Automotive Maintenance And Detailing


Automotive Maintenance And Detailing

What Is the Difference Between Car Polish and Car Waxing?

As in the previous section, we already have done car wash in the first step. Here we are now going to a further step of car detailing, polishing. Car polish is a term in which people get confused with car waxing. Polishing is another one process of surface prep before you do protection process (waxing, sealant or ceramic coating). It will manage the car surface with contamination of bond or anything left from the washing process.

Car polishing is included with many levels:

 – Compound level, they use this for a cutting process of rough to very rough car paint defect. 

 – Medium or light level is for the car with the uneven paint surface. It likes a very slight scratch which is no need high cut level like compounding.

 – The finishing level is for a car with a very smooth surface but has some dirt, dull, marring, oxidation and you want shiny results.

For a beginner, we suggest you focus on medium to finishing level. We can do these steps by normal polishing tools even with your hands. It is because the compound level has high cutting, needs an experienced person to do such as a car painting guy. They need a lot of tools and processes to polish at this level.

Polishing, therefore, is an act of elimination or remove defection of the surface not only car paint but chrome, metal, rubber, plastic, glasses also. Besides an abrasive like polishing rotary and pad, you need chemical products which have good properties of removal very thin layer and defect. They make products with several chemical formulas that you need to pay attention to when purchasing it.

car polshing

Polishing by Hand and Machine

There are two standard choices, polishing by hand and machine. For the beginner who do polish car 1 or 2 times a year, we believe they will not invest in the rotary polisher. Hand polishing is a basic and zero-cost tool at this point. There are a lot of products from makers produced to support hand polishing like thick polishing pad and polish product with the special chemical formula. Polishing by hand is an easy and effective job, almost the same with the machine but takes a lot more time. Applying the product to a pad and polish with circular movement, left-right, up-down like criss-cross pattern. This is very effective polish as you can control weight on the surface, especially on thinner paint or soft area of the car body.

Polishing Pattern

Polisher movement

criss-cross pattern
pad motion

By the way, if you want to save time, polishing machines are the best choice. It is including with standard rotary polisher and dual action polisher. The first one is a basic polisher use for a long time in a car detailing business. It is good for car paintwork, fast and offers good results but it does not suit the beginner. It is because rotary polisher can cause heat and damage to paintwork. Dual-action polisher is another level of car polishing machine. It has a more advanced movement of the rotary pad, orbital movement or two simultaneously spinning. This will keep heat and friction to a minimum for surface protection, as above pictures.

Whatever polishing by hand or machine, you would have the correct movement. By hand, besides circle movement, you should make a criss-cross pattern during polish on each panel. Polishing by machine, it has the same criss-cross technique as same as by hand but a lot faster. One important thing is you should be aware of not to polish with high speed on the thinner area. We suggest hand polishing which you can control movement and weight a lot of wells on thin, small and corner areas.

Car polish

We hope you would find benefit from the above article. It might not be complete information on all polishing stages that is because we would like to focus on the beginner or enthusiast who wants to detail car by themselves at home. We are providing more information about the related tool and product in the Top Lists post where you can follow this link.

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