Generally, polished aluminum wheels are one of the most effective surfaces to prevent corrosion. Polished aluminum remains durable for a long time. That’s why aluminum wheels are widely used on vehicles throughout the world.
So, you might be confused about whether you can clear coat polished aluminum wheels or not. Well, sometimes the polished aluminum can get scratches. Then you might feel the need to protect the polished aluminum.
Well, you have to know the consequences of applying a clear coat over polished aluminum wheels.
Can you clear coat polished aluminum wheels?
You can clear coat polished aluminum wheels. Generally, a clear coat over the polished aluminum will make the surface more protective and durable. But you must prepare the polished aluminum surface before applying the clear coat. Otherwise, the clear coat will not adhere to the aluminum.
Many people get confused about using a clear coat over polished aluminum wheels. Because polished aluminum is a non-corrosive surface. Moreover, it also provides glossiness. So, many people think that clear coating is not compulsory.
But polished aluminum wheels might need a coating. Especially when the polished aluminum wheels get scratches. Generally, polished aluminum wheels get damaged or scratched by physical damage most of the time.
A clear coat over the polished aluminum wheels will protect the surface from scratching. But the surface preparation is an essential part of the application of a clear coat. If the surface is not clean, the clear coat will not fulfill its purpose.
So, you might see a bad surface finish on the clear coat.
Moreover, if you don’t prepare the polished aluminum, the clear coat will not stick to it. You can also spray the clear coat over the aluminum surface easily.
Sometimes, the polished aluminum wheels can face oxidation or corrosion. So, you must protect the aluminum wheels. Otherwise, the corrosion might damage the wheels drastically. That’s why a clear coat is beneficial for the polished aluminum surface.
The clear coat will protect the polished aluminum wheels from weather effects. Moreover, it will protect the wheels from UV rays. But you must ensure that the coated wheels don’t come close to strong chemicals.
Because strong chemicals can damage the clear coat quickly. Moreover, harsh physical damage can also affect the clear coat. But in general, the clear coat will protect the aluminum wheels and make them attractive.
Should I clear coat polished aluminum rims and wheels?
It’s not compulsory to clear coat polished aluminum rims and wheels. But if you want additional protection, you can apply a clear coat. For example, if the wheels have the possibility of getting scratches, you should take additional protection.
Applying a clear coat on polished aluminum has many advantages. The clear coat will keep the surface protected from moisture, humidity, and scratches. Besides, it will also keep the surface safe from ultraviolet rays and other environmental effects.
If you don’t apply a clear coat over the polished aluminum wheels, they might not be damaged immediately. Because the polished aluminum is not that sensitive to getting scratched. But sometimes, pressures and temperatures can lead to corrosion of the aluminum wheels.
So, if you want a better finish over the polished aluminum wheels, you should apply a clear coat. But you should prepare the surface before applying the coating. Otherwise, the coating will not be effective and durable.
Four reasons why you can clear coat polished aluminum wheels
Now that you know you can clear coat over polished aluminum wheels, you might want to know the reasons. So, let’s see the reasons why you can clear coat polished aluminum wheels.
Applying the clear coat over polished aluminum wheels is not compulsory. But when you use the clear coating over polished aluminum wheels, it gives the wheels more durability.
Because the additional layer of clear coat will protect the wheels from different effects. With a clear coat over the aluminum wheels, the surface will be long-lasting.
You might know that a clear coat can make a surface shiny. Though the polished aluminum is also shiny, another layer will not reduce the shine. If you paint the aluminum surface with other coatings, the surface might not remain shiny. But the clear coat will preserve the shine.
Protects from weather effects:
Different weather effects, like rain, humidity, temperature, UV rays, etc., can affect the polished aluminum wheels. These effects can lead to corrosion and oxidation. So, when you spray the clear coat over the polished aluminum, this layer will protect the aluminum surface.
Protects against scratches:
Generally, physical damage and pressure are responsible for scratches on the polished aluminum wheel. So, if you can apply a clear coat over it, the coat will protect the surface from scratches.
Moreover, this additional layer will protect the surface from physical damage. But make sure the surface doesn’t come close to any harsh chemicals.
How many coats of clear should I spray on polished aluminum?
How many coats of clear you should spray on polished aluminum depends on how much hardness and shine you need. Generally, two or three coats of clear are enough to spray on polished aluminum.
Sometimes, people only apply one layer of clear coat over polished aluminum. But this might not provide enough durability to the surface. Moreover, the thin layer might chip off quickly. So, if you can spray three coats, it will be long-lasting.
Moreover, if you apply too many coats of the clear coat on polished aluminum, the layer might become thick and defective. Because a thick layer might trap moisture and induce corrosion. So, two or three coats will be enough.
Besides, if you want to preserve the glossiness of polished aluminum, you have to apply two to three coats of clear coat. Otherwise, the coating will reduce the shine of the polished aluminum.
How do you prep aluminum wheels for a clear coat?
You must prepare the aluminum wheels for a clear coat. Otherwise, the clear will not adhere to the aluminum properly. When you want to prepare the aluminum wheels, you have to clean the wheels first.
For example, you have to clean dirt, dust, and grease from the surface. Then you have to sand the wheels to make the aluminum surface smooth. You have to wet sand the surface.
You can begin with a lower grit and work your way up to a higher grit. For example, you have to use 220, 320, and 400-grit sandpaper to polish the aluminum.
Then you can wipe away the residues. You can use mineral spirits to wipe and clean the aluminum surface. Then you can apply a clear coat over the prepared aluminum surface.
How to clear coat polished aluminum wheels?
If you want to clear coat over polished aluminum wheels, you have to follow the appropriate method. Otherwise, the clear coat will not be effective. So, let’s see how you can use the clear coat polished aluminum wheels.
Preparing the surface:
First, you should prepare the aluminum surface before applying a clear coat. For example, you have to clean the surface of dirt and dust. Then you have to sand the aluminum to make the surface suitable for applying a clear coat.
Choosing the clear coat:
After preparing the surface, you have to choose the right clear coat for the surface. Make sure that the clear coat is compatible with aluminum.
Putting the clear coat:
Then you can apply the clear coat over the polished aluminum wheels. You can either use a paintbrush to apply the clear coat or spray it over the wheels.
If you want to make the surface durable, you can apply two or three coats of clear coat.
Curing and drying:
After each coat of clear coat, you have to let the surface dry for an adequate amount of time. Keep the surface dry and cure after the final coat. You should allow the surface to dry and cure for at least 24 hours.
What is the best clear coat for polished aluminum?
AlumaClear is one of the best clears for polished aluminum. This clear coat is specially made for applying to aluminum surfaces. Moreover, ProtectaClear, ceramic sealer, POR-15 Glisten, VHT Clear Coat, etc., are better choices for aluminum.
When you apply a clear coat on polished aluminum, the clear coat should be compatible with metals. So, you can also use a metal-suitable clear coat on polished aluminum. Otherwise, random clear coats might react with the aluminum surface and make it worse.
With enough surface preparation, you can clear coat polished aluminum wheels. Cleaning, sanding, polishing, etc., surface preparation is essential for applying a clear coat over polished aluminum wheels. Otherwise, the clear coat might be less durable and chip off over time.
I am an automotive enthusiast and have been interested in cars since I was a little kid. I have worked in the automotive industry for many years and have extensive knowledge of vehicles and their engines. I am a father of two and I love spending time with my family.
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