Best rain repellents 2018
A good rain repellent can improve visibility in the wet and improve safety when driving.
It seems that drivers love or loathe rain repellents, but this hasn’t prevented new products being introduced to the market in time for the autumn showers.
Fans love the super-slick coating these products leave on glass, which allows rain to run rapidly off. This means you won’t need to use your car’s wipers so much, plus repellents can keep side and rear glass, and wing mirrors, cleaner for longer. But critics can’t put up with the mist effect that follows each sweep of the wipers once a rain repellent’s been applied, or the vision in the wet after dark. There’s no doubt that rain repellent lasts, with the sort of stamina bodywork waxes can only dream of. Yet even this is a problem for some, as removing the treatment can prove tricky.
Whatever your opinion, there are clear advantages, especially on side glass or rear windows with no wipers. So which is best? We tried the latest products, including two cleaners, to find the best rain repellent.
How we tested them
Each product was applied to a sectioned-off screen under the wiper sweep – to accelerate wear – that had been clayed and cleaned. Water beading was then monitored over nine weeks. While all work in much the same way, they’re applied in different ways, so we took this into account and ranked them according to effecitveness, price from online sources and also what you get for the price - including extras like a cloth.
This was tough to decide, with the top performers coming in quite different packages. Dodo Juice, despite being hard work to apply, takes the win from newcomer Meguiar while former champ EnduroShield grabs the bronze position.
- 1. Dodo Juice Supernatural Glass Sealant Kit
- 2. Meguiar's Perfect Clarity Glass Sealant
- 3. EnduroShield Auto Glass Wipe
Dodo Juice Supernatural Glass Sealant Kit
Rating: 5.0 Price: £20
Unlike other rain repellants, Dodo Juice Supernatural kit takes care and time to apply. You prep the surface with a strong shampoo, clay, polish and IPA glass cleaner, apply the solution twice with the lint-free cloth, buff it, then leave it to cure for up to three hours.
Not easy or cheap; you get around half the amount for close to twice the money. But it works, and we believe claims of six months-plus protection.
Meguiar’s Perfect Clarity Glass Sealant
Rating: 4.0 Price: £11
To ensure a like-for-like comparison, we didn’t prepare the test area with the new Perfect Clarity Glass Polishing Compound (£12 for 236ml) Meguiar’s recommends for removing bonded contaminants.
In the box you get the solution plus a small sponge applicator. Put it on like a wax in overlapping sweeps, allow to dry, then wipe off with a moist microfibre cloth. Repeat to ensure even coverage.
Even without the compound it worked well, if a step behind our test winner. At the end of our nine-week test it was still effective, but flooded more easily than the Supernatural. Once flooded it cleared its section, but took a few seconds. While it doesn’t have our champ’s stamina, it’s cheaper, better value and easier to apply.
EnduroShield Auto Glass Wipe
Rating: 4.0 Price: £8
Size: Two Wipes
Ease of use makes the sachet version of EnduroShield an attractive option, especially as it comes with a polishing cloth. It couldn’t be simpler to apply – just wipe on and leave. The only drawback is that it needs to cure for eight hours. It beaded strongly throughout our test, only giving best to Dodo Juice. Great stamina overcomes the relatively high cost of each application.
Carlack Glass Finish
Rating: 4.0 Price: £17
Carlack's Glass Finish is our pick of the conventional repellents and secures a podium on the maker’s debut in our tests. You apply it to a clean screen with a paper towel before leaving it to dry. Next, you moisten it and buff the windscreen clear. Yet it’s well worth going through this complicated process, as the product certainly works. Glass Finish couldn’t quite match our top choices in this test, but it was clearly ahead of its big-pack rivals and showed little sign of slowing.
Armor All Shield for Glass
Rating: 4.0 Price: £7
The Shield range has already taken wins in our wax and wheel sealant tests, but fails to complete the hat trick here. It’s not that it doesn’t work; more that it didn’t show the same performance advantage on glass as other Shield products. It’s certainly cost-effective and easy to apply – wipe on and buff – but rivals beaded water quicker, and it faded towards the end.
EnduroShield Auto Glass
Rating: 4.0 Price: £15
A previous Best Buy is still a top product but has fallen down the ranks slightly. As with Dodo Juice, you get a small pack, but it’s easier to apply – although it needs eight hours to cure before you use your wipers. Curiously, it was a step behind the Wipe version throughout the test – it struggled to shift water as quickly.
Dr Beasley’s Glass IQ
Rating: 3.0 Price: £14
The effort put into applying a sealant seems to be reflected in its durability. Dr Beasley’s Glass IQ is the easiest to apply, with no lengthy prep; just spray, then wipe off with a clean cloth.
It was still present after four weeks, but had stopped working by the end. It is also volatile organic compound-free and carries none of its rivals’ hazard warnings. Not the most durable, but application is so easy that topping up is an absolute breeze.
Turtle Wax ClearVue Rain Repellent
Rating: 3.0 Price: £5
If you’re on a tight budget, this is the solution for you. You get 300ml for a fiver and it works well. You have to apply it twice before sprinkling with water and buffing. But you can ignore advice to repeat every two to three weeks, as we only saw signs of fading at the end of our nine week test.
Rain-X Rain Repellent
Rating: 3.0 Price: £5
Mention rain repellents, and it won’t be long before Rain-X comes up. It gave its name to the sector and remains a solid performer. In fact, there was little to choose between it and Turtle Wax on the screen. It’s easier to apply, requiring just one coat, but trails on price.
Bluecol Rain Repellent
Rating: 3.0Price: £5
No surprise to find this Bluecol treatment alongside Rain-X and Turtle Wax, as it’s a very similar product. Like Rain-X, it requires one application before you allow it to dry, then wet and buff clear. It’s not quite as effective as the Rain-X or the Turtle Wax, but a keen price makes it a worthwhile option.
Read which car wax and polish came out top in our product group test here.