Waxing adds shine and enhances the look of a vehicle’s finish, while also providing a final layer of protection from UV rays, pollution, and other damaging environmental conditions.

Types of Wax. Carnauba, a natural wax, tends to shed water by making the water bead and run off. Some synthetic waxes add an extra agent like silicone polymers to increase the slickness, shedding water even better. Water contacting waxed finishes slides right off, allowing a vehicle to dry much faster. The less time water and impurities sit on a vehicle’s finish, the less chance they have to contribute to corrosion and oxidation. Some “cleaner waxes” are also formulated to remove oxidation and minor scratches more gently than polish.

Applying Wax. Like washing, you should never apply wax on a hot vehicle or in direct sunlight. Remember to read the labels on the wax container for specific application information. Make sure the wax that you buy is suitable for your car’s finish. Some waxes are safe for both basecoat and clearcoat finishes, others are not. Pure wax for a clearcoat finish should be nonabrasive.