Wheel alignment

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Spit and polish

For as long as I can remember, carnauba wax has been my go-to for our cars and my road bikes.  Gives a good shine and is relatively long-lasting.  Having recently run out and wanting to give a bit of pre-winter protection to our fleet, I popped into our local Repco store to get some more.  However, perusing the shelves, I came across this:

Meguiars Hybrid Ceramic Wax

Pure ceramic coatings have been around for quite a while but they require a high degree of surface preparation. The instructions on the this hybrid looked pretty straightforward so thought I'd give it a go. The instructions said that for the first time up, wash your vehicle in the normal way and straight after you've applied clean water, squirt on some ceramic wax, then spread with a soft cloth and buff with a microfibre towel until dry.  I followed the procedure and here's the result:  

A real mirror finish

The finish is superb and it gives a really slippery feel.  Really easy to apply too.  That slippery feel translates to less dust sticking than a pure wax finish.  It's too early to comment on how easy it is to clean off accumulated road dirt.  However, water is still beading then running off even gentle slopes on the car after 3 weeks of use as shown below.  It pretty much runs straight off vertical panels.

Good beading and run-off after 3 weeks of use

The photo below shows beading on our 4x4 roof straight after a shower.  The coating is 3 weeks old and the vehicle lives outside.  So far so good although it's too early to predict longevity.

Beading after 3 weeks of the 4x4 sitting outside

The Meguiars instructions say that to build up layers on subsequent cleans, simply squirt on the product after washing, then use a strong jet from a hose or pressure cleaner to spread it on the panels, then buff dry.  In my opinion, this is both wasteful and somewhat hit and miss.  A few videos I've subsequently watched on YouTube also hint at this.  What I did by way of experiment was after washing and drying, to wipe a dry, clean panel of the car with a wet microfibre cloth, immediately apply a light squirt of ceramic wax then buff it dry. I then repeated this on the rest of the car panels and it worked perfectly with only a small amount of product used. 

So what's the initial verdict?  In terms of finish, it does exactly what it claims and is easy and quick to apply now I've got a better technique sorted out. Because it's a relatively new product, it attracts a premium price.  It costs a bit under NZ$60 for a 768 ml bottle (US36, AUD51, GBP29) which is similar to a good carnauba wax.  The price may fall over time but in any event, a bottle should last up to a couple of years if the finish is reasonably durable.  Very happy to have an alternative to conventional waxes.

In other news, international supply chain delays are really pissing me off.  The Giant brand e-mountain bike which I ordered in early March still hasn't arrived in the country and may not show up until late June.  Conversely, the accessories ordered from China and Australia only take 2-3 weeks to arrive.  I'm picking that the accessories are relatively quick thanks to air freight whereas larger items such as bikes are almost exclusively shipped by sea.  Sigh.....

2 comments:

  1. I’ve been using a ceramic wash/wax for a couple of months and have been happy with the results.

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    1. That's encouraging news Richard. It certainly repels dust when you run a hose over the vehicles. Looks like we have a winner!

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