Best car wheel wax and sealant 2019
Which is the best spray-on car wheel sealant treatment to keep brake dust and grime at bay?
Cleaning wheels is one of the trickier valeting jobs. The grime is baked on, the cleaners used are often hazardous and the surfaces complex and tricky to access, so any help has to be good. This used to be done by wheel waxes in much the same way as paintwork is protected, but the arrival of sealants has moved the game on.
Drivers can expect the latest products to keep working for months rather than weeks. To find the best we applied a selection to a rim and monitored progress over six weeks, looking for a finish that was as close to just-cleaned as possible. We factored in ease of use and price, but the heart of the test was durability and how long each could keep grime at bay.
- 1. Wonder Wheels Wheel Sealant
- 2. Armor All Shield Brake Dust Repellent
- 3. Autoglym Wheel Protector
Wonder Wheels Wheel Sealant
Price: Around £7 Size: 300ml
Another win for Wonder Wheels, with a sealant it ambitiously claims to provide “infinite protection”. We didn’t see that kind of performance, but Wheel Sealant certainly worked throughout our six-week test. There were streaks on its section, but they were lighter than those of its rivals’. That was impressive, because other contenders looked little different from untreated areas by the end of the test.
As is common for these sealants, you need to set a little time aside for application. The wheels must be cleaned before the sealant is sprayed on. It then needs to be left untouched while it cures and bonds to the rim. But it’s well worth the wait, with grime build-up slowed noticeably. This is the easiest of the best performers on price, too.
Armor All Shield Brake Dust Repellent
Price: Around £9 Size: 300ml
The US producer pioneered this form of sealant for wheel rims following the success of its Shield product for automotive body paint. As with all of Armor All’s competitors here, there’s a bit more effort required to apply Brake Dust Repellent, which again needs the wheel to be thoroughly cleaned first. Also, the treated item has to be left for at least an hour without being touched. Overnight is best if you can spare the time. Armor All claims that Brake Dust Repellent lasts only four weeks, yet we saw that it was still working after six, if not quite so effectively as our winning Wonder Wheels. The competition has caught up, but this is still a great product.
Autoglym Wheel Protector
Price: Around £11Size: 300ml
Autoglym developed this sealant with its motorsport partners, and the result works well, even if it’s not particularly quick to apply. In the same way as with Armor All Shield Brake Dust Repellent, leaving the car overnight without driving it is best, because the longer the formula has to cure, the better the final result will be, and the longer the finish will last. And a note of warning, too: this product is also not suitable for black, dark or mirror-finished wheels. On our test rim it performed well, matching our winner early on and only dropping a little behind at the end. As usual, a high price does Autoglym no favours, but Wheel Protector is certainly effective.