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Best synthetic wax

Best synthetic wax

I know this has been discussed in the TMC forum and possibly here also, but with my Blue 85 due in a couple weeks I am making final plans for its first wax. I have used NuFinish on past cars but did read on the TMC forum some good comments about 3M 39030 Performance Finish. It is reasonably priced and also gets very good reviews on Amazon. Just wondering what others are using and happy with. I do plan to take care of the car but am not obsessive with try to keep it looking like a "show car". Just want to hit a happy medium of clean, great looking finish with reasonable amount of efforts. So appreciate any suggestions.

stevenmaifert | May 15, 2013

I'm using Meguiar's NXT Tech Wax 2.0 paste purchased on Amazon.com. Very happy with it.

carlf9121 | May 15, 2013

I have a black P85. To maintain the luster and shine for the last 2 months, I've been using Meguiar's Ultimate Quick Detailer. It's been great on the road, especially on the recent trip from NorCal to SoCal.

Took the car to Santana Row and it draw alot of attention.

Meguiar's Ultimate Quick Detailer
by Meguiar's

Enhances wax protection that is safe on all surface
Features hydrophobic polymer technology
Delivers a high surface tension which adds protection
Removes dust, bugs and finger prints
Leaves an ultra-slick and ultra-dark finish

kw1 | May 15, 2013

I also use Meguiar's NXT Tech Wax 2.0. I put it on shortly after getting the MS as the reviews were good, it was easy, available, and not too expensive. I touch up (remove bugs, dust, and rear panel grime) with Pinnacle Crystal Mist Carnauba Detail Spray (easy and quick plus it smells good). I use the 2 cloth quick detail method - one to soak up the detail spray and the dirt, the second to dry/buff to a shine - the whole car takes about 5 minutes. The combination seems to leave a very deep gloss on my silver MS and I get a lot of compliments - however those are probably due to the car and not my wax :)

Schlermie | May 15, 2013

There was a thread here a while back where folks were touting "Liquid Glass LG-100" and "Optimum Opti-Coat 2.0".

skulleyb | May 15, 2013

Need to find a detailer for opti-coat in la anyone?

defmonk | May 15, 2013

Meguiar's NXT Tech Wax 2.0 liquid, too. My recommendation is to do a double pass, as in the instructions. Very happy with the results and super easy to apply and buff.

Kleist | May 15, 2013

Sorry guys - do I need to wash my car ? I thought that would be part of the annual service.
Just kidding... I am reading the thread.

ModelNick | May 15, 2013

I've been using Griot's Garage products for years. The "Best Of Show" wax is excellent. In fact, anything I've ever tried from them has been fantastic - window cleaner, speed shine, spray on wax, clay bar, micro fiber towels and many others.

Cattledog | May 16, 2013

Kleist - Pretty sure a wash is part of the $600 annual service when you bring it in. Now if you want a weekly wash, you'll have to sign up for the little known $31,200/yr. weekly service. However, if you've held your TSLA shares, it's pocket change.

mbcaffe | May 16, 2013

I just used Collinite liquid wax #845. Previously used NXT Tech Wax 2.0 paste. I think the Collinite is a little better. you will not go wrong with either. I also have the blue

gary.greene | May 16, 2013

+1 for Meguiar's Quick Detailer. I use it all the time between car washes to clean off minor spots and road grit. Works beautifully but use a micro fiber cloth to be safe.

biggator | May 16, 2013

Just did a full Zaino treatment on my wife's MS85.. looks fantastic.

Neech | May 16, 2013

A member on TMC recently tested several polishes and he found something called Glare to be the best in that bunch. Does anyone else have experience with Glare?

CAS | May 16, 2013

+1 biggator. I only use Zaino on my Model S.

alcassfast | May 17, 2013

@stevenmai...
My neighbour raves about that stuff.

rdalcanto | May 17, 2013

I haven't tried on a black car yet, but I use WashWaxAll (washwax.com) on my motorhome and Silver Porsche. Super easy. I wash the car, and when still wet, spray the washwaxall on, and wipe dry. Do about 1/8th of the car at a time. Basically doesn't add any time. I will report back on the shine on my black MS in a month after delivery.

brickayola | May 17, 2013

A Benz snob said liquid glass was crap and I should only use Zymol (non-synthetic?). Anyone have experience with it?

RD7 | May 17, 2013

I have been using Meguiar's NXT Tech Wax for 2+ years now on all my cars. Could not be happier with it. I apply it using a small buffer with a microfiber applicator, and buff off with a large orbital buffer also w a microfiber bonnet. No streaks, great shine and water repellency, no wax stuck in crevices.

As an aside, on the interior I was surprised to find that most of my leather cleaners left streak marks on the black Nappa leather. After much experimentation, I found that Mother's leather cleaner worked by far the best. Also applied Meguiar's leather sealant after cleaning everything thoroughly with the Meguiar's followed by a 10% dilution of Woolite. We'll see how well the sealant works, but appearance-wise, it looks great now.

c.bussert67 | May 17, 2013

I've never really bought fancy wax before since I haven't owned a car this expensive before, but the S got me looking. I have learned to trust meguires for good bang for the buck. I have the pearl white and I noticed that meguires has a "White wax" out now, so I tried it. Its a paste in a tube. It goes on smooth and it leaves the paint with a level of shine and slick feeling to a finger I've never had before.
I don't think its synthetic, but it really is worth a try. I'm really impressed by it. The paint looks deep and glows in the sunlight.
They make a "black wax" as well.

nickjhowe | May 17, 2013

The guy who did my paint protection film swears by NXT - to remove small marks from the film. If you get any stubborn marks on the surface of the film, or dings where a stone has hit it, then a dab of NXT seems to work wonders.

eAdopter | May 18, 2013

I don't normally wax/polish my cars often, but reading the Forums and waiting two years for my MS got the best of me.

My MS will be delivered in 7-10 days and I plan to keep it polished. With that in mind, I read every review I could find and narrowed the product list down to three:

NTX
Nu Finish
Glare

I ordered Glare from eBay. Nu Finish was purchased at a local store. I decided to skip NXT. I have little doubt NXT is a good product, but the other two intrigued me more and I only need to polish two cars.. Glare is supposed to remove/hide spider webs and swirl marks, polish chrome, and last five years. Nu Finish is supposed to last one year. I like the idea of low maintenance so I decided to experiment with only the last two products, Glare and Nu Finish.

I have two cars for my test. One is a 1998 with plenty of spider webs and swirl marks. The second is a 2012 with no spider webs or swirl marks (near pefect).
Today I washed/waxed/polished both cars. Both were washed/dried in 55 degree weather. Neither car was driven or allowed to get warm in the sun (overcast today). Both cars were polished in my garage to avoid having UV rays bake-on the products. I hate having a wax get too hard and then having to scrub it off. Too much work.

Here are the results:

The 1998 car was first. To test Glare, I applied it to half of the hood. Glare did an amazing(!) job of hiding the spider webs and swirl marks. About 90% of the marks were hiden when viewed under a bright light. I was impressed. The second half of the hood was polished with Nu Finish. It also provided a very good shine, but only hid about 5% of the spider webs. Both products looked very good from beyond 3 feet. Both were easy to apply. Glare produced more dush. Nu Finish produced almost no dust. Glare had slightly less gloss but looked deeper. I finished the 1998 car with Nu Finish ($6) and the car looks great.
Note: One thing was interesting. The two products overlapped as I worked on the hood. Glare refused being removed by Nu Finish. Nu Finish could be removed by Glare. It seems Glare is something more than a typical polish. I even tried to remove it with a variety of soaps and wax. No luck. Glare is tough stuff.
Next up, the 2012 car with near-perfect paint. Again, I applied both Glare and Nu Finish side by side. There were no spider webs or swirls to compare with a bright light. Both products produced a great shine. Glare was slightly more mirror-like. Glare was also slightly easier to remove and buff. In order to have a comparison in a few weeks, I finished the 2012 car with Glare. Again, it produced more dust but not as much as regular wax.
Having one car now polised with each product, I'll keep an eye on durability for the coming weeks and months.
I've decided to use Nu Finish on my MS. The paint will be new so there should be no spider webs to hide. Nu Finish is much more cost effective, assuming it lasts several months.

rdalcanto | May 19, 2013

@eAdopter
Awesome write up! Thanks for the info!

youlikeadajuice | May 19, 2013

@eAdopter...thanks for the info, I'm planning on using Glare on my black model S soon...what did you apply the glare with? Machine? By hand? What kind of pads if you used a machine...thanks!

eelton | May 19, 2013

Pinnacle Liquid Souveran--particularly on a black car.

eAdopter | May 19, 2013

@youlikeadajuice
I purchase a 2-pack of round, white, cotton terry applicators ($2.59) and used one for the Glare, one for the Nu Finish. I originally thought I would wash and re-use the applicators, but for that price, I'll purchase new applicators every time.

I didn't mention this earlier, but I also used Nu Finish on the windows. Very little polish is needed for windows. It made them spotless, shinny, streakless, and nothing sticks. I won't go back to Rain-X.

SPECIAL NOTE: I used a thick(!) microfiber cloth to wipe and buff after applying the products. A high-quality, thick cloth will cost about $10-$12. Did I mention "thick" enough? It's very important. The cloths seem expensive, but I now know they're worth every penny. The thick microfiber knap pulls the dry polish away from the car surface as you wipe and buff, preventing "gumming" and streaks. They also don't "dig " into the polish while wiping.

rdalcanto | May 19, 2013

@eAdopter
I'm surprised you seemed to pick the NuFinish over the Glare, even after saying the Glare was easier to apply/remove, and is probably tougher and longer lasting. I don't mind spending a little more if it gives me better protection from road salt, bird poop, etc., and I don't have to apply as often.

eAdopter | May 19, 2013

@rdlcanto
Yes, I see what you mean. I think it's important to keep my goals in mind. The goals were to determine:

1. Which one is best for my Model S with new paint.
2. If it's necessary to spend more to achieve a significant difference.

Longer term, I'll be watching both products for durrabilty - results coming.

For an older car, I agree with you. I think Glare is a slam dunk for my 1998 car because of how it hid the spider webs. But I was only using the older car as a test platform. I don't plan to polish it again.

For a surface in excellent or new condition like my 2012 car and soon-to-be Model S respectively, the differences were very(!) small.

Both products had similar gloss and both were easy to apply. Nu Finish had less dust, and Glare produced very little dust. In summary, both are excellent as of day 1. Each product has a minor advantage over the other, so I don't see any reason to spend 3x for Glare when it faired 1.1x better in my test.

I'm not a wealthy person and value is important to me. This is the type of decision making that allows me to save money over a long period of time, then pay cash for my Model S. I spend more money when differences warrant it, but not for the level of differences I described above. I hope this makes sense. It has a lot to do with personal preference and may not be for everyone.

rdalcanto | May 19, 2013

Thank you!

ron8853 | May 19, 2013

I use Zaino Bros. Z2 Pro. Only available on-line, but they do ship same day. Might try "Leather in a Bottle" as well. Quirky name but recommended for leather surfaces..

eAdopter | May 19, 2013

@ron8853
Can you tell us more about how it holds up over time. Why did you choose it over other products?

smahawar | May 19, 2013

Hey everyone, I have a dark grey P85 and my father has a midnight blue one. I did quite a bit of research about wax and wax vs sealant etc.

At the end of the day I found that basically hard waxes which seem more antiquated with respect to sealants have more structural integrity against rocks etc while driving. That being said putting on a layer of wax takes a considerable amount of elbow grease and must be repeated at least twice annually--but it looks great.

So to that end I went in search for the best hard wax I could find. At the top end of the spectrum you have SwissVax which is 100s of dollars per container and at the low end you have things you find at Walmart like Turtle Wax. I did quite a bit of research and settled on a mid range wax by Zymol
http://www.amazon.com/Zymol-101-Carbon-Wax/dp/B000L50ZVI

This wax looks great and it repels water very well and protects the paint.

Remember you should always use clay and detail spray to get all of the small impurities off your paint before waxing. Block off a few hours or hire someone.

J.T. | May 19, 2013

As I read these forums and then check out websites like Zaino, Chemical Guys, and the Junkman there seems to be a difference of opinion vis a vis microfiber vs. USA made white 100% cotton towels from BB&B. What is your experience?

GettingOldFast | May 20, 2013

@Neech
I've used Glare, based on that TMC comparison. As soon as I got it, I tried (because Amazon users recommended this) clarifying the plastic headlight covers on my son's 2002 Mazda, which were scratched and yellowed considerably. It was so amazing, I didn't do the other headlight 'cuz I wanted to show people the difference! Then I used the Glare on my Silver MS, following the instructions to do two coats. First, I just did the painted surfaces of the car, then on the second coat, I did the entire car, including glass and chrome and the wheels (everything except rubber and vinyl).

The results were pretty impressive and made the next washing very effortless, but I was hoping that it would preclude the need to wax the car for another six months. Since I really like that glossy don't-you-dare-sit-on-my-car-or-you-will-slide-off-and-get-hurt feeling, I still use a quick-detailer spray after each washing. I can't say whether this result is better or worse than any other polishes, but I like it and will stick with until I get my $30's worth. Actually, after eAdopter's review, I'm kind of looking forward to using it on all my older cars to see what sort of renewal they provide.

Brian H | May 20, 2013

As a cataract sufferer in one eye (and slightly in the other) awaiting lens replacement, I sympathize with your son's car.

hsadler | May 21, 2013

Question:

Have the Tech Wax NXT, however, the MS has Paint Armor due at Fremont on Friday (they forgot to do it for delivery).

Should I wax first or wait till after?

eAdopter | May 21, 2013

Update:
As you'll recall from my Glare and Nu Finish review (link below), I had high praise for both products and promised to keep you posted regarding durability, etc.

The hood of my 1998 car has both products applied side by side. Let the competition begin.

Rain Day 1
Today was my first chance to observe performance in the rain. While it doesn't speak directly to durability, the performance difference on my 1998 car was dramatic.

Nu Finish: Performed very well. Caused water to bead much like a conventional wax.

Glare: OMG! Water won't stick to the painted surface. There are no beads because it won't stay wet.

Earlier I said I wouldn't pay 3x the cost for Glare when it only performed 1.1x better than Nu Finish. Well, this is only "Rain Day 1", but I may need to change my mind if Glare continues to perform this well. I'll keep you posted.

Link to earlier review
http://www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/best-synthetic-wax

MrB | May 22, 2013

I had a local shop do 6 coats of Zano on my Black P85, after they wet sanded the paint to get out the orange peel, and buffed the whole car to a beautiful mirror shine, and after Tesla put paint protection on the car, (I opted for a full hood piece directly from the manufacturer).

The car look amazing so far and it's been wash twice since the Zano.

Vlnprof | May 25, 2013

rdalcanto - thanks for the washwaxall recommendation. I was not familiar with it, but just tried it on my MS and it worked great!

Ya Hump | May 28, 2014

Have used lots of products on various vehicles in the past/present. So far today in AZ most are 'lacking' in many ways.
WANTS:
+ UV Inhibitors to prevent oxidation/UV damage for "DAILY" driver
+ Ability to somewhat remove oxidation/UV damage
+ Rain Shedding / Hard Water spots
+ Ease to apply and remove (can do multiple apps)
+ How Long a Product Lasts
+ Really want that deep ultra slick SHOW CAR shine (without some acrylic nail looking layer)

PRODUCTS COMMENTS:
* NXT - Don't like for many reasons
* GLARE - Never used; can't wait to try based on comments Thanks!
* Zaino - Used long time ago on car sold, will try again based on above comments Thanks!
* 3M Liquid Polish ((051131-05993) - LOVE IT!!! I'd bathe in this. for Show Cars goes on and off so easy. New stuff though really isn't quite like the old stuff. Have to apply every month though and doesn't really remove oxidation. Have to use their other products for oxidation. If you want to keep a car nice and don't mind applying every month this is "THEE STUFF". Easy On and comes off so so easy. Don't know about UV because only used it on cars in garage (no sun/rain).
* Pinnacle Liquid Souveran - typical good carnuba (great for show cars that don't get wet too often or harsh use) lasts ~3 wks in the sun
* Nu Finish - fan but find it really doesn't hold up in UV like expected, great for up North and worked awesome in snow/rain and held up for 6 months plus. Used to use after every wash because it was so easy to apply and remove and didn't paste up. Once had car paint resprayed after using and it caused 'orange peel' 'bubbles' in certain areas even after applying primer. Believe it even prevented rust in certain areas before Rustoleum came out with rust inhibitors.
* Griots - good stuff but still doesn't seem to meet to the UV needs
* Liquid Gold 100 - nope
* Zymol - not too bad but didn't prevent oxidation as expected and doesn't seem to remove it; seems ok for new cars but swirl marks do return so multiple regular apps needed, so I would rather use carnuba for same if not better results
* Pure Carnuba products (Adams/Mothers/Mequires/Others) - seem to be pretty much the same as far as lasting ability, do seem to help oxidation, UV but wear pretty quickly. EXCELLENT SHINE! Mequire's Ultimate and Adam's Butter Wax is by far easiest to apply and remove.
* PolyGlycoat - had to sand a vehicle to bare metal and multi primer coat to fix. Doesn't remove oxidation though, great for new cars and seems to hold up great in salted roads/rain/snow. Not a true show car shine but it lasts. Definately seems to bond to car metal. Applied carnuba over it no problem to get shine wanted.
* Turtle Wax ICE - crap, although their claybar stuff seems to work
* Mequires Ultimate (Full Step Process) - does what it says but UV and oxidation return after a couple months (new wax is easy to apply and remove though)
* Mequires Gold Class - nope cheaper better stuff
* Mothers (Full Step Process) - does what it says but UV and oxidation return after a couple months - seems harder to apply than Mequires
* Collinite - smells like kerosene and does great for a bit, use it on other things than most car finishes but it does amazing things at times like prevents rust. Still use it on gates, bare metals around the house and even wood.
* Scratch Doctor - (NuFinish) - nope! Use corn starch for better results, have yet to find a good scratch product, but seen them in Popular Mechanics and shows, but none seem to work or last.
* Boyd's Polish - nope - not worth any comments even
* Adam's Spray Detail - easiest way to keep a garage car smooth and silkly between polishes.

Usually done all by hand, sometimes by machine, TERRY CLOTH (nice ones only no Harbor Freight knock offs) and while not a believer in Microfiber clothes they do fill their niche for certain polishes / waxes. For certain ones they are the only way to remove swirl marks, while others they simply remove too much product or actually make it easier to remove the right amount and the swirl marks!

SO QUESTION TO ALL:
---> What is the BEST UV product that doesn't leave some acyrilic layer, removes oxidation, easy to apply/remove, and leaves that SHOW CAR shine? Hard water spot removal would help too, way too many times has car been rained or sprayed by sprinklers and left spots.

THANKS ALL!!!