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Here’s a fun fact: your brand-new car isn’t actually brand-new. Not because someone took it for a spin before you did—after all, that’s what test drives are for. What we mean is that the moment you bring your brand-new car home from the dealership, it’s already several months old.
See for yourself. Open the car door on the driver’s side and check the label on the door jamb. You’ll find the exact date the OEM assembled your vehicle, which will most likely be at least 4-5 months before you purchased it. That means, for at least 4-5 months, your vehicle sat at the dealership unprotected, exposed to acidic rain and harsh UV rays and, during test drives, road hazards and debris.
That’s why it’s so important to protect your car after taking it home – to keep it looking sleek and glossy. With the proper maintenance, a factory fresh paint job can continue to shine for up to 20 years!
So what’s the best way to protect the paint on a new car? Read on to find out!
Once you get your new car home from the dealership, the first thing you want to do is give it a quick wash. If your car sat in an outdoor parking lot, then it was exposed to countless contaminants that you wouldn’t want to seal into your finish: dust, pollen, mineral deposits from rainwater—even car exhaust from passing traffic.
Spray your car with a hose from the top down to rinse away any loose soils. Then, wash your car with your preferred car wash solution. We recommend filling your bucket with a gentle, all-purpose car wash soap like our Turtle Wax M.A.X. Power Wash at its lowest concentration or our Hybrid Solution Pro Pure Wash. Use a microfiber wash mitt to gently massage the cleaning solution into the paint surface to remove any dirt and light stains that may have accumulated. Rinse your car thoroughly and towel dry.
Now that you’ve cleaned any noticeable dirt or dust on the clear coat, it’s the perfect time to inspect your vehicle’s finish up close. Unless you paid for a dealership sealant, chances are your vehicle didn’t come with any additional protection.
In this case, some contaminants may have bonded to the clear coat. Even if these microscopic particles aren’t visible to the naked eye, they can still dull your vehicle’s shine and continue to degrade the paintwork, so it’s important to get rid of these contaminants before adding a layer of protection.
To check for bonded contaminants, place a zip-top bag over your hand and gently glide it across the surface of your car. If you feel any grittiness or tiny bumps, then there are tiny particles stuck in the clear coat, and you’ll need to use a clay mitt and clay lubricant to remove them.
Place a generous amount of lubricant on the clay mitt and the surface of your car, then glide the mitt back and forth across the surface of your car. Once you’ve worked your way around the entire car, feel again with your plastic bag. The surface of your car should feel smooth like glass.
The fact that your car is new isn’t an excuse to skip the wax. After all, we’ve already covered that your brand-new car isn’t as new as you think it is! And even if you don’t feel like it (let’s be honest, sometimes we don’t) applying a spray wax to your car after a wash only takes 5-10 minutes, and with regular touch-ups and maintenance, it protects your vehicle for up to 6 months!
For the easiest option, we recommend Hybrid Solutions Ceramic Wet Wax for car paint protection. Just apply it after your final rinse to combine waxing and drying your car into one, easy step! Spray 1-2 mists of car wax per panel and buff these surfaces dry with a fresh, microfiber towel for up to 6 months of scratch protection, chemical resistance and hydrophobic protection.
Or, for a longer lasting, jaw-dropping, showroom look, check out our Hybrid Solutions PRO Flex Wax. This advanced spray wax is infused with genuine graphene, the strongest substance known to man, for unparalleled durability, heat resistance and a deeper, eye-popping shine. Achieving the ultimate finish has never been faster or more convenient.
Above all, the best way to protect your paint is through regular maintenance. No car wax or paint sealant can beat routine washing, waxing and paint correction. To read up on pro tips and best practices for taking care of your new set of wheels, check out some of our other how-to articles and guides, including “Maintain Your Car's Appearance With These Car Detailing Tips!”
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