Here’s the scenario: You’ve got a car with a good paint job, but it’s dirty. It might be a Wednesday, and you really don’t have time to do a full hand wax. Is an instant spray sealant like Meguiar’s Hybrid Ceramic Wax worth applying to your car?
I’ve wondered about this kind of product for a long time. You’ll see them next to the “real” wax products, which require an application, drying, and buffing, at your local auto parts store. And these products make all kinds of claims. For example, this one notes “Ceramic Made Easy!” and “Protection & durability beyond conventional wax.” Could this possibly be true of a quick application of a spray-on product?
Before I get into my real-world test of Maguiar’s Hybrid Ceramic Wax, a step back. In winter of 2021, I followed through on a longtime dream and bought myself a fairly well-used 2006 Mustang GT. It was to be a fun car, so I kept my budget pretty low. And of course, I found the ideal car at a great price right in the middle of Colorado’s nastiest month, February. And it lived about a 3-hour drive away from my home. So by the time it reached my garage, this jet-black muscle car was, well, filthy. And it had clearly not been waxed in a very long time.
But given pretty bad weather on the horizon for a long time, I didn’t have the opportunity to spend a nice afternoon giving it a proper wax. So I hit an auto parts store and found myself glazing over at the myriad options available for quick, spray-on wax products that I could apply at my local DIY carwash. After a long time of reading labels, I settled on Meguiar’s Hybrid Ceramic Wax.
Here’s how it worked.
Meguiar’s Hybrid Ceramic Wax Review
Meguiar’s launched its Hybrid Ceramic Wax in 2019, so it’s been around for a few years. While it’s called a “hybrid” its primary active ingredient is SiO2 ceramic.
SiO2 spray-on treatments work by bonding with the surface of your paint to provide a thin protective coating against pollutants, dirt, moisture, and oxidation. While these are not the same as full ceramic coatings, they can offer some protection and are very easy to apply.
In the case of my Mustang, I first washed the car in a DIY carwash. I sprayed the car with a pre-soak and soap mode, scrubbed it a little with a towel, and then rinsed it well. I continued to follow the instructions, spraying the car from top to bottom (I didn’t apply to the roof because it’s a convertible).
Meguiar’s recommends spraying this treatment on a wet car the first time, then towel-drying it. I followed these instructions and was impressed to see the water beading around the treatment as I sprayed it on. It clearly had an effect on the water.
Next, I pulled the car out of the washing station and dried it using a few microfiber cloths. The results were stunning!
Where previously I had a pretty dull, dirty black car, now it sparkled in the sunshine. The surface felt very slick to the touch. After initially drying the car, I noticed some streaks and swirls. Using a dry towel, I quickly polished those out. With less than 15 minutes of work, I took my car from dirty to dazzling. And I had a hunch that the Hybrid Ceramic Wax had a lot to do with it.
One caveat and update: After writing most of this review, I applied the product to my F-150. In this case, I found that it took quite a bit of polishing with a microfiber cloth to get a uniform shine on the finish. After the initial drying, there were quite a few swirls. After some elbow grease, the truck looked great, much like the Mustang above. I don’t know why it took more work for the initial application, but the result was ultimately good.
Meguiar’s Hybrid Ceramic Wax Long Term Testing
That was in mid-February. Now, at the end of April, I’ve had a couple of months of experience with the product. And I must admit I like it more than ever.
I’ve washed the Mustang three times now and applied the Meguiar’s Hybrid Ceramic Wax each time. With two to three weeks between treatments, I’ve found the car beads off water amazingly well. It also remains very smooth to the touch. And maybe my favorite feature is that dust just brushes right off. Denver is a very dusty town, and all it takes is about 30 seconds with a light cloth and I can whisk away dust without having to fully wash my car. It takes no pressure, just a quick flick of the cloth, and the car looks as clean as the day I washed it.
Is this worth the $15 or so per bottle? To me, the answer is an emphatic yes! I still need to do more testing to decide whether it can compete with more complete wax or ceramic systems. But given that I’ve applied it three times and still have half a bottle left, it’s much cheaper than applying a worthless “wax” in an automated car wash.
For a quick spray that you can apply in minutes, Meguiar’s Hybrid Ceramic Wax is impressive and gives you great water-beading protection that lasts for weeks at a time. It’s definitely worth a try.