Car customization is one of the most popular hobbies of car enthusiasts around the world. Customizing your car is like an art form. You can choose from different modifications to enhance the overall performance, look, and feel of your ride.
One of the most essential baselines of any car customization is the clear coat. However, some people tend to overlook the importance of a clear coat during this process. It may seem like a small and insignificant part of the car, but it plays an essential role in preserving the overall aesthetic of your vehicle. In this blog post, we will explore the importance of clear coats in car customization while going over some of the other crucial details about this process.
What Is Clear Coat?
Before diving deep into the clear coat’s role, let’s understand what it is first. A clear coat, also known as clear paint or clear plastic, is a protective layer you can apply to the top of the base coat of your car. The clear coat adds a lot to the paint in ways that we’ll go into more depth on below. Clear coats are usually made of acrylic, urethane, or polyurethane and may come in 1K, 2K, or 2X formulations.
Types of Clear Coats
Two types of clear coats are common throughout the car customization world: solvent-based and water-based. Solvent-based clear coats, the traditional solutions, consist of a mix of chemicals and solvents that dissolve the clear coat to form a continuous film.
On the other hand, water-based clear coats use water as a solvent rather than chemicals. This method has become increasingly popular due to its environmental friendliness. However, both types of clear coat have their advantages and disadvantages, and selecting the right one depends on the customer’s needs and preferences.
What Clear Coats Provide for Vehicles
Now that you have a better understanding of what clear coats are, let’s fully explore the role of clear coats in car customization. There are many features that these coverings provide for a vehicle, so we’ll cover each one separately and dive into their importance.
The most significant role of the clear coat is to protect your car’s paint. The clear coat acts as a barrier between the paint and harmful elements such as UV rays, bird droppings, acid rain, and scratches. Without a clear coat, the paint of your car would become dull and faded over time and would require frequent repainting.
Similar to the added protection they offer, clear coats also add an extra layer of durability to your car paint. Since a clear coat will help prevent scratches, it’ll also protect the paint from chipping and cracking. This durability will help ensure the longevity of your car’s paint.
Easy To Clean
Another benefit of clear coats is that they make cleaning your car easier and more efficient. The smooth surface created by the clear coat makes cleaning dirt, dust, and grime easy. Plus, in most cases, dirt will have a harder time latching on in the first place. Unlike with other uncoated surfaces, cleaning clear coats is hassle-free.
A clear coat can also enhance the overall aesthetic appeal of your car. A clear coat gives the paint a glossy and reflective finish, making the colors pop while highlighting the curves and lines of your car. On top of that, the clear coat adds depth and dimension to the paint, giving your vehicle a professional and polished look. The shine and depth created by the clear coat are unmatched by any other protective coating.
Finally, the use of a clear coat in car customization may seem like an added expense, but it’s really not. In the long run, it’s one of the most cost-effective vehicle care solutions. A clear coat protects the paint from UV rays and other harmful elements, meaning you’ll spend less money on repainting and repairing the paint over the lifetime of the vehicle.
Steps in Applying Clear Coat
Another thing that’s vital to know about clear coats is how to apply them. Before applying one, the car’s surface must be free of defects such as dust, dirt, and impurities. Failure to ensure the surface is clear will lead to a shoddy finish, affecting the quality of the customization. The steps in applying a clear coat to a car surface include the following.
- Sanding the vehicle: This process is crucial, as it removes the previous finish and provides a smooth surface to apply the new clear coat.
- Cleaning: After sanding, you must thoroughly clean the car to remove all impurities.
- Preparation: This step consists of covering the car areas that don’t need clear coat application. Areas that benefit from this kind of protection include windows, tires, and mirrors.
- Applying Base Coat: After preparation, experts apply the base coat onto the vehicle’s surface evenly. The base coat acts as the foundation of the customization.
- Buffing: This step involves smoothing the base coat using an abrasive material to remove imperfections and achieve an even surface.
- Applying clear coat: The final stage of customization involves applying the protective and glossy clear coat over the base coat. It’s best to apply it in a dust-free, well-ventilated environment while wearing protective clothing and gloves.
Maintaining Clear Coat
While clear coats don’t need a lot of work after the initial installation, maintaining them is an essential part of keeping your car looking its best. Maintenance can include everything from regular washing and waxing to avoiding harsh chemicals and abrasive products.
When washing your car, use a gentle, pH-neutral soap and a microfiber cloth to avoid scratching the surface. After washing, apply a high-quality wax to protect the clear coat from the elements and maintain its glossiness.
Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive products on the clear coat, as this can cause damage or even strip away the clear coat entirely. If you come across any scratches or chips in the clear coat while maintaining it, take the time to mend them. This measure will help prevent any further damage.
Where To Get the Products You Need
Of course, the most important part of applying a clear coat is having the products needed to do so. Fortunately, Eagle National is here with all the vehicle clear coat items you could ever need. No matter the scale of your clear coat project, you’ll be able to achieve your end goal by using our high-quality products. Take the time today to find the items you need on our website.