Vehicle Clear Coat: What you need to know

Vehicle Clear Coat: What you need to know

Clear coat is, at its most basic, the uppermost layer of paint on a car that has no color. In other words, it’s transparent. It’s used to protect the colored layers beneath, helping to protect them from damage.

Clear Coating 101

  • Why is clear coating used?
  • Clear coating: the pros
  • Clear coating: the cons

Why is clear coating used?

Clear coating is added to a vehicle during production. Because most manufacturers use water-based paint, it’s essential that this is protected by a clear coat barrier.

It’s a layer of resin that dries to a hard, invisible layer that prevents damage from UV rays, debris, dust, etc. It adds depth and shine to the paint below it, helping prevent color fade. It also means that minor imperfections—such as those caused by acid rain—can easily be buffed out.

Modern clear coating has been designed to be kinder to the environment, with reduced use of polluting solvents. 

Clear coating: the pros

Clear coating is used for many reasons. These include:

  • Clear coating enhances the appearance of paintwork. 
  • The colors appear glossier and deeper. 
  • They add a hard, protective ‘shell’ over the entire vehicle that’s resistant to oxidation. 
  • Because it has no color, a clear coat can’t fade or lose brightness.
  • Clear coats make it easier to maintain the good looks of a car. 

Clear coating: the cons

For all it’s protective assets, clear coating does have a few disadvantages that you should be aware of:

  • It’s not resistant to scratches, so will sustain damage if you use abrasive products or an intense rubbing motion when cleaning.
  • While a clear coat can’t fade, it can become dull. This can be caused in multiple ways, including excessive UV exposure, bird droppings, acid rain, bug splatter, and industrial fallout.
  • Clear coating requires regular washing, waxing, and attention to prevent it degrading over time.
  • Without care and attention, clear coating can fail. While this happens slowly, once this happens it’s very apparent and dramatically reduces the aesthetic appearance of the vehicle.

How to Protect a Car’s Clear Coating

  • Protecting the protection

Protecting the protection

There are many ways that you can protect the top coat of your vehicle, ensuring that its looks remain pristine.

  1. Wash regularly and ensure that any bird droppings, bug splatters, and other contaminants are removed as soon as possible.
  2. Keep the car under cover, such as in a garage or carport, to reduce the amount of exposure to the sun, heat, and UV rays.
  3. Wax regularly. This adds an additional layer of protection over the clear coating.
  4. Take advantage of a polyurethane clear paint protection product. This eliminates the need for expensive and time-intensive waxing, as well as providing a tough barrier against damage from stone chips, airborne contaminants, and weather related damage. Such products can also be used over car wraps, new paint jobs, and any individual areas of the car that are at higher risk of damage. This might include wing mirrors, the hood, and front bumpers.

Despite the need to look after the clear coating, there’s no doubt that it truly enhances a vehicle’s looks. Good car care and, perhaps, the application of a paint protection film (PPF) will ensure that your ride remains as beautiful as the day it rolled off the factory floor.

Contact Auto SuperShield for the Ultimate in Clear Coating, PPF, & Car Wraps

The ultimate in clear coat protection is, without a doubt, the Xpel Stealth. Offering unbeatable protection, great value for money, and a stunning satin finish, the experts at Auto SuperShield ensure your ride’s gleaming good looks are protected against everything that Mother Nature can throw. Forget about the worry of damage from rocks, debris, and dirt, this tough polyurethane layer can be added over pristine new paint finishes, painted matte finishes, and even matte vinyl stripes.

Discover more at and book in the best clearcoat paint protection today.

Schedule Your Appointment

Schedule Now

Thank you! Check your inbox now :)

Schedule Now

Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form!

Autobahn of Boca Raton | (561) 286-8633 | 2540 NW 2nd Ave, Boca Raton, FL 33431

Upgrade Modal