9 Best Automotive Clear Coats of 2021

Jerry Wilson
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Today, automotive clear coatings are widely used to protect all kinds of automobiles. Whether they’re made out of metal, fiberglass, or plastic, clear coatings help protect your car from issues like rust, scratches, and discoloring, keeping your vehicle looking fresh and new.

If you’ve ever owned a car, you’ve probably used some form of automotive clear coat to keep it looking perfect.

However, you’ll definitely want to use the best automotive clear coat product possible because it’s one of the most important investments you make for your car.

Like the title says, you’ll find the top nine clear coat products available online below.

NameCategoryProduct
Maxima 78920 SC1 High Gloss Coating 17.2 FL. OZ. 508 mLBest OverallMaxima 78920 SC1 High Gloss Coating 17.2 FL. OZ. 508 mL
Dupli-Color BCL0125 Clear Exact-Match Automotive Top CoatBudget PickDupli-Color BCL0125 Clear Exact-Match Automotive Top Coat
Speedokote SMR-130/75-K-MUpgrade PickSpeedokote SMR-130/75-K-M

1. Maxima 78920 SC1 High Gloss Coating 17.2 FL. OZ. 508 mL

Our rating: 9 / 10

Maxima 78920 SC1 High Gloss Coating 17.2 FL. OZ. 508 mL

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Pros:

  • Excellent customer service
  • Available in a wide variety of options
  • Capacity of 340g
  • Excellent value for money

Cons:

  • Lower level of protection
  • No UV protection

FULL SYNOPSIS: Maxima SC1 High Gloss Coating is a paint sealant which provides a strong layer of protection between your car’s paint and environmental elements. This coating is able to provide a high gloss finish and strong resistance to corrosion.

In addition to its high level of protection, this spray-on coating provides a great finish. In fact, one of the advantages of this spray-on coating is the shine that it provides on the surface of your car’s paint.

This is the product that you need if you’re looking for immediate protection against common environmental elements like rain, trees, and parking lots. It’s also important to note that this coating doesn’t provide UV protection.

2. Speedokote SMR-130/75-K-M

Our rating: 9 / 10

Speedokote SMR-130/75-K-M

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Pros:

  • Very fast dry time
  • Creates a thick shiny gloss
  • Easy to apply with no sanding
  • Dries in half the time of traditional clearcoats
  • Three year warranty

Cons:

  • Not for areas that will be exposed to outdoor weather
  • May require the use of a tack cloth when using a rollers or brushes

Susp. – Semi Gloss

3. Spraymax 3680061 2K Clear

Our rating: 9 / 10

Spraymax 3680061 2K Clear

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Pros:

  • High resistance to fading
  • Excellent coverage
  • Dries to a high gloss finish

The Spraymax 2K clear coat provides highly professional protection for your vehicle while keeping it looking great. The high resistance to fading keeps the vehicle looking sharp even after exposure to sun and heat. Moreover, the epoxy paint is a fast drying formula offering a more durable finish than 2-part paints.

This automotive clear coat is suitable for vehicles with a 2 year old surface or less, keeping it resistant to weathering and corrosion. The clear coat comes in high-gloss and satin finishes. Furthermore, it is designed for interior and exterior use, and has no harmful volatile organic compounds.

This protective coating has been developed for automobiles subject to extreme weather conditions. It is liquid-based and offers greater protection than powder coating or paint. The clear coat spray is also easy to apply and dries evenly, which makes opaque paint job possible on larger surfaces.

4. SEM 13013 Satin Clear Color Coat

Our rating: 8 / 10

SEM 13013 Satin Clear Color Coat

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Pros:

  • Great value for money
  • Medium viscosity
  • Quick drying
  • No orange rusting

SEM is a company known for their amazing products, and their Clear 13013 is no different. This product features a medium viscosity and has the ability to cover imperfections and create a crystal clear finish. Like most clear coats available on the market, this one is also free of any lead and can be used on both an exterior paint surface and an interior one.

We really appreciate the fact that this product is easy to use and quick drying, which makes it convenient for work or weekend projects. The clear coat results in a mirror-like finish that is clear and glossy, and the product leaves a dry-to-touch result that you can see and feel in a matter of minutes after application.

For the interior, you should know that this product cannot be used, but you have many other options to choose from. While this product is not used on the interior, because of the high build quality and easy application process, we decided to include it in this guide even though it’s not solely for interior use.

5. Genuine Toyota 00258-0000C-21 Clear Coat Touch-Up Paint Pen 1/2 FL OZ

Our rating: 8 / 10

Genuine Toyota 00258-0000C-21 Clear Coat Touch-Up Paint Pen 1/2 FL OZ

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Pros:

  • Shipment Included
  • Very Easy to Use With Brilliant Results
  • Highly Absorbable Lining

Cons:

  • Very Expensive
  • Available Only in Black
  • Some Issues With Non-Repurchase

Genuine Toyota touch up paint is a phenomenal product at a phenomenal price point. I’ve used it on my personal vehicles and it’s done a great job at covering the scratches the road sends my way.

Toyota touch up pen is very easy to use with brilliant results. You have to make sure before buying the paint to ensure that your car make and model is the same as the emailed instructions. I’m not sure how universal it is.

The paint is of very high quality, especially for the price point. It’s very reasonably priced and the bottle is reusable. If you’re a car owner like me, this little guy will pay for itself.

6. Dupli-Color EBSP30000 Clear Coat Paint Shop Finish System

Our rating: 8 / 10

Dupli-Color EBSP30000 Clear Coat Paint Shop Finish System

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Pros:

  • Ease of application
  • Dries quickly
  • Can be applied in extreme temperatures
  • Excellent protection against rust
  • Good user reviews
  • Availability
  • Price

Dupli-Color's spray paint isn’t just paint; it’s a clear coat paint shop finishing system that offers excellent protection against rust. But the best part about this spray paint is the ease of application.

There are two primary ways to apply clear coats: airless spray and an HVLP spray gun. Dupli-Color designed their spray cans to work well in both application types. I prefer the Gunk HVLP spray gun because it’s easier to clean and feels like a spray gun for an airbrush.

This clear coat was first formulated to be used in automotive paint shops. Its ability to be applied at temperatures as low as 10‛F actually allowed for a lot more work to be done in the winter months by automotive painters. Its superior protection against rust also made it popular with the mining industry.

7. Dupli-Color BCL0125 Clear Exact-Match Automotive Top Coat

Our rating: 7 / 10

Dupli-Color BCL0125 Clear Exact-Match Automotive Top Coat

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Pros:

  • Spray Application
  • Transforms a dull, oxidized finish
  • Superior UV resistance
  • Long-lasting, durable coating
  • Affordable

To take care of your vehicle's finish and provide a long-lasting coating, Dupli-Color offers 8-ounce BCL0125 Clear Exact-Match Automotive Top Coat. It is a precise, long-lasting, durable coating that resists fading and chipping.

Dupli-Color’s high-performance product features: a chemically-bonded and patented coating system, UV inhibitors, and a proprietary anti-slip additive for a smooth, glossy finish.

The paint is fortified with a hardener that protects the coating from UV rays and fading. The formula is water-based and is easy to apply. It can be spray or brush-applied.

8. KBS Coatings 8304 DiamondFinish Clear Coat

Our rating: 7 / 10

KBS Coatings 8304 DiamondFinish Clear Coat

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Pros:

  • Fast-drying
  • Protectant and sealant
  • Clear finish

Cons:

  • Only available in one size
  • Can cause some chemical burns
  • Paint shop professionals only

You don’t have to be a professional paint shop to use the KBS Coatings clear coat and you won’t have to be a professional to understand how good this product is. During the manufacturing process, the clear coat is designed with an extremely high resin content, which is the main component in most top coat finishes. The result is a durable layer that will protect your vehicle from UV damage, extreme temperatures, mechanical wear and tear, and so much more.

The product is a brand new and improved formula that is designed for those who want the very best in the industry. This is a true high-end product that is made with the highest quality ingredients and a brush-on application process that is second to none.

This amazing product is one of the very best you can buy for custom automotive finishes. This is why you can find the product at all of the top paint shops in the entire country. They want the best, so do you, and this is the very best you can find.

9. PlastiKote 1000 Universal Clear Coat Automotive Touch-Up Paint

Our rating: 5 / 10

PlastiKote 1000 Universal Clear Coat Automotive Touch-Up Paint

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Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Easy to use and apply
  • Easy mixing
  • Glossy finish

Cons:

  • Can chip or fade if installed from top to bottom
  • Need to work fast

Automotive touch up paint is a must-have if you have an existing vehicle. The problem is that some of the paints available on the market today aren’t up to the task of covering scratches and other blemishes. You want to find a paint that’s going to go on smooth and easily, cover your problem areas, and last as long as the body of your vehicle.

Our top pick is the Plastikote 1000 because it’s the best clear coat to use on your vehicle as it’s easy to apply and dries to a glossy finish. Buyers who have previously used this paint have given it favorable reviews because it’s so easy to work with and has a smooth finish that could make your scratches and chip marks seem non-existent.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best automotive clear coat on the market?

You see, there is one clear coat that stands out from the rest, and that is the 3M Clear Bra. They are the original clear bra experts and have been in the business since the 1960’s.

Clear Bra is the clear coating that is perfectly customized to your vehicle’s paint. The company actually applies hundreds of thousands of volts to your car while it is in the change bay at a body shop. This process creates tiny divots in your paint. It’s not noticeable, but it’s enough for the Clear Bra to bond with your vehicle’s paint, making it virtually impossible to peel off. However, without the Clear Bra’s adhesive capabilities, the clear coating is useless. Luckily, this adhesive works extremely well.

What is the hardest clear coat?

The most durable automotive clear coat is a polyurethane (PU) product. It provides the best long-term protection and durability. It is ideal for application directly on bare metal, and also works great as a topcoat to provide protection to more sensitive basecoats. The downside is these products have a tendency to yellow with age, and may require additional cost/steps in order to restore to a more pristine appearance. Also, be aware that some restored cars may be sold by some dealers, as having a yellowed appearance is a somewhat desired look among collectors.

The next best and much less expensive type of clear coat is polyurethane enamel (PUE). These clear coats are harder than their acrylic counterparts and will yellow much later than polyurethane. They are much easier to repair, as most products allow for direct touch up of chips and scratches.

How many coats of clear do you need for a show car?

You might not believe it looking at some cars out there, but most shows cars are actually made from 3 layers of clear coat. This increases their shine and is a common trick used by professionals when applying clear coat to show cars.

This works by adding a layer of color, followed by a layer of clear, and then another layer of color. This type of process ensures that the many layers of clear coat are as smooth as possible and absolutely non-reflective.

If you want a show car shine, then you’ll need to apply 3 layers. Applying more than that will not continue to add shine, it only makes things worse.

An alternative method is to use an epoxy clear coat. These are not as shiny and smooth as regular clear coats, but they’re significantly harder and long-lasting. epoxy clear coats can last for many years and you can easily bake them on.

How long does 2k clear coat last?

2K clear coat is an automotive clear coat that lasts on the average about two years and six months if applied correctly. This is still longer than any other type of lacquer, but it can vary depending on the type of car, the area of the country it is maintained in, and how often the car is driven. So, the lifespan of the clear coat can vary considerably.

Conclusion

Before doing any work on your car to give it a fresh look, consider that it is advisable to see what is circulating around in the street lights in your area. It is the reason why you need to know what should you use. The answer is to see the best automotive clear coats so you can make your car look brand new. There are different types of coating products and you must choose the best one. Do not simply purchase the first to be on the shelf or you will be wasting your money and time.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Maxima 78920 SC1 High Gloss Coating 17.2 FL. OZ. 508 mLBest OverallMaxima 78920 SC1 High Gloss Coating 17.2 FL. OZ. 508 mL
Dupli-Color BCL0125 Clear Exact-Match Automotive Top CoatBudget PickDupli-Color BCL0125 Clear Exact-Match Automotive Top Coat
Speedokote SMR-130/75-K-MUpgrade PickSpeedokote SMR-130/75-K-M