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Old 07-13-2003, 07:38 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Posts: 8,538
Meguiar's #20 Polymer Sealant beats Zaino

My wife and I had to leave our cars outside of the garage for about 5 days. Both cars got hit with sprinklers daily, and the water dried on the cars, leaving heavy water spots / mineral deposits.

My wife's car is a 1994 black Infiniti G20. I had 5 coats of Z5 and 2 coats of Z2, the last coat of Z2 was put on about 2 weeks before the car was left out.

My car is a smoke silver "E320" and had one coat of Meguiar's #20 Polymer Sealant. The coat of Meguiar's #20 was put on the same day as the Z2 was applied to the Infiniti G20.

I washed and detailed both cars this weekend.

The results?

The water deposits chemically etched the paint on the G20. Went right through the 7 coats of Zaino, and left mineral deposits on the paint. I tried my Dual Action Polisher, and it wouldn't remove the chemical etching, even with Meguiar's Compounding pad and #83.

I had to pull out the DeWalt Rotary Buffer and use the Meguiar's Compounding Pad and #83. I then stepped down to #82 and the Polishing Pad, then #82 again with the finishing pad. I then hand applied Show Car Glaze, and just applied a coat of #20 Polymer Sealant.

My E320, on the other hand, remained completely protected with one coat of Polymer Sealant. Everything just hosed right off, and the paint was spotless. All of the water spots, bird droppings, dirt, etc. just hosed right off.

I'm done with Zaino.

I got a bottle of Z5 and a bottle of Z2 for sale. Unopened in original condition. $5 for each bottle.

Please e-mail me:
Paul S.

2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
79,200 miles.

1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".

Last edited by suginami; 07-13-2003 at 08:52 PM.
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Old 07-13-2003, 09:55 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: South Eastern, MA
Posts: 1,743
Paul, you need to post these results on Autopia!!

I still think Zaino is way overrated, I've done several comparisons and have achieve better results with other products.. Zaino's cost doesn't warrant it's results. The only reason Zaino shines better than other products is that they insist that the paint is properly cleaned and clayed prior to application. Any product will provide as good and better results if all the same steps are followed.

I still have some Zaino left over, I use it on my wheels and engine bay.

02 C32 AMG

92 500E
84 190E 2.3 5 Spd
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Old 07-14-2003, 06:14 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Western Pa.
Posts: 2,417
Those water spots and then hot sun usually spell death for a paint job,,, especially back east here. Bought a car cover for the SL, and I use it every day, rain or shine.
95 SL500 Smoke Silver, Parchment 64K
07 E350 4matic Station Wagon White 34K
02 E320 4Matic Silver/grey 80K
05 F150 Silver 44K
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Old 07-14-2003, 07:21 PM
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Join Date: Oct 1999
Posts: 1,562
Greetings Paul- do you know if the Polymer Sealant contains mineral spirits or elements that break down the paint?

Or perhaps do you know if the sealant merely lays on top of the wax or polish or glaze?

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Old 07-14-2003, 09:03 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Posts: 8,538
I'm not sure if Polymer Sealant contains mineral spirits or not, but it is "...a blend of polymers, resins, silicones, and imported waxes."

In other words, like almost all of Meguiar's waxes / sealants, #20 cleans, polishes, and protects the paint all at the same time.

The cleaning agents would almost surely be chemical cleaners, or possible contain "diminishing abrasives". In any event, it is very non-agressive.

When you ask if it "breaks down the paint", I'm not sure what you mean. If you are implying that it is somehow harmful to the paint, I don't think a company like Meguiar's would make a product that would "break down paint".

Mike Phillips, a training specialist with Meguiar's, has posted here before. He has commented on the ability to "layer" waxes or sealants on top of your paint, in other words, layering sealant film builds. He is not in favor of this as polishes / waxes / sealants are made to adhere to and improve your paint. If your are applying a product on top of another layer (like Zaino), he calls this "waxing your wax".

Here is a quote from one of Mike Phillip's posts:

"Because Gold Class is a "Polish Wax" (or Polish Synthetic", if you will), it adds polish and wax at the same time, which is a good thing if you want to maintain your paint and only want to do "One Thing", after washing, i.e. apply a protective coating of wax.

If you want to truly "Layer" a product then you need a "Pure" wax or synthetic protectant. But... there is a point to just how much you can actually "Layer" a product.

Taken to the extreme, if you can truly layer a product, such as Zaino, then after enough layers... you would no longer be applying Zaino to paint but would in fact be applying Zaino on top of a "Film-build" of Zaino. Since Zaino isn't "clear", it is a tan colored lotion, layer upon layer would not make a surface "More Clear", but in fact would make the surface "More Opaque".

Make sense?

I have "layered" multiple coats of a variety of wax products... on purpose... to the degree of being ridiculous and there is a point of diminishing returns. That is, no matter how many coats of a product I apply, subsequent applications, "must" re-liquefy previous applications "enough" that a true "film-build" never accumulates to the point of actually being a viewable layer, i.e. if it is truly "layering" then common sense would tell you that after enough coats you would "See" the "layers"."

Thus, since most of Meguiar's contain polishing oils, instead of layering the film build, you are simply breaking down the prior coat, and re-applying the same first layer of product.
Paul S.

2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
79,200 miles.

1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".
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Old 07-14-2003, 09:09 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Posts: 8,538
Just read another post by Mike Phillips, and the cleaning agents in #20 are chemical:

"If you want water to bead high, use #20 Polymer Sealant, this is a sythetic wax the GuruReports somehow missed. It has a mild chemical cleaner in it to help clean the surface which also helps the wax to "bite" or adhere well. Good for a daily driver if you want a long lasting wax."
Paul S.

2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
79,200 miles.

1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".
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Old 07-14-2003, 09:13 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Southern California, U.S.A.
Posts: 8,538
I asked Mike Phillips in another thread about the concept of layering. His posts are so informative that I thought I'd post his reply here for your enjoyment:

"Hi Suginami,

What I am going to write here, is what "I do", that is, my opinion.

It is not what Meguiar's recommends. So what they say is the official word.

What I like to do after machine cleaning and machine polishing a finish is apply a coat of #20 Polymer Sealant.

It turns the surface very slick and as far as a wax goes, it lasts a long time.

When my customer is paying me $300.00 plus to polish the paint on their car, not including chemical costs, they want the finish to,

A. Look Good
B. Last a Long time

#20 makes the surface slick, "I believe", (that's my opinion), this helps to reduce towel scratches. (It makes it pretty darn slick), it also dries very fast, is incredibly easy to wipe off and it last for a long time, months, depending on the environment, how frequent it is washed and whether a premium wash is used or a detergent, #20 can last up to 6 months

So I always put that on first, it seals the pores, without question, and turns the surace very slick.

Next I like to apply a coat of #16 for personal reasons. It is too hard for most people to remove without getting frustrated, or potentially scratching their paint. #16 is Meguiar's first wax, it came out in 1950 it has been improved over the years as science advances. It is a heavy wax or a high molocular weight wax. It is a blended wax, it gets it's protective characteristics from a variety of ingredients, not just carnauba.

And while some web wax enthusiest drone on about how carnauba "melts' off your car when exposed to the sun, I would have to disagree. That's a blanket statement and while it may be true of some products it is not true of all products.

Meguair's not only makes automotive waxes, they also make Fiberglass Mold Release waxes, some of them are good up to 600 degrees, F.

On the back of the can of the #16 Professional Paste wax it says, "Formulated for durable protection in the hottest weather".

For what I do, I like it. The only way you can know if you like it is to use it. I recommend you try the Medallion first. It leaves a very dark finish. On my test panel it was darker than Zaino even after multple "thin" coats. On both clearcoated black and black lacquer.

Interesting thing. The listed Medallion as a "Carnauba" wax, when it is a synthetic and the #16 Professional Paste wax as a "Cleaner/wax", when it is a "Pure Wax".

#16 is only for use on perfect finishes, like the kind I produce after machine cleaning and machine polishing using a rotary buffer and the Meguiar's cleaners and polishes and their foam buffing pads that they have offered since the Beach Boys' came out with, "Help me Rhonda", since the Rolling Stones, came out with, "I can't get no satisfaction", since Gilligan's Island came on t.v. (I think it's funny that Meguiar's invented foam pad polishing, since 1965 and it has only been since the mid-90's that anyone else even had a foam pad on the market, but now those that do proclaim themselves to be experts and don't ever mention the fact they got the idea from..... Meguiar's.

Typically, you can apply a synthetic wax over a synthetic wax for a layering effect. That is why Meguiar's has always said, two thin coats is better than one thick coat. Thick coats are just plain hard to remove, plus it wastes a lot of wax, whether it's Meguiar's wax or anyone elses.

You can apply a coat of a Meguiars' Pure Wax, like the #16 over a Synthetic.

You can apply a pure wax over another pure wax.

You cannot apply a synthetic wax over a Pure Wax like the #16, it appears to liquify it to the point of removing it.

I know this is true in the mold release industry also.

As far as applying a coat of the #7 Show Car Glaze, over wax, be it a synthetic or a natural ingredient base, Here is the deal.

1. If your intention is to "polish" the paint, you should polish then wax over the polish. This acts to "lock" or "seal" the polish "in". Polishing first is the correct procedure.

2. If your intention is to make your paint look "wet", then you "can" apply, or in my case, re-apply an application of polish, on top of the wax. This would include, #7 Show Car Glaze, #81 Hand Polish, Deep Crystal Polish, #5 New Car Glaze, #3 Machine Glaze, and even the #80 Speed Glaze, (its quite oily).

The idea is to make the paint look wet, and oil products can do this. #7 Show Car Glaze is one of the most popular "true/pure polishes" ever sold. It has an enormous following. There must be a reason. There are no abrasives whatsoever in the #7 Show Car Glaze for those of you who always refer to "Polish" as an abrasive product.

Because Meguar's polishes are water solouble, (the are not waxes, see my upcoming book for a discussion on "Words" and their meanings"), the effect is short lived. That is to say, once you wash the car or it is exposed to inclement weather, the polish sitting on top of the wax will will dissappear.

Now show cars' are not typically washed a lot or driven in inclement weather.

Used correctly, Meguair's #7 Show Care Glaze works great.

Now, some of the oils in the polish will penetrate past the wax and into the paint, that is because you can never completely "seal" a surface with something you pour our of a bottle or scoop out of a can. (You can't do it from the factory with fresh paint either, at least not "completely", paint has pores, you can argue about how porous some paints are, but in the end... they are all porous to some degree and with time, even the tightest pore paints become more permeable)

So yes, in my opinion the benefit to applying a coating of #7 over the wax is for short term gloss, hiding fine scratches, depth of color and making the paint look wet.

Case in point.

I buffed out a 1956 Nomad for a guy who tried to wet-sand, cut and buff it himself. He ruined it. In fact, he had not taken it out of the garage for over a year because of the way it looked. He had it painted, "Viper Red". (Nomads are "BIG" in case you never noticed and messed up finishes this big cannot be "quickly" fixed).

I spent three days on his car. The last day I worked on it, although it had a flawless finish, I applied a thin coat of #7 Show Car Glaze. That day, I repeat... that day he was taking it to a "Show 'N Shine". It was the middle of August, bright sunny day.

It had to look flawless. He was so excited to show it off. I used the #7 to make his paint look it's best, to look wet.

He gave me a $100.00 tip

He loves his "New" car.

If you have further questions, send them to my home e-mail

I hope I was able to answer some of your questions on polishes and waxes.

Mike Phillips"
Paul S.

2001 E430, Bourdeaux Red, Oyster interior.
79,200 miles.

1973 280SE 4.5, 170,000 miles. 568 Signal Red, Black MB Tex. "The Red Baron".
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Old 07-25-2003, 04:06 PM
Mike Phillips's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Oregon/California
Posts: 49
Originally posted by suginami


I hardly ever use that e-mail anymore,


"Find a product you like and use it often"

Jack Anderson
Paint Instructor for PPG paints
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