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What is Paint Sealant?

Autumn Rivers
Updated Feb 20, 2024
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Most vehicles are exposed to the outdoors, as long as they are used daily rather than stored safely away. For this reason, some people assume they cannot use their car very often if they want it to look nice for long. Fortunately, paint sealant can protect cars from the elements, making it possible to have a shiny car that looks quite new despite constant use.

Harmful elements exist nearly everywhere in the outdoors. In particularly sunny states, cars constantly might be assaulted with bright sunlight and ultraviolet (UV) rays, making the paint fade fast. Parking under a tree is not always a solution, since bird droppings also can damage the appearance of a vehicle. Additional damaging substances include acid rain, salt, pollution, and harmful minerals in regular rain. With the number of damaging elements outdoors, it often is no wonder that many owners of new or classic cars are worried about driving them.

Paint sealant is a protective layer that creates a barrier between the paint and any substances that might make contact with the vehicle. Aside from protecting it, paint sealant also makes the surface shiny. In fact, it usually is considered similar to car wax, but tends to last longer, partly because the melting point of this type of sealer is much higher than that of wax. For this reason, it usually needs to be applied less often, about every six months compared to about every month for regular car wax. Another difference is that paint sealant forms a hard barrier around the car, while wax tends to penetrate the paint.

There are a few types of paint sealant on the market. Some are made mostly of polymers, while others include a combination of polymers, acrylics, and resins. One thing most paint sealants have in common is that they are synthetic, rather than made of naturally occurring materials. The majority do not contain cleaning products, which many car enthusiasts appreciate since they typically like to use cleaners before applying a sealing coat.

Various types of paint sealant have special advantages. Some have added protection against corrosion, while others are particularly fast-drying. Older versions generally required several coats, and usually took a long time to dry. Newer types usually are known for being quite easy to apply, typically requiring only one coat. Most can be applied by hand or with a polisher, which makes them attractive to those who are not exactly professional car detailers.

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Autumn Rivers
By Autumn Rivers
Autumn Rivers, a talented writer for WikiMotors, holds a B.A. in Journalism from Arizona State University. Her background in journalism helps her create well-researched and engaging content, providing readers with valuable insights and information on a variety of subjects.

Discussion Comments

By highlighter — On May 26, 2011

What is Teflon paint sealant for a car and is it worth the money? I went car shopping and found a car I really like. The dealer told me they added something called Teflon paint sealant that adds $600 to the price of the car. Is it worth it, or is the dealer just trying to sell me snake oil?

By Comparables — On May 24, 2011

@Valleyfiah- I have a small construction business and you would be surprised to know that heavy machinery at job sites is often a target for graffiti artists. we coat all of our machinery with an anti-spray paint sealant that allows us to virtually wash the paint away. I do not remember exactly what it is called (I'm sure someone else reading this does), but it works great.

Most paints just drip off before they have a chance to dry. They people who are vandalizing the equipment soon learn that it is a waste of time and money to spray our equipment. I know that they make it for walls and other structures too. My buddy who works for the city introduced me to the product so maybe you can call the parks and rec department to find more info.

By ValleyFiah — On May 23, 2011

This is not a question about automotive paint sealants, but it is related nonetheless. Are there any types of paint sealants that protect against graffiti? I am looking for something that prevents spray paint and mop markers from sticking to painted surfaces.

I paid for an expensive mural on the side of my building (I own a restaurant), and someone spray painted a horrible looking tag on it. It took a number of hours to have the mural restored and it was not cheap. I would like to apply a coating that will prevent this from happening again. Thanks to all you wiseGEEKS that know a little something about paint.

Autumn Rivers

Autumn Rivers

Autumn Rivers, a talented writer for WikiMotors, holds a B.A. in Journalism from Arizona State University. Her background in journalism helps her create well-researched and engaging content, providing readers with valuable insights and information on a variety of subjects.
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