How Often to Wax a Car

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Whether you have an exotic car that you'd like to keep in mint condition or you'd like to keep your family car looking its best, it's important to wax your car or have your car waxed by a professional at least once a year. The type of wax you use depends on how frequently you will need to wax your car, but some newer waxes on the market will keep your car exterior looking great for months.

History

  • The first known car waxes were simply beeswax formulated for use on vehicles. Beeswax mixed with turpentine is still considered to be a crude car wax that is effective for use today. Turtle Wax is the most well-known car wax company, established in the 1960s. In the 1970s, it was discovered that the best way to get a great shine on the exterior of a car was to start with a clay bar to remove paint contamination and scratches, buff with a product like an abrasive polish, and then wax with a synthetic sealant.

Function

  • Waxing a car is important in order to maintain its paint job and avoid surface scratches, rust, oxidation and water deposits. Most waxes nowadays are synthetic and last longer than the waxes of the past. It's important to rub a liquid synthetic sealant onto your car's finish before applying the wax, which is usually carnauba-based. Not only does a waxed car appear newer, the wax also protects the car from further damage.

Time Frame

  • Car wax should be reapplied at least once a year if you are using a synthetic wax and would like the car to be protected from damage. If you are planning to enter car shows or would like your car to appear as though it is in its absolute best condition, you can wax your car at least once a week. You cannot wax your car too much; however, it is really not necessary to wax your car more than once a year. Stick with a high-quality sealant and wax, and your car will look like new for at least a few months before you need to reapply.

Considerations

  • There is no correct answer as to how often you should wax your car. If your car is kept in a garage and not exposed to many harsh weather conditions, you will probably need to wax your car less often than someone who keeps his car outside and lives at the beach or in the desert. If you see your car starting to lose its shine, it's time to wax. That's the best key to knowing how often you should wax your car. If you are unsure about how often to wax your car depending on your environment and where the car is stored, speak to a professional car detailer in your area.

Warning

  • Although car wax can be made at home by mixing beeswax and turpentine, it is not recommended for use on the entire car until you are aware of the reaction the wax will have on your particular paint job. if you have an exotic car or a show car, you will be better off getting your car professionally detailed instead of trying to create your own wax. If you are experimenting and would like to try out your own wax recipe, try melting together 1/4 pound of beeswax, 1 cup water, 1 cup turpentine and 1/4 cup liquid soap. Let it cool and experiment on a small area of your paint job. If you are satisfied with the results, try the mixture on your entire car. If you are concerned about the integrity of your car's paint job, take your car to a professional detailer.

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