Monday, May 7, 2012

Wax vs. Polish

Here are a couple photos, the first showing the car shortly after I got it with wax, and the second with polish (Zaino). The look with wax is a kind of deep, warmth. The look with polymer polish is sharp, and highly reflective. I think wax feels more traditional while polish feels kind of techno and cutting edge. The GTI looks great in polymer (either really), while a classic car would look better with wax.

The wear advantage always goes to polymer. My single coat of Zaino lasted about six months before it began to obviously wear down, while wax is good for about three months. There's no way to get around this and even super amazing $300/tin concourse wax won't extend the wear (just the look). If you don't want to detail your car often, polymer is the way to go.

It used to be that polymers required multiple coats, bonding agents followed by polishes. Nowadays, products are all-in-one. My Zaino ZFX involves annoying mixing bottles, with a few drops of the bonding agent put in a small bottle of one time use polish. But it goes on in one coat. Inefficient for sure, as there's always some left over, but much better than applying two coats of product. Competitors mix it for you and claim better product use efficiency. I believe it.

If you want long lasting protection but also the warmth of wax, you can use a polymer polish and then wax over it to your hearts content. That's kind of what I'm going to do. My new Z1 car wash soap has some wax in it, which will add protection and I'll likely use wax between washes, although the Zaino would be just as easy.

If mentioned before that detailing is a lot like miniature painting and that's very true. The key is the prep work. If you can prep the surface so it's clean and able to take the product, then even the cheapest wax will look great. A clean surface also includes not introducing scratches into the surface unnecessarily. I've been to car gathering where people swear by their detailing prowess, only to see a dizzying amount of micro-swirls because they didn't do their prep and most importantly, scratched up their car with cotton towels.

Wax: Meguiers (2 coats)

Polymer: Zaino (1 coat)

1 comment:

  1. i accept your word for wax is a kind of deep, warmth. The look with polymer polish is sharp, and highly reflective.

    Car Wax