Are you throwing money away on car waxes in El Paso?
Updated: Mar 3
Most people whether they are into car-care or not, know about car wax and it's protection/shine properties.
Let's talk about the most common REAL car waxes/sealants/coatings, why you should or shouldn't use them and what options are out there.
Drive-thru "hot wax"
We will quickly explain the drive-thru "hot wax" and its purpose. It's function is to get you to spend more money for a severely watered down and useless product. The wax they put on your car provides a small increase in shine and has a durability of about 1 day. If you're lucky, maybe 2 days under perfect conditions.
Should you get the hot wax from drive-through washes in El Paso?
Only if you like burning money and destroying your car with each wash.
General Carnauba rub in waxes:
Carnauba is an organic product that provides some protection and a high level of shine. They are great for making your car look amazing and in most cases is layer-able.
Layer-able meaning you can apply several coats of a product. There is a high amount of diminishing returns on layering any type of coating product. Usually after 3 coats, any additional coats are unnoticeable.
The downside of carnauba waxes is that they do not last very long, typically 1-3 months in a best case scenario.
In our El Paso fall, spring and especially summer, waxes are a waste of money in most cases. Since it is an organic product and is literally a wax, its melting point is fairly low. One quick and easy test is to put your hand on the hood of your car. If you can't comfortably leave your hand there for at least 5 seconds, the wax you just put on has either already melted off or is in the process of melting off. Your 1-3 months of protection and shine can be gone in a matter of minutes.
The melting point of carnauba is in the high 100s. That may sound high but a dark colored car in direct sunlight can easily reach higher than 190 degrees. If that car is running, the heat from the engine in combination with the sunlight can send it well over 200 degrees, dark colored vehicle or not.
For that reason alone, H2NO does not offer carnauba paste waxes as part of their packages or add-on services. If we serviced in a different environment where our highest highs were in the 80s, we would offer these waxes. Save yourself the time, money and headache and use a different option.
Should you carnauba wax your car in El Paso?
Paint sealants are man-made and have some good properties all around. They provide a fair amount of shine, are usually layer-able and have decent durability.
They will increase the shine and gloss of your car, not as much as carnauba waxes though. However, their durability is 4-6 months; longer if well maintained.
Because they are a man-made chemical, they have higher resistances than waxes. Their lower end and higher end temperature resistances are greater. For example, most paint sealants have a melting point around 350 degrees or higher. That is more than enough to hold on a black car in our summers of 110+ degree weather.
At H2NO we primarily use paint sealants for our details. In our climate, it provides the most value for our customers. After we seal the paint, we apply a spray on carnauba wax so you get that shine from carnauba but the protection and durability of a sealant.
Should you use a paint sealant in El Paso?
Spray on wax (carnauba based):
Spray on waxes provide a very similar wow-factor in terms of shine and gloss for a vehicle. They are also extremely easy to apply.
However, their downside is a severe loss in durability. Spray waxes typically last 1-3 weeks under perfect conditions. The same heat issue applies to carnauba based spray waxes. If your car gets too hot, it won't last its expected life.
A spray wax is good for in between details. It will tide your car over until you get a new paint sealant on it or help maintain your sealant if you already had one put on. However, if your only line of defense is a spray carnauba wax, that's like only wearing a t-shirt in Antarctica.
At H2NO we use carnauba based spray waxes as toppers for our washes and details. For our details, we first seal the vehicle with a paint sealant to get you that great 4-6 month protection and follow up with a spray wax to get you that extra shine. By the time the spray wax wears off, you should already be scheduling your next wash to maintain your vehicle.
Should you use a carnauba spray wax in El Paso?
There is a lot of hype around ceramic coatings, for good reasons too. They are great products.
First, their durability is unmatched by paint sealants. Ceramic coatings can last anywhere from 2 years to over 5 years if really well maintained.
They produce a tremendous amount of gloss, shine and protection. It's the best of paint sealants, waxes and then some more because of their durability.
Their major downfalls are application and price.
Application of ceramic coating is a skill of its own. It requires a steady hand and careful attention to minute details. Once the coating is applied, cure time can be as little as 4 hours or as much as 36 hours. During that cure time, depending on the product, manufactures highly recommend that the vehicle be kept in a garage away from sunlight and away from moisture. If you get a ceramic coating, you may have to go 2 days without using your vehicle.
Price is a pretty penny compared to waxes and paint sealant. Ceramic coating treatments from most reputable places range anywhere from $400 to $1200 depending on the coating, business and longevity promised by the manufacturer.
Before applying a ceramic coating, paint correction is always recommended. The purpose is to seal in your perfectly corrected paint and also to provide an even and clean surface for the coating to adhere to.
At H2NO we only use IGL coatings as they are professional grade products only available to manufacture approved detailers. They are stronger, longer lasting and better for the environment than "over the counter" coatings available at amazon or other retail stores.
We currently offer two levels of ceramic coatings. Our basic IGL coating package last 2 years and our deluxe IGL coating package lasts 3 years. Both have the ability double their durability with proper maintenance and ceramic booster services.
The detailing craft is about to go into a transition. The next product we describe will likely replace ceramic coatings entirely in the next 2-5 years. We are ahead of the competition and have already secured a distributor for it. We are currently the ONLY business in El Paso to offer graphene coatings.
Should you ceramic coat your car in El Paso?
Graphene coating is the newest technology for vehicle coatings. Not a lot of companies produce it and its pure graphene products are only available to professionals.
In our professional opinion, graphene will replace ceramic once more companies figure out how to mass produce it. Currently, only a handful of companies produce it and there is a waiting list for it. We were on this waiting list for months and now offer it to our customers!
The price point is higher and application has more strict requirements. The end results are worth the work and money.
However, graphene is stronger and provides more protection. For example, if a bird decides your car is a toilet, your ceramic coating will likely come off or be weakened when you clean the poop off of your car. The chemicals in the bird droppings react with the ceramic coating and some of the coating will come off with the poop. The same can be said of cleaning chemicals. If your car gets sprayed with a strong enough chemical for some reason, you ceramic coating may come with it.
With graphene, that won't happen. The poop will come right off without affecting your coating. If you park in a spot that is prone to bird droppings, your 3 year ceramic coating will have holes in it or have its life span reduced.
Graphene is also much more resistant to water spots than ceramic.
Graphene currently has a standard 5 year rated coating when installed professionally, H2NO is an authorized installer. This can be boosted to 10 years if maintained properly and boosted with graphene maintenance services.
H2NO is the only business in El Paso that offers graphene coatings and all of its benefits!
Should you graphene coat your car with H2NO?