Do you want to block elements, scratches, and stains from interfering with your car paintwork? Or you simply want to make your look more attractive by giving its base paint a deeper and wetter appearance?
If this is what you desire, an automotive clear coat will meet your needs.
However, the hundreds of products on the market can make it hard for you to select the best automotive clear coat spray can for your specific needs.
Right below, we have selected for you the top-rated products to help you compare and choose the perfect product for your vehicle.
Best Automotive Clear Coat Spray Cans:
1. Dupli-Color BCL0125 Clear Exact-Match Automotive Top Coat
If you’re hunting for the best spray can clear coat for cars for large touchup jobs, this product from Dupli-Color will meet your needs. The clear coat comes at an incredibly affordable cost but performs quite well compared to the higher-end products.
Because it comes packed in an aerosol can, this coat is pretty easy to apply on your car. It also features an adjustable EZ Touch 360-degree nozzle that outputs a wide spray pattern to ensure you apply an even and smooth coat to your vehicle.
Thanks to its acrylic lacquer composition, you can easily apply this clear coat over your vehicle’s factory base paint or Dupli-Color’s premium automotive paint. You can use this paint for large touchup jobs in your car or motorcycle, or even vehicle accessories.
Once applied, this top coat dries to the touch in a matter of 30 minutes (and 1 hour to handle), leaving behind a high-quality protective transparent coat plus a high-gloss finish that leaves your car with a show-like look!
2. USC SprayMax 2K Glamour High Gloss Aerosol Clear
With this clear coat, you’ll get an extremely long-lasting high gloss finish that’s resistant to scratches and abrasion. This makes it the ultimate choice for protecting your car base paint against those scratches and abrasion that can end up giving it a really bad look.
When properly applied, this clear coat will also help protect your vehicle’s basecoat from gasoline and chemicals, thus reducing rusting and discoloration.
For you to use this 2k clear coat, you’ll need to activate its two acrylic components. You do this by simply pulling the tab on the can to let the two components mix. Afterward, you can shake the can and then start spraying your vehicle.
Keep in mind that this product comes packed in an aerosol can to ensure easy application. It also comes with a uniquely designed nozzle that delivers spray gun-like performance and results.
The auto clear coat dries into weather and chemical resistance coat and can work with the basecoat of just any vehicle.
3. Maxima 78920 SC1 High Gloss Coating
Proudly manufactured in the USA by Maxima, this high gloss coating comes specially formulated for Powersports. This means its formula will adhere well and offer great protection in the toughest conditions.
The coating will work with any coating, from fiberglass, carbon fiber, plastic, and any car body painted surface. It’s also popular among motorcycle and ATV owners due to its great capabilities at keeping mud off the plastic fenders when on the tracks.
When you apply this product on your auto base coat, it will leave behind a fresh, clean scent and form a dry, durable shine and luster to give your car that brand new look you desire. Since this paint is 100% waterproof, it will keep the underlying base coat paint while making your car body easy to clean.
Applying this coating on your vehicle, ATV, or motorbike is quite easy as it comes in an easy to use spray can. You directly spray it to the car painted surface, unlike products that require you to transfer them to another sprayer first.
4. POR-15 45718 Top Coat Gloss Clear Spray Paint
Do you reside in areas where your vehicle’s highly vulnerable to corrosion? If yes, this direct-to-metal clear coat is an ideal choice for you. It’s specially designed to work well in applications where your car body is exposed to elements that can cause rust and corrosion.
You can apply this paint directly to metal or a previously painted surface…and you don’t need a primer or undercoat when using it. It comes formulated to form a pretty robust barrier to shed moisture—ensuring long-lasting protection.
The spray paint is also easy to apply and cures into a nice, even finish. It forms a high gloss and shine finish that truly enhances the look of your vehicle.
For the best results, the manufacturer suggests that you thoroughly clean your car surface to eliminate any dirt, loose lust, soap, wax, grease, oil or grease, that might stand in its way of forming a permanent barrier against moisture and corrosion.
5. KBS Coatings 8114 Clear High Gloss Diamond Finish Clear Aerosol
If you’re looking for the best clear coat spray paint that you can apply directly to your car’s base coat with minimal preparations, consider this KBS clear coat. The coat goes on easily and evenly, and quickly dries and binds to your car’s paint.
This is a flexible paint that you can apply directly to your car’s paint or direct to a steel surface. Its professional pattern spray head allows you to achieve professional results with every application you make on your vehicle.
One of the things that make this clear coat popular involves its unmatched toughness. When it cures, it forms an incredibly tough and hard layer like no other product on the market does. The layer offers you long-lasting protection and adds high gloss to your car surface.
What’s more, this paint remains flexible atop your car surface and is even able to perform really well in the toughest environments without signs of cracking, peeling, or yellowing.
Because the high-gloss clear coat is also 100% UV stable and has high color resistance, it will keep your lovely car paint from getting discolored and fading overtime.
6. U-Pol Products 0796 Clear CLEAR#1 High Gloss Coat
This is the perfect choice when it comes to the ultimate UV resistance. As you already know, the UV rays can cause your car’s good looks to discolor and fade with continued exposure. But this paint blocks these harmful rays, keeping your vehicle looking brand new for longer.
The high-quality automotive clear coat is ideal for complete sprays and delivers a super high gloss finish. It’s compatible with water-based base coats. It also works well with existing 2K clear coats. Unlike the cheaply made clear coats out there, this one won’t discolor your basecoat and works great on silver metallic.
When applied to your car’s base coat, this coat hardens quickly to form a high build coating that’s easily flatted and polished when necessary.
Thanks to its good flow and non-sag properties, this coat will give you excellent coverage. It boasts extremely high UV resistance, which assures you of long-term durability.
For all your auto spot repairs, this clear coat will do wonders! The aerosol can makes the paint easy to apply on your car base paint, so you can easily achieve excellent gloss and image depth.
7. Spraymax 3680061 2K Clear
The Spraymax 3680061 2K Clear takes up our last best clear coat spray can reviews spot. This clear coat is proudly made in the US and comes as a 2-component aerosol coat. It’s easy to apply, flows pretty smooth, and dries to a durable, high gloss finish.
The 2K clear coat offers much higher UV and weather resistance compared to the standard aerosol clear coats you’ll find on the market today.
What keeps it even further from the standard aerosol is the innovative nozzle technology it comes with. This works closely with the new propellant technology. This results in a spray-gun like professional. The clear coat delivers higher yield, faster spray time, and wider (and even) spray pattern.
Using this 2K clear coat is pretty easy. You’ll need to activate the two components, shake, and spray to your car base paint. The easy-use aerosol can make the application process much easier and quicker.
Also worth noting is that this clear coat has excellent resistance to scratches and abrasion. It works with all basecoats and dries into a superior gloss finish with good polishability.
What type of clear coat is used on cars?
There are varieties of clear coats for cars on the market today. Diving into the market without a clear understanding of the different types of coats can make it hard for you to decide on the right one for your car.
Below, we have a quick rundown of the most common types of clear coat products you’ll encounter on the market today:
1. Topcoat clear coat
This type of coat is intended for application as the final coat over your car’s colored base paint. Topcoats are usually easy to polish. They also boast greater depth, have a glossy appearance, and tend to dry pretty fast.
2. Glamour clear coat
Glamour clear coat takes longer to dry compared to other types of clear coats. The benefit of the slow drying process is that it’s more resistant to moisture. Moreover, it gives you adequate time to do leveling on your car surface. If you wish to speed up the drying process, you might consider heating up the car.
3. Turbo clear coat
So you’re looking for a clear coat that helps you cover those dents, chips, and scratches on your car base paint? If yes, then a turbo clear coat is what you need. The coat is designed for collision repairs. Keep in mind, though, that this coat requires more polishing for you to achieve a glossy finish. It also dries quite fast, and you can do the buffing shortly after.
4. Higher solid clear coat
This is a suitable choice if you want to achieve a thicker film over your car paint. But you’ll have to be patient with this coat as it takes longer to dry, given the solvents need time to evaporate fully. For these solid clear coats, you’ll need to dig deeper into your pockets than any other automotive clear coat.
Can you spray clear coat over old clear coat?
You can apply a new clear coat over an existing clear coat if it’s still in good condition. If you examine the old coat and it seems damaged (flaking and delaminating), then your best bet is to remove all of it and apply your new clear coat over the base coat.
In case the old coat appears faded or peeling, you need to do some prep work to ensure you achieve great results with your new coat.
After you have done these steps, your surface is now ready for a new clear coat! You can grab the best spray can clear coat you just ordered and start spraying over the basecoat as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
Can you brush on automotive clear coat?
Different people have varying opinions on the use of a paintbrush to apply a clear coat on your car. The majority are for the idea that you won’t get any satisfactory results with a brush…the rest believe that you can achieve great results with a brush, provided you use it correctly.
So, whose opinion should you side with?
It goes without saying that the easiest way to apply a clear coat on your vehicle an achieve a nice, smooth finish involves spraying the clear coat over your base paint. This explains why most car owners believe that spraying is the most effective way of applying a clear coat.
But…in case your clear coat doesn’t come in a spray can, or you simply don’t have a spray gun, then you can turn to a paintbrush to get the job done. In this case, we recommend you to use a synthetic bristle brush. Make sure you apply the clear in long, smooth strokes in one direction to avoid creating texture to your car surface. For even better results, avoid going over the same area more than once.
If you notice you have missed any areas with a brush, you should wait until the coat has dried, then correct it with the next clear coat.
What to look for before buying?
When shopping for the best spray paint clear coat, keep the following factors in mind to help you find the most suitable product for your specific needs.
Another important consideration when looking for an auto clear coat is the time it takes to completely dry. You’ll discover that different products have varying drying periods depending on their formulation. If you want something you can easily buff an hour after applying, go for a fast-drying coat such as the topcoat or turbo coat. If you’re patient enough to wait for a few days for the coat to dry, then you can get a glamour or high solid coat.
One of the main reasons why everyone wants to apply a clear coat on their vehicle is to achieve that high glossy appearance. However, not all the products out there can achieve this type of gloss. The level of gloss in a clear coat is usually indicated in units starting from 0 to 100. 0 indicates the lowest level, while 100 indicates the highest gloss level. A clear coat paint with a gloss level of around 90 will give your vehicle a shiny, brand new look.
Clear coats simply mean non-pigmented paints. However, some of them tend to change the color of your car’s base coat by darkening it. Assuming you don’t want your car original paint to be altered, you should pay attention to the type of product you choose to ensure it creates a fully transparent, glass-like film on your car base paint.
Scratch and UV resistance
A good clear coat should also be able to form a protective barrier for your car base paint against scratches and the harmful UV rays. Look for a product that’s formulated to protect against scratches, chips, and abrasion. A product capable of covering up existing scratches or minor dents is even more desirable. Other things to look for in a clear coat in regard to its protective capabilities include excellent resistance against UV rays, chemicals, and corrosion.
Ease of application
You should also make sure the product you choose is easy to apply. Clear coats that come in aerosol cans are usually easy to apply. You simply need to spray it to your car or motorcycle surface without the hassle of first transferring it to other cans. A spray can that comes with a uniquely designed nozzle will help deliver spray gun like, professional results. Models with adjustable spray nozzles are even better.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do I need a clear coat?
Not necessarily. Cars painted with a single stage, non-clear coat paint tend to go for years with good results. Adding a clear coat has a couple of advantages, though. It protects the car base paint from damage and lets you easily buff out scratches as well as other imperfections without altering the underlying base paint. The clear coat also gives your car a super-glossy appearance, making it look shinier and brand new.
Q: What causes the automotive clear coat to peel?
The most common cause for the peeling of a clear coat is long-term exposure to the UV rays. These tend to burn the coat, thus degrading it by whitening it and making it rough. Incorrect application—like long intervals between the base coat and clear coat—can cause the clear coat to not adhere correctly to the base coat, making it to peel off eventually. Small stones and debris getting thrown against your car paintwork can also result in tiny abrasions and chips, which eventually lead to flaking and peeling.
Q: Can I wax the clear coat paint?
Most car waxes can work with car clear coats. However, we highly recommend you to check what the manufacturer states regarding using the two products together. This is because some clear coats tend to form a thin film that you can easily rub off if you rub in the wax too hard or if you wax with a tough fabric.
Q: Will washing the car damage the clear coat paint?
Not really. A car wash will not damage your car’s clear coat. But if the car wash picks dirt and debris during cleaning, it might rub them against your car clear coat and damage them. Lucky for you, modern car washes come with advanced equipment that stops dirt and grit from getting caught up in the brushes and getting rubbed against your car. For a manual car wash, however, the risk of damaging your clear coat is quite high.
Giving your car a brand new, shiny look and protecting its paintwork from scratches, UV rays, road salt, and other harsh elements is now possible with an automotive clear coat spray. We have outlined the basics of getting the perfect clear coat for your vehicle in this guide, so you’ll have a smooth time choosing the best automotive clear coat spray can for your specific needs and preferences. We have also outlined some of the top products you can order today to give your car that showroom-like look!