i have been using Meguiar's Gold Class car wash and Hybrid Ceramic wax with great results. Next time i need to buy car wash soap I will try The Hybrid Ceramic Wash and Wax since that seems to be a combination of the 2 products. If you try it let us know how you like it.
Thanks for the response. I’ve been looking for the Meguires Ceramic Wash and Wax and no one has it so far. I also have been using the Meguires Gold Class and with the new ceramic stuff coming out that’s what I wanted and couldn’t find it at Advance and O’Rileys so I am gonna try their newer Meguires Wash and Wax and see how it goes.
Seems to me, as I’m so lazy the stand alone Ceramic wax is to much work to get the first and subsequent applications on just right as the Gold Meguires has always turned out good for me.
I think so. After a good detail and professional ceramic coating. I just wet the car and spray on a 6month ceramic detailer spray every now and again then Rinse it off. Haven’t touched the paint in years.
You can use a garden hose and it looks like you just spent two days detailing it. I had my wheels and glass done as well. It’s like a permanent rain X on everything. I blow whatever is left off with a cheap battery powered leaf blower our you can just drive it. The little water that is left will all blow off without leaving anything on the paint. Looks Spotless every time.
Most paste waxes have gone the way of the dinosaurs by now. True ceramic coatings (the ones that come in little glass bottles with suede applicators and specific instructions) last longer and are actually easier to apply, IMO.
One thing I don't think is talked about enough is that an inexperienced detailer (or even experienced ones that don't know any better) tends to cake wax in every little crevice and crack on the car where it dries to a white chalk that you have to dig or scrape off every panel, or they get some on rubber/plastic trim and it's very hard to remove. You can make a similar mistake with a ceramic coating where you might leave a "high spot" where the coating flashed off but wasn't wiped off the panel, but you can remove that in 10 seconds with polish and a microfiber cloth, and ceramic coating on rubber/plastic can actually make it look better (deeper black) and protects it. There are coatings for wheels and glass windows as well which are well worth it.
There are hundreds of ceramic brands since they're cheap to manufacture and have a high markup, plus everyone wants to use them. Typically if you're paying ~$60-100 for a 30mL DIY kit that's not a made-up Amazon brand then you'll do well, not that I've tried a $15 Amazon special kit but if you're spending the time to do this then I think it's worth spending a bit for something you know works well. My personal preference is Carpro (Cquartz) for most things, there's also Gyeon, Sonax, 3D, Gtechniq, and Optimum as some respected brands. There's also graphene-infused coatings which are even newer than ceramic and therefore more expensive, I've not tried one yet. Ceramic detailing sprays are also popular and easier to apply than a true coating, but are meant more as an "every other wash" type of thing, they don't last as long.
Pro detailers have access to specially-made "pro grade" versions of the above coatings, I'm not sure if that's just marketing hype or the coatings are actually formulated differently for flash time/durability. Detailers obviously charge for their labor which blows up the price of a ceramic coating to >$1k USD because they should be polishing the car before applying it, which can be an all-day job.
If you prefer to DIY, there's a whole big rabbit hole to go down but to stay sane you can just wash the car, decontaminate it with an iron fallout remover spray, clay bar, perform a 1-step quick polish if you have the time/tools, and then coat with ceramic once the paint is completely bare with no waxes/oils/etc. The polishing step isn't strictly necessary but that's how you get the best coating durability, plus the paint underneath will look way better in the first place. If the car lives inside and your climate isn't Russia, the coating will last a few years with some basic care. Like DRIFTER says, once this is done properly, you can foam up the car and just rinse & blow dry it off and it will look better than 99% of other cars on the road.
To answer nigel's original question, the real key is to perform the above steps and then it doesn't really matter which car wash soap you use as long as it's not meant to strip protection off (bug removers, etc.) and you like how it smells. I personally prefer a pure soap over a combo-type like Wash & Wax which leaves some wax on the car, if you use that before trying to polish or ceramic coat paint it can make your life difficult. I like Chemical Guy's green car wash soap since it smells like melons . Meguiar's Gold Class wash is absolutely everywhere but smells like ass to me so I don't like it.
I would have the car professionally detailed and then Ceramic coated. You can do it yourself but after seeing customers cars that were done professionally. I would have a pro do it unless you are experienced with the process it’s worth the cost. I can’t remember the brand my guy uses but I have done a bunch of cars with the stuff and the 6 month stuff just sprays on and sprays off. You don’t even have to touch the paint to keep it up.
Well - I've been stuck on the Zaino stuff so far...
I'm sure I'm dated.
I know my car would look better with a detail for the minor scratches, but I have trust issues....
So far when I clean the car up and do a through Zaino job it looks pretty wet, nice.
How does the ceramic job look after 12 months, and what can you do about it (other than have it re-done).
Dumb question, do you continue to wax a ceramic car, or just wash and enjoy.
Nothing wrong with waxes if that's what you prefer. A light polish can do a lot for the overall appearance with minimal risk to the factory paint, much more than a wax or ceramic coating would do, so if you're looking for gloss then polishing is the way to go.
Ceramic fills in micro-scratches and marring the same way wax does, which helps enhance gloss. I'm not sure how much they compare objectively, you can probably find comparison videos done with a gloss meter but I'd expect them to be close. Hard for me to tell the difference at least.
As for protection, after 12 months a good coating will still bead water and function almost the same, but highly environment dependent just like wax. If it's a daily that sits outside you'll want to use top coats (spray ceramic detailers) and regular washes to maintain the base ceramic coating. For a garaged weekend car in a decent climate, the coating should last well over a year.
You can wax a ceramic coated car which can protect the coating underneath, but then all the properties of the coating are overtaken by whatever wax you're using so overlapping the purpose somewhat. You can just wash and enjoy and you'll be fine, if you want to maintain the coating & protection longer you can use ceramic detailing spray as a once every few washes coating. Example, I use Carpro Cquartz UK, every so often I'll use Carpro Reload after a wash as a ceramic enhancer before a show or during a seasonal detailing. Though honestly, most of the time I just wash and go and it's been fine for over a year. I invested a bit into hobbyist detailing tools so that I can polish and apply coatings myself for much cheaper.
The most annoying part of after any drive are BUGS. If you remove them within 24h a pressure spray is sufficient but after 1-2 weeks they bind to the paint and only a polish works applyied to the spot them easily out. I'm talking of a bone naked paint on a DD, no Zaino, no wax, nothing. Is that better with Ceramics?
I've used Zaino due to its high gloss but on a DD wet days tend to destroy the protection film. I'd surely stay away of Carnauba waxes. They offer excellent deep gloss if a highly concentrated Carnauba wax is being used but after 1-2 car washes the car starts to look faded again.
I am a sort of adherent to the traditional carnauba wax. The solid lump / paste version of the stuff like floor wax from 1950, not the squeeze out of the bottle stuff. I like it because it is easy to apply and buff and looks great when the paint is in good condition. It has absolutely no cutting / cleaning / polishing components which is why it is easy to apply and buff. I do paint polishing with a DA buffer separately and as infrequently as possible. Typically will try to do spot corrections if I see a problem rather than do the whole car. As goldNSX notes, the raw carnauba is not a long lasting finish.
Last year I started using Mequiar's 21 paint sealant as an alternative to the carnauba wax. Like the carnauba paste wax it has absolutely no cutting / cleaner / polish in it which makes it easy to apply and buff off. On a car with good paint, the end finish is pretty much comparable to the carnauba and so far it is lasting much longer, probably about 4 months of 'out of storage' exposure. Mequiars advertising touts the ability to eliminate fine scratches and swirls. It might have some minimal 'filling' capability; but, I would not count on it to do any correction at all.
I had tried the Cquartz DIY product about 6-7 years ago. For the price, I was underwhelmed with the result in terms that the finish was not obviously better than a car with good paint and carnauba wax.
The front of my NSX and other cars is wrapped with PPF (bugs are definitely an issue here). PPF is softer than paint and they do seem to embed themselves in it. If you don't want to use a plastic bug scrubber, its spray them with water and let the remains sit to soften up and then repeat a couple times. With patience they will usually come off with out the use of the scrubber.