In the world of DIY car detailing, there are usually no boundaries on what car owners and detailers can or can’t do.
Using general knowledge as well as trial and error, most DIY detailers try to use various products so that they can enhance the look of their cars.
These methods don’t often work successfully and that’s why you should always do your research before attempting any DIY hack on your vehicle.
An example of such a DIY hack is applying a clear coat on plasti dip. When plasti dip was introduced, it hit the car detailing industry by storm. Considering how easy and fast it was to apply on a car, everyone rushed towards using it.
Nowadays, it’s not unusual to spot rims, or even entire cars that have been plasti dipped. As the uses of plasti dip on car bodies become popular, car owners can’t help but wonder – can you clear coat plasti dip.
There are three main reasons why a car owner may think of clear coating plasti dip;
- You want to achieve a shiny finish.
- You want to protect the plasti dip. Clear coat has always been used to protect auto paint. But can it do the same for plasti dip?
- And finally, you want plasti dip to last longer.
You are right that plasti dip can offer the above three benefits. But the big question is, can you apply a clear coat over plasti dip? Sure, you can but plasti dip that has got a layer of clear coat doesn’t peel off easily.
That is the reason why most people avoid applying clear coats on plasti dip. On various car forums, you will read how great the clear coat looks on plasti dip.
And you too can achieve the same result, when you apply both the plasti dip and clear coat correctly. What they don’t tell you is that two years later when the plasti dip is worn out, you will be in for a hard time when removing it.
Table of Contents
- Should I Clear Coat Over Plasti Dip?
- How to Make Plasti Dip Shinier Without Clear Coat?
- Is It Easy to Remove Freshly Clear Coated Plasti Dip?
- Can Clear Coat Make Plasti Dip Permanent?
- How to Remove Plasti Dip that Has Been Clear Coated?
- Does Plasti Dip Need Clear Coat Protection?
- How to Remove Clear Coat?
Should I Clear Coat Over Plasti Dip?
If you intend to have the plasti dip on your car for a while and you are ready to sweat it out when removing it, then sure, you can apply a clear coat over plasti dip.
The manufacturers of plasti dip praise this product for how easy it is to remove. And it’s true, plasti deep does peel off easily when you apply the recommended number of coats.
However, plasti dip that has been coated with a clear will take days for it to come off. And you may have to engage in unorthodox techniques such as the use of razors and chemicals that can damage the paint beneath.
How to Make Plasti Dip Shinier Without Clear Coat?
As mentioned above, most people result to using clear coat because they want to make the plasti dip shinier. However, instead of using clear coat, we would recommend Plasti Dip Glossifier.
This is a clear coat that was specifically formulated to be used on plasti dip. Unlike an enamel clear coat, it won’t make it hard for you to peel off the plasti dip.
And it will give you the shine and gloss that you want to have on a part of a car that has been plasti dipped.
Feel free to ask around or do some digging, this Glossifier bonds exceptionally well on plasti dip. It gives any surface that has been plasti dipped a polished and smoother look.
And its ingredients are designed to blend with those of plasti dip. The Glossifier is durable and can withstand hot temperatures. It comes in a spray can and is, therefore, easier to apply than when you opt for a clear coat.
A pro tip that every professional detailer will tell you is that always used the right products. If you have decided to go with plasti dip, do not use clear coat to add shine. Instead, go for the Glossifier.
And, if you have decided to use automotive paint, don’t use plasti dip Glossifier. Stick to clear coat. Also, when you decide to plasti dip a car, always buy the plasti-dip kit.
This usually contains a base coat, color, and a glossy top coat. If you buy a plasti dip kit, you don’t even need to go looking for a clear coat.
Is It Easy to Remove Freshly Clear Coated Plasti Dip?
Yes, when you try and remove freshly applied clear coat on plasti dip, you won’t run into any challenges. However, if you let it cure on the plasti dip, it won’t come off easily.
Can Clear Coat Make Plasti Dip Permanent?
In an attempt to make plasti dip last for longer or rather become permanent, some people think that a clear coat can help with that. The thing is, plasti dip isn’t designed to bond permanently on a surface.
Therefore, no matter what you do, plasti dip will never bond to your car paint permanently.
It is more of a temporary solution and if you want something that’s going to last, go for automotive paint and then add a clear coat. For the wheels, ceramic coats are more durable than plasti dip.
So, even if you add several layers of clear coat or apply multiple layers of plasti dip, it won’t hold permanently to your car.
You will even be lucky if it reaches the three-year lifespan that the manufacturer claims it can last.
The only benefit of plasti dip is that it is easier to apply and doesn’t need a lot of prep work as is the case with paint.
And on the downside, plasti dip can’t last as long as automotive paint. You, therefore, have to choose between the two and weigh out which pros and cons you are willing to tolerate.
How to Remove Plasti Dip that Has Been Clear Coated?
We have already mentioned that plasti dip hardens when it is clear coated. Therefore, the ordinary methods of removing plasti dip such as peeling it off may not work. It’s worth giving it a try.
But as long as you applied a clear coat and it cured, you just have to bring out the big guns. Before resulting into more severe methods, we advise that you try using Goo Gone, WD-40, and Isopropyl Alcohol.
If all the above fails, then you should grab a paint thinner and spread it on the area you want to remove the plasti dip. A paint thinner can damage car paint, so be very careful with it.
The last option that we only recommend when everything else has failed is craping the plasti dip off with a plastic razor or a credit card.
You may end up scratching the paint if you go with the latter option. To be on the safe side, take your car to a body shop and let the experts do their job.
Does Plasti Dip Need Clear Coat Protection?
Even before you put a clear coat on the plasti dip, you should ask yourself, does the plasti dip need the protection of a clear coat.
According to the manufacturer, plasti dip can take a beating from the elements and it should hold up just fine.
However, plasti dip isn’t as durable as auto paint. The only advantage of plasti dip is it’s easier to fix. When it starts to peel, you can strip it off and apply another layer.
With paint, you have to sand, apply primer, paint then clear coat. That’s a lot of work.
How to Remove Clear Coat?
Most of the products we have listed that can be used to remove clear coated plasti dip are too strong for a clear coat that is on auto paint. Therefore only use paint thinners when you don’t need that paint job.
In instances when you want to remove a clear coat but don’t want to damage the paint, the best product to use is sandpaper, more specifically 800 and 1200 grit sandpapers.
This is a procedure that requires a careful and gentle approach. And should only be done when you want to apply a fresh clear coat.
If you are not sure how to go about the process of removing clear coat using sandpapers, take your car to an auto body shop and ask for help. This process can easily damage the paint.
N.B. Check also this article Can You Paint Over Plasti Dip?