they can be applied.
Easy Application and Removal.Not everyone has access to a dual-action polisher or a rotary buffer, but that’s okay. The best car waxes, especially those intended for use on black or dark-colored automobiles, should require little effort to apply and remove. The instructions should be clear about how much product to use over a specified surface area. A few swipes with a microfiber cloth should be all that’s necessary to remove wax as well.
Long-Lasting Protection.If you have to spend hours each month waxing your car, you will likely tire of the routine and nothing will get done. Choose a car wax that goes on thick enough to protect your vehicle for months at a time. That way, you won’t have to spend more hours and cash on keeping your car’s paint clean. Longer-lasting waxes aren’t necessarily thicker, they’re just a better wax.
Paint-Corrective.The ideal wax should not only protect your car’s paint from the elements but boost it as well. Minor scratches can be removed if you use wax correctly, but the best waxes correct as they are applied. No extra steps or special knowledge necessary. Black cars are especially prone to scratches and marring defects, so removing those imperfections as you maintain the paint itself is a win-win.
Wipes Clean.The best car waxes wipe away without leaving a trace – except for a protective layering. There are a variety of factors that play into how well a wax wipes off, but generally speaking, the wax shouldn’t harden immediately once applied. Paste wax is a bit different, but liquid wax should act more like a lotion. A wax that wipes clean is also easier to use overall.
Commitment Level: The level of time and money you want to invest in waxing your vehicle will dictate what you look for in a wax. If you only want a simple wax, take a hard look at the suggestions above. If you want more from your wax, consider investing in an advanced application method like a DA polisher or rotary buffer. They’ll cut your waxing time down tremendously.
Additional Materials: Even spray wax requires you to own a soft microfiber towel or two to wipe off the excess liquid. If you’re going to be waxing often, look into additional materials for the best results – like a clay bar, waxing pad/applicator, and polisher/buffer. The more prepared you are, the better your results will be.
Before you purchase a black-car-specific wax, watch at least four or five videos on various products and how they are applied. Knowing how to properly apply wax will have a huge impact on your final results. If you still have questions, speak to a local dealership or a representative of the manufacturer whose product you bought.
It’s always best to wax your vehicle in a covered, cool area. This is especially true for black and dark-colored vehicles because you don’t want to create swirl marks. At the same time, having an illuminated workspace will make it much easier to see the difference between your “before” and “after” finishes.
When waxing your vehicle, avoid exterior materials like plastics and rubber trim pieces. The wax should only be applied to painted surfaces. If you happen to get wax on plastic or rubber, use a damp microfiber towel to immediately remove it. Wax should wipe right off of window glass.
If you’ve never done any exterior work to your black car, you should ideally clay bar the paint before you wax it. The most effective waxing occurs when the wax applies directly to the surface of the clear coat, without any contaminants between the two that would interrupt coverage. Plus, a smoother surface will provide a deeper, fuller shine.
If you dread waxing your black vehicle, consider the benefits of ceramic coating. Ceramic coatings often cost a bit more upfront but can last for years at a time.
When you are shopping for a new vehicle, consider color. Though it might not be high on your priority list, the color of a vehicle has a lot to do with its long-term value. Silver cars hide scratches much better than black cars, while white cars require a clay-barring every so often to maintain their stark brightness.
Source: The Drive