How Many Coats of Wax Should I Put on My Car?

Car waxes are designed to help protect the paint against the elements. However, a coating does not last forever and must be applied regularly, which may lead you to question how many coats of wax you should put on your car.

Ideally, you should aim to put two coats of wax on your car. The time between waxing sessions and the number of coats depends on several factors, including your environment. For example, a cool, dry climate needs fewer waxing sessions than a vehicle parked outside in harsh weather. A car left outside in year-round direct sunlight or exposed to severe winter weather requires more frequent waxing sessions. In this article, I have covered everything you need about car wax, why you should use it, how many coats and how often to apply it. 

What Is Car Wax?

Car wax is a type of coating that is applied to the exterior of a car. It is a mixture of natural and synthetic substances that provide shine and protection to the paint. Car wax is typically applied in a paste form and works by sealing the paint from moisture, UV rays, and air pollution. It usually contains carnauba wax, making the car look glossy and slippery between your fingers, making it easier to apply and remove. However, it is essential to note that some types of car wax contain silicones.

Additionally, wax can reduce the appearance of blemishes and minor scratches by filling imperfections in the clear coat, improving the car’s overall appearance.

Why You Should Use Car Wax

Car wax is an essential part of maintaining your vehicle. If you need more than that, here are five reasons to wax your car

  1. Protection Against Scratches – Regular application of car wax to the surface of your vehicle will help protect your finish from blemishes. While wax won’t eliminate scratches, it will fill in shallow scratches and make them less noticeable. In addition, waxing is an excellent way to enhance your car’s appearance and protect it from environmental contaminants.
  2. Protects The Paint From Exposure – The body of a car is exposed to various elements every day, including road salt, bird droppings, gasoline spills, and tree sap. These substances damage the car’s finish, causing it to oxidize over time. Car wax is a barrier between the paint and these contaminants, preventing damage.
  3. Saves You Time And Money – Waxing your car can save you a significant amount of time and money. Between waxing sessions, the car is very easy to wash, saving time and money.
  4. Improves Resale Value – Car waxing is an integral part of maintaining the resale value of a car. The paint is a car’s first impression, and a dirty car’s paint will reflect poorly on its resale value. Regularly applying car wax will protect the paint and give your vehicle a ‘new car’ feel, increasing its resale value. Potential buyers are likely to look at the exterior of your car first and will judge it based on its paint job and appearance.
  5. Makes Your Car Look Shiny – Using wax on your vehicle will make it look shiny and improve its appearance. Water is the biggest enemy of your car’s paint, containing chemicals and pollutants that can scratch the finish. Applying car wax will protect the paint from these harmful elements and make it “hydrophobic,” meaning it forces water beads to bunch together and stay off your car.

How Many Coats of Car Wax Should You Apply?

For the best protection, apply two coats of car wax to your car. Apply the first coat of wax carefully and evenly; it will help you avoid leaving any spots unprotected. Once you’ve applied the first coat, it is time to wait a few hours before applying the second.

It’s essential to read the wax’s instructions before applying it to your car. Each brand and variant of car wax has different instructions. Before you begin, ensure your vehicle is immaculately clean; the car needs preparation before it can be applied. If it is not, you might scratch the clear coat and make it difficult to remove. When applying car wax, you should use a thin layer in a circular motion; it ensures that the wax will bond better with the paint and won’t come off quickly.

How Often Should You Wax A Car?

Waxing your vehicle every three to six months for optimal results is ideal. Remember that some wax coatings will still be in excellent condition after six months. Each brand has different recommended intervals. 

It is important to keep in mind that the frequency of waxing a vehicle may vary depending on the climate. If you live in an area that experiences harsh winters, waxing your car several times a year is recommended, as the salt and road grime can deteriorate the protective layer of the car’s paint. However, waxing your car twice a year is sufficient if the weather is mild. 

The frequency of waxing your car can also depend on the age and type of your vehicle. If you have a newer car, it might not require much waxing as the paintwork is expected to be in good condition and protected. Some dealerships’ paint protection services that are applied from new are often far from perfect. In such cases, it is recommended to have a detailing specialist apply protection by preparing the paint surface before applying a protective coating like wax. More frequent waxing might be necessary for older cars, especially if used more often in rough weather conditions.

Can You Wax a Car Too Much?

Keeping your car shiny and clean is essential, but the amount of waxing you do depends on several factors. One of the critical factors is the climate. If you live in a warm and dry environment, you may want to wax your car more often than in winter.

Waxing a car more frequently does not cause any damage to the vehicle, even if you over-wax it. However, you must know that the paint will bond only with one layer of wax at a time. Additional layers of wax will not amp up some extra protection for your car.


A clean car is a pleasure to look at and drive. Not only does it look good, but it also has better resale value than one that doesn’t look as nice. The frequency you should consider waxing your vehicle depends on the wax you use and how often you drive your car. It all depends on your preferences, how much time you have to spend, and your budget. If you keep your car garage, it can go longer between waxing. Most importantly, to answer how many coats of wax should you put on a car? You should apply two coats of wax, but allow the first to dry before applying the second layer.

My name is Tom although my friends call me Tommy. Messing around with cars and bikes has always been a hobby of mine even from a young age. So I made it my day job 17 years ago. I am a fully qualified mechanic as you would expect. I've worked in all different areas of the motor trade, valeting, panel beating, engine repairs, I'm sure you get the idea. I enjoy sharing my wealth of knowledge and experience with others, which is the reason I spend a lot of time here writing for this website.

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