Table of Contents
- View The Best Clay Bars Below
- 1. Mothers California Gold Clay Bar System
- 2. Meguiar’s Mild Mirror Glaze Detailing Clay
- 3. Adam’s Fine Grade Clay Bar
- 4. Chemical Guys Heavy Duty Clay Bar
- 5. Senrokes Clay Bar
- 6. TAKAVU Car Clay Bar
- 7. Griot’s Garage Paint Cleaning Clay
- 8. IPELY Car Clay Bar
- 9. Adam’s Medium Grade Clay Bar Jar Kit
- 10. MATCC Car Clay Bar
- Car Clay Bars Buyer’s Guide
- Mind the Type
- Consider the Grade
- The Brand
- The Number of Bars
- The Size
- Benefits of Using a Clay Bar on Your Car
- Frequently Asked Questions on Clay Bar Detailing
- 1. How Exactly Does a Clay Bar Work?
- 2. What is the Difference Between Clay Bar Detailing and Polishing?
- 3. How Often Should You Clay Bar Your Car?
- 4. When Do I Clay Bar My Car?
- 5. Can I Use Soapy Water to Clay Bar?
- 6. How to Properly Use a Clay Bar
- 7. Should I Worry About Clay Bars Scratching My Paint?
- 8. Do I Need to Clean My Clay Bar?
We’ve all seen a very nice, shiny looking car pull up somewhere we are at, or drive past us. In such instances, most of us tend to think it’s either new or fresh out of the car wash. Well, while this isn’t far from the truth, this isn’t always the case.
That shiny looking ride you just saw might not have been that aesthetically pleasing a few hours ago. The owner probably used a clay bar to give it that instant shine and showroom appearance, and you too can do the same by using the best clay bars in the market
A clay bar is an elastic resin compound that you slide across your car’s paint to remove stubborn contaminants. But while effective, the auto market today is saturated with all sorts of clay bars. Here are the ten best clay bar you can bet your money on today.
View The Best Clay Bars Below
1. Mothers California Gold Clay Bar System
Mothers is a pretty famous brand and not just for this clay bar kit, but their wide range of top-shelf quality automotive detailing product. This particular California gold clay bar system is one of their bestselling. It comes with everything users need to get rid of stubborn contaminants. That is two 100 grams clay bars, a 16oz instant detailer spray, which serves as a lubricant for the clay bar, and a microfiber towel.
So, if this is the first time you’re buying clay bars, this is a value pack as it comes with everything you need, so you don’t have to spend extra buying separately. It’s also non-abrasive, and pretty versatile as each clay bar can be used on any type of clear coats and paint.
+ Easy to use
+ Comes as a complete set
+ It’s non-abrasive
+ Pretty versatile
Why We Like It – Other than the fact it comes as a whole pack, this Mother’s California gold clay bars kit product is easy to use. Also, you can keep the detailer spray and the microfiber towel for future touchups.
2. Meguiar’s Mild Mirror Glaze Detailing Clay
Struggling to get rid of contaminants stuck on your ride’s topcoat paint? If yes, then the Meguiar’s C2000 is the best clay bar for the job. It removes both bonded surfaces contaminants and is non-abrasive, hence ideal for lighter contamination. As a mild car detailing product, Meguiar’s detailing clay is perfect for both beginners and experienced clay bar users. It comes in an 8.2-ounce plastic packaging, so it’s easy to store any leftover clay after you’re done using it.
+ Ideal for both light and bonded contaminants
+ Mild detailer hence doesn’t damage vehicle paint
+ Excellent plastic packaging makes it easy to keep for future uses.
+ It’s easy to apply
Why We Like It – Apart from removing an array of contaminants, the Meguiar’s C2000 clay bar kit has excellent packaging as it makes it easy to store for future uses.
3. Adam’s Fine Grade Clay Bar
This car detailing Clay bar kit is one of the best clay bars from Adam’s iconic range of products and for all the right reasons. As a fine grade clay bar, it is ultra-soft and easy to knead. Therefore, it’s easy to use as you can seamlessly manipulate it into different shapes, and use it to remove contamination even in tight spots. This product offers the best value for your money because one 100gram clay bar is enough to use on an entire vehicle.
For a fine grade clay bar kit, it’s pretty durable and can be used multiple times (learn more on grades on our buying guide ). It’s quite versatile, and besides your car’s paint, it can also be used on a range of other surfaces from glass, clear plastic to polished metal.
+ It’s super soft and easy to use.
+ Can be used multiple times
+ Can be used on a wide range of surfaces
+ Flexible enough for tight spots.
Why We Like It – Adam’s fine grade clay bar kit product sure does offer you the best value for your money. A single 100gram bar is not only enough to use on an entire ride, but also durable enough to store for multiple future uses. It’s also quite versatile and can be used to remove contaminants on other surfaces.
4. Chemical Guys Heavy Duty Clay Bar
Chemical Guys are one of the leading manufacturers of professional-grade car care products. Having been in operation for several decades, chemical guys car detailing products are usually slightly costly, but as you would expect, they are of incredible quality.
This clay bar kit, for instance, comes complete with everything you need. It features one 100-gram clay bar and a 16Oz bottle of lubricant. This is enough to not only rid your entire vehicle of contaminants but also to do so multiple times.
It is a professional-grade clay bar product, hence seamlessly removes all sorts of pollutants from debris, over-spray, pollution, to brake dust. At the same time, it’s gentle enough to use on delicate top coat, paint, plastic, and metal.
+ Ideal for light and medium contamination removal
+ Comes as a complete clay kit
+ Multi-surface use
+ Can be used multiple times
Why We Like It – As with other Chemical guys clay bar kits, what you see is what you get. That is a high-quality lubricant and a clay bar that’ll restore your car’s lost shine by removing tough contaminants and oxidized paint. This Chemical guys clay bar kit also offers the best bang for your money as it’s not only enough for your vehicle, but also can be used multiple times and on a wide range of surfaces.
5. Senrokes Clay Bar
If you are planning to remove contaminants on the multiple cars sitting in your home garage or simply want to stock up, then this Senrokes detailing clay bar product is for you. It comes with four 100gram clay bars, a microfiber towel, and a storage box. Unlike most claybars that require a special lube, all you need to remove contaminants on your ride using a senroke clay bar is water.
First, soak the bar in water and then use it to remove bonded dirt on your vehicles safe. The manufacturer had intended each bar be used multiple times, which is why the package features sealed storage. After you’re done using it, dry it thoroughly, place it in a plastic bag and then into the storage box.
+ Comes with four clay bars for future use
+ One clay bar can be used on multiple occasions
+ It has a sealed storage box for storage.
+ Clay bars only need to be soaked in water, hence easy to use.
Why We Like It – At its price range, the Senrokes detailing clay bar is an excellent buy as it not only comes with four clay bars but also because one clay bar can be used multiple times. This product is also quite versatile and can be used on various surfaces ranging from chrome-plated to lacquer glass surfaces.
6. TAKAVU Car Clay Bar
Nothing feels as good as a car’s silky smooth surface after its waxed or washed. However, a standard wax or wash won’t give you a shiny or silky finish if your vehicle’s exterior has weeks or months of contamination from tree sap, brake dust, or bird droppings. However, this Takavu clay bar will give you that. It comes with two 100-gram red detailing clay bars designed to remove smaller contaminants.
It is an ultra-fine clay bar material hence gentle on your hands and your ride as well and removes hard water spots, fallout, grime, and tree sap with ease. Other than your car’s paint, Takavu clay bars are also ideal to use on clear plastics and glass polished metal surfaces
+ Money-back guarantee
+ Plastic container for storage
+ It can be used multiple times.
+ Ultra-soft, easy to use clay bar
Why We Like It – Takavu clay bars can be used several times. After you are done, simply dry the clay bar, place it in a plastic bag and into the plastic container it came with for future use. Also, you can use it on various surfaces.
7. Griot’s Garage Paint Cleaning Clay
If you have multiple vehicles, each requiring an entire clay bar cleaning, then Griots Garage 1153 clay is a perfect fit for you. It comes in an 8oz container, works on all types of paints, and is enough to use in up to 7 cars based on the contamination levels.
Additionally, the container makes storage seamless as all you need to do is ensure it’s tightly sealed to maintain its moisture. So, if you only have one car, you can be sure you’ll be using it for a long time. It has a light mustard yellow shade, hence easy to tell whether the contaminants are being removed.
+ Easy to store
+ Works well on a range of surface
+ Can be used for detailing up to 7 cars
+ Removes contaminants with damaging paint
Why We Like It – The Griot’s garage paint cleaning clay is an actual value pack. It can be used for detailing multiple vehicles. It comes in a sealed container, which makes storage quite easy.
8. IPELY Car Clay Bar
The Ipely Car detailing clay bar product comes with four 100-gram clay bars and can be used with water. This is a significant bonus, as it means you won’t be looking for clay bars or a detailing spray anytime soon. Add in the fact that one clay bar can be used multiple times, and this is undoubtedly one of the best offers you’ll find at its price range.
Value aside, these clay bars boast the consistency of real clay, hence soft and easy to use. Besides using on your car’s painted surface, the Ipely clay bar is pretty versatile and can be used on transparent plastic surfaces, for instance, your ride’s headlight, glass, and polished metal, among many other areas. Simply put, you can use these clay bars to clean your entire car for as many times as need be!
+ Ideal for use on different car parts including headlight and taillights
+ Removes moderate contaminants
+ Convenience in one pack as it comes with four clay bars
+ It doesn’t damage car paint.
Why We Like It – The Ipely clay bar pack is an offer you can’t refuse. It comes with four clay bars, can be used with either a detailing spray or water, and each bar can be used multiple times. The product is also ideal for all of your car’s exterior surfaces from the paintwork to the headlights.
9. Adam’s Medium Grade Clay Bar Jar Kit
For a heavily contaminated car paint surface, the earlier fine grade clay bar may not be enough, which is why Adams brought forth this medium grade smooth surface clay kit for its consumers. Featuring two-100gram bars, this product will effectively remove stubborn freshwater stains, oxidized paint, rail dust, and a host of other contaminants.
It is non-abrasive, hence eliminates contaminants without damaging car paint. As noted, the clay kit comes with clay bars only, therefore cheaper and ideal if you have any detailing spray left from your previous buy. Make sure you wash your car first before decontamination for a perfectly, silky smooth and shiny finish.
+ Removes light and heavy contamination with ease
+ Flexible enough to use on tight spots
+ Durable hence ideal for multiple uses
+ Removes contamination on an array of surfaces
Why We Like It – For a medium-grade detailing clay bar, this product is pretty soft yet strong enough to remove light to moderate contamination from a car’s surface. It comes with two clay bars, hence ideal for multiple uses.
10. MATCC Car Clay Bar
Closing our list is the MATCC car clay bar, and as with others on our list, it doesn’t disappoint. It comes with three orange detailing clay bars and is stretchy when wet, hence makes cleaning easy. Although gentle to your hands, it has a plasticky, slightly rough detailing to remove rough and bonded contaminants with ease.
Also, while it’s always a good idea to use a detailing spray, don’t stress if you don’t have one as it can be used with water. The clay bar can be used on any of your car’s exterior surfaces from the paintwork to the windshield, leaving you with not only a silky, smooth, and shiny ride but an all-round clean vehicle.
+ Removes rough contaminants on your vehicle’s paint with ease
+ Doesn’t need detailing spray
+ Ideal for use on any car surface
+ Comes in a sealed container for easy storage
Why We Like It – Apart from the fact that one doesn’t need water, this clay bar product is safe to use on any of your vehicle’s surfaces, be it the windshield, the headlights, or the even the wheels.
Car Clay Bars Buyer’s Guide
Clay bars are a simple yet highly effective way to get rid of pollutants that dull your car’s paint job. However, their simplicity means there are quite many detailing clay kits in the market today. Therefore, the chances of buying a product that won’t do an effective job are pretty high. However, don’t fret because we did the heavy lifting for you and prepared a comprehensive buying guide below to make sure you walk away with an excellent product.
Mind the Type
Just because a particular product has the words clay on it doesn’t mean it’s meant to remove contaminants on your car’s paint. Read on to see the different types of clay bars you will find in the market
Glass Cleaning Clay Bar
While most of the products on our list of the best clay bar packs above can be used to clean a glass surface such as your car’s windshield, note, there is a clay bar specifically made for cleaning automotive glass surfaces. If you end up buying one of these for removing hard water spots and tree sap on your car’s paint, you will be disappointed.
A clay mitt is similar to a wash mitt only that it has the clay resin. Therefore, wear it over your hand. Both the clay mitt and a clay bar are designed to do the same job, but clay mitts are much more durable. Even though car mitts are easy to use, car detailing experts find clay bars more effective in removing contaminants on a car’s surface as they’re specifically meant for that task.
Consider the Grade
Before you decide to buy Mothers California gold clay bars or add Chemical guys clay bar to cart, it’s essential to note that while both products are clay bars, they may not be the same. Not just because they are from different companies, but because they may be in different grade categories as discussed below.
Heavy grade clay bars are very effective but very abrasive too. They’ll quickly remove deeply bonded contaminants, but in the process, they’ll also damage your vehicle’s paint. That said, you should never use a heavy grade clay bar unless you are dealing with deeply embedded pollutants and even if this is the case, polish your car afterwards. Heavy grade clay bars should only be used by professionals or on wheels, glass, and other hard surfaces of your car’s exterior.
A medium grade smooth surface clay kit is aggressive but not abrasive. It will remove stubborn contaminants such as industrial fallout, hard water spots, and oxidation without damaging your vehicle’s paint. Great examples of medium grade clay bars on our list of best clay bars above include chemical guys, Adams Griots, Meguiar’s mild kit, and Mothers California gold clay bar system.
Fine grade clay bars have the softest consistency. Thanks to this, they are easy to knead during use and don’t damage your paint at all. They are, however, only ideal for the removal of light debris and perfect if you don’t drive a lot but want your car always looking sleek regardless. One of the best fine grade clay bars on our list of the best clay bar products above is Adam’s fine grade clay bar kit.
It’s also a wise thing to consider the brand behind the clay bar you plan on buying. Only the best brands go the extra mile to produce the best. Also note, if you need any sort of assistance, such brands will always have your back as they boast highly responsive and hospitable customer care teams. Such brands include Chemical guys, Griots Garage, Mothers, Meguiar’s, and the others on our list of the best claybar above.
Rubbing a clay bar product on your car’s surface without lubrication will not only create a mess but also may damage your paint. With that said, another essential factor to consider while purchasing a clay bar product is the type of lubricant it uses. Some like Mothers and chemical guys come as a complete set. This means the package includes the lubricant. While others only include a clay bar, and at most, a microfiber towel. With these that do not include a lubricant you have the option to either buy separately, or use soapy water. They’re also ideal if you had previously bought a complete set, and only looking for a replacement bar.
The Number of Bars
Some brands will offer you a single bar while others like Chemical guys and Mothers California gold clay bar system give you a kit complete with all you need. Others like Senrokes and Ipely are pretty generous and offer you four bars in a single product pack. If you already have a lubricant or planning on using water, a pack with two or four bars would be quite cost-saving as you get to store some for future use. It all comes down to your current budget and needs.
When it comes to the size of the clay bar, don’t look at it in terms of how small or big it is or how it’s shaped when you hold it. After all, you will be ripping it and kneading it while using it. Instead, consider its size in regards to the overall value. That is, can you use that single clay bar to clean your entire car and, if possible, keep it for future use afterward?
When you use a clay bar product, you want one that you can easily knead so that once you’re done cleaning one part, you can knead it again and clean another part of your vehicle with a fresh part of the bar. That said, you want one that’s elastic but not too much to make a mess or stick to your car’s surface.
Although the color of the clay bar product shouldn’t be the determining factor, it’s also wise to consider it. Why? Well, with a light-colored clay bar product, it is easier to tell whether all the rubbing you’ve been doing for the past five minutes is removing the dirt or not.
Benefits of Using a Clay Bar on Your Car
With all you could do to improve your ride’s appearance, here are three main reasons why you should bother to use a clay bar product on it;
1. To Enhance Aesthetic Appeal
Your car may be relatively new, but if it has a contaminated surface, it won’t look as good. If you want to drive around in a car that wows everyone, then you have to improve its exterior appeal. Waxing and washing are great ways to do so, but clay barring is the way to go if you want to restore your car’s shiny and silky smooth surface.
2. It’ll Maintain Your Car’s Paint
Polishing and waxing your car are great ways to keep its aesthetic appeal but they are pretty expensive and are a lot of work. A clay bar, on the other hand, removes even the bonded contaminants within a short while, leaving your ride looking like it’s just out of the showroom.
3. It’s Affordable
What’s fascinating about clay bars is they restore your car’s shine instantly without leaving a dent in your budget. They are way much cheaper in comparison to what you would have paid at a dealership or a detailing shop to get your car polished.
Frequently Asked Questions on Clay Bar Detailing
1. How Exactly Does a Clay Bar Work?
If you just heard about clay bars, it’s normal to find yourself wondering how these small pieces of resins are better than the strong detergent you bought the other day. But, they are popular for a reason. To understand how they work, think of any of the clay bars above. For instance, chemical guys as a magnet. When rubbed against your vehicle’s surface, it conforms to it and attracts dirt deposits, including bonded contaminants such as rail dust, industrial fallout, bug remnants, and even paint oxidation.
2. What is the Difference Between Clay Bar Detailing and Polishing?
People tend to confuse clay bar detailing with polishing, and although both tasks help you restore your car’s lost shine, they’re two worlds apart. With polishing, a new paint job is done, hence giving your car an instant shine. With clay bar detailing, on the other hand, no paint job is done. You simply remove contaminants using a smooth surface clay resin. In that light, it’s wise to ensure you use a clay bar even before polishing to remove contaminants.
Polishing your car without clay bar detailing only drives the contaminants deeper into your paint which means its surface will remain rough even after a fresh paint job. It’s essential to note a clay bar only cleans and gets rids of contaminants; a regular car wash wouldn’t. Therefore, don’t expect it to remove paint scratches or swirl marks magically.
3. How Often Should You Clay Bar Your Car?
There are no strict rules on how regularly you should clay bar your ride. It all depends on your environment. For instance, if your car is always sitting in your garage, and you only use it when you are on a work break, you may not need to do so regularly. But if you drive a lot, especially in areas that kick up a lot of dust or tend to pack it beneath trees a lot, you should clay bar it as often as possible. Generally, you should do it at least twice or thrice a year.
4. When Do I Clay Bar My Car?
You should clay bar your car whenever you feel necessary. For instance, if you run your hands against its surface and find it rough, then you should clay bar it. If it has been a while and you’re not sure whether you should, consider running a bag test. A bag test involves placing a zip-lock bag on the surface you think is rough. When you touch your car’s surface over this bag, the tiny particles will be amplified. Make sure you wash your car before the bag test.
5. Can I Use Soapy Water to Clay Bar?
Yes, you sure can use soapy water to clay bar. As you may have noticed, some of the clay bar kits on our list above, such as Chemical guys and Mothers, feature their lubricant. But some come with only the clay bars but can be used with water for detailing. However, as you’d expect, a detailing spray does a much better job.
6. How to Properly Use a Clay Bar
If you haven’t done any clay bar detailing yourself, it can be quite confusing. The good news is it’s quite easy to use. Here are the steps to follow.
Pack Your Car in a Cool Place
If you are using a lubricant, you should pack it in a cool place or without direct sunlight. Why? Well, most clay bar detailing sprays tend to become soft and less effective when warm. Also, the lube will evaporate.
Wash Your Car
Next, clean your car thoroughly with soap and water. In other words, clean it the way you usually do to remove all the loose dirt, so your work with the clay bar product can only be to remove the embedded contaminants. This step is essential because clay picks up even the tiniest dirt particles. So if you don’t remove the loose dirt, it’ll only remove this and not the bonded contaminants you’re trying to remove. Also, these particles, for instance, sand, may end up scratching your car’s paint.
Time to Clay Bar
Once you’ve confirmed the car is clean, leave it to dry and then come back with the clay bar. Spray the lubricant and if you’re using water, apply water on a small part and rub it back and forth. Once you are done, wipe it with a microfiber towel and confirm whether all dirt deposits have been removed. If not, apply the lubricant or the soapy water solution again and repeat.
Do this until you’re satisfied and repeat the same process in all other areas you wanted to clean. Note, if the clay bar accidentally falls on the ground, it’s as good as gone. Don’t try to use it again as you’ll only damage your car’s paint. That is why it’s a good idea to opt for a product with multiple bars.
7. Should I Worry About Clay Bars Scratching My Paint?
If you use the product as per the manufacturer’s or the tips above, you should never worry about a clay bar damaging your vehicle. The only time a clay bar may damage your vehicle paint is if you rub it on a non-lubricated surface. Ensure you are using plenty of lubricants every time you finish cleaning one part and move to another. If you are using water, ensure it is soapy.
While shopping for one, keep in mind the grade matters. If you bought a heavy grade clay bar product when you were looking for a soft one, it’d damage your car’s paint, yet you only wanted the fine one. This is why it’s essential to consider the grade of the product carefully.
8. Do I Need to Clean My Clay Bar?
No. After using it to clean one surface, knead it until it gives you a fresh, clean surface before using it again.
A clay bar is the perfect go-to solution for when you want to give your car that show-room appearance without breaking the budget or doing too much work on its paint. They are especially ideal if you drive a lot. That said, the California gold clay bar kit system from Mothers was our best pick as it comes with all you need, and at the same time, is pretty price friendly.
Chemical guys were our second pick as it’s one of the best, non-abrasive medium grade clay bars in the market. But in a nutshell, all the clay bars on our list are the best you’ll find in the market today. The comprehensive buying guide will also enable you to make an informed decision.