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    The 8 Best Towed Vehicle Braking Systems 2021

    Who wouldn’t want to cruise around our country in a big shiny RV? Checking out breathtaking national parks by day and sipping cold beer by the campfire come nightfall; it’s the American dream. But as luxurious as a massive RV can be, there’s one big downside: you’ll struggle to find parking outside the campgrounds.
    Day trips, grocery runs, and inner-city exploration all become a chore when you’re sitting behind the wheel of a 30-foot rig.
    But thankfully, there’s a viable solution to this age-old conundrum: towing a vehicle behind you as you go. With a towed vehicle, you can set up camp with your RV and scoot off in a smaller ride to explore the sights. Comfort at the campsite and mobility during the day—the best of both worlds.
    But it’s not as easy as hooking up an SUV to your RV hitch and hitting the road; the law requires you to install and utilize a towed vehicle braking system.
    In this article, we’ll discuss the details of the supplementary braking system in our in-depth guide. And once you’re up to speed, we’ll walk you through the best products on the market today so you can pick out the perfect option for you.

    Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Towed Braking System
    Before you start sifting through our top recommendations, it’s essential to understand the primary features to consider. Only then will you have the necessary expertise to identify the ideal auxiliary braking system for your needs.
    Although auxiliary braking systems work with most vehicle makes and models, you still need to ensure your preferred product is compatible. It’s crucial to check brake compatibility, too; some models only work with certain brake types.
    Portable or Permanent
    Do you plan on switching between different towing vehicles, or are you more likely to stick with the same one? You can quickly move portable systems between multiple cars, while a professional mechanic must hardwire permanent solutions.
    Braking System Type
    Towed vehicle braking systems come in three main types: proportional, direct, and progressive. For the everyday RVer, these aren’t quite as crucial to consider as the portable versus permanent choice. Nonetheless, it’s worth acquiring a basic understanding of how each system type works.
    This supplementary braking system monitors the towing vehicle’s acceleration and deceleration, then applies the toad brakes proportionally. The system monitors the RV brakes via an in-built accelerometer or sensor, which automatically evaluates how much pressure has been applied. Consequently, both systems exert the same amount of braking power at the same time.
    These don’t require any adjustment once installed, but they tend to perform poorly with hybrid or power-assisted brakes.
    This auxiliary braking system begins applying increasing (progressive) pressure on the toad vehicle brakes when it registers pressure on the towing vehicle brakes. The longer the towing vehicle brakes are depressed, the longer the toad vehicle will brake. However, the toad vehicle will eventually stop braking at a predetermined point to preserve its brakes from excessive wear and tear.
    The drawback to this cost-effective option is it essentially estimates how long the towing vehicle has been braking, so it isn’t entirely accurate. It also causes undue wear and tear on the toad vehicle, despite the fact it disengages them to prevent overheating.
    A direct towing vehicle braking system is hardwired into the RV brakes to mimic exactly what the latter is doing. The pressure exerted on the RV pedal gets replicated in a 1:1 ratio on the toad pedal, making it exceptionally accurate. This method largely avoids under-braking and over-braking the toad, making it safer than the other options.
    On the downside, it’s only suitable for permanent towed vehicle braking systems and may void the warranty of your toad.
    Weight & Size
    If you’re using a portable towed vehicle braking system, you constantly move it back and forth. Therefore, it’s sensible to aim for a lightweight and compact model that’s easy to transport. Portability isn’t a priority with permanent hardwired systems.
    Emergency Breakaway System
    An emergency breakaway system will automatically engage the towed vehicle brakes should it uncouple from your RV. This potentially life-saving safety feature prevents a loose towed vehicle from careening into oncoming cars or pedestrians.
    Cash strapped RVers might opt for a cheap portable system to save money, even if it’s not necessarily the ideal option. If you’re in a favorable financial position and plan on using the same towed vehicle for some time, a high-end permanent model is your best bet.
    Now that you know what to keep in mind, let’s take a look at our picks for the best products available today.

    Top 8 Best Towed Vehicle Braking Systems 2021
    1. Best Overall Braking System: Roadmaster 8700 Invisibrake Hidden Power Braking System

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: It’s a brilliant permanent system that provides optimal convenience and safe towing for years on end.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Portable or Permanent: Permanent
    Brake Compatibility: Vacuum powered breaks
    Braking System Type: Progressive breaking
    Emergency Breakaway: Yes
    Dimensions: 5 x 12.5 x 7 inches; 15.6 pounds
    This high-end progressive braking system from Roadmaster offers superb functionality for vacuum-powered brakes.
    The permanent braking system is installed out of sight and takes advantage of existing electrical connections on your toad and motorhome. What’s more, it’ll bypass the 12V system to recharge your toad battery on the road—never worry about running it flat en route to the campsite again.
    The thing we love most about the InvisiBrake, though, is it’s a highly comprehensive solution. Once she’s installed in your toad, you won’t have to disconnect anything ever again—much more convenient than a portable model.
    The unit includes an emergency breakaway system for optimal safety and is easily adjustable to suit personal braking preferences.
    On the downside, it’s not at all easy to install. Even a skilled mechanic could spend hours getting it done, and we don’t recommend DIY unless you’re an auto pro. If you’re not exceptionally handy and don’t want to pay for installation, we recommend something easier to set up like the Blue Ox Patriot 3 Brake System. It’s also annoying that the motorhome brake lights come on and activate the unit while engine braking—hardly a deal-breaker, though.

    Convenient and comprehensive system
    Ready to go each day without connecting anything
    Will recharge battery while driving
    Adjustable braking preferences
    Includes emergency breakaway system

    Difficult to install
    RV Engine brake activates toad brakes

    2. Best Premium Braking System: Blue Ox BRK2019 Patriot 3 Brake System

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: It’s compatible with most cars and works better than other portable braking systems on the market.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Portable or Permanent: Portable
    Brake Compatibility: Most cars, including hybrids
    Braking System Type: Proportional
    Emergency Breakaway: Yes
    Dimensions: 21 x 13 x 10 inches; 14.04 pounds
    Although expensive, the BRK2019 Patriot 3 is worth every penny for RVers after a portable supplementary breaking solution.
    The state-of-the-art setup automatically monitors brake pressure while towing and slows your toad accordingly, resulting in a smoother and safer ride. Plus, its all-electric design makes for faster response times, which could save your life in an emergency.
    The system gets top marks for compatibility as it works well with virtually any car, including newfangled hybrids.
    It’s an excellent solution for non-mechanically minded RVers as the technology is remarkably easy to use. All you need to do for installation is position the Patriot in the driver’s seat, put the claw on the brake pedal, run through the setup, and then put the control unit in the RV—even grandma could work that out.
    We also love how you can fine-tune the brake settings from the control unit as you drive, as that’s not a common feature on portable units.
    Hooking up the emergency breakaway does require wiring, although it’s worth the hassle for the added peace of mind. Those who don’t want to mess with that will need to pay a professional to help or choose an even easier to install system, like the Roadmaster 9400 Even Brake System.

    Easy to install
    Simple to use
    Effective and safe braking
    Compatible with most cars

    Breakaway requires wiring

    3. Best Budget Braking System: Roadmaster 9160 Brakemaster Towed Car Braking System

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: This tiny portable system from Roadmaster does a beautiful job for a low price.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Portable or Permanent: Portable
    Brake Compatibility: Air brakes
    Braking System Type: Proportional
    Emergency Breakaway: Yes
    Dimensions: 15 x 11 x 15 inches; 11 pounds
    If you don’t have a thousand bucks to spare on a towed vehicle braking system, then take a look at this nifty little number from Roadmaster. Coming in at a fraction of the cost of the competition, it’s a budget-friendly way to remain legally compliant and safe on the roads.
    The proportional system works on most air brakes by monitoring the tow vehicle’s braking power and emulating it on the toad. It’s especially effective when towing larger toads, so keep that in mind if you’re hauling a bulky SUV. And considering the low price point at play, the brakes work wonderfully well and don’t make you feel like you’re pulling a toad at all—extra points for comfort!
    As much as we love it, the unit does have one major drawback: the installation is a nightmare. Even an expert automobile DIYer would spend several frustrating hours getting the mechanism set up. More likely, you’ll have to enlist professional help, and that’ll only add to the overall cost. Once it’s set up, though, it’s super easy to move in and out of your ride.
    This model comes with an emergency breakaway feature, which we highly recommend. Still, if you don’t feel you need it, then grab the 9100 Brakemaster instead (it’s exactly the same sans the emergency breakaway).

    Cost-effective brake system
    Works on almost all air brake RVs
    Good for larger toads
    Doesn’t feel like towing
    Includes emergency breakaway

    Hard to install

    4. Best Braking System for Air Brakes: Demco 9599007 Air Force One Braking System

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: This high-end permanent system offers outstanding air brake performance and won’t void your RV warranty.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Portable or Permanent: Permanent
    Brake Compatibility: Air brakes
    Braking System Type: Direct braking
    Dimensions: 17 x 13 x 9 inches; 51 pounds
    If you’re looking for a high-performance auxiliary air brake compatible system, then look no further than the 9599007 Air Force One. Good enough for the President of the United States (probably), this upmarket system affords awe-inspiring direct braking action on all air brake motorhomes. You’ll relish in a comfortable and safe ride as a result.
    Another thing we love about this American-made product is it’s one of the only air brake systems that won’t void the chassis warranty on your RV upon installation. Also, the braking system has a lengthy five-year warranty to ensure both investments are adequately protected. And that’s reason enough to buy this unit in our book.
    It’s a painful device to install, even if you’ve got plenty of practice working on automobiles. Keen DIYers without automotive experience would be better off outsourcing the job to a professional—trust us, your sanity depends on it.
    Once it’s installed, you won’t have to worry about a thing as there are no moving parts to tweak or settings to configure, making it a complete turn-key solution.

    Doesn’t void motorhome warranty
    Works well on air brake RVs
    Made in the USA
    Five-year warranty
    Safe and comfortable towing experience

    Very difficult to install

    5. Best Braking System for Hydraulic Brakes: Demco 9599006 Stay-in-Play Duo Braking System

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: The Demco Stay-in-Play harnesses two separate braking technologies for a safe and comfortable tow.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Portable or Permanent: Permanent
    Brake Compatibility: Hydraulic
    Braking System Type: Progressive and proportional
    Dimensions: 17 x 13 x 9 inches; 11 pounds
    While most towed vehicle braking systems work on either a proportional or progressive system, the Stay-in-Play takes a different approach. This interesting option from DEMCO is both progressive and proportional, a unique design that optimizes safety and durability on the road.
    The system draws upon a potent dose of air pressure to activate the brake pedal on the toad, then uses a vacuum to power the braking system. It only kicks in when it detects both deceleration and the brake light, making it more accurate than other options out there. Also, your toad vehicle won’t apply the brakes during engine braking from the RV, which helps immensely on those steep downhill descents.
    It’s relatively easy to install for a permanent system—if you’ve got mechanical expertise, you could certainly have a shot at DIY. Another considerable advantage is convenience, as all you have to do is flick on the switch before setting off on your adventures each day.
    The mid-range unit is reliable overall but will require maintenance from time to time. The brake pedal cable is prone to snapping, for example, although it’s not hard at all to replace.
    Note that this unit is a newer, rebranded version of the SMI 99251 Stay-in-Play.

    Both progressive and proportional
    Uses air and vacuum technology
    Requires deceleration and brake lights to engage
    Doesn’t engage when engine braking
    Convenient and easy to install

    Some parts may need maintenance

    6. Most Even Braking System: Roadmaster 9400 Even Brake System

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: This powerful portable proportional system brakes evenly every time and doesn’t provoke excessive wear and tear.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Portable or Permanent: Portable
    Brake Compatibility: Compatible with most toads
    Braking System Type: Proportional
    Emergency Breakaway: Yes
    Dimensions: 3 x 12.7 x 12.5 inches; 22.3 pounds
    Roadmaster makes a wide range of superb supplementary braking systems, and the 9400 is no exception.
    Although it costs about twice the price of our top budget pick, the Roadmaster 9160 is worth the extra expense. Frequent RVers who are happy to spend a bit extra on a quality portable system tend to love the device for its performance and durability.
    The proportional system does an outstanding job at evenly applying the brakes on both vehicles simultaneously. Consequently, you’ll enjoy a safer and more predictable towing experience without wearing down the brake pads on your RV or toad.
    The system is compatible with most toads, although it’s worth double-checking the chart on their website to make sure it’ll work with yours.
    You get a dashboard monitor as part of the deal to install in your RV, allowing you to tweak the configurations while on the road. Although the instructions aren’t the best, the initial installation is easy enough for the average DIYer to attempt. Swapping the unit between toads is simple, too, as it disconnects and reconnects in seconds.
    One downside is there’s no in-built system to keep your toad batteries charged up. It does at least feature a warning light on the motorhome dash display to let you know when the voltage drops low. If your battery reaches a critical level, it’ll automatically go into sleep mode (it’s still ready to engage for emergency braking).
    These sorts of even braking systems aren’t ideal at altitude, so give it a miss and upgrade to the Blue Ox BRK2019 Patriot 3 Brake System if you spend most of your days up in the hills.

    High-quality portable system
    Even and predictable braking
    Quickly swaps between toads
    Easy installation
    Compatible with most toads

    Can run toad battery flat
    Not effective at altitude

    7. Best Permanent Braking System: Hopkins 39530 BrakeBuddy Stealth

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: This awesome option from Hopkins sits stealthily out of sight and doubles as a trailer brake system.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Portable or Permanent: Permanent
    Brake Compatibility: Most cars
    Braking System Type: Progressive
    Emergency Breakaway: Yes
    Dimensions: 16 x 16 x 7.5 inches; 15 pounds
    The BrakeBuddy Stealth is an excellent permanent option for RVers who want a supplementary braking system that’s hidden from sight. The untrained eye won’t even notice these stealthy auxiliary brakes, and the unit is super easy to use—a true ‘set it and forget it’ solution.
    Although the initial installation takes a while and may require professional help, the system is super-fast and easy to engage once it’s ready to go. All you need to do is plug the adapter in and hook up the tow bar, a process that takes one minute or less.
    It’s a high-performance progressive system; thus, the unit will detect changes in inertia and apply the brakes accordingly. A vacuum pump replenishes the vacuum system to ensure consistent and reliable braking operation for years to come.
    We appreciate that this unit comes with a battery maintainer and disconnect kit, as you’ll never worry about draining your toad flat.
    Another big highlight is the device works well as a proportion trailer brake controller—you’re not limited to using it just on your toad. Of course, as it’s a permanent solution, it won’t be easy to move between vehicles. Nonetheless, it’s an excellent backup to have if you expect to upgrade to a trailer further down the track.

    Sits almost entirely out of sight
    Easy to engage for each use
    Includes battery maintainer
    Doubles as a trailer brake controller

    Installation isn’t easy

    8. Best Portable Braking System: Roadmaster 9700 Supplemental Braking System

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: It’s simple to switch between vehicles and comes with an emergency breakaway system.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Portable or Permanent: Portable
    Brake Compatibility: Suitable for most cars
    Braking System Type: Progressive
    Emergency Breakaway System: Yes
    Dimensions: 25 x 13.5 x 16 inches; 20 pounds
    The 9700 from Roadmaster is an excellent option if you want a user-friendly portable with an emergency breakaway system included in the deal.
    This unit runs on a basic progressive braking system, which means it applies a preset value of pressure upon detecting the brake lights being engaged. That means it doesn’t quite brake as smoothly or consistently as the Roadmaster 9400 (or other high-end proportional systems), but it’s still good enough for most users’ needs.
    The big advantage to this is portability as it slides easily into the pedal area of most cars and is a cinch to move between vehicles. The initial installation is also relatively straightforward—it shouldn’t take an experienced DIYer much more than an hour to set up.
    Another cool feature is the three pressure sensitivity and PSI presets you can pre-program before use: light, medium, or heavy braking. Aim high if you’re hauling a giant toad or cruising down steep mountainous slopes.
    The emergency breakaway system works well, overriding the presets to deliver maximum braking pressure in the event of a breakaway.
    It’s a bit bulkier than other portable systems, so we recommend you double-check whether it’ll fit into the allocated space.

    User-friendly system
    Relatively simple to install
    Easy to move between vehicles
    Includes emergency breakaway
    Multiple pressure/PSI sensitivity presets

    Doesn’t perform as well as proportional systems
    Bulkier than other portable systems

    Towed Vehicle Braking System Guide
    Before you pony up and purchase a towed vehicle braking system for your ride, it’s worth studying the details of the technology. And to help you learn the ropes with optimal efficiency, we’ve pieced together this in-depth Buyer’s Guide.
    [Image: Alt-Text: Towed vehicle braking system on an RV]
    What Is a Towed Vehicle?
    Let’s start with the fundamentals.
    A towed vehicle refers to an automobile that’s towed behind a larger automobile. To classify, the towed vehicle must have all four wheels on the ground, not on a hook, wheel lift, or flatbed as you’d see on a tow truck. Typically, the towed vehicle connects to the towing vehicle via an A-frame and sits a short distance behind it.
    While any large vehicle can tow a smaller car, the four-wheels-on-the-ground towing style we’re talking about is almost exclusively seen in RVs. Having a smaller vehicle in tow allows travelers to park their big rig at the RV park and explore their surroundings in a more agile automobile.
    In the RV world, a popular slang term for the towed vehicle is a “toad.” Some folks call them “dinghies,” a reference to the little boats you see being towed behind larger ships.
    What Is a Towed Vehicle Braking System?
    A towed vehicle braking system is a mechanical contraption that enables the RV driver to apply the brakes on the towed vehicle as well as the RV. The procedure takes advantage of the toad’s existing brakes; it merely provides a mechanism to activate them when needed.
    The towed vehicle braking system is either portable (installed every time you drive) or permanent (hardwired into the toad).
    Other common names include an auxiliary braking system or a supplementary braking system.
    The Benefits of a Towed Vehicle Braking System
    Your massive RV has already got a solid set of brakes. Therefore, you don’t need to bother hooking up the brakes on your tiny little toad, right?
    Not only does a towed vehicle braking system make your RV safer and more durable, it’s also a legal requirement in most US states.
    A Better Braking System
    A fully loaded Class A RV weighs anywhere between 16,000 to 30,000 pounds. Regardless of how good its brakes are, it’s going to take a long time to come to a complete halt. Chuck on an extra 3,000 pounds or so (the average weight of a towed vehicle), and it’ll take significantly longer still.
    Installing a towed vehicle braking system allows the driver to engage both the RV and toad brakes simultaneously, significantly reducing the time it takes to slow down. The reduced braking distance not only makes the RV more comfortable to drive, but it could also save your life in an emergency as well.
    Less Wear and Tear
    Although Class A RVs tend to come with heavy-duty brakes to handle a hefty load, they’re not designed to withstand the additional pressure exerted by a towed vehicle. Even though it may only weigh a fraction of the RV, the toad vehicle’s extra pounds will result in excessive wear and tear on the RV brakes.
    If you install a towed vehicle braking system, however, you’ll spread the braking work over two separate systems. That will prevent any of your brakes from overheating and substantially reduce the degradation of your brake pads. A towed vehicle braking system also reduces the pressure exerted on your tow bar, meaning you’ll need to replace it less often.
    Even though a towed vehicle braking system is a considerable immediate expense, it’ll reduce the service intervals and overall maintenance costs, potentially saving you money in the long run.
    The Law Often Requires It
    All US states and territories place restrictions on the weight you can haul without having a towed vehicle braking system installed. The exact limits vary from state to state, and they’re probably more stringent than you think.
    Bear in mind you’ll need to abide by the laws of the state you’re in, not where you’re from or where your vehicle is registered. So if you’re planning a cross-continental road trip with your toad, it’s almost certain you’ll be breaking the law somewhere if you don’t have such a system installed.
    If you believe a highway patrol officer would never pull you over to check compliance, then think about what would happen if you were in an accident. You’d automatically be at fault, and your insurance would become null and void. That would cost you a fortune in the event of a severe accident and could see you facing jail if there were any injuries or death. It’s just not worth the risk.
    How To Determine Towed Braking System Compatibility
    Although towed vehicle braking systems are designed to be as versatile as possible, not every product will work with every make and model. It’s up to the buyer (that’s you) to research whether a system is compatible with their would-be toad.
    Portable systems tend to be more universal than permanent ones, so be especially thorough with your research if you’re going down the hardwired route.
    Some Amazon sellers include a handy tool at the top of the page that tells you whether the product is compatible with your car’s make and model. Not all products offer this, however, in which case you can contact the seller directly, leave a question via the customer questions and answers tab, or consult the manufacturer website.
    You’ll also need to check what brake types your preferred towed vehicle braking system is compatible with. For example, the Demco 9599006 is only suitable for hydraulic brakes, while the Demco 9599007 only works with air brakes.
    Permanent Versus Portable Towed Vehicle Braking Systems: Which Is Best for You?
    [Image: Alt-Text: RV with a toad]
    When purchasing a towed vehicle braking system, you need to decide whether you want a portable or permanent device. Each works differently and has distinct pros and cons, which we’ll outline below.
    Portable Towed Vehicle Braking Systems
    The portable towed vehicle braking system is a budget-friendly and versatile option, but it comes at the cost of convenience. As the unit is positioned by the toad’s brake pedals, you’ll need to remove it every time you drive your smaller vehicle, then insert it again when you take off in your RV.
    The big benefit of the portable system is you can quickly move it between toads. If you’ve got multiple automobiles you’d like to tow behind your RV, you can transfer the braking system between them—no need to hardwire one into each car. That’s super handy if you’ve got a big family in which several relatives want to use your RV with their own toad. And if you upgrade your toad further down the track, moving the system into the new vehicle will be a breeze.
    Another plus is the price. Portable systems tend to be cheaper than their hardwired counterparts and don’t require an expensive professional installation. Some RVers opt for the portable system based on price alone, even if it isn’t the most convenient solution.
    The insertion and removal process is designed to be as quick and painless as possible and doesn’t require any specialist skills. Nonetheless, it’ll still take 10 minutes or so, and that becomes tiresome when you’re switching between campsites frequently.
    There’s also an initial one-time installation that takes an hour or so, although it doesn’t usually require much mechanical knowledge.
    Can be moved between different toads
    Doesn’t require professional installation
    Cheaper than a hardwired system
    Needs to be inserted/removed frequently
    Inconvenient when changing campsites
    Who Should Buy A Portable Towed Vehicle Braking System?
    RVers who expect to tow multiple different vehicles or plan to purchase a new toad soon should probably get a portable braking system. It’s also an enticing option when price is a primary consideration.
    Permanent Towed Vehicle Braking Systems
    As the name implies, these are designed to be permanently installed (hardwired) into the towed vehicle and RV. It’s a technical process that requires the expertise of a mechanic (or a mechanically minded DIYer), typically taking several hours to complete.
    The obvious drawback is you’ll need to fork out for a pricey professional installation or spend a whole afternoon, if not longer, attempting a DIY install (you’ll need exceptional auto electrical expertise).
    And once you’ve installed it into your toad, it’s an arduous task to take it out again. Reinstallation takes just as long as installation; therefore, these are generally intended to permanently be left in place. If you upgrade to a new toad, transferring a hardwired towed vehicle braking system will cost you dearly.
    On the plus side, a hardwired system is a true ‘set it and forget it’ solution. Once it’s in, you won’t have to stuff around moving a portable system back and forth and finding somewhere to store it. Your permanent towed vehicle braking system will always be there at the ready, and you’ll spend less time fiddling around when you set up camp. Furthermore, as they’re tucked away in a secluded spot within the toad, you won’t lose any storage space.
    Only requires one installation
    Saves time when setting up/packing down camp
    Hassle-free long term solution
    Doesn’t take up storage space
    Requires pricey professional installation
    Cannot be quickly moved between toads
    Who Should Buy a Permanent Towed Vehicle Braking System?
    RVers who only have one toad and don’t plan on upgrading it soon would benefit from the convenience of a towed vehicle braking system.
    Emergency Breakaway System
    The best towed vehicle braking systems come with an emergency breakaway feature for enhanced safety on the road.
    Should your A-frame tow bar snap while driving, a breakaway system will automatically apply the brakes on your toad. This stops the driverless vehicle from flying across the highway at breakneck speed and potentially causing a deadly collision.
    With a breakaway system installed, a runaway toad will quickly come to a halt without (hopefully) hitting anything along the way. It doesn’t offer failsafe protection, but it certainly does decrease the danger in a breakaway event.
    Battery Drain
    Many supplemental braking systems hook into the starter battery of the car for juice.
    The downside to this design is that with extended use—say, a cross country road trip in which you rarely turn on the toad’s engine—the starter battery may run flat, and you’ll need to jump or push start it to regain power. If you drive your toad at least a little bit every time you make camp, you should charge the battery up enough to avoid running it flat.
    Some auxiliary braking systems include a battery maintainer or bypass the toad starter battery by drawing 12V power elsewhere. Doing so means the toad battery won’t drain while being towed, and you’ll never have to worry about it running flat.
    Other systems include an indicator light on the RV dash panel to alert the driver of an impending flat battery. That way, you can pull over and turn on your toad engine to avoid running its battery flat.
    Towed Vehicle Braking System: FAQ
    If you’ve still got questions about the towed vehicle braking system, take a look through the following FAQ.
    What Is Best Braking System for Towed Vehicle?
    Although the best towed vehicle braking system depends on your personal circumstances, we rate some units more highly than others. The Roadmaster 8700 is our favorite option overall for its effective braking mechanism and affordable price tag.
    What States Require a Braking System on a Towed Vehicle?
    All US states and Canadian territories except Missouri require brakes on towed vehicles under certain conditions. Some states require a braking system for towed vehicles above a specific weight, while others base requirements off the braking distance of the RV and attached toad.
    Can You Flat Tow a Jeep Wrangler?
    Yes. All Jeep Wranglers and Gladiators are suitable toads. You’ll need to attach the appropriate A-frame and a compatible towed vehicle braking system.
    Can You Flat Tow a Jeep Without Brakes?
    Probably not, but it depends on which state you’re in. Most states only allow flat towing without brakes up to a specific weight limit.
    Does Towing a Car Put Miles on it?
    Nope. Towing a Jeep or any other towed vehicle won’t put miles on the odometer.
    What’s the Best Vehicle To Flat Tow Behind an RV?
    The best vehicle for flat towing comes down to personal preference. Nonetheless, the Jeep Wrangler is among the most popular flat towing options as it’s easy to hook up and relatively petite.
    Best Towed Vehicle Braking Systems: Final Thoughts
    By now, you know all the essential details of the towed vehicle braking system: what it is, why you need one, how they work, and the different types available on the market.
    All that’s left to do now is factor in the key considerations and peruse our top 8 Recommendations to pick out the perfect system for you. Once you’ve got a brand spanking new auxiliary brake system installed in your toad, you’ll be ready to hit the road in a safe and legally compliant way. More

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    The 10 Best Neoprene Seat Covers 2021

    You’re rough on your car’s upholstery. Whether it’s kids grinding animal crackers into the fabric or your pooch redecorating the backseat (because dog fur goes with everything), the interior of your ride takes a beating.
    If you want to preserve your car’s resale value — or if your existing seats are just cracked and uncomfortable — then investing in some neoprene seat covers is the way to go. Not only will they protect your upholstery, but they look snazzy and feel great to boot.

    What You Need to Know Before Buying Neoprene Seat Covers for Your Car
    Buying something like a seat cover seems like a brainless proposition — you just buy the one you like and put it over your seats, right?
    While that isn’t terribly far from the truth, there are a few things you need to be aware of before you make a purchase.
    Not Every Cover Fits Every Seat
    As you might expect, a Ford F-150 has a different seat layout than, say, a Toyota Camry. That means that not every neoprene cover on the market will be compatible with your car, so it’s essential that you make sure you have a match before you make a purchase.
    Pay special attention to whether the cover is designed for bucket or bench seats. It’s not easy to make a cover fit an entire row of seats when it was only designed to cover one, after all.
    We’ll go over all of this in more detail later on, but for now, the important thing to remember is to make sure the cover you buy will work with the car you drive.
    What Do You Want the Cover to Do?
    This may sound simple — it needs to cover your seat, right? What else could it do, help you solve mysteries?
    While your cover may not be much help when it comes time to figure out what’s haunting the old Suggins place, some options excel at different things than others.
    For example, some are great at repelling pet hair, while others provide excellent comfort on bumpy roads. If you don’t know what you’re looking for your cover to do before you start shopping, you’ll have a hard time evaluating the different options.
    Unfortunately, there’s not a single cover that excels in every single category, but our top pick, the Gorla Premium comes closest.
    That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for you, though.
    Additional Factors to Consider in Neoprene Seat Covers
    Along with the compatibility with your vehicle and the primary purpose of the seat covers, there are three other key factors that you’d be wise to consider when browsing through the available products:
    Comfort: Don’t underestimate the value of some thick foam padding. After all, the chances are that you’ll be sitting on this thing on a daily basis.
    Durability: Sure, a seat cover might be comfy for the first few weeks, but for how long can you expect it to stay that way?
    Care: The odd stain here and there is no biggie, as long as you can clean it up with relative ease. Some neoprene seat covers are machine washable, while others require you to be a little more hands-on. Our reviews will let you know what to expect.
    For a thorough look at our top 10 picks, including a detailed breakdown by category, read on.

    Top 10 Best Neoprene Seat Covers 2021
    1. Best Overall Pick: Gorla Premium Black Universal

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    Why we like it: The Gorla Premium is good at everything, and it can fit any car. Plus, the lifetime warranty gives you peace of mind that it can stand up to the kind of abuse you inflict on your car on a daily basis.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: Any make and model (bucket seats only)
    How many in each order: 1
    Warranty: Lifetime
    The Gorla Premium is our top pick because it’s very good at everything while still being convenient and affordable. However, it’s not necessarily outstanding at any particular thing, and comfort is a great example of that.
    This cover is comfy, don’t get us wrong. It only provides a medium amount of padding, though, and it won’t protect you from every bump and dip on the road (for something that will, check out the Rough Country 91018).
    The company backs its covers with a lifetime warranty for a reason. It may not survive a knife fight, but it’s more than capable of standing up to everyday wear and tear. You really have to work to damage this thing.
    That means it can withstand puppy claws too, so you can take your pets with you wherever you go.
    It’s also completely waterproof, so you don’t have to worry if you spill a drink on it or sit on it while still soaking wet from a day at the beach. The cover won’t stick to your skin either, regardless of how drenched you are or how hot it is outside.
    The company recommends hand-washing it, but it is safe for use in the washing machine. Just don’t put it in the dryer.
    Keeping it clean on a day-to-day basis is fairly easy, as you can just wipe most stains away with a damp towel. It will attract pet hair like a magnet, but fur usually comes off in the washing machine.
    You may want to wash it as soon as you get it as well, because it has a strong odor out of the box. The smell quickly goes away, though.

    Backed by a lifetime warranty
    Machine washable
    Strong enough to withstand dog claws
    Won’t stick to skin
    Completely waterproof

    Attracts pet hair like a magnet
    Strong odor out of the box

    2. Best Budget Pick: TANYOO Waterproof

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    Why we like it: While there’s not much to it, the TANYOO Waterproof gets the job done at an excellent price.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: Any make and model
    How many in each order: 1 (2-piece option is also available at a higher price)
    Warranty: Lifetime
    There’s not much to the TANYOO Waterproof in terms of fabric; it’s designed to fit over your existing seats and nothing more. As a result, most of the comfort will come from your car’s existing interior.
    That’s not to say that this thing is uncomfortable, though. It’s perfectly fine to sit on, and if you have heated seats, you’ll love how much heat it allows through. The flip side to that, of course, is that it’ll get hot in the summer and cold in the winter.
    There’s a rubber backing on it that helps keep it in place well, so you shouldn’t have to deal with too much slipping and sliding. At this price point, though, don’t expect perfection.
    You’ll also find three convenient pockets at the bottom. This lets you store your phone, a drink, or really anything that you might want to put into a pocket. When cup holder or console space is at a premium, they really come in handy.
    The thin fabric isn’t as durable as some other models out there (and if durability is your primary concern, you may want to check out the toughest option on this list, the Smittybilt 471225). You’ll definitely see some wear and tear after a few years.
    The good news is that the company backs its products with a lifetime warranty, so you can send it back if it starts to wear out. We definitely think it’ll give you plenty of bang for not-very-many bucks, though.
    The waterproof material is extremely easy to clean. Spills can be mopped right up, and any other stains usually come up with a damp cloth and a little bit of elbow grease.
    If the thing gets really grody, though, you can toss it in the washing machine. That should do the trick.

    Extremely affordable
    Compatible with heated seats
    Convenient pockets at bottom
    Easy to clean
    Rubber backing holds them in place well

    Offers little in the way of comfort
    Will show wear and tear after a while

    3. Best Premium Pick: Rough Country 91018

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    Why we like it: Custom-made for the Ford F-150, this option offers an impressive mix of ruggedness and sophistication.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: 2015-2020 Ford F150 XL/XLT
    How many in each order: 3 (2 bucket seat covers, 1 bench)
    Warranty: 1 year
    These covers boast a layer of thick foam padding that cradles your body and acts as a shock absorber. You can practically go off-roading and it will feel like you’re on a freshly-paved road with these things installed.
    The fabric is extremely breathable as well. It offers wonderful protection against the elements, allowing you to climb inside wearing shorts on a hot summer day without burning your skin off in the process.
    Part of the reason why they’re so comfortable is because they’re designed to fit the F-150 perfectly, including room for the air bags, seat adjuster, headrest, and more. This custom fit makes them fairly easy to install as well, and there shouldn’t be any bagginess or sliding to deal with.
    If you tend to be hard on your truck, then these covers are exactly what you need. They’re made to withstand a rough-and-tumble lifestyle, so you don’t have to change your behavior to accommodate your car’s upholstery.
    Of course, given how much these covers cost, they should be able to stop a bullet.
    One small detail that may irk you, given what you’ll spend on these things, is the fact that the logo is only screen-printed on. It will fade over time, but the underlying material should remain completely intact.
    The Rough Country covers are highly stain-resistant, and you can deal with most spills and messes by simply wiping them down. You can even leave the mess for a few hours without it staining the fabric.
    You can put them in the washing machine, but for best results, they should be hand-washed and air dried. This is a minor inconvenience, but any inconvenience at this price range sticks out like a sore thumb.

    Extremely durable
    Will fit your truck’s seats like a glove
    Easy to clean
    Includes a layer of foam padding
    Fabric is very breathable

    Very expensive
    Need to be hand-washed
    Logo fades over time

    4. Easiest Installation: MAJA Premium

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    Why we like it: You won’t find anything easier to put on and take off than the MAJA Premium, making it perfect for anyone who doesn’t want to use a cover all the time.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: Any make and model (bucket seats only)
    How many in each order: 1
    Warranty: None
    The MAJA Premium slips right over your existing seat, including the headrest, and the thick fabric gives you plenty of extra padding. You’ll definitely appreciate the difference when you’re stuck in traffic during your morning commute.
    However, it’s designed to just sit on top of your existing seat, so you can expect it to bunch up and slip around while you drive. This can make it uncomfortable at times, especially on bare skin.
    Of course, that also makes it easy to put on and take off as needed, so it’s an excellent choice if you just want occasional coverage.
    The thick fabric does a good job of withstanding regular wear and tear, but if you sit on it wrong, you can put a crease into it. This won’t necessarily shorten its lifespan, but it can make it permanently less comfortable.
    Given that it’s so easy to get on and remove, though, you can choose to only use it when the situation truly demands protecting your upholstery. If you do that, it should last for years and years.
    It’s very easy to maintain this model, as you can spot-clean any messes, and getting rid of dirt and crumbs is as easy as taking it out and shaking it off. It’s machine washable in case it gets seriously dirty, but it needs to air dry.
    There are three different color options — or rather, you have your choice of three different colors of piping along the black material. The colors tend to fade over time if left in the sun, but this isn’t a terribly stylish option to begin with, so that may not matter much to you.

    Easy to put on and take off
    Good amount of padding
    Cleaning is a breeze
    Ideal for occasional use

    Tends to slide around and bunch up
    Can be creased permanently
    Not especially stylish

    5. Best for Jeeps: Smittybilt 471225

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    Why we like it: The Smittybilt 471225 will make even the roughest ride a little more comfortable, and it’s sturdy enough to withstand all kinds of abuse.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: 1997 – 2002 Jeep Wrangler
    How many in each order: 3 (2 bucket seats, 1 bench)
    Warranty: None
    The middle portions of these Smittybilts have quite a bit of padding, giving your lumbar some extra cushioning for long, rough rides down dirt roads.
    This also allows you to slide right out of the vehicle, which can be helpful for people with mobility issues as it drastically reduces the effort needed to get in and out. That extra boost can be necessary, as a side effect of all that padding is you’ll have a tendency to sink right into the seat.
    They’re not quite as comfortable to install, though, and you’ll likely end up with bruised and bloody knuckles along the way. What’s worse, if you can’t get them to fit just right, it will compromise how comfortable they are in a big way.
    There’s little to complain about in terms of durability, as these are well-made covers. That’s important, given that Jeep owners aren’t known for being easy on their gear.
    The neoprene is very thick and heavy, and it can stand up to all sorts of abuse. It will fade if left in direct sunlight, though, so you may want to park in the shade.
    These covers can be cleaned with a little bit of water and a chamois, and they dry quickly. Even mud comes right off, so there’s no reason to avoid taking your Jeep off-roading.
    That’s good, because they’re not machine washable. You wouldn’t want to take them off anyway, given how difficult they are to put on in the first place.

    Lots of lumbar padding
    Easy to slide in and out of seats
    Simple to clean
    Thick and durable

    A pain to install
    Will cause you to sink into seat
    Tends to fade if left in the sun

    6. Best Temporary Option: Goodyear GY1121

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    Why we like it: The Goodyear GY1121 is an easy and inexpensive universal option, so while it’s not the nicest on the market, it’s accessible for just about any owner.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: All makes and models (front seat only)
    How many in each order: 1
    Warranty: None
    There’s nothing to this cover, really; it’s designed to protect your existing seat, and that’s it. However, it’s not uncomfortable, but overall the coziness will depend largely on the seats that came with your car.
    Each of these covers is sold individually, though, so you don’t have to put one on every seat if you don’t want to. It’s a cinch to get on and off, as it just slips on and then straps in place, which means it doesn’t have to be a permanent addition, either.
    This is quite an inexpensive cover, so you might not expect much in the way of longevity. However, it should be able to handle normal wear and tear.
    It’s only water-resistant, not fully waterproof, which means there’s not as much neoprene in it as you’ll find in some other options, like the Motor Trend OS274. You shouldn’t expect it to last forever, but it can get the job done in the short term.
    You can throw one of these in the washing machine if it gets too dirty, but that shouldn’t be necessary too often. Food doesn’t really stick to the neoprene and liquid beads up for easy blotting, so it should never be too filthy.

    Sold individually
    A cinch to install
    Liquid beads on the surface
    Good value for the price

    Almost no padding whatsoever
    Not fully waterproof
    Won’t last as long as some other options

    7. Snuggest Fit: GEARFLAG JK

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    Why we like it: If you don’t like dealing with creases or folds in your seats, the GEARFLAG JK is perfect for you. They will stick to your seats like a second skin — and you may just forget they’re even there.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: 2007 – 2017 Wrangler JK
    How many in each order: 2 (front seats only)
    Warranty: None
    There’s no foam padding or anything like that on this option, but that allows them to fit your seats like a glove. Assuming that your seats are the least bit comfy, these covers should suit you just fine.
    The neoprene is extremely thick and heavy, so it should give you plenty of support.
    Installation is an absolute pain, but it’s at least fairly straightforward, so you shouldn’t be confused. There will be a heavy rubber smell for a few weeks, though.
    The thickness of these covers ensures they’ll last for a few years at least, and even the stitching is well-done. They’re more than capable of handling anything the road can throw at them when you drive with the top down as well, including rain, wind, and salt water.
    There’s no opening for a side airbag, though, so you’ll either need to modify them or understand that they may be damaged in the event of an accident.
    These covers don’t ship with instructions, so you’ll have to use your own best judgment when it comes to taking care of them. We wouldn’t recommend throwing them in the washing machine, though.
    For the most part, all you should need to do is wipe them off when they become visibly dirty. You may also want to put some protectant on them as well if you don’t want the color to fade.

    Made of thick neoprene
    Fit seats like a glove
    Even the stitching is well-done
    Easy to take care of

    Lacks an opening for side airbag
    Installation is a pain
    No instructions included

    8. Best for Jump Seats: CarCovers Custom

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    Why we like it: It has a limited utility, but if you need to protect the jump seat in your truck, you won’t find a better option than this one.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: 2009 – 2014 Ford F150, F250, F350
    How many in each order: 1 (jump seat only)
    Warranty: No
    If you have a truck with a jump seat, then you know that’s the hardest one to find a decent cover for. This option from CarCovers Custom does an excellent job of keeping your middle seat protected, but it’s not as comfortable as a model that would be made for one of the bucket seats would be.
    It covers the seat itself as well as the middle backrest, with holes cut out for the cup holders. As such, it’s extremely convenient to use and easy to put on. It’s not really meant to be sat on very often, although it does a good job of keeping your seat at a comfortable temperature.
    This is an extremely durable cover; it’s been treated with an application designed to increase UV-resistance, in addition to being thick enough to prevent regular wear and tear.
    You may have to really pull on it to get it over the seat, though. Over time, that may stretch the cover out, but that’s not an issue unless you want to put it in another truck.
    Liquids tend to just sit on top of this water-resistant cover, so it’s likely that all you’ll need to do is mop up any spilled drinks.
    It’s not machine washable, but it can be hand-washed and air dried. However, putting it on is difficult, so it’s likely you’ll only take it off if it starts to get really gnarly.

    Easy to put on
    Holes cut out for cup holders
    Treated to resist fading

    Not machine washable
    May stretch over time
    Less comfortable than other covers

    9. Best Weather Protection: Motor Trend OS274

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    Why we like it: These budget covers provide excellent protection from extreme weather, so your seats will always be at a comfortable temperature.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: All makes and models
    How many in each order: 2 (bucket seats only)
    Warranty: None
    These covers are designed for two things: to protect your seats and allow proper ventilation. There’s virtually no padding, so if you need a cover to provide comfort, keep looking (and look at the FH Group FB085RED114 in particular).
    They’re designed to be a universal fit, but they won’t be a snug one. Expect a little bagginess, which may lead to bunching or creasing. However, they shouldn’t be uncomfortable (unless your seats are already pretty ragged).
    Given that these are budget covers, the durability is in line with what you’d expect. They won’t last forever, but they can give you a few years’ worth of protection, assuming you’re not too rough on them.
    You won’t have to worry about them getting damaged by the airbags, though, as they’re cut in such a way as to allow unfettered deployment.
    The covers are completely waterproof, which means you shouldn’t have any issues with messes, as long as you have napkins or a towel handy. They’re not machine washable, though.
    There is one issue with their waterproof nature however, they don’t cover the entirety of the seat. That means you need to be quick on the draw with the cleaning supplies if you don’t want the mess to reach your actual seats.

    Provide plenty of ventilation
    Completely waterproof
    Very inexpensive

    Fit tends to be baggy
    Won’t cover the entire seat
    No padding whatsoever

    10. Most Attractive Covers: FH Group FB085RED114

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    Why we like it: If you want covers that will look as attractive as your existing seats — if not more so — then this stylish option is the way to go.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Compatible with: Most bucket seats
    How many in each order: 3 (2 bucket seats and 1 bench)
    Warranty: None
    The neoprene on this option covers a healthy dose of EVA foam, making them plush and comfortable. Plus, despite the padding, they won’t interfere with heated seats.
    While these covers are fun to sit on, it’s the appearance that really sets them apart. You can get them in 8 different colors, allowing you to choose a pattern that complements your car’s interior beautifully.
    The durability definitely leaves something to be desired here. You can expect the seams to start fraying after a year or so, and they’ll likely tear if they come in contact with something sharp.
    However, the biggest issue will come with washing them. They’ll fall apart after a few trips through the washing machine, so we’d recommend hand-washing or spot cleaning them instead.
    As mentioned above, you can throw these things in the washing machine, but it isn’t recommended. Spills are easy to clean, though.
    You’ll likely need to vacuum them frequently, as they collect cloth balls, food crumbs, and pet hair. All that mess usually comes right up when vacuumed, so there shouldn’t be any need to toss it in the dryer.

    Padded with EVA foam
    Very attractive
    Available in multiple colors

    Won’t stand up to much abuse
    Will fall apart after a few washes
    Tend to trap hair, crumbs, and other debris

    How to Find the Perfect Neoprene Seat Covers for Protecting Your Car’s Interior
    Seat covers may not be something you’ve ever given much thought to — after all, covering your seats was the manufacturer’s job, right?
    The existing upholstery may be all you need, but there are several reasons to consider an upgrade. We’ll go over some of the most important below.
    Why Should You Consider Putting Covers on Your Seats?
    There are several benefits to putting aftermarket covers on your car’s seats. For the most part, they fall into three categories: protection, comfort, and cleanliness.
    There are many things that can damage your car’s seats: UV rays from the sun, your dog’s nails, a spilled soda, or giving your friend Shredder a ride to Arby’s. By putting a cover over your seats, you can protect them from all sorts of harm.
    Not only does this keep your car looking pristine, it also increases the resale value once it’s time for a new ride. That makes seat covers an investment that can pay off many times over down the line.
    Many covers have extra padding sewn in, making them even more plush and comfortable than your existing seats. This can come in handy if you have back problems, or even if you just want to live in luxury during your daily commute.
    Not only that, but neoprene covers are extremely breathable. This means they’ll be comfortable even if it’s scorching hot or freezing cold outside. Many people put them over leather seats for that reason alone.
    If your hectic schedule forces you to eat meals in the car, or if you have kids, then you know how easy it is to make a mess of your seats. Drinks can get spilled, ketchup can get smeared everywhere, and crumbs can find their way into every nook and cranny of the fabric.
    It’s even worse if you add a dog or other pet in the mix. Now you have to deal with slobber, sharp nails, and tons of fur — and we’re still just talking about your kids (kidding — we hope).
    Rather than spend hours trying to vacuum your car out (or worse, living with seats that look like a Jackson Pollock painting), you can use a seat cover instead. Most covers are easy to remove and can be thrown in the washing machine, allowing you to always have pristine seats — no matter how clumsy you are with your Big Mac.
    What Makes Neoprene a Good Material for Seat Covers?
    Neoprene is a type of synthetic rubber that’s often used to make wetsuits, orthopedic braces, and more.
    It makes an excellent material for seat covers because it’s extremely durable, and it’s resistant to UV damage as well as normal wear and tear. It’s also waterproof, so spills won’t penetrate to the material below.
    However, not all neoprene covers are created equal. Some are made of thick cuts of the stuff, while others use thinner layers or a mixture of neoprene and some other material. That’s why some covers are waterproof, while others are only water-resistant.
    Why Do Some Seat Covers Only Work on Specific Cars?
    It all depends on how they’re installed. Some seat covers — the ones that are universal fits, or close to it — attach with Velcro straps or other simple mechanisms. The MAJA Premium is one such model.
    Others, however, are specifically designed for certain makes and models. These usually take more time to install, as they line up specifically with certain parts of your car. The upside is that these usually look and feel better — and cost more. The Rough Country 91018 is a good example of a custom-fit cover.
    You should also realize that the custom-fit models are more likely to accommodate things like side airbags. If you’re buying a universal fit option, you should check beforehand to see whether it will interfere with any of your car’s safety mechanisms.
    Is There Anything Else I Need to Know About Seat Covers?
    There are a few other things to think about, but they’re fairly minor in the grand scheme of things.
    One is whether or not the cover will block the warmth from your heated seats. Some are too thick for the heat to penetrate, rendering that particular luxury useless. However, neoprene does a good job of stopping cold on its own, so you may not need heated seats at all with a neoprene cover installed. If you don’t have heated seats and are worried that neoprene seat covers won’t be sufficiently warm, check out our guide to the best heated seat covers.
    Finally, some options come with accessories like seat belt covers, headrest covers, pockets, and more. Again, these bonuses shouldn’t be enough to swing your buying decision one way or the other, but they’re nice extras to have.
    Final Thoughts
    The best way to keep your car’s interior looking as beautiful as the day you bought it is to be extremely careful every time you’re inside it — with no eating, drinking, dogs, or fun allowed.
    If you want to actually enjoy your car without compromising its attractiveness, though, putting neoprene covers over the seats is the way to go. Neoprene prevents liquids and other messes from setting into the fabric, and it’s also extremely comfortable to sit on.
    You could leave your seats the way they are and treat your car like it’s an art museum full of priceless works — but installing neoprene seat covers will allow you to actually drive the thing without ruining its beauty in the process. More

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    The 10 Best Brake Rotors 2021

    Brakes. You need them if you want to be a productive member of society. Sometimes brakes wear out; they are, after all, considered regular wear items. Sometimes you just need more performance so you can rule the track, other times you just need a workhorse pair of pads. Either way, the second most common replacement item (behind pads) when it comes to brakes are rotors. They are also the most visible brake feature, so chances are if you are doing car work, you are going to interact with them.

    A Short Primer on Brake Rotors
    Buying brakes can be extra painful because of marketing. Every manufacturer claims to make the best brake rotors, pads, and calipers. They claim that only their rotors will stop you the fastest, only their rotors will cause the least amount of noise, only their rotors will last the longest, and for the most part, it’s just marketing. We want to give you the tools to cut through the infomercial jargon and get the facts. In order to do that, we have this quick buying guide, a review section below, and an in-depth look at brakes at the bottom.
    Styles of Rotors
    There are a few different styles of brake rotors that you will come across. The biggest concern with disc brakes is heat buildup, so engineers have come up with all sorts of ways to dissipate that heat. Having rotors with good heat dispersal won’t make your car faster, you can read about that down here, but it will make your brakes perform better after a lot of use.
    Smooth rotors are the kind of rotors your car probably came with. If you look at the surface, you won’t see any marks or anything. It will just be a smooth metal surface. Smooth rotors have the longest life, the least amount of noise, and the best value. They can also be ‘turned’ by a shop to get some extra life.
    Drilled rotors have holes in them. In the older days of cars, brake pads for disc brakes were garbage and ejected tons of particles into the air. Those particles would collect on the disc brake and make them way less effective. Performance junkies would drill holes into their brakes that the dust particles could escape out of. Nowadays, unless you’ve got an older car, it’s all for looks. Modern brake pads don’t need them. Drilled rotors can’t be turned and are noisier than smooth brakes.
    Unlike drilled rotors, slotted rotors are still used for performance. They have grooves that clean the brake pads as they pass, as well as remove debris from the disc itself. They are noisier, and won’t last nearly as long as a smooth rotor. However, they are better performing than smooth rotors. They won’t necessarily stop your car faster, but they will keep your brakes working better during heavy use.
    Dimpled rotors are a combination of drilled and slotted. They look drilled, but the holes don’t go all the way through.
    Vented rotors only worth mentioning venting because you’ll see them a lot. Old disc brakes would overheat quickly, so manufacturers changed the classic solid rotor design to get air to flow through them and cool them off. These air-ways, or vents, are found on every modern front brake system. Slotted, drilled, and smooth brakes can all be vented.
    Brake Pads: Making Compromises
    If you read above, you might have noticed that there are strengths and weaknesses to each type of brake pad. The basics of it are that the more performance you want, the more comfort you sacrifice. Performance brakes are noisy, they will destroy brake pads, and they’re expensive. Inexpensive brake pads and long-lasting ones perform poorly. That means you have to compromise when choosing which features are the most important to you.
    Performance is more about heat dispersion than stopping power. We’ll tell you about it down here, but the rotor itself isn’t really what determines how fast you can stop. What the rotor is responsible for is dispersing heat. When brakes get hot, they don’t work as well. The more you use your brakes, like when racing, the hotter they get. Towing, racing, and constant driving are where slotted rotors reign supreme.
    Noisy brakes are annoying. Squeaking, grinding, groaning. The problem is that noise is your brakes working harder, so quieter brakes are not dispersing as much heat and not biting as hard. That’s fine for the average driver, and it’s why new cars all come with smooth brakes.
    Longevity comes in two forms: how long your brake pads will last, and how long the disc will last. No one wants to replace their brakes frequently. Slotted and drilled rotors will consume brake pads at a much faster rate than smooth rotors. The coated, costlier rotors will last longer than cheaper uncoated rotors.
    Rotor Location
    The last thing you have to know is which rotor you’re replacing. Front rotors are often different from rear rotors on cars. Some rotors are also different from left to right. If you are all set up to change your front brakes, but you have rear rotors, you will have a bad time.
    STOP. Hopefully, that caught your attention because we need to talk about fitment. You need to take the time to make sure you buy the right brake kit for your car. Amazon makes it easy. If your garage is set up, it will recommend the right one or tell you if the brand doesn’t have anything for you. It will also give you a big red banner telling you if you are on the wrong product.
    Alright, let’s get to the reviews. There’s a lot of different options on this list. Some brakes, like the Power Stop Evolution, are just stock replacements. Some focus on noise reduction, like the Bosch, and some are really only good for performance driving like the EBC set. Get the ones that fit your lifestyle.

    Top 10 Best Brake Rotors 2021
    1. Best Overall Brake Rotor Kit: Power Stop Evolution

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: The Power Stop Evolution series pads are a fantastic value, and since the kit includes pads, it’s a complete upgrade.
    Editor’s Rating:

    These are smooth, stock replacement rotors. We’ll call them “mild” performance, in that they aren’t an upgrade over your stock brakes, but they will still perform way better than old rotors. You will feel a noticeable improvement because of the included brake pads, though.
    The Power Stop brakes are quiet and have a great pedal feel. You won’t have anything to complain about if you install these on your daily. The Bosch down the list are a little less noisy, but they aren’t as convenient.
    They are smooth rotors, hard pads, and coated to protect against the elements. In other words, they will be good for a while. The only issue is that the coating doesn’t last as long as more expensive discs, so if longevity is your only concern, get the Bremby or Raybestos down the list.
    Our Thoughts
    Anytime you can get a kit that includes rotors and pads, we get excited. It’s not because they are super high quality or anything. It’s because it means you are more likely to replace and upgrade the whole system instead of just slapping rotors on your car and expecting miracles.
    What you get in the box is a perfectly acceptable replacement for your stock brakes. They don’t perform better, and they probably won’t last quite as long as factory brakes, but you won’t have to worry about them. The best part is that it’s a great value; you save about $50 by buying it as a kit.

    Good value
    Rotors will last a good amount of time
    Included pads make it a very convenient thing to buy

    The coating doesn’t last as long as others
    There are higher performing discs for the same price

    2. Best Budget Rotors: Bosch QuietCast

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: The Bosch QuietCast rotors are perfect if you just want a solid rotor that works well and doesn’t make very much noise.
    Editor’s Rating:

    For the price, they have great performance. Usually, budget brakes shake and rattle. The ultra-cheap Wagners on our list certainly will. Bosch somehow made a budget brake rotor that is rock solid. It’s not suitable for racing or anything, but for the average car, they are fantastic.
    Comfort is where the Bosch rotors shine. They are very quiet and very smooth, and you will definitely notice how nice they are if you get stuck in stop and go traffic.
    Your pads will wear evenly, which is good, but the rotors are just middle of the road as far as durability. The price makes it easier to replace them when they get worn down, and you’ll still have spent less than rotors that last a bit longer.
    Our Thoughts
    Bosch knocks it out of the park with the QuietCast rotors. They are just a great rotor for most cars. They are quiet, work well enough, and last long enough to be worth it. We have to temper all of that greatness. We keep saying they work great for the price. There are better performing brakes, like the Napa’s, and there are longer-lasting brakes, like the Brembos, but they both cost more than twice as much. They are also both noisier.
    There just isn’t much bad to say about the QuietCast brakes at the end of the day. If they came as an easy to find set, they’d be the best on our list. The fact that Bosch sells the rotors one at a time just makes them inconvenient compared to the Powerstop set.

    High quality for the price

    Don’t last as long as similar rotors
    Only sold individually

    3. Best Premium Rotors: EBC Brakes Dimpled and Slotted

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: EBC is a household name in performance, and these slotted rotors are prime examples of why. The coating makes them look the part, too.
    Editor’s Rating:

    No matter how you slice it, EBC’s performance brakes are amazing. They get around the weakness inherent in drilled rotors by using dimples instead of holes but keep the extra cooling ability. The coating is meant for grip, the grooves will keep the pads clean, and the rotors are extra wide for extra airflow. If you track your car or go “to Mexico” a lot, these are fantastic.
    We talked a bit about how you compromise comfort for performance. EBC represents the extreme end of that. They make weird noises, the pedal will grab high and catch you off guard, they will throw dust all over your wheels that’s hard to clean off, and they will squeal under light braking. That just adds charm to a built street-rod, but it can be very annoying on your commuter.
    If you want to be annoyed, go read the reviews online about the EBC brakes. Many people are buying these performance brakes that don’t know the rules, and then they are complaining about how the brakes didn’t last very long. That’s the trade-off, you can’t have extra brake performance and durability.
    That being said, for performance brakes, they actually last a good amount of time. You’ll go through a lot of pads before you have to replace the rotors. Napa has a performance brake that does last a while longer, but compared to pads like the Power Stop cross-drilled deals, these things are solid.
    Our Thoughts
    If you’ll allow us to have a super vain moment, part of the reason we love the EBC brakes is that they look awesome. The dimpled look and dark color scream performance, and unlike the 30 dollar eBay wing bolted to an automatic Civic, they have the chops to back it up.
    They cost a lot, though. They cost a lot, you have to replace them way more often, and if you aren’t going to a track or doing a lot of spirited driving, they will drive you insane. If you just like the looks, no judgment, but just get the Power Stop drilled rotors. Those at least won’t set you back the cost.
    The other issue is that it’s sort of hard to find the right set for your car. EBC makes them for front and rear applications and makes them in a ton of different sizes. For some reason, it seems like no two places want to carry the same options. Chances are if you are looking for high-performance brakes, you already have a supplier you like, so it’s probably not an issue. Otherwise, if they aren’t on Amazon, try Summit.

    Looks amazing
    Very good stopping power
    Great cooling capabilities

    Can be hard to find the right ones for your car

    4. Best Easy to Buy Performance Rotors: Napa Reactive One Slotted

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: Napa’s brake parts line is well known for punching above their cost, and can be picked up anywhere.
    Editor’s Rating:

    The Napa Performance brakes are, surprise, meant for performance. They aren’t as hardcore as the EBCs, but will absolutely improve your car. If the EBC is perfect for racing, the Napas are more for stop and go traffic during a hot day in Florida. The kind where you have to make sure your brakes don’t fade because a guy in a scooter might drive right onto the highway right in front of you.
    Better than the EBCs, still awful. They will make funny noises, they will grab hard, and they don’t have the benefit of looking so good.
    It’s difficult to quantify the longevity on these, since they are performance brakes and won’t last as long as smooth rotors, but they are coated and made of a harder material than most performance brakes. That means they actually last a good amount of time. You’ll get at least a few years of good performance, no problem.
    Our Thoughts
    Napa brakes are sort of a guarded secret among mechanics. They are a good price, can be picked up anywhere, and are high-quality. You don’t get a sticker to put on your car, though. No one will be impressed when you respond with “Napa” when people ask you if you are running Brembos.
    What you do get is some really high-quality brakes. They are expensive compared to standard rotors, but they work great and last a while. Oh, and you don’t have to guess or play with a website to get them. Just walk into any Napa and have the clerk go grab them for you. It’s a very safe way to buy rotors since you can just have the clerk double-check that they’ll fit your car on the spot.

    High performance
    Very easy to find and buy

    No one will be impressed when you list your car’s mods

    5. Best Complete Rotor Kit: Detroit Axle 4 Disc Replacement Kit

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: It’s impossible to do a complete brake job for cheaper.
    Editor’s Rating:

    They will stop your vehicle. That’s it, that’s all you get. If the rotors get hot, they’ll fade, and they will get hot after a lot of use. These rotors are better than the Wagners, but not by a lot.
    They are a bit noisy for smooth brakes. The problem is twofold since the pads included in the kit are cheaper too. Cheaper products just tend to be loud; the Bosch QuietCast rotors are the exception, not the rule.
    The rotor will last a long longer than the pads, which is normal. What’s abnormal is how much longer the rotors will last. You’ll go through two or three sets before you need to replace the rotors. Just like with the noisiness, the problem is more about the poor quality pads. They work fine, but they don’t have the lasting power that higher cost pads will have.
    Our Thoughts
    If you tally up everything in this kit, it’s easily the least expensive brake job possible. The kit is amazingly complete, too. It’s amazing; they even include new brake fluid. You get all four discs, pads, shims, and the grease. Our other kit, the Power Stop, doesn’t even include half that much stuff and is the same price.
    Sure, it’s all of decent quality. In fact, if we are honest, the included pads are downright bad. If you just need new brakes for your junker, commuter, or other inexpensive rides, they will work fine. Don’t expect EBC quality, just enjoy the fact that you’re getting an entire brake replacement kit for cheap.

    Includes everything, even the cleaner
    Rotors are good for the price
    Very inexpensive

    Included pads are meh

    6. Best Looking Upgrade Rotors: Power Stop Drilled/Slotted

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: If you have a fast car, and you want everyone to know it’s fast, Power Stop has you covered with this upgrade kit.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Power Stop’s drilled rotors look great! They don’t perform as well as they look, though. They are maybe a little better at cooling than your average smooth rotors, but the grooves and holes are mostly for show. What will definitely improve your performance are the included brake pads, so there’s that.
    Okay, so we know we said that performance brakes are noisy and awful to live with, but they are only performance in name. They are quiet enough to be fine for daily driving. You will get the pedal feel that comes with slotted rotors, meaning it will take a little getting used to, but that’s part of the fun.
    They’ll last just as long as any budget discs like the Raybestos. The grooves and holes will eat your brake pads at a much faster rate, though. With the Power Stop Performance rotors, you are definitely trading practicality for looks.
    Our Thoughts
    There is no judgment in what we’re about to say, but if you really want your car to look high performance without being high performance, these brakes are perfect. You get the nice, drilled, and slotted rotor looks without the drawbacks of having an actual high-performance brake. It might even let you drive harder because psychologically, you’ll feel better about the brakes. We aren’t qualified to comment on that, but they really are good looking brakes.
    The thing is, they are a quarter of the cost of the EBCs. Plus, we said it before, we’ll say it again, we love it when you can get a kit with rotors and pads. Power Stop makes great pads, so you get good stopping power. Since it’s a kit, you don’t have to worry about matching anything up. It’s just a nice kit to upgrade your stock brakes, even if you’re just doing it for the prestige of having drilled rotors.

    Looks good
    It being a matched set makes it convenient
    Lasts a long time for slotted rotors

    Not really high performance
    Will eat brake pads for lunch

    7. Best Anti-Rust Rotor: ACDelco Professional

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: These brakes are just meant to last forever, which is perfect if you hate doing a ton of maintenance.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Do you like your care feeling like new? These brakes will make it feel like new, assuming you get good brake pads to go with it. They aren’t an upgrade, they aren’t worse; they are just a good replacement for old brakes.
    They are a little noisy for smooth brakes, but it’s not noticeable inside the cabin. For a replacement rotor, there’s nothing to complain about.
    ACDelco is the GM OEM replacement brand, so they have to be really, really long-lasting. That’s what they are known for. It’s not uncommon to see stock GM vehicles with high mileage and original brakes. ACDelco has to compete directly with that, you don’t have to worry about them failing.
    Our Thoughts
    There exists a pretty big issue with recommending ACDelco rotors. If you don’t have a GM product, like a Chevy Truck or Cadillac Coupe, then it might be hard to find brakes that fit. That’s because ACDelco is a GM OEM manufacturer. That’s great if you have a GM product. They are long-lasting, great quality for the price brakes.
    Check out the Raybestos or Power Stops if you don’t have a GM vehicle. There’s really no reason not to grab these if you do have a GM, though.

    Good quality for the price
    Guaranteed to work with GM products

    Not guaranteed to work with non-GM vehicles
    A little noisy

    8. Best Rotors for Stock Replacement: Raybestos Professional

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: They work great, don’t cost much, and are from a brand known for quality.
    Editor’s Rating:

    These are some of the only smooth, standard rotors that we can safely say will probably out-perform the stock brakes on inexpensive cars. For the price, you can’t really ask for more. Raybestos has lines that go all the way up to ultra-high performance, their R-300 line, but even their cheap line has great stopping power and cooling.
    They are average in the comfort department. Nothing that you will be upset about, but not as nice as the Bosch up top. You will get a very confident brake feel, though.
    The downside to performance is always that you sacrifice a little durability, and this is no different. It’s not nearly as extreme as something like the EBCs. It just won’t last as long as the Brembos or ACDelcos.
    Our Thoughts
    It’s hard to really say a lot about a product that is “just fine.” There’s nothing to praise, nothing to damn, and nothing quirky to dwell on. Maybe that’s praise enough. The Raybestos’ rotors are perfectly acceptable and don’t cost too much. Raybestos is at least a well-known quality brand, so you don’t have to worry too much about what you are getting.
    Comparing them to their direct competitors might be the most useful. They work better than the Bosch rotors but are noisier. They won’t last as long as the ACDelcos, but cost less and fit more vehicles. So if you want the best performance from a budget disc, here it is.

    Good stopping power
    Raybestos has good quality control

    They don’t last as long as similarly priced rotors
    Not as quiet as the Bosch rotors

    9. Best UV Coated Rotors: Brembo UV Coated

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: Brembo knows how to build brakes, and these coated rotors might outlast your car.
    Editor’s Rating:

    They are Brembos, they work great. You don’t get the heat dispersion, since they are just smooth rotors without bigger vents, but you’d be hard-pressed to get better from a smooth brake.
    Perfectly fine. The Brembos are as quiet as the Bosch rotors. They cost a lot more, so you should expect them to be a bit better than all the budget options. It’s nice that they aren’t a letdown.
    These Brembos are really well protected and well constructed. They will definitely last, and they won’t go through pads at an alarming rate. They will get noisier as the brake coating wears off over time. That affects longevity and comfort and can be one of the more irritating things when buying coated brakes.
    Our Thoughts
    Brembo is one of the brands, like Wilwood or EBC, that you can feel good about owning. You can take the sticker out of the box and slap it on your car. These ones are from the budget line. At least, as budget as Brembo gets, they are still expensive.
    You get some really long-lasting, good performing brakes that will improve your car over factory for the price. Enough said.

    Great performance for a smooth rotor
    Brembo is a well known, prestigious brand
    The coating will protect the rotors from the elements

    Can get noisy over time

    10. Best Inexpensive Rotor: Wagner E-Coated

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: This rotor is incredibly inexpensive and does its job just fine.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Yup, they perform. Your car will stop. Your brakes will fade over time with, so it’s probably prudent to look for a performance pad if you’re planning on taking them to a track.
    These inexpensive rotors don’t produce too much road noise. These rotors are super cheap, so don’t expect too much.
    These rotors will last long enough that you can save up some money and get some higher quality rotors, that will last longer. If you need something cheap to get you through a couple of months, these are a good option.
    Our Thoughts
    Sometimes you just need a really cheap rotor to hold you over. If you have a cheap, old car that isn’t worth putting much money into, these are fine. If you are a little strapped for cash, but your rotors badly need replacement, these will work great. But if you’re looking for something that performs well, this is not your best pick.

    They will stop your car

    They won’t last very long
    You are trusting your life to a product that prides itself in being just ok

    The Total Guide to Brake Rotors
    This section is going to feel more like a myth-busting section than anything else. There is so much marketing hype and misinformation about brakes on the internet. Even some other guides to buying brake rotors that we’ve seen are helping spread the embellished truths. We’ll call them that to be kind.
    What is a Rotor Anyway?
    In the olden days, all cars had drum brakes. In the 60s, performance cars were dabbling with disc brakes. By the 70s and 80s, disc brakes were a premium feature. Nowadays, they have largely replaced their less efficient drum counterparts entirely. Only the most budget of models still uses drums, and only in the rear.
    Disc brakes are composed of three main parts. The caliper converts hydraulic or mechanical pressure into squeezing force. The pads, which are made of abrasive material, are attached to the part of the caliper putting on the squeeze. Finally, the caliper squeezes the pads against the rotor to slow down your car. The rotor is the big disc that gives disc brakes their name.
    Rotors Are Only Part of the System
    This is an important takeaway. Rotors alone will not make your brakes better. Many sites and manufacturers put a huge amount of emphasis on how great your life will be if you buy expensive rotors. But the truth is that just getting expensive rotors probably won’t improve your braking performance much, if at all.
    How to Actually Improve Your Braking Performance
    In order to actually improve braking performance noticeably, you need larger diameter rotors, higher performance pads, and larger calipers. It doesn’t matter how expensive the EBC slotted and dimpled rotors are or how good the Power Stop drilled rotors look. You aren’t going to notice a huge improvement if you just slam on the brakes. That’s because rotor performance isn’t about braking distance, but about keeping braking performance consistent over time.
    If you really want the absolute best braking performance you can get for the money, buy newer, better tires. That’s not very cool; tires are boring and don’t add anything to your car’s looks. It’s the truth though. Most vehicles on the road (or the track, for that matter) are limited by tires, not brakes, when it comes to stopping power. It doesn’t matter how good your brakes can bring the tire to a stop. If you don’t have traction, the car doesn’t stop.
    Rotor Performance Means Keeping Things Consistent
    When you drive a car hard and do a lot of braking, the brakes heat up. Watch any car racing event, and you’ll see their brakes get red hot. If you really want a good example, watch Donut Media set their brakes on fire here. You can actually watch that whole episode to see first-hand everything we are talking about below. When brakes get hot, they stop working well and can fail outright. That’s called brake fade, and it’s a reality of performance driving. Rotor technology is all about getting rid of heat.
    Vented, Slotted, Directional, Drilled, and Dimpled
    We explained what each of those does in brief up above. What we want to touch on here is how you can avoid the exaggerations made by companies that are very into separating you from your money. If you want to keep it really simple, just know that you aren’t really getting a “super high-performance” brake kit unless you are paying thousands of dollars. On real race cars, a single rotor can cost over two thousand dollars. Check out this rotor from Willwood. That’s what a real exotic rotor looks like. If you are searching for one of those, or some similar carbon fiber brakes, for your 6-second car, then let’s face it. You probably aren’t reading this guide.
    Directional Rotors
    We only mentioned it very briefly above, but some rotors are directional. Directional just means that the left and right rotors are different. Either the veins for the vents are curved to push are out like a pump, or the slots run in a certain direction. Most slotted rotors are directional, like the EBCs. Not all of them are, some slotted rotors use straight grooves instead of angled grooves, and the Napa brakes we recommend have funky cool grooves that are symmetrical. The good news is directional brake rotors are almost always sold in pairs, so just make sure you read the label before installing them.
    Drilled Rotors
    Throughout this entire article, we have been hard on drilled rotors, saying things like “they’re mostly for looks” and “they don’t really help you stop.” That’s not totally fair, though: it’s even worse than we make it out to be. They also are weaker than other rotors. The holes create weak points that can cause cracking under high loads. Your daily driver or weekend car won’t notice any difference, but please don’t try to take cheap drilled rotors to a hillclimb.
    Rotor Replacement Tips and Tricks
    Now that you have chosen some rotors and learned all there is to learn, let’s get into some general tips to make sure you can have the best stopping power you can.
    Know When to Replace Your Rotors
    Rotors get warped, grooved, and wear down over time. If you are having bad vibrations under braking, or hear really awful noises when you tap the brake pedal, you probably need new rotors. Generally, they last about 50k miles, but check your manual.
    The only way to tell during normal operation is to measure their thickness, which you should do periodically no matter what. Take the time to also look for damage, and check their thickness against the factory specifications. Those are easiest to just google; use “type of car+type of brakes+rotor tolerance.”
    Replace Your Fluid and Pads
    Rotors are actually one of the slowest wearing parts of the brake system, so chances are you will also need pads and fluid when the rotors need replacing. You are already doing a ton of work to replace the rotors, and it doesn’t take any more time to replace the pads. Replacing the fluid does take more time, but most people don’t do that enough as it is so you might as well do a total service every time you do rotors.
    Don’t Be Afraid to Take It to a Shop
    These are your brakes we are talking about. If you don’t feel comfortable, let a pro do it. It’s not an expensive procedure. Most shops will do it in a few hours, so if you source the parts yourself, it’s quite inexpensive, and you won’t have to leave your car overnight.
    Don’t be afraid to do it yourself though, we guarantee there’s a Youtube video that’s a step by step guide to replacing the rotors on your car.
    Get the Lug Wrench
    So what are you waiting for? Grab some new rotors and get going. Or get stopping. Just remember to make sure the ones you buy fit your vehicle and don’t believe all the marketing on the box. More

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    The 7 Best Caliper Paints 2021

    If you’re a big car lover, it makes sense to want your ride to stand out from the crowd. Adding designs, accessories, and other peripherals to customize your vehicle can be rewarding as a car owner, but all the little expenses can add up in the long run.
    A low-cost way to personalize your car is to paint your brake calipers with specialized paints. Although caliper paints will cost slightly higher than regular cans of spray paint, they’re a worthy investment to make down the road.
    Finding the best brake caliper paint is crucial if you want to tackle a project like this successfully. But how are you to find your perfect match out there? Well, if that question has been burning in your mind, then you’re in the right place – this article will discuss everything you need to know about caliper paints, including a list of the best brake caliper paints you can find in the market right now.

    Factors to Consider When Buying Caliper Paints
    Before we proceed to the list of best caliper paints you can buy online, here are some of the most important factors you should consider first.
    Not all caliper paints are made the same. This may be somewhat of a no-brainer, but paint type is something you should consider when looking for the perfect caliper paint for your needs.
    Type usually refers to the material that the paint product is made of. It can be epoxy, enamel, or even vinyl film. The important thing to remember is that they all have their own pros and cons. For instance, epoxy paints can withstand temperature a lot better than either vinyl or enamel.
    There’s a whole lot more to this; if you want to know more details, head over to our full buyer’s guide below.
    When you’re painting your car to personalize it, it’s only natural to want a long-lasting, beautiful color that perfectly matches your personality.
    Therefore, one important factor to consider when picking caliper paints is the paint color. Different brands are going to offer different colors. For example, G2 Caliper Paint System has 11 colors in its arsenal, while Rust-Oleum gives you only 4 choices. You should always check beforehand whether the product you want offers the color that you prefer.
    More than the color spectrum, it’s also essential to know what the finish quality is of the product you’re going to buy. Will the finished product be rough or smooth? Matte or gloss? Knowing these things in advance helps bring out the best of what your chosen caliper paint has to offer.
    In general, one aerosol can of canister paint can cover all four of a car’s calipers and still have a little bit of material left. However, if you wish to purchase in bulk, there are always combo packs available. These bundles are cheaper overall than their price per piece.
    A general rule to abide by is to purchase at least two cans of aerosol paint if painting standard-sized vehicle calipers. If you run out, you won’t have to wait long for the next coating, making for a better paint job.
    However, if your brake calipers are a lot larger than the size of a clenched fist, then you’re going to need more paint.
    Your brake calipers are some of the most exposed parts of your vehicle. They regularly come into contact with water, chemicals, and debris on a day-to-day basis, not to mention the extreme friction that they generate to serve their purpose. High-temperature resistance will assure you that all your time and effort will not peel off after several drives.
    You’d also want to check other related properties, such as resistance to scratching, chipping, chemicals, and corrosion. Aside from being aesthetically pleasing, caliper paints are also meant to protect the surface of your brake caliper from these damaging factors. The more resistant your caliper paint is to external factors, the longer-lasting your paint job will be.
    Application Method
    There’s a lot more to be said about the application method later on in this guide, but let’s highlight the very basics.
    Caliper paints are generally sold in two kinds: dip-brush application type and aerosol sprays. Beginners are more likely to prefer brush application compared to aerosol sprays. Although sprays are convenient, it’s very easy to make off-sprays and waste a lot of material. With brush application, one can carefully apply the paint with less chance for wastage.
    Drying Time
    Drying time is one of the most useful things to know about your chosen caliper paint. You don’t want to be uncertain about the time that your coat takes to dry. If you don’t know how long the paint dries, you may fail to schedule your time to get the job done properly. Worse, you might end up invalidating all your hard work by using your calipers before the paint has fully cured.
    High-quality caliper paints should be performance-dry about two hours after application. Your product should only need a minute or two before it’s dry enough to coat with another layer.
    The best caliper paint should be able to complete a full application within two or three coats. This refers to the base layer plus the full-coverage finish layer. If you need to apply any more to achieve a quality finish, you’re not getting the quality you deserve. This is all the more important for paint-application cans where the substance is more likely to be concentrated.
    The best caliper paint should last for at least several years. Nobody wants to retouch their brake caliper every few months. Choose a product that is essentially something you can paint on and forget until the next painting session 5 years down the road.
    Now that you know the factors you need to consider when buying caliper paints, it’s time to get to the products themselves. Without further ado, here are the 7 best caliper paints that you can buy online right now.

    Top 7 Best Caliper Paints 2021
    1. Best Overall Pick: POR-15 Caliper Paint

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: Made with professional-grade, high-quality materials, the POR-15 Caliper Paint offers you only the best in terms of heat resistance, durability, protectivity, and even aesthetics.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Colors Available: 5
    Type: Dipping Can, Heat Resistant
    Application Method: Dip, Brush
    Heat Resistance: 500°F
    Drying Time: 3-4 Hours Coat Drying Time, 24 Hours Full Curing Time
    POR-15 certainly doesn’t hold back anything in their pursuit to give their customers top-of-the-line products, and this specialized caliper paint is a great example of that.
    The POR-15 Caliper Paint is designed specifically to withstand high-temperature operations. It provides a long-lasting coating to protect against heat and various elements, boasting resistance to heat measuring up to 500°F. It also comes in different ceramic shades to make your car uniquely yours at the same time.
    Overall Performance
    Everything about POR-15 screams convenience and quality. The paint is sold in an 8-ounce can, more than enough to cover a standard-sized brake caliper. It comes in five beautiful and shiny vintage-like colors. The coat cures into a ceramic-like, durable finish that can protect your brake calipers from damaging factors like metal oxidation, although it can’t really do much for scratches and scrapes.
    It’s formulated for brake calipers, but you can also apply it as a protective coating on other small, metallic parts of your vehicle, making it quite versatile. That said, while the paint can withstand a punishing 500°F peak, it actually pales in comparison to the competition, some of which can withstand over 900°F like G2’s High-Temperature Brake Caliper Paint System and Rust-Oleum’s Caliper Spray Paint.
    The application is incredibly straightforward albeit a little messy. If you want to dip-apply it for a more convenient time, you’re going to have to remove your brake calipers from your vehicle first. If this doesn’t seem doable for you, you can always opt to hand-paint it instead. However, be prepared to devote a little more time to finish the task and accept that there will be spots that cannot be reached by your paintbrush.
    Nevertheless, the POR-15 Caliper Paint is a good all-around choice for anyone looking to personalize and protect their brake calipers simultaneously.
    POR-15 sells this caliper paint in a three-step paint system. Pair it with POR-15’s cleaner/degreaser and metal prep rust neutralizing agent for best results.

    Tough and durable coating
    Comes in 5 ceramic-like colors
    Protects against metal oxidation

    500°F heat resistance is lacking
    Brush application doesn’t give full coverage
    Does not protect against scratches and scrapes

    2. Best Premium Pick: G2 High-Temperature Brake Caliper Paint System

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    Why we like it: The G2 High-Temperature Caliper Paint System is an easy to use, wear-resistant, heat resistant, and rust-resistant paint set that comes in 11 glossy colors, adding an instant layer of beauty and protection to your vehicle’s brake calipers.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Colors Available: 11, Including Black, Blue, and Red
    Type: Hardens; Rust-Resistant
    Application Method: Brush
    Heat Resistance: 980°F
    Drying Time: 1-1.5 Hours Drying Time, 12 hours Curing Time
    G2’s High-Temperature Brake Caliper Paint System is a specialized caliper paint system that prides itself on having the highest temperature tolerance in the market right now. It can withstand temperatures of up to a whopping 980°F, almost double the resistance of other products like POR-15’s Caliper Paint.
    In addition to this, the paint hardens to a chip, flake, and rust-resistant coating that can be painted on for further customization.
    Overall Performance
    Sold as a full kit, this High-Temperature Caliper Paint System comes complete with the paint, brake cleaner, brake caliper reactor, and brush. It offers one of the highest heat resistance in the market, so you can be assured that the heat generated by your driving will not pose a problem in keeping your brake calipers looking good.
    The paint sticks very well to the surface metal, and the color doesn’t easily fade or wear off. It’s designed to resist damage from road salt, water, chemicals, and small debris. It becomes harder than aerosol sprays when dried, which means it will not flake or get chipped.
    It also dries faster compared to the competition, and one coating of paint can already get you far. You can easily do three coatings of paint on four standard-sized brake calipers, and you’ll still have a little bit of something left over.
    As good as the product is, though, the brush that comes with the set isn’t very user-friendly. It’s hard to aim precisely, and sometimes, it even leaves bristle marks on the still-wet paint. You should also be mindful when using this paint as it coagulates easily at room temperature. This can result in an uneven finish that doesn’t look as good.
    Coagulation, also known as clumping or clotting, occurs in this paint when the surrounding temperature is higher than around 72°F, or room temperature. If possible, schedule your painting season during colder weather to lessen the chances of this happening. Also, make sure to stir the paint every now and then while using it.

    Hardens to a shiny coating
    Impressive 980°F heat resistance
    Protects against chemical and physical damages
    The set already has everything you need
    Offers 11 color choices

    Clumps very easily
    More expensive than the competition
    Marketed colors don’t always match real life

    3. Best Budget Pick: VHT Brake Caliper Paint Can

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    Why we like it: For a fraction of the price of other products in the market, the VHT Caliper Paint isn’t only scratch and chip resistant, but rust, chemical, and heat resistant as well.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Colors Available: 9, Including Black, Blue, and Red
    Type: Glossy
    Application Method: Spray
    Heat Resistance: 500°F
    Drying Time: 30 Mins Touch-Dry, 24 Hours Curing Time
    If you’re looking for a brake caliper paint that can fit even into the tightest of budgets, look no further than VHT’s High-Temperature Brake Caliper Paint.
    It’s formulated specifically for brakes, rotors, brakes, drums, and calipers. It dries into a sturdy, heat-resistant coat that can also resist chemicals and rust. The coat is also sturdy enough to resist regular wear and tear, scratches, peels, and chips.
    Overall Performance
    Considering the low price, the VHT Caliper Paint performs wonderfully even in extreme conditions.
    The paint atomizes well and produces a good, solid, and even coverage. It dries to the touch very quickly, but you need to let it undergo the complete overnight curing process before using your vehicle. Once fully cured, it can survive temperatures of up to 900°F.
    Application is very convenient, as it comes in an aerosol spray can with a quality nozzle that is easy to use even for beginners. There are also product instructions present on the can that you can follow if it’s your first time painting your brake calipers.
    The color variety is diverse enough for everyone and shines well in bright sunlight after a correct application. You can choose colors that are not commonly available in other caliper paints, such as gold, orange, and glossy black.
    However, you do need to be careful when using this product, as it can be quite choosy when it comes to adhering to your calipers. One, it’s not as thick as other caliper paints, so the application can be more difficult and messier than other paints. Two, you need to use a clear finishing coat to prevent brake dust from dulling the paint’s vibrant color. As long as you do this, we guarantee that the results won’t disappoint you.
    This caliper paint actually belongs to the VHT paint system. You can get the highest quality results when used in conjunction with the VHS cleaner and paint finish. Complete curing can occur even at room temperature, but you can also heat your brake calipers to 200°F to speed up the process.

    Wide color variety
    Lower price when bought as a six-pack
    Can help resist rust as well
    Resistance to high temperatures
    Protects against harmful chemicals

    Actual colors are a bit off from the packaging
    Color can fade out over time if not properly sealed
    Other products needed for best results

    4. Easiest to Apply: Dupli-Color Brake Caliper Paint

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    Why we like it: Not only does the Dupli-Color Brake Caliper Paint come with the standard heat, chip, scratch, and chemical resistance, but it’s also easy to apply, quick to dry, and long-lasting to boot.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Colors Available: 6, Including Black, Blue, and Red
    Type: Ceramic-Based Resin
    Application Method: Spray
    Heat Resistance: 500°F
    Drying Time: 30 Minutes Drying Time
    Thanks to its special “EZ Touch” Conical Nozzle, painting your brake calipers is made much easier with Dupli-Color’s brake Caliper Paint.
    Once it dries, it hardens into a sturdy coating that not only looks good but also protects your calipers against brake dust, chipping, and automotive and road chemicals. Not to mention, because of the ceramic resin materials, the glossy coating can withstand the heat of up to 500°F. All of this from a simple point-and-spray can.
    Overall Performance
    If you’re looking for a product that can protect your brake calipers in all aspects, then you’re in the right place. The paint can withstand up to 500°F of heat, and once fully cured, it can also resist minor damages such as chipping and abrasions. It can also prevent your calipers from developing rust and corrosion. A versatile product, you can apply it to drums and brake rotors as well.
    Dupli-Color’s Caliper Paint is also rather convenient to use. Its special feature, the “EZ Touch” technology, ensures you will not waste an atom of spray when you point and press this product towards your calipers. You can expect the paint to dry in just 30 minutes, although you need to wait at least an hour for it to fully dry.
    It can be bought in single, 2-pack, or 6-pack choices, each one providing you with the formula to a beautiful, long-lasting caliper brake finish. It also comes as a Paint Kit – a complete set containing the paint, aerosol cleaner, stick for stirring, paintbrush, masking tape, and even an instruction booklet to help you if it’s your first time undertaking a project like this.
    Be warned – the finished product is more matte than glossy, despite what Dupli-Color is actually advertising. However, for people looking for that exact look, this should be no problem at all.
    For the best results, consider using the Paint Kit mentioned above, which has everything that you will need to ensure a successful, high-quality, and long-lasting finish. If you don’t want to buy the full kit, however, Dupli-Color also sells a cleaner individually.

    Attractive matte finish
    Fast drying time
    Chip, chemical, and dust resistant
    Includes a detailed instruction manual

    Lower heat resistance than the competition
    Advertised as glossy instead of matte

    5. Best for Precision Spraying: Rust-Oleum Caliper Spray Paint

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    Why we like it: The Rust-Oleum’s Specialty Rust-Preventative Caliper Paint is specifically designed for precision-spraying, which means you should get your rust-resistant, heat resistant, and scratch-resistant paint only where you want it to go.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Colors Available: 3, Including Black
    Type: N/A
    Application Method: Spray
    Heat Resistance: 900°F
    Drying Time: 24 Hours Curing Time
    Rust-Oleum has been a huge name in the rust inhibition industry for quite a long time now, and deservedly so. The company now brings its reputation of providing top-of-the-line rust-inhibiting chemicals into the caliper painting market with this new product.
    The Rust-Oleum Caliper Spray Paint dries into a strong, durable coating that can resist temperatures of up to 900°F. Aside from brake calipers, the paint can also be applied to springs, rotors, and drums.
    Overall Performance
    Performance-wise, this caliper spray paint is perfect for day to day driving, especially for hot climates and even for competitive driving. It’s also designed to resist rusting due to moisture, chemicals, or brake dust deposits, so you can rest assured that your calipers remain safe and sound beneath this protective layer of paint.
    In addition to this, Rust-Oleum’s easy-spray technology makes it easy for anyone to touch up their brake calipers. The comfort-tip nozzle works from any angle so that you can reach even the most body-twistingly difficult places.
    The biggest downside to this product is the coverage, specifically the sheerness of it. Each can contains 12 ounces of material, but since the coverage isn’t that good, you would have to do at least two coats to fully cover your calipers. At most, a single can only covers two full coatings on two brake calipers, which makes it relatively expensive compared to other options on the market. It also doesn’t dry that fast, which means you’ll be spending a lot of time painting with this product.
    Although the paint instructions on the container tell you that you don’t have to prime, this doesn’t mean that you can’t—or that you shouldn’t. Users have reported better success if they prime the metal first before applying this spray. Other than this, Rust-Oleum’s paint is also safe to dry with microwave ovens or hair dryers, in case the weather outside is too cloudy or rainy to dry paint well.

    Easier spraying with comfort-tip nozzle
    Resists heat up to 900°F
    Has rust-inhibiting features
    Scratch, peel, and chip-resistant

    Requires multiple coats for the best finish
    Long drying time
    Not resistant to brake cleaner agents

    6. Most Versatile Caliper Paint: Superwrap Sprayable Vinyl Wrap

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    Why we like it: The Superwrap Sprayable Vinyl Wrap is a versatile product that you can apply to any metal part of your car to make it more personalized—including your brake calipers.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Colors Available: 5
    Type: Sprayable Vinyl
    Application Method: Spray
    Heat Resistance: 500°F
    Drying Time: 30 Minutes
    The Superwrap is a new product with lots to prove. With its high-end look and easy application, it’s a perfect choice for beginner DIY-ers who are not confident yet with their painting skills.
    You can use Superwrap for your wheels and accessories, including your car’s brake calipers. The best thing about this product is that it only takes a single step to get a good-looking finish.
    Since it’s a sprayable vinyl, you can easily peel it off with a scraper if you want to remove it. It does come with fewer benefits than traditional spray paints, but its one-step, easy application makes it worth considering for many.
    Overall Performance
    The Superwrap can give your brake calipers a high-gloss, professional, premium look that is hard to beat, especially for the amount of effort–or lack thereof–that it takes to do.
    Although it’s very different from traditional spray paint, the process is fairly similar. This includes cleaning, masking, spraying, and drying out. One remarkable thing about this product is the fact that it’s made out of vinyl. This means that you can peel it off much easier than normal paint in case you change your mind. Otherwise, it stays strongly bonded to the material.
    Performance-wise, the material is self-leveling and does not drip while drying. If you do it properly, meaning while the paint is still half-dry, you can remove the tape without peeling any part of the paint off.
    Just make sure to follow the instructions to the letter and apply it during good weather for proper drying. If you do this, you’re sure to have great-looking brake calipers to spruce up your car’s looks.
    However, since the product is more for detailing and aesthetics, it does fall slightly short in the protection aspect. Although it looks good, all it has is a bit of heat resistance – no protection against physical, chemical, and corrosion damage whatsoever.
    The Superwrap was not originally manufactured for brake calipers, which means that you can use it on any metal surface of your car, not just your calipers.
    Be sure to apply the product in multiple light coats until you achieve the desired effect. After doing so, lock in the color by using a paint sealant to reduce the chances of it peeling and chipping away.

    Extremely easy to apply
    Professional-looking finish
    Does not drip while drying
    Easy to remove

    No additional protective qualities
    Durability is doubtful in some instances
    New product means fewer user reviews

    7. Best Long-Lasting Pick: Eastwood Long Lasting Heat Resistant Caliper Paint

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    Why we like it: You can apply the Eastwood Long Lasting Heat Resistant Caliper Paint in both paint and spray methods, which gives you a lot of leeway in planning your workflow.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Colors Available: 3
    Type: Spray Paint
    Application Method: Brush or Spray
    Heat Resistance: 650°F
    Drying Time: 1 Hour Dry to Touch
    Eastwood’s offering may be relatively new on the market, but its take on brake caliper paint is spot-on. This paint is highly resistant to heat, chemicals, and UV rays. It’s also wonderfully convenient to apply, as you don’t have to remove your brake caliper from your car to paint it. Moreover, you can either spray it or brush it with a paintbrush, which is quite rare for caliper paints, as far as we’re concerned.
    Overall Performance
    Eastwood has developed a reliable reputation in the repair and restoration automotive paints industry, although they’re not as well-known in this specific niche. This product, which comes in silver, red, and black, is their entry into the caliper brake market.
    Because of its nano-ceramic technology, it’s able to withstand up to 650°F of heat. It can even protect against the harmful and corrosive effects of chemicals and UV rays as well. You can apply it via brush, roll, or paint gun. The paint comes in a large 16-ounce can, which means one is enough for four brake calipers. Thankfully, it can go a long way in terms of coverage.
    Once you’ve applied it and properly sealed it, you can rest assured of brand-new looking calipers that wouldn’t accumulate brake dust. The self-sealing nature of the paint allows it to dry to a hard coating, which makes for easy cleaning.
    However, one particular drawback is the cost of the maximum-quality kit, since you need to buy several more products individually to achieve the best effects.
    To get the best out of Eastwood’s Heat Resistant Caliper Paint, you should use the urethane activator. It cures and hardens the ceramic and urethane components of the paints, allowing the paint to become even sturdier.
    You should also buy the pre-painting aerosol spray to achieve the most optimal cleanliness for the highest quality finish. The cleaner the surface, the better the final look.

    Resistant to UV and chemicals
    Above-average heat resistance
    Convenient spray or brush application
    Large can means more coverage

    Limited color choices
    Produces strong fumes
    Can cause skin irritation

    Full Guide to Buying Caliper Paints

    Interested in knowing more? This section will cover everything you need to know about caliper paints, including what they are, what are their advantages, and how to apply them to your vehicle.
    What Are Caliper Paints?
    Caliper paints are paint products formulated specifically for brake calipers. The brake calipers of your car are an important part of your vehicle’s braking function, which includes disc brakes for the front and back wheels. Calipers house the brake pads, which are two pieces of metal that create friction with the rotating disk of your wheel to slow your vehicle down every time you hit the brakes.
    Although there are various methods for upgrading your vehicle’s look, painting your brake calipers is probably one of the most affordable yet most overlooked.
    With caliper paints, you get to add a dash of oomph to your ride without having to do costly overhauls. It also serves to protect the metal surface of the brake calipers from external factors, such as moisture, chemicals, and friction. Thus, it’s important to choose the best caliper paints to ensure the best for your car.
    Benefits of Using Caliper Paints
    At this point, you may be wondering if you even need to paint your calipers in the first place. Short answer? Yes. Here are some of the main benefits of using caliper paints.
    1. It Adds to the Aesthetic of Your Vehicle
    Tired of your ride’s same old look, but can’t commit to anything too time-consuming or expensive?
    Painting your calipers lets you add a dash of style to your vehicle without all of the hassles and cost that comes with a full design modification. You can even choose different colors to complement the look that you’re aiming for, and it easily accentuates the design of your vehicle. Make your car pop with just a little touch-up!
    2. It Offers Tremendous Benefits for Low Costs
    Vehicle upgrades will undoubtedly cost you thousands of your hard-earned cash. Painting your brake calipers alone may not provide as much impact as fully repainting your car, but it’s always better than your vehicle remaining its drab self. Best of all, this nifty little upgrade won’t even put a dent in your pocket.
    3. Provides Additional Protection for Your Calipers
    The best-quality caliper paint shouldn’t only make your vehicle look good; it should also be durable.
    Think about it. Your vehicle’s brake system is regularly subjected to high temperatures and constantly exposed to debris, road chemicals, and water. Due to this, calipers are more prone to corrosion, rust, and damage. A good coat of protective paint can help mitigate these damages and therefore keep your car safe and sound for longer.
    4. Painting Your Brake Calipers Is Not Rocket Science
    It’s barely even mechanical science. All you have to know is how to remove your tires and wheels. The rest of the process is as easy as one, two, three. If you know how to follow basic instructions–like the ones included in this guide below – then you’ve got all you need to perfectly pull off the job.
    5. You Can Redo It Anytime You Want
    Since painting your brake calipers is not a major design modification, it’s very easy to redo it if you’re unhappy with how it turned out. Just buy another can or two of your desired color and dedicate a few hours to finish the process, and you can say hello to your car’s new look.
    Types of Caliper Paints
    There are several types of caliper paints, each with their own pros and cons.
    Also known as spray paints, aerosol paints are some of the most common types of caliper paints on the market right now. They typically contain enamel-based paint and are commonly sold in 11- or 12-ounce cans, with a wide variety of gloss, metallic, matte, or other kinds of finish.
    This kind of paint is popular thanks to its ease of application and relatively quick drying time. However, they tend to need a few coats of material to provide a finished look, meaning you have to factor in multiple coats when estimating your total application time.
    Vinyl Film
    Vinyl film is a more difficult type of caliper paint to work with, especially if you’re a complete beginner. That’s because you need tools, such as razor blades and heat guns, to pull off the job successfully. In return though, you get a much faster drying time and a cleaner finish.
    The paint comes in vinyl sheets and, using a heat gun, you’ll have to meld the sheet to the surface of your brake calipers, completing the process in one step. If there’s any excess film visible at the edges, simply trim it with your razor.
    Dipping Cans
    Dipping cans are a nice option to have for people who find brush painting or spray painting inconvenient. With dipping cans, you simply have to dip your calipers into the can of paint, resulting in a uniform coat with only one application.
    The only notable downside is that you have to completely remove your brake calipers from your vehicle first – something that you don’t necessarily have to do when using vinyl film or aerosol paints.
    Epoxy-based caliper paints adhere to the metal of your calipers much better than any other type on this list. They’re durable and protective, and they keep your brake calipers looking good for a long time to boot.
    Unfortunately, not only are they more volatile than other caliper paint chemicals, but they’re also more difficult to apply. Plus, all the caustic chemicals present in the paint could seriously harm you, so you need to take more safety precautions before you begin the painting process.
    Important Features of Caliper Paints
    Different products offer different things. To find the best caliper paint for your vehicle, you should take note of the features that these products usually offer.
    Paint Density
    The denser the paint is, the more effective it is in protecting the metal surface of your caliper against the elements that it gets exposed to every day. It can also better inhibit rust and other forms of corrosion from forming on your calipers.
    However, keep in mind that a higher paint density also equates to a muddier finish, so you have to find the middle ground if you want to create a shinier coat.
    For instance, polymer-based paints, a dense type of paint, result in a thick enamel coating that can protect your calipers from chemical, physical, and even temperature damage while creating a beautiful and shiny finish.
    Resistance to Different Elements
    As mentioned, caliper paints don’t exist purely for the sake of design. They also have to be functional. Caliper paints are a great way to protect your brake calipers from damage, be it from road chemicals, debris, or water.
    To know what you can expect from your caliper paint, it’s good to know the kind of resistance that they can offer you first.
    Heat Resistance
    Since they regularly deal with a lot of friction, it’s normal for your vehicle’s brakes to become hot during daily use.
    A temperature spike of above 400°F (204°C) is a normal occurrence for these components, and they can sometimes even rise higher than the vehicle’s engine itself. Because of this, normal paint will undoubtedly burn off, and you’ll be left with exposed and vulnerable brake calipers.
    Heat-resistant paints like specialized caliper paints, on the other hand, work as fire inhibitors that expand above a certain temperature threshold to provide a barrier for insulation.
    Rust Resistance
    Rust resistance is another important aspect of caliper paints. Rust-inhibiting formulas prevent oxidation to happen on the metal’s surface. Oxidation happens when metal reacts negatively to water and oxygen, allowing corrosion to occur.
    To prevent it, your caliper paint should adhere strongly to the metal surface and seal tightly enough to completely cut off its exposure to air. For double protection, other rust-inhibiting paints have zinc additives, which oxidize themselves to protect the metal underneath.
    Chemical Resistance
    You may not notice it, but your brake calipers are exposed to tons of chemicals every day. Various metal-damaging chemicals are present in the asphalt of your roads, such as road salts and harmful oils.
    You may not be driving across a chemical, radioactive wasteland when you drive to work, but little by little, these trace amounts of chemicals can accumulate and eventually cause damages to your calipers.
    Chemical resistant caliper paints can prevent this by providing a neutral buffer between the underlying metal surface and the outside world.
    Damage Resistance
    You shouldn’t expect bulletproof resistance, but a good caliper paint should at least be strong enough to resist abrasions, scratches, and chips. More than protecting the metal surface, high-quality caliper paints are actually damage resistant themselves. This allows them to stay on your calipers and look good even after months or years.
    Brush vs. Spray
    There are different ways that you can apply your caliper paints, but by far the two most common methods are by brush or by aerosol spray.
    Pros and Cons of Brushing
    Brush-type applications are best for you if you want precision and control. The paint must be dense and adherent, as you want the paint to stick to the brush after just one dip. If it doesn’t, then that means it’s too watery and perhaps not ideal for brushing.
    Because these paints tend to run thicker than aerosol sprays, you typically don’t need to do more than one coating, two max. This is different from aerosol sprays whose coverage is on the thinner side, so you have to go through the extra coating to have an adequate finish.
    However, if you don’t do it well, your brush strokes can leave uneven and undesirable streaks on your calipers. Companies also tend to pack cheap paintbrushes in brush kits, leaving paint bristles on your work that results in an uneven texture.
    Pros and Cons of Spraying
    If your main consideration is the ease of application, then aerosol spray paints are the way to go. All you have to do is point and press. They also tend to result in a more balanced final layer.
    In addition to this, you have the added benefit of being able to reach nooks and crannies that may otherwise be rendered inaccessible by brushing. You don’t have to remove the calipers themselves, just the wheel. To prevent paint from getting into undesirable areas, simply use tape to mask them.
    However, although sprays are convenient, you have less control over the output of your work, as you can’t adjust the sensitivity of the spray or the size of the nozzle. Also, if you’re painting in an uncontrolled environment–say, outdoors on a windy day–aerosols can definitely make the application a lot messier than necessary.
    Steps to Painting Your Calipers
    Before painting, make sure that you have the following materials prepared.
    Your chosen caliper paint
    Rubbing alcohol
    Masking tape
    Rag for cleaning
    Sandpaper with a 400-600 grit
    Tools for wheel removal
    Protective equipment, such as gloves and workshop goggles
    Hydraulic jack, or any form of load-bearing elevation for your vehicle
    Painting your brake calipers is actually an easy, straightforward job, but it can be quite overwhelming for someone who has never done it before.
    Mount your vehicle to allow you to remove the wheels. You can also choose to remove your calipers and set them down on a flat surface.
    Clean the surface that you want to paint with a rag.
    Next, sand down the whole area with 400-600 grain sandpaper to grind down rust and create a rough enough surface for the paint to stick on.
    Apply a degreaser before wiping it again with rubbing alcohol to ensure that no unwanted particles are remaining.
    Mask the areas that you don’t want to paint using painter’s tape or masking tape. Make sure you cover everything, especially if you’re using aerosol sprays where you have less control over the spread.
    Paint your calipers using your preferred method. Make sure to give the paint enough time to dry in between coats.
    Let the paint cure before you use your vehicle. Curing time depends on the specific product, but we recommend letting the paint sit for at least 24 hours to fully ensure its readiness.
    Tips for Buying and Using Caliper Paints
    Here is some additional useful knowledge about buying and using caliper paints.
    If it’s your first time painting brake calipers, it’s best to use a spray-type paint first like VHT Brake Caliper Paint Can, as they are the easiest and most convenient to apply.
    Avoid white caliper paints since they can easily look dirty in day-to-day use.
    Some caliper paints don’t indicate the color of the contents. Instead, you can find out the color of the paint itself from the color of the packaging or the cap.
    Try out the paint on a piece of scrap metal first to see what color it is when it dries. You can take it a step further and apply one, then two, then three layers of paint to know exactly what to expect.
    Make sure that you’re painting in a well-ventilated area. Caliper paints have harmful chemical fumes that can cause damages to your health if inhaled for long.
    Always use protective equipment such as gloves, masks, and goggles when painting, especially for body parts that are near or in contact with the paint.
    Frequently Asked Questions
    If you still have questions about caliper paints, never fear — we have answers to the most common ones below.
    1. Do I Need a Clear-Colored Final Layer for More Durability?
    No, you don’t need to apply clear paint for your final layer, as you can simply add another layer of the caliper paint that you already have. If you want a clear coat just for the shine, you should choose a caliper paint product with an already shiny formula, like the G2 High-Temperature Brake Caliper Paint System.
    2. Does a Large Vehicle Need More Caliper Paints Than a Small One?
    Not necessarily. The main determinant for how much caliper paint you need is the brake calipers themselves. For instance, even smaller cars may have larger brakes installed, if they were manufactured for high performance uses.
    3. Do I Need to Disassemble My Brake System to Successfully Paint My Brake Calipers?
    Painting your calipers typically only requires you to remove your brake caliper from your wheel assembly, not disassemble the entire brake system itself. Some paints are even easier to apply, only requiring you to remove the wheels from the car in order to get to the calipers.
    4. How Long Does It Take for Caliper Paints to Wear Off?
    The duration of your caliper paint depends on a lot of factors, including usage, climate, and how well you maintain your car. In general, though, high-quality caliper paints can last for about 3 years before needing a complete overhaul.
    Final Words
    Customizing your car is a wonderful way to express yourself and distinguish your ride from the sea of its similarly-faced, mass-produced cousins. Painting your brake calipers is a cheap and easy way to do this from the comfort of your garage.
    More than that, painting your calipers provides much-needed protection, making sure that the metal within stays untouched by rust, corrosion, and damage.
    Set yourself apart from the crowd and protect your vehicle at the same time by painting your brake calipers now! More

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    The 10 Best Retractable Truck Tonneau Covers 2021

    Trucks are awesome. They can be found taking bricks to the job site, taking luggage to the hotel, or hauling all the fishing gear to the river. That makes trucks the adventure vehicle of choice for many people. Unfortunately, the same feature that makes trucks awesome can also make them terrible.
    The open bed of a pick-up truck is a beautiful thing for quickly loading big objects, but those objects will be exposed to the weather. What’s worse, though, is that anything easy to put in can be easy to take out, and nothing ruins a day faster than having your stuff stolen.
    Fortunately, a retractable tonneau cover is an easy to operate upgrade for your truck that can keep your stuff dry and away from sticky fingers. This guide will help you choose a great one. First, we’ll go over what they are and what to look for. Then we have a top 10 list with our take, and in the end, we take a closer look at some of the features.

    Retractable Tonneau Basics
    Tonneau covers can vary a lot in style and features, so if you are in the market for one, there are a few decisions you have to make. If you are here, you’ve already made the first decision. Tonneaus come in a lot of different flavors, you can see our complete overview here, but in this article, we are focused on the kind that retracts.
    This leads us to…
    What Makes a Tonneau Retractable
    Retractable tonneaus are specially made to be easy to open and close. They do this by rolling up tightly at the front of the bed. Often they have some sort of assistance to make it easier to roll them up. Picture a set of horizontal blinds. You pull the chord, and they retract up with little effort. It works the same way.
    Assistance Method
    If the retractable cover features some kind of assistance, it will have one of two mechanisms.
    Springs: Torsion springs help retract the cover and hold tension on the cover while you drive. These are exactly like your house blinds, just bigger. They take a little bit of effort to use but are less expensive.
    Powered: Fancier, more expensive retractable covers are powered. You don’t have to do anything other than press a button to open or close them.
    What to Consider Before Buying a Retractable Tonneau Cover
    There are a handful of things to look for to make sure you get the right tonneau for your situation. We’ll expand on many of them below if you want to know more.
    Most modern retractable tonneau covers are made of aluminum, so there’s not much variation. Some are aluminum combined with g, which has its own specific benefits. The vinyl covering can add an extra layer of protection, and polymer parts can add strength and security.
    Locking Mechanism
    A simple lock and key is good enough for most people who are concerned about security. It will stop most thieves. Electronic locks can add an element of extra convenience since you don’t need a key, and tonneaus that have no external access are even more secure.
    Ease of Operation
    If you are going to be getting into your truck bed a lot, you are going to want to focus on getting a cover that is easy to operate. The differences are often subtle. One cover might have adjustable stops, while another may use ball bearings instead of plastic bushings. In our reviews, we’ll try to point out which ones are especially easy.
    Ease of Installation
    Weight, complexity, and quality all greatly affect how easy it is to install. If you have help, are mechanically inclined, or are willing to pay a shop to do it, it’s probably not a big concern. If you are doing it yourself and don’t have many tools, you should focus on products that are easier to install.
    Trucks are already expensive, and unfortunately, so are retractable tonneau covers. There is still variation in price, though, so if you are on a strict budget, just expect to sacrifice features or quality to keep the cost down.
    Trucks have to withstand a lot of abuse, and most tonneau covers are up to the task. Some are just exceptionally sturdy, so we were sure to point them out.
    Extra Features
    There are a whole host of extra features that are specific to one model or another. Gator, for instance, has adjustable lock open points, and Retrax has a model that allows you to mount a bed rack to it. If there’s something specific you really need, then keep an eye out for it.
    Check Your Bed Size
    The good news is that almost every product on our list comes in a variety of sizes. They are either selectable on the same product page or will be in the recommended section on the page. You can also use the Amazon Garage feature to help you out.
    Just make sure to double and triple check your bed size before confirming a purchase. Unless you are the inventor of a shrink ray, there is no way to make a cover that’s 8ft by 6ft fit your 5ft by 4ft Tacoma bed.
    Now that you know the basics of what to look for, let’s jump right into the reviews of our favorite Tonneau Covers for 2021.

    Top 10 Best Retractable Truck Tonneau Covers 2021
    1. Best Overall Pick: Gator Recoil

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    Why we like it: The Gator Recoil is very easy to operate, very easy to install, and offers a ton of added security to your truck.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Aluminum
    Assistance: Spring
    Lock: Tailgate
    What Stands Out
    The way the Gator Recoil operates is really fantastic. Rather than locking anywhere, you pre-set latching points that the Recoil will automatically stop at as you open it. That may seem like a downside since it limits the number of positions you can open the cover.
    With the stops, though, you can operate the entire thing one-handed and with minimal effort. If you have ever fought with a stop anywhere cover as it tries to retract away from you while you fumble with the keys, you know how nice those stops can be.
    It’s also very secure. The operation is all done from underneath the cover, so the only way to access it is by opening the tailgate. Your tailgate is a lot stronger than the little locks that come with other tonneaus.
    Our Thoughts
    The Gator Recoil isn’t the best in any one area. Instead, it does everything really well. It looks good, it’s easy to use, and it’s inexpensive. It’s not the best looking; that’s probably the Roll N Lock M-Series. It’s not the easiest to use; the powered Roll N Lock opens by itself. Finally, the Synetic USA Retractable is cheaper.
    All of those other tonneaus make sacrifices, though. They are hard to install, or expensive, or easy to break. The Gator doesn’t have any real compromises. In fact, it’s probably the easiest to install bed cover on our list. Gator has a lot of experience making rail systems, so it’s no surprise. All that combined is why we can easily suggest that if you don’t value any single feature over any others, it’s the one you should buy.

    The adjustable stop points make operation easy
    It’s easy to install
    It’s very secure

    It’s not the best at anything
    Some people will prefer covers without stop points

    2. Easiest to Use: RetraxONE MX

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    Why we like it: The RetraxONE has a very unique, ultra-compact construction that lets it operate incredibly smoothly.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Reinforced Polycarbonate
    Assistance: Spring
    Lock: Key or Tailgate
    What Stands Out
    The RetraxONE is one of the smoothest operating covers out there. It’s something Retrax takes very seriously. In fact, it’s the reason they appear on this list with two of their other products; both the automated PowertraxPro and super durable RetraxPro are also very easy to operate. The RetraxONE is their “entry-level” product, which just means it’s cheaper and has fewer features than the other two.
    Our Thoughts
    The RetraxONE is a nice cover, no matter how you slice it. The durable black finish is more resistant to the truck lifestyle than many others, and the buttery smooth operation will have you smiling every time you have to peel it back to load a dirt bike.
    It just has a few issues that come from the “entry-level” part of the equation. To get the price down, they used plastic on this cover for parts that would be metal on their premium products. That can lead to some stripped screws or worn-out parts after a few years.
    It’s also just not as waterproof as it could be if there was a little bit more thought into fitting specific trucks. Usually, little design elements like that are what separate budget tonneau covers from nicer covers. The RetraxONE straddles the line between budget and nice, so we can’t fault it too much for not being as waterproof as a premium cover, but we also feel like it wouldn’t take much effort on their part to get it just a little tighter.
    All in all, though, it’s a good looking, easy to operate, and durable system. You won’t regret purchasing it.

    The black matte finish looks good
    It’s very easy to operate
    It’s a good value

    It could stand to be more waterproof
    The plastic parts can break over time

    3. Best Budget Pick: Pace Edwards Switchblade

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    Why we like it: This cover has no external locks and is made of very durable materials. Thieves will have a very hard time ruining your day.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Aluminum and Polymer
    Assistance: Spring
    Lock: Tailgate
    What Stands Out
    First, we just have to say that this is a really good looking cover. It’s a very low profile, and the matte finish is hard to scratch.
    The other thing is that it’s very secure. Many tonneau covers rely on small keyed locks to stop thieves. The Switchblade doesn’t have an external lock; if your tailgate is locked, you can’t open the cover. The Gator Recoil has the same style of lock, but the Switchblade takes security to the next level because it’s made from a hybrid of materials that allow some flex but can’t be pierced.
    Our Thoughts
    There are a lot of things to love about the Switchblade. It’s got a great name, for one thing. It’s also a great value. The low cost and high security make a worthy investment for anyone with a truck.
    However, there are a few things that stop it from being perfect. The most disappointing thing is that it’s not as waterproof as some others. It comes with weatherstripping, but the low profile works against you. Water won’t flow off the cover, and that gives the water a lot of time to find any crack or hole.
    The other thing is that this cover isn’t as easy to install as others. You will find that to be the case with many budget covers. They don’t have nice clamps and are often just pickier about being centered. Not a huge issue, but when most of a product is good, the little things stand out.

    It looks good
    It’s very secure
    It’s inexpensive

    It could stand to be more weatherproof
    Other products are easiest to install

    4. Best Premium Pick: Roll N Lock E-Series

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    Why we like it: The Roll N Lock E-Series is simply one of the fanciest tonneau covers you can buy.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Aluminum
    Assistance: Powered
    Lock: Electric
    What Stands Out
    Everything stands out on this cover. It has one of the nicest, thickest powder coat finishes, so even looking at it, you know it’s premium. It also has Roll N Lock’s signature waterproofing; it’s an unrivaled cover in that department. You could get all of that on the M-Series, though, and those cost a lot less.
    The E-Series is electric, though. You can open, close, and lock it with a small remote. It takes this cover from a simple utilitarian upgrade and turns it into a party trick. You won’t help but smile when you roll up to your friend’s house and don’t have to get out into the snow to let them borrow your chainsaw. Just drive up, hit the button, and make them retrieve it.
    Our Thoughts
    The E-Series Roll N Lock transcends practicality. There are good reasons to want the powered operation, like if you have trouble opening a normal cover or want the extra security of being able to close the cover when you drive to certain neighborhoods without getting out. However, if you just need a cover that automatically retracts, the PowertraxONE is just fine.
    The Roll N Lock is just nicer. It has a better finish, it operates smoother, and it has better weatherproofing. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to splurge and get the best thing for your truck, and you certainly won’t find much to complain about with this thing.
    There’s nothing to complain about except the installation, actually. All those cool electric features make this thing weigh about twice what most retractable tonneaus weigh. That means you may have to bribe a few friends with beer or pay a shop to help.

    It offers some of the best protection from the elements
    It looks great
    The operation is truly effortless

    It’s really expensive
    It can be hard to install alone

    5. Best Looking: Roll N Lock M-Series

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    Why we like it: This cover is one of the best-looking covers you can buy, and it’s an absolute breeze to install and operate.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Vinyl Covered Aluminum
    Assistance: Spring
    Lock: Single Key Lock
    What Stands Out
    The best thing about the Roll N Lock M-Series is that it looks truly fantastic. It has an ultra-low profile; the tracks are even inside the bed rather than on the rails. It’s also got a vinyl cover over the aluminum slats. That gives it this nice, unbroken look and virtually eliminates the possibility of scratches.
    The vinyl cover also gives it an extra layer of weatherproofing, which is always a good thing. The downside is that the vinyl is more prone to fading, which is a problem that plagues almost all vinyl and cloth covers. The good news is that unlike most vinyl covers, this cover has an aluminum core. Thieves can’t just take a pocketknife to it and remove all your stuff.
    Our Thoughts
    The M-Series is a little on the expensive side for what is otherwise a fairly standard tonneau, so if you care more about function than looks, there are better options. The Switchblade is a great alternative that costs quite a bit less.
    Here’s the thing, though. A lot of truck owners out there don’t use their trucks for truck stuff. They rarely haul rocks and wouldn’t dream of loading two oil-covered motorcycles into the back. That’s fine; if you only occasionally open the cover to load some luggage and drive to the airport, a truck is a very comfortable way to do it.
    If that does describe you, the Roll N Lock M-Series is a perfect accessory. It gives you the security of aluminum without looking like a utilitarian aluminum cover. It gives you a very sleek profile for lower wind resistance, and it is resistant to scratches. It will add to the style of your truck, and there’s no shame in valuing that.

    The vinyl finish looks fantastic
    It’s scratch-resistant
    It has one of the lowest profiles for maximum aerodynamics

    It’s on the expensive side for what it is
    The vinyl can fade over time

    6. Most Durable: RetraxPRO XR

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    Why we like it: The RetraxPRO has premium features that make it perfect for people that like to use and abuse their trucks.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Aluminum
    Assistance: Spring
    Lock: Key Lock
    What Stands Out
    One of the nicest things about the RetraxPRO is that it has special rails that allow you to bolt a rack onto it. The whole thing is built for adventure. It’s extra strong so it can survive abuse, and it can lock anywhere so you can load all sorts of misshapen things in the bed. Coupled with a rack mount, you can get yourself, your kayaks, and all your camp gear to the lake without worry.
    Our Thoughts
    The price is steep, and unfortunately, that’s the first thing that jumps out to us. You have to really want a rear rack for this cover to be worth it. If you frequently mountain bike or are into rooftop tent camping, then it’s probably worth it. Otherwise, you can grab the RetraxONE, and you’ll probably be just as happy.
    The good news is that with the premium price, there are a lot of premium features. It has extra protection from the elements, and the aluminum top can support up to 500lb. You can tell that Retrax put a lot of thought into every detail, and all the little things start to stand out. Things like the key slot have a rubber cover over it so that it doesn’t get impacted with debris, and when it rolls up, it doesn’t slide around, so it can’t get scratched.
    There is one final thing to be aware of if you are looking at this cover. The T-slot system it uses for mounting racks is not compatible with all racks. It’s something you’ll have to check if you already have a bed rack.

    It’s very high-quality
    You can mount a bed rack to the rails
    It’s very strong

    It’s expensive
    You may have some compatibility issues

    7. Great Waterproofing: Synetic USA Retractable

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    Why we like it: Unlike many budget tonneau covers, this Synetic USA offers amazing waterproofing.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Aluminum
    Assistance: Spring
    Lock: Key Lock
    What Stands Out
    The Synetic USA cover exemplifies beauty in simplicity. It doesn’t have a ton of features, but it’s a very good cover. It’s great at keeping the elements off of your stuff, and it’s virtually maintenance-free. In short, it’s the perfect cover for anyone that does a lot of work with their truck and just needs a cover they don’t have to think about.
    Our Thoughts
    The Synetic USA retractable cover is a really good value. It’s made of good material, it is decently weatherproof, and it’s easy enough to operate. It’s not the best looking, but it’s really not anything to complain about. Best of all, it’s pretty inexpensive.
    The biggest problem with the Synetic cover is the installation. That’s the same problem that plagues most budget covers. The clamps aren’t as easy to work with. The instructions are honestly pretty bad, and it’s heavier than many competitors.
    It’s also not as easy to open and close as others. It’s a really minor thing in the scheme of things, but if you open and close the cover a lot, get the Gator instead. The Synetic USA cover has two locks for added security, but that makes it a lot slower to unlock, especially when you only want it partially open.

    It’s a great value
    The thick aluminum makes it very durable
    It has better than average waterproofing

    The installation process could be better
    It’s hard to open it quickly

    8. Most Versatile: Peragon Retractable

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    Why we like it: If you are constantly carrying a variety of different loads, a cover like this Peragon will save you from a lot of headaches.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Aluminum
    Assistance: None
    Lock: Key Lock
    What Stands Out
    There are a few little things that stand out about the Peragon cover. It’s compatible with a truck rack, though it’s not as easy to work with as the RetraxPRO. It’s also really strong; it’s not a traditional roll-up design, so the slats can be made more durable than other brands.
    However, what really sets it apart is that it’s really easy to fold up and remove. Unlike most retractable, or even most folding, tonneau covers, once you roll up the Peragon it’s effortless to undo the latch and just lift the entire thing off your bed. You don’t have to worry about destroying it while hauling rocks or anything; just leave it behind.
    Our Thoughts
    There are a few bad things the Peragon covers. The first thing that can be a deal-breaker is that you have to order it from Peragon. You won’t find it on Amazon, which means you won’t get free Prime 2-day shipping or anything.
    The second thing is that they aren’t truly retractable, not like other assisted covers are. Most retractable covers, like the Gator we recommend, have some assistance that makes them easy to open and close. The Peragon covers don’t. They fold up very easily and offer almost the same benefits of a retractable cover, but you’ll be doing all the work.
    It makes up for those downsides in how easy it is to use and install. It’s a really easy system to live with because of how many configurations you can get from it, and it’s not likely to break.

    It’s easy to install
    It’s easy to remove
    They are very durable

    There’s no opening assistance
    They could be more convenient to buy

    9. Best High Tech Retractable Tonneau Cover: PowertraxONE MX

    View on Amazon
    Why we like it: You can open this cover with your keychain, and unlike other automatic covers, it won’t totally break the bank.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Aluminum
    Assistance: Powered
    Lock: Electro-Magnetic
    What Stands Out
    The thing that makes this amazing is that you use a key fob to open and close it. One of the big issues with a lot of modern trucks is that they are high off the ground, and it can be hard to get to the covers to open and close them if you are short or otherwise can’t reach across the width of the bed. Having a powered retractable cover eliminates the need to touch the cover at all. You can retract it, load up, and then extend it all without much effort.
    Our Thoughts
    Just like the Roll N Lock E Series, this cover is automatic and powered by a remote, but it costs a lot less. That is a really fantastic thing because the cost of the Roll N Lock is the biggest drawback. Even though a self-retracting cover is already a luxury item, it’s always nice to save a few dollars.
    It’s not as nice as the Roll N Lock, which is sort of to be expected. The finish scratches a lot easier, and it’s a lot pickier about how you install it. If you are off a little bit, it can bind or leak. There is a very simple solution to that, though, and that solution is to make sure you follow the directions.
    Other than a few quality issues, this cover offers a really fantastic value. If you, for whatever reason, don’t want to operate a cover manually, you won’t be disappointed.

    It’s a great value
    It retracts and extends automatically
    The remote is small and unobtrusive

    The finish is not the best
    It can be a little bit finicky to install

    10. Best Basic Retractable Tonneau Cover: ISTUNT Aluminum

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    Why we like it: It’s a little clunky, but it’s a really amazing price.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Material: Aluminum
    Assistance: Spring
    Lock: Single Key Lock
    What Stands Out
    This is the least expensive product on our list, so if you have a strict budget, then this is for you. Just be aware that they got that low cost by cutting corners on quality. The place that shows the most is in the fit and finish. It could look better, and almost everything else on our list is easier to install.
    Our Thoughts
    In our honest opinion, you’d be better off saving up a little more money and grabbing the Synetic USA cover. It’s much nicer, and it’s more secure. That’s because if budget is your primary concern, you should be looking at tri-fold tonneaus instead. They will protect your stuff, be much easier to install, and are much less expensive.
    Having said that, we know that many people really want a retractable cover and want it to be as inexpensive as possible. If that describes you, we probably don’t need to say anything else; this is one of the least expensive retractable tonneau covers on the hard-shell market.
    Just be warned, installing it is going to be a challenge. They have a “helpful” video on their product page that actually makes it more confusing unless you can parse out what “release the rope easily when you want to locking in the center” means.

    It’s very inexpensive
    It has an OK lock
    Made of aluminum, which is a little rare for a budget unit

    The quality could be better
    It’s a bit difficult to install

    A Closer Look at Retractable Covers
    If you still have questions after the reviews, this section is for you. There are a few things that deserve a closer look, starting with why you would want to have a retractable cover over other styles.
    The Pros and Cons of Retractable Covers
    If you read through the reviews but still aren’t sold on any of them, then it may simply be that a retractable cover isn’t what you are looking for. The following are the major advantages and disadvantages of a retractable cover for you to use to compare.
    They make it easy to get in and out of your bed
    They often look better than other types
    They are stronger than vinyl and multi-piece covers
    Many offer unique features, like rack mounts, that are not found on other types
    They are often much more expensive than other types
    They don’t offer the quality of weatherproofing that other bed covers offer
    They are harder to install
    The Security of Retractable Covers
    Keeping your cargo secure is one of the most common reasons to buy a hard tonneau cover. We touch on some of the differences in the reviews above, but there are some universal things that can make a tonneau more secure than others.
    Most retractable covers, including all of the ones we reviewed, are made of aluminum. That’s great for security since it can’t be cut by a simple knife and is resistant to being forced open.
    Some covers are more secure than others, though. Covers with smaller slats are easier to damage and get into, whereas covers that have a combination of construction materials are more resistant to common attacks from crowbars and things. There are also variations in the thickness of the aluminum; thicker aluminum is, of course, harder to damage.
    The rails that hold the cover in place are another place that security can be upped. If the tracks are easily accessible, it’s easier for a tool to be slipped underneath and for the tracks to be pried off.
    The clamps that hold the rails on come in various quality levels as well. A low quality, inexpensive clamp will shear much more easily than a thicker clamp.
    The locking method that a particular cover uses isn’t the most important part of security, but it still can make a difference, especially if you want the most security you can get. Anytime a lock is on the outside, as is standard with most covers, it is susceptible to being tampered with. That gives powered covers, and covers that rely on the tailgate for security, a slight edge.
    Tips for Getting Better Weatherproofing

    We mentioned above that retractable covers are not as waterproof as other types of tonneau covers. That’s because of the low profile, which allows water to pool up in places, and because of the tracks that the cover fits into.
    Those tracks can’t be sealed, or the cover wouldn’t be able to slide in it, so there will always be space for water to get through. You can do a few things to make sure you get the best waterproofing possible, though.
    Make sure the drain is properly installed. Most retractable covers have a tube that allows the water to drain from the storage box out to the ground. You will probably need to drill a hole in your bed to feed that tube through to the outside. You should follow the directions and use a grommet.
    Keep the frame square and equal. If the cover closes at a little bit of an angle, it will leave a gap that rain can get through.
    Be careful when installing the weatherstripping. Debris that gets trapped in the stripping can prevent it from working correctly.
    What Does Tonneau Mean?
    Tonneau is the French word for a barrel. In the old days of racing, people would put arch-shaped covers over their cars’ open spots to make them more aerodynamic. Those barrel-shaped covers were eventually used to cover a truck’s cargo, and the name stuck. You can read more about the history here if you want.
    Will A Tonneau Cover Improve My Gas Mileage?
    Probably not. The Mythbusters famously put the gas mileage claim to the test and found no meaningful improvement. However, there are so many different trucks and truck bed designs that it’s impossible to claim that there won’t be an improvement on your vehicle. Many people claim to get better mileage, but our advice is to make sure you are choosing a bed cover for other reasons.
    Are Retractable Tonneau Covers Waterproof?
    A retractable cover will keep most of the water off your cargo, but if rain is your biggest concern, an overbed folding tonneau is a better option. Retractable covers must-have tracks that they are attached to, and those tracks are nearly impossible to completely waterproof.
    Can I Go Through the Car Wash With a Tonneau Cover?
    A touch-free wash is probably not going to harm your cover. A good pressure wash may force water into your bed, so if you are giving it a good pressure washing, it’s better to retract it so the bed can dry.
    A drive through brush style car wash can damage the tonneau, and we don’t recommend it.
    Enjoy Stylish Security
    Statistically speaking, a truck will be the second most important purchase of your life. Give it a bed cover. They are relatively cheap ways to ensure your stuff doesn’t get ruined by weather or stolen by thieves, and they are incredibly stylish. More

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    The 10 Best Seat Cushions for Truck Drivers 2021

    Truck drivers, we know the long haul is uncomfortable. When you spend hundreds of hours glued to your seat, you’re going to encounter back problems. Unfortunately, car and truck seats aren’t designed with your long-term comfort in mind.
    Even high-end vehicles fall short when it comes to comfort, especially if you’re sitting in the same position for hours. Luckily, you don’t need to suffer. We’re here to help you achieve the comfort you deserve.
    Seat cushions for trucks have been around for decades, and they continue to evolve. Today, there are dozens of great seat cushions to choose from. They come in many different shapes and sizes, so we know it’s hard to make a choice and know what you’re getting. The good news is that we’ve done the research. We’re going to take you through the best seat cushions for truck drivers and offer shopping tips along the way.

    Things to Consider When Shopping for Seat Cushions for Truck Drivers
    Shopping for seat cushions seems straightforward, right? Find one you like and try it out to see if you made the right choice. While this method of shopping for seat cushions is viable, we don’t recommend it. Instead, we’re going to take you through a few features and factors to consider before you choose a product. This way, you don’t have to take any risks.
    The Number of Cushions
    When you’re shopping for a seat cushion, you’ll come across a few options. While most cushions offer lumbar support for the lower back, some products come with an additional cushion. The additional cushion provides additional support for your lower back and ensures your upper back and neck are also comfortable. While these products are more expensive, it’s worth the extra money if you’re not satisfied with a single lumbar cushion.
    With that said, products that come with one cushion are still viable options if you’re looking to save money and don’t suffer from significant lumbar pain. Furthermore, premium products that come with one cushion can perform as well as two-cushion options. Overall, it comes down to your preferences.
    Seat cushions for truck drivers come in a few different styles. Every style has unique shapes and sizes that work for specific areas of the body. You’ll come across u-shape cushions, donut-style cushions, cushions that run the length of your spine, and wedge cushions.
    All of these styles are viable options, but it depends on what you’re looking to get out of a seat cushion. For example, a u-shape cushion provides better tailbone relief than wedge cushions. On the other hand, a wedge cushion gives you an extra few inches to look over the steering wheel and does a better job at correcting posture.
    Another factor you need to consider is the size of a cushion. Most trucks have larger seats than regular automobiles, so you don’t have to worry as much. Luckily, most products are designed to fit modern seats, regardless of vehicle size. Still, you should double-check that the cushion you’re considering will fit your vehicle.
    While it’s hard to put a price on comfort, seat cushions for cars and trucks vary in price. Depending on how many cushions a product comes with and the material it’s made of, you’ll come across budget-friendly and expensive choices. Luckily, most products fall into one of three categories:
    $: Around $20 (Average comfort, typically one cushion)$$: Around $35 (Above-average comfort, one or two cushions)$$$: Around $50 (Premium comfort, one or two cushions)
    There is a lot to look for in seat cushions for truck drivers. Every product has advantages and disadvantages, so knowing what to look for is essential. Keeping these factors in mind, read on to learn about the ten best seat cushions for truck drivers.

    Top 10 Best Seat Cushions for Truck Drivers 2021
    1. Best Overall Pick: SOFTaCARE Seat Cushion

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    Why we like it: We love this seat cushion because of its intelligent design. Unlike other products, it comes with a pocket on the side to hold your phone, snacks, and other small items.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$$
    Cushions: 2
    Style: U-shape
    Size: 16×13×3 inches
    The SOFTaCARE Seat Cushion comes with two premium cushions. The bottom cushion features a u-shape design to relieve tailbone pressure, and it’s stuffed with memory foam that conforms to your body. Even without the second cushion, the bottom cushion provides plenty of support for your back and a long period of trucking. While the bottom cushion is excellent, the upper cushion complements it well. It’s made with the same memory foam and offers support for your upper back.
    This product is also easy to work with and adjust. Both cushions have machine washable covers, and straps connect them for quick adjustments. While this product is suitable for trucking, you can also use it at home or on busses, planes, and trains.
    What Sets it Apart
    While the SOFTaCARE Seat Cushion comes with many innovative features, it’s unique because of the side pocket. With this product, you can store your phone, wallet, keys, snacks, and other essentials. This makes the product useful for long trips and makes it easy to keep track of your belongings.
    Things to Consider
    The SOFTaCARE Seat Cushion is well-made, but it’s not for everyone. While it’s great for long periods and leaving in the truck, it lacks portability. The two cushions provide additional comfort, but they’re difficult to move between vehicles.
    If you’re looking for a more portable seat cushion, the ComfiLife Gel Enhanced Seat Cushion is a great alternative. While it only comes with one cushion, it’s made with similar material and more comfortable to move between locations.
    Who It’s For
    If you’re struggling with one seat cushion, the SOFTaCARE Seat Cushion is an excellent choice. It comes with two premium cushions that provide plenty of support for your back. It’s one of the best options for long-term comfort and people suffering from sciatica.

    Machine washable covers
    Straps connect both cushions
    Features a pocket for storage

    Lacks portability
    Bulkier than smaller seat cushions

    2. Best Premium Pick: Everlasting Comfort Memory Foam Seat Cushion

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    Why we like it: The Everlasting Comfort Memory Foam Seat Cushion is one of our favorite products because of the ventilated design. While it uses cooling gel for temperature regulation, the ventilated design makes it even more comfortable for long periods.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$$
    Cushions: 2
    Style: U-shape
    Size: 30×18×14.5 inches
    The Everlasting Comfort Memory Foam Seat Cushion is a premium product with many innovative features. It comes with two cushions that combine ventilated memory foam, cooling gel, and a u-shape cutout for high-quality comfort.
    It also comes with hypoallergenic seat covers that are machine washable and dryer safe. The seat cushions are also large enough to accommodate people of all sizes, and the straps allow you to position the upper cushion anywhere on the seat.
    What Sets it Apart
    The Everlasting Comfort Memory Foam Seat Cushion is unique because of the premium features it comes with. Compared to other products, these seat cushions come with more features that enhance your comfort. The ventilated memory foam design leads the industry in temperature regulation, and the cushions absorb and disperse body heat with ease. Furthermore, it comes with a lifetime satisfaction guarantee.
    Things to Consider
    The Everlasting Comfort Memory Foam Seat Cushion is one of the best choices, but it’s not for everyone. While it comes with premium features, it’s more expensive than most seat cushions for truck drivers. Plus, it’s bulky and less portable than other seat cushions.
    If you like the two-cushion design but need a more affordable option, the Fortem Seat Cushion is a great alternative. While it doesn’t have premium heat regulation, it’s similar in comfort.
    Who It’s For
    If you’re shopping for a premium seat cushion for truck driving, this product is the best choice. The heat regulation is second-to-none, and it provides support for your lower and upper back. It’s also an excellent choice for overnight drivers because you can use the upper cushion as a pillow.

    Industry-leading heat regulation
    Can also be used as a pillow
    Adjustable straps
    Lifetime satisfaction guarantee

    Bulkier than most seat cushions for truck drivers

    3. Best Budget Pick: ComfiLife Gel Enhanced Seat Cushion

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    Why we like it: There is a lot to like about this seat cushion, but our favorite feature is the innovative layer of cooling gel. Resting between you and the memory foam cushion, it regulates temperature and keeps you cool during long periods.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$
    Cushions: 1
    Style: U-shape
    Size: 17.5×13.7×2.8 inches
    The ComfiLife Gel Enhanced Seat Cushion is an innovative product and affordable product. It’s made with 100% memory foam and leverages a u-shape design to relieve tailbone pressure. The seat cushion also uses a cooling gel layer that regulates temperature and keeps you cool during long periods. It also comes with a machine washable cover, carrying handle, and a non-slip rubber bottom.
    What Sets it Apart
    This seat cushion is unique because of its portability. Weighing less than three pounds, it’s easy to move between your truck and favorite chair. Furthermore, it comes with a built-in carrying handle, making it more comfortable to carry than other seat cushions. Still, what makes this product impressive are the features it comes with. It’s rare to find a premium memory foam, cooling gel, and a carrying handle in portable seat cushions.
    Things to Consider
    While this seat cushion is great for portability, it’s not the best option for people with big frames. It can adjust to different weights, but the small size renders the product less effective for larger individuals. Unfortunately, that’s the price you have to pay for portability.
    If you need a larger seat cushion for trucking, a great alternative is Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion. It comes with a similar cushion, but it’s larger and better for people with larger frames.
    Who It’s For
    The ComfiLife Gel Enhanced Seat Cushion is one of the best options if you’re looking for portability. If you’re not a long-haul trucker and drive locally, it’s one of your best options. This is because it’s portable and easy to move between your home and other vehicles. Still, if you’re driving long distances, a larger seat cushion is a better choice.

    Machine-washable seat cover
    Cooling gel
    Built-in carrying handle
    Lightweight design

    Not suitable for people with larger frames

    4. Best Large Seat Cushion: Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion

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    Why we like it: We love the Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion because it’s large enough to accommodate people of all sizes.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$
    Cushions: 1
    Style: U-shape
    Size: 18×14×3
    The Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion is comfortable, portable, and easy to work with. The cushion is made with orthopedic memory foam that saves your body’s imprint for long-term comfort. It uses a u-shape design to relieve tailbone pressure and comes with a cover that’s machine washable.
    Plus, the cover doesn’t shrink in the dryer or lose its color after frequent washing. It’s excellent for back pain, hip pain, tailbone pressure, posture, joint pain, and hemorrhoids.
    What Sets it Apart
    This is a unique seat cushion because of its size. Most products that come with one cushion are too small for people with wide frames. Luckily, this seat cushion has large dimensions that make it perfect for people of all shapes and sizes. With this product, you don’t need to worry about choosing the right size because it’s one-size-fits-all.
    The manufacturer also has a 2-year satisfaction guarantee, so you don’t need to take any risks. If you dislike the seat cushion, simply send it back to the manufacturer for a refund.
    Things to Consider
    The Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion performs as advertised, but it lacks features that regulate temperature. There is no cooling gel, which makes it uncomfortable to use for long periods.
    Some shoppers don’t need cooling gel, but if you prefer a product that comes with it, a great alternative is the ComfiLife Gel Enhanced Seat Cushion. It’s smaller than this seat cushion but comes with a layer of cooling gel for temperature regulation.
    Who It’s For
    If you’ve tried smaller seat cushions in the past and find them uncomfortable, this product is a great choice. Its large size makes it comfortable for everyone, regardless of body type. Compared to other products with one seat cushion, the Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion is more extensive than most competitors.

    Large size accommodates most body types
    Machine washable cover
    Orthopedic memory foam
    Risk-free 2-year satisfaction guarantee

    Lacks portability
    No cooling gel for temperature regulation

    5. Best Cushion/Pillow Combination: Fortem Seat Cushion

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    Why we like it: We love the Fortem Seat Cushion because you can use it as a memory foam pillow if you need to take a break from trucking.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$$
    Cushions: 2
    Style: U-shape
    Size: 17.5×13.5×3
    The Fortem Seat Cushion comes with two cushions that support your upper and lower back. Both cushions come with machine washable 3D covers, and they’re made with memory foam material. This helps the cushion conform to your body and remember your imprint for added comfort.
    Two straps connect the cushions, and there is a carrying handle that makes it easy to switch between vehicles or your home. It also features a u-shape design that keeps pressure off your tailbone and a carrying handle for portability.
    What Sets it Apart
    The Fortem Seat Cushion is unique because you can use it as a memory foam pillow. While the lower cushion is for sitting, the upper cushion doubles as a pillow. The pad works well, and it’s useful in cars, at home, and even during airline travel. There is also a one-year warranty, so you don’t need to worry about wasting money if it’s not the right fit.
    Things to Consider
    This seat cushion comes with many unique features, but it’s not perfect. While its lightweight design makes it easy to move around, it doesn’t handle heavier passengers well. For people with larger frames and weight over 200 pounds, you should consider an alternative.
    If you like the two-cushion design, a great option is the SOFTaCARE Seat Cushion. It’s made with similar memory foam, comes with two cushions, and can handle more weight.
    Who It’s For
    If you’re someone who trucks for many hours or days at once, this product is an excellent choice. The upper cushion functions as a memory foam pillow, so you can pull over and take a nap without waking up with neck pain. Furthermore, you can adjust the straps to position the pillow higher on the seat if you’re looking to sleep in a seated position.

    Adjustable straps for different positions on seats
    Comes with a carrying handle for portability
    The upper cushion works as a memory foam pillow
    One-year warranty
    Machine washable covers

    Not suitable for people over 200 pounds
    These straps don’t connect the cushions, which makes it easier to misplace one

    6. Best All-Purpose Seat Cushion: Everlasting Comfort Seat Cushion

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    Why we like it: We love the Everlasting Comfort Seat Cushion because it’s an all-purpose product. It’s designed to fit most chairs, and it’s useful at home and on the go.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$
    Cushions: 1
    Style: U-shape
    Size: 17×14×2 inches
    The Everlasting Comfort Seat Cushion is one of the most popular products around. It’s designed for office chairs, trucks, cars, and even couches. The seat cushion is made with 100% memory foam that conforms to your body for maximum comfort. Furthermore, it features an ergonomic u-shape cutout for tailbone pressure release.
    This seat cushion also uses heat-responsive technology to prevent sweating during long periods. You can also clean the seat cover in a washing machine, and it won’t shrink in dryers.
    What Sets it Apart
    The Everlasting Comfort Seat Cushion is unique because it’s an all-purpose seat cushion. While it works for truck driving, you can also use it at home or the office. Furthermore, it’s portable, lightweight, and easy to move between vehicles. Compared to other seat cushions, it’s one of the best products to use in different settings.
    Things to Consider
    The Everlasting Comfort Seat Cushion is designed well, but it suffers from its small size. Compared to larger seat cushions, it’s not a great fit for all body types. If you have a wider frame, you’re better off with a larger seat cushion like the Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion. The design is similar, but it’s wider.
    Who It’s For
    This seat cushion is an excellent choice for truck drivers that move around frequently. If you drive a few different trucks, it’s easy to take with you between vehicles. Plus, it’s great to use at home for additional comfort on the couch or in your office. Overall, it’s one of the most well-rounded seat cushions around.

    Machine-washable seat cover
    Lightweight and portable
    Ergonomic u-shape design relieves tailbone pressure

    Its small size is not suitable for people with larger body types

    7. Best Waterproof Cushion: Cool Gel Memory Foam Seat Cushion

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    Why we like it: We love that this product comes with a waterproof seat cover. When you’re trucking in the rain, you can keep the fabric safe and dry.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$
    Cushions: 2
    Style: U-shape
    Size: 19.61×16.1×6.61
    The Cool Gel Memory Foam Seat Cushion is a large product that comes with two premium seat cushions. The cushions come with machine washable covers and use memory foam that conforms to your body.
    The lower cushion uses a u-shape design to relieve tailbone pressure, and the upper cushion relieves tension from your spine. Some straps let you adjust the cushions’ position, and they’re sturdy enough to accommodate people with large frames and above-average body weight.
    What Sets it Apart
    The Cool Gel Memory Foam Seat Cushion is similar to most two-cushion products, but it comes with a waterproof cover. This cover slips over the product and keeps the fabric safe from water. The company also offers a satisfaction guarantee, so you can return the cushions if you don’t like them.
    Things to Consider
    The Cool Gel Memory Foam Seat Cushion is a well-rounded product, but it’s larger than most seat cushions. While this works well for larger people, it’s cumbersome to move around and less portable than similar two-cushion products.
    If you’re looking for a more compact and portable two-cushion product, the Fortem Seat Cushion is a great alternative. It comes with similar features, but it’s smaller and portable.
    Who It’s For
    If you’re someone that works in a humid climate, the Cool Gel Memory Foam Seat Cushion is a great choice. The waterproof seat cover keeps the fabric safe from moisture, so you don’t need to clean it if the seat cushion comes into contact with water. This seat cushion is also an excellent choice for people with larger frames because it’s wider than most products.

    Comes with a waterproof cover
    U-shape design for tailbone relief
    Adjustable straps
    Suitable for people with larger frames
    Satisfaction guarantee

    Bulky and less portable than smaller seat cushions

    8. Most Breathable: Donut Pillow

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    Why we like it: The Donut Pillow is one of our top picks because of the innovative donut-shaped design. For some truck drivers, it’s more comfortable and breathable than u-shape seat cushions.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$
    Cushions: 1
    Style: Donut
    Size: 16×13×2.75
    The Donut Pillow is an innovative pillow that takes on the shape of a donut. It’s made with memory foam that conforms to your body, and the cover is machine washable. While this pillow is comfortable, it’s also great for pain relief. The donut shape is perfect for dealing with hemorrhoids, lumbar pain, and tailbone problems. Furthermore, it increases blood flow and corrects posture. The seat cushion is also ergonomic and fits in most vehicles.
    What Sets it Apart
    Orthopedic doctors recommend the Donut Pillow because of the donut-style design. While it works like a u-shape pillow, the donut shape relieves more tailbone pressure and regulates blood flow. Furthermore, it’s better at keeping your butt off of the seat because it’s sturdier than flat, u-shape seat cushions.
    Things to Consider
    The Donut Pillow is a great choice, but it’s not for everyone. While the donut-style design is beneficial, it offers less back support than u-shape cushions because it elevates your body off the seat and backrest. If you’re looking for a traditional u-shape seat cushion, the Everlasting Comfort Seat Cushion is a great alternative.
    Who It’s For
    The Donut Pillow is an excellent choice if you’re suffering from tailbone discomfort. The donut shape is perfect for relieving pressure in your tailbone, reducing the impact of hemorrhoids, and regulating blood flow. While it’s less useful for back problems, it’s the best choice for tailbone relief.

    Relieves tailbone pressure, regulates blood flow, and reduces the impact of hemorrhoids
    Recommended by orthopedic doctors
    Machine washable cover

    Less effective than u-shape pillows for lumbar support
    Can be uncomfortable for tall people

    9. Best Lumbar Support: Dreamer Car Lumbar

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    Why we like it: This is one of our favorite choices because of the ergonomic design that runs along the length of your back. Unlike other seat cushions, this product gives support to every area of your back.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$
    Cushions: 1
    Style: Spinal
    Size: 29.9 inches
    The Dreamer Car Lumbar has a unique design that runs along the length of your back. This allows the product to provide support to all areas of your back, and you don’t need to make adjustments. Primarily, it’s made with memory foam that conforms to your body, but the seat cover uses cotton that makes it soft to the touch. It also comes with durable and sturdy buckles that keep it secured to your seat.
    What Sets it Apart
    The Dreamer Car Lumbar is unique because of its design. While you only get one cushion, the cushion rests between you and the seat. You don’t need to worry about adjusting the cushion position and there is no lower cushion to worry about. Furthermore, it looks good in most vehicles and gives you better posture for driving.
    Things to Consider
    The Dreamer Car Lumbar uses a unique design that doesn’t work for everyone. While it’s innovative, you can’t adjust the cushion on your seat. Unfortunately, if you’re over six feet tall, you won’t benefit from this product. Furthermore, there is no u-shape cutout to relieve pressure on your tailbone. If you’re looking for a simple seat cushion that’s one-size-fits-all and good for tailbone pressure, the Everlasting Comfort Seat Cushion is an excellent alternative.
    Who It’s For
    The Dreamer Car Lumbar is an excellent product for people under six feet tall because you don’t need to worry about making adjustments on the seat. This cushion is also a great choice if you don’t want to sit on anything. It offers lumbar support without forcing you to sit on an additional cushion. While sitting on a cushion is excellent for tailbone relief, it can lead to uncomfortable driving positions, and you have to make adjustments to your seat when you move it.

    Innovative design doesn’t require seating adjustments
    Sturdy buckle prevents it from moving on the road
    Fixes your posture on the road

    Doesn’t offer support for your tailbone
    Not suitable for people over six feet tall

    10. Best Wedge Seat Cushion: Desk Jockey Car Seat

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    Why we like it: We love the Desk Jockey Car Seat because it comes with a carrying case you can use for transportation or storage. With the carrying case, you don’t need to worry about dust or debris building up on the surface, even if you haven’t used it in a while.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Price: $$
    Cushions: 1
    Style: Wedge
    Size: 14×13×3 inches
    The Desk Jockey Car Seat is a wedge-shape product that gives you an alternative to u-shape and two-cushion products. The wedge corrects your posture, helps you see over the steering wheel, and comes with a u-shape indent for tailbone relief. This product also comes with a cover that’s machine washable and a carrying case for storage or travel.
    What Sets it Apart
    Aside from the wedge shape, this product is unique because of the carrying case it comes with. The carrying case makes it easy to take with you on the go, but you can also use it for storage. This helps you store the product without worrying about dust or debris building up on the surface.
    Things to Consider
    The Desk Jockey Car Seat is a great product, but the wedge design doesn’t work for everyone. While it’s portable, some people find the angle uncomfortable during long periods, especially if you’re tall. This is more a preference issue, but it’s worth noting.
    It also lacks a u-shape cutout, so there is no tailbone relief. The u-shape indent works well, but it’s less effective than the cutout. Another thing to note is that the velvet cover can shrink in the dryer, making it useless.
    If you’re looking for a more traditional u-shape seat cushion, the Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion is a great alternative. It’s similar in size but features a u-shape design for tailbone relief.
    Who It’s For
    If you’re not looking for two cushions and don’t need the u-shape cutout, this product is a great choice. Furthermore, this cushion is also a great choice if you have trouble seeing over the steering wheel. Unlike u-shape cushions, this product gives you a few extra inches to sit on. The carrying case also makes it an excellent choice for shoppers that only need a seat cushion every once in a while.

    Comes with a carrying case
    Comfortable and soft velvet cover
    Machine washable
    Corrects posture and gives you additional height to see out of your windshield

    If you’re tall, the height boost is uncomfortable
    The u-shape indent doesn’t relieve as much pressure as u-shape cutouts
    The velvet cover can shrink in the dryer

    Everything You Need to Know About Seat Cushions for Truck Drivers

    If you’re driving a truck across many miles, a seat cushion can make or break your experience. Looking at the ten best seat cushions for truck drivers makes shopping more manageable, but you still have to narrow down your options. To help you do so, we’re going to take you through shopping tips and make recommendations based on your personal needs.
    Starting With Your Area of Discomfort
    First and foremost, we’ll start with your area of discomfort. Depending on where you’re experiencing pain or discomfort, the seat cushion, you need changes. Some everyday struggles include lower back problems, tailbone pressure, and spinal issues.
    Lower Back
    We’ll start with the lower back. Lower back pain is one of the most common problems we face as a society. Most people have experienced lumbar pain before or will in the future. Unfortunately, lower back pain is a gift that keeps on giving. Furthermore, if you have a condition like sciatica, lower back pain comes in waves that vary in intensity.
    When it comes to driving a truck for long periods, lower back pain becomes a nagging issue. You’ll find yourself squirming to find the right position but the discomfort rarely subsides. To fix the problem, you need a seat cushion that gives your lower lumbar support. This is because sitting for long periods is linked to back pain with improper posture.
    According to Harvard University, preventing and treating back pain while you’re sitting is about correcting your posture.
    If you’re struggling with lower back pain, we have a few recommendations. First and foremost, the ComfiLife Gel Enhanced Seat Cushion is a great seat cushion for truck drivers to start with. The u-shape design keeps your tailbone and lumbar in the right position to prevent pain or discomfort. It also comes with cooling gel to keep you cool during the long haul.
    If you’re looking for a two-cushion option, which is best for severe back pain, the SOFTaCARE Seat Cushion is a great choice. The lower cushion has a u-shape cutout for your tailbone, and the upper cushion can be positioned to improve your posture.
    When sitting down, you’re putting most of your body weight on your tailbone. The tailbone is one of the most durable parts of the body but sitting for long periods causes pressure. This problem worsens when you’re sitting for long periods on un-padded seating, which is what most heavy trucks come with.
    To rid your tailbone of pressure, you’ll want to sit on a seat cushion that has a u-shape or donut shape cutout. The cutout lets your body evenly distribute your torso’s weight, which relieves the pressure on your tailbone. One of the most effective tailbone relief products is the Donut Pillow.
    We prefer the Donut Pillow over u-shape products because the cutout is larger and more ergonomic. Still, if you’re suffering from a combination of lower lumbar pain and tailbone pressure, a u-shape seat cushion is your best option.
    Spinal Problems
    Spinal problems typically come from injuries like herniated discs. These injuries damage the spine, which causes inflammation around the site of the injury. Unfortunately, spinal problems are challenging to treat without the right seat cushion. The good news? The Dreamer Car Lumbar can help.
    This seat cushion runs along the length of your back, giving you support for multiple areas. While it doesn’t relieve tailbone pressure, it’s useful for your upper and lower back. Even pain from herniated discs can be reduced with this seat cushion.
    Temperature Regulation
    Temperature regulation is essential if you’re sitting for long periods. While it’s not as bad as pain, having a sweaty back or buttocks can ruin your day. Plus, if you drive through humid areas on warm days, your truck’s air conditioning might not be enough to keep you cool.
    If you’re struggling with temperature regulation, one of the best seat cushions for truck drivers is the Everlasting Comfort Memory Foam Seat Cushion. It uses ventilated cooling gel to disperse body heat, keep you dry, and cool you down.
    Finding the Right Size
    When you’re driving a truck, being in the right position is essential. You need to see the road and vehicles around you to prevent accidents. If you’re not sitting at the right height or use a seat cushion that puts you in an awkward position, it puts your life and the lives of others in harm’s way. Luckily, there are seat cushions for truck drivers of all sizes.
    Small Build
    If you’re on the smaller side, less than six feet tall or slender, having a seat cushion that gives you a boost can help you see over the steering wheel. For smaller builds, the Desk Jockey Car Seat is a great choice. The wedge design gives you a three-inch boost, which is perfect for expanding your vision.
    Large Build
    Unfortunately, if you’re taller or broader than average, finding a comfortable seat cushion isn’t always straightforward. Luckily, you have options. One of our favorite choices for larger builds is the Cool Gel Memory Foam Seat Cushion.
    While it’s larger than most seat cushions for truck drivers, it’s not cumbersome and doesn’t alter your driving position. Furthermore, the larger size makes it comfortable for people with large hips, and the adjustable upper cushion is perfect for people over six feet tall.
    Seat Cushions for Truck Drivers FAQ
    Can I Use an Office Chair Seat Cushion for Trucking?
    Most seat cushions have advantages and disadvantages. While you can use most seat cushions for multiple applications, seat cushions for truck driving need to be considered carefully. Sure, you can use your office cushion, but you’ll be better off with a product that’s designed for use in cars or trucks.
    How Many Cushions do I Need?
    When you’re shopping for seat cushions, it’s hard to know how many you need. Starting with one is the best way to see if you need more, but if you have upper back or neck issues, it’s a good idea to start with a two-cushion product like the Fortem Seat Cushion. You’ll be able to adjust the top cushion to help your neck and spine.
    Can I Use a Standard U-Shape Neck Pillow?
    While you can use a standard u-shape neck pillow, like the ones you see everyone using on planes, they’re not practical for truck driving. This is because the pillows are designed as pillows, which means they’re for sleeping. When you’re driving a truck, sleeping is one of the last things you should be doing. Furthermore, u-shape neck pillows don’t work for your back or tailbone.
    Because your spine support is so important, we recommend the correct cushion for every vehicle you will be spending a long time in, including your car and motorcycle.
    Final Words
    Your comfort is our priority. Trucking over various miles causes discomfort, regardless of the chair you’re sitting in. For this reason, we want you to have the best seat cushion. While some products might work for others, seat cushions are personal products.
    We’ve done our best to help you narrow down your options, but sometimes you need to try a few products before you find the right fit. The good news is that seat cushions for truck drivers are affordable products, so feel free to try a few before you settle on one you like! More

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    The 10 Best Car Odor Eliminators to Buy 2021

    Nobody likes a smelly car. If you’ve cleaned your car but just can’t get that rancid smell to go away, you’ll want to consider a good car odor eliminator. Finding the right one depends on what you’re dealing with and your personal preferences. However, we’ve taken some of the leg work out of finding the right odor eliminator for your car.

    Things to Consider in Car Odor Eliminators
    With many smells to eliminate, and many products on the market, you’ll want to make a few considerations before grabbing an odor eliminator for your car.
    Type of Odor Eliminators
    There are several different types of odor eliminators to use in your car, depending on much time or effort you’re willing to put in, or how aggressive of an odor you’re facing.
    Spot Sprays
    Odor eliminators that come premixed in a spray bottle make it quick and easy to get down to business. You can spot spray affected areas, such as in the case of pet accidents, or you can hit your entire car to zap lingering odors like those from smoke. Just be mindful of the directions – some sprays don’t mix well with leather and plastics, and can cause damage to certain surfaces.
    These are concentrated odor eliminators meant to be diluted in water. With concentrates, you can customize the strength, making them great for dealing with harsh odors. Concentrates are also often more economical in the long run.
    For instance, the Chemical Guys New Car Smell Odor Eliminator makes up to 2 full gallons worth of spray. Using it in moderation, it could easily last you a full year.
    These set-and-forget aerosol sprays are one of the easiest and quickest ways to freshen your car up and eliminate foul odors. They are also perhaps the most dangerous – with foggers, you’ll want to make sure your car is clear of pets and people. When activating a fogger’s locking trigger, make sure you also keep it pointed away from you.
    Vent and Duct Aerosols
    Foggers work great for your whole car, including your vents and ducts. But if you’ve got a problem in your car’s AC system, you might specifically opt for a vent and duct odor eliminator. These aerosols are meant to go into your vents inside your car, as well as your air intake outside the car. They usually come with a straw that helps you get down inside your vents.
    A gel that sits passively to eliminate odors around the clock. These are useful if you smoke in your car, but you don’t want your car smelling like stale smoke. They also work great as a general air freshener that eliminates odors.
    Charcoal Bags
    Another great passive option, they utilize charcoal’s absorbent properties to suck up odors and trap them. These are also non-toxic, environmentally safe, and have no smell, making them great if you’re sensitive to smells.
    Powder odor eliminators are simple products you sprinkle onto your fabrics and then vacuum up. With some powders, you can also mix them with water and use them as a spot spray.
    Type of Odors
    Odor eliminators have one job and one job only: get rid of that gnarly stench in your car. Next you need to consider what odors you’re dealing with. Here are a few common types of odors:
    Pet Smells
    This is a catch-all for any odors caused by your pets, from wet dog smell to vomit and accidents. If you’ve got an organic mess in your carpet or seats, you’ll seriously want to consider a product specifically meant to tackle these messes, like Rocco & Roxie Supply Professional Strength Stain and Odor Eliminator. It’s formulated with special enzymes that will take out stains and eat odors caused by pets.
    Stale smoke odors are the worst, especially if you’re a non-smoker. Most odor eliminators will tackle smoke odors to some degree. But if you want to be extra sure you’ll rid your car of that horrendous stench, you might want to consider something specifically made for smoke odors, such as Armor All’s Smoke X Odor Eliminator.
    If you’re a current smoker, but want to keep your car smelling as fresh as possible, you can also try using the Ozium Smoke & Odors Eliminator Gel. This stuff works passively around the clock to help keep your car smelling fresh, and lasts for months.
    Mold and Mildew
    Mold and mildew are an unfortunate side effect of high humidity. You might find mold and mildew in your air ducts, especially if you commonly run your air conditioner. If you’ve isolated the smell to your vents and ducts, you’ll either want an aerosol fogger or an air duct cleaner like the Armor All Car Vent and Duct Odor Eliminator.
    All odor eliminators can be safe as long as you use them as directed. Still, you might want to opt for a non-toxic option to avoid potential health problems and disasters.
    If you’re looking for something that’s non-toxic and environmentally friendly, you might want to check out Van Den Heuvels R86 Industrial Odor Eliminator.
    Suitable Surfaces
    Your car’s interior is made up of rubber, vinyl, plastic, fabrics, and maybe even leather. With so many types of surfaces, you’ll want to be sure to choose an odor eliminator that’s safe for the surfaces you’re treating.
    Some sprays are meant for fabrics only, and can damage the plastic, leather, or vinyl components. Others are safe for all water-safe surfaces. Be sure you’re grabbing the right stuff for the job so you don’t ruin your car trying to tame foul odors.
    Now, keeping in mind some of the basics, let’s look at some of the best car odor eliminators we’ve found.

    Top 10 Best Car Odor Eliminators 2021
    1. Best Overall Odor Eliminator: Febreze Eliminator Extra Strength + Unstopables

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    Why we like it: From a reputable company, it’s rather inexpensive, works great, and can neutralize the toughest odors.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Spot spray
    Type of odors: All
    Safety: Safe when dry
    Surfaces: Fabrics
    A staple in many households, Febreze is well-known for being one of the best odor eliminators around. Formulated to attract and neutralize odors, this package is a double-whammy for foul odors in your car.
    It includes a bottle of Febreze Fabric Extra Strength and Febreze Fabric “UnStopables,” a more concentrated formula. Both bottles contain a proprietary formula that is safe for all fabrics except leather, suede, and silk. However, be sure to do a test spray in an inconspicuous spot if you’re worried about potential water spotting or other issues.
    In addition to eliminating foul odors in your car, Febreze is also great for around the house. Being versatile and relatively inexpensive, it’s a safe bet and works effectively on most foul odors that linger.
    Both sprays have a strong fresh linen scent that will fade as they dry. If you’re sensitive to chemical fragrances, this could be a little too strong for you – especially the “UnStopables.” In that case, you might consider spraying when you plan to be away from your car for a while, and then briefly air it out before you get in again.
    If you’d rather opt for a more natural smell, you might be interested in checking out the Angry Orange Pet Odor Eliminator. It doesn’t contain the same odor-trapping chemicals Febreze includes, but it’s a powerful natural cleaner capable of eliminating odors while leaving a fresh orange scent behind.
    Nevertheless, Febreze is a common household name for a reason. Whether you’re trying to tackle old smoke and pet odors, or you just want an effective multi-use odor eliminator for your car and home, Febreze is a solid choice.

    Tackles many types of foul odors
    Safe on nearly all fabrics
    Multiple bottles of different scents
    Fresh linen scent

    Fragrance may be too strong and artificial for some people

    2. Best Premium Odor Eliminator: Angry Orange Ready-to-Use Citrus Pet Odor Eliminator

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    Why we like it: It’s natural, non-toxic, biodegradable, and makes your car smell like an orange orchard.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Spot spray
    Type of odors: All
    Safety: Biodegradable and non-toxic
    Surfaces: Most water-safe surfaces
    Angry Orange’s Ready-to-Use Pet Odor Eliminator is a great choice if you want to eliminate tough odors, or just freshen your car up. Despite the fact that it’s marketed as a pet odor eliminator, it’s a great all-around odor eliminator strong enough to work on smelly pet accidents.
    The smell is insanely strong, yet natural and fairly pleasant. You should be prepared for an orange bomb after you spray it, especially if you’re putting it in a small, enclosed area like your car. However, given time, it will fade, and you can always further dilute it to lessen the intensity of the smell.
    If you have a sensitive nose, Angry Orange may be a bit overwhelming. If you’d rather opt for a natural odor eliminator that doesn’t have a smell, you might want to consider the Basic Concepts Bamboo Charcoal Air Purifying Bags. However, you should also keep in mind that – unlike Angry Orange – charcoal bags are a passive solution and won’t attack the source of foul odors.
    Angry Orange is safe for nearly all water-safe surfaces and safe around children and pets. However, you’ll want to be careful with plastic. Concentrated orange oil can melt through polystyrene. This bottle isn’t a pure orange oil concentrate, but it could still cause some issues with clouding on your car’s dashboard. As such, you should always do an inconspicuous test spray before going nuts with it.
    If you love the smell of citrus, or you just want a natural and potent alternative to the likes of Febreze and other artificial odor eliminator sprays, this stuff is the perfect solution for you!

    Great for all-around use
    Smells great and all-natural
    Works especially well on pet odors
    Safe for most surfaces

    Smell may be overwhelming for some
    May not be safe to spray on plastics

    3. Best Budget Odor Eliminator: Chemical Guys AIR_101_16 New Car Smell Odor Eliminator

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    Why we like it: Aiming to give your car that new car smell, this stuff will last forever, making up to 2 gallons of spray.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Concentrate
    Type of odors: All
    Safety: May irritate eyes
    Surfaces: Fabric (not safe for use on plastic)
    Sometimes a little can go a long way, and with the Chemical Guys New Car Smell Odor Eliminator, that certainly holds true. At a highly competitive price, this small 16-ounce bottle of concentrate makes up to 2 gallons of spray that will last for a long time, making it a highly economical choice.
    It won’t just mask odors either. Containing odor-fighting enzymes, it seeks to eliminate odors at the source, leaving behind an odor that’s supposed to make your car smell as if you just drove it off the lot. It also contains enzymes that will break down odor-causing molecules, so you can be sure it won’t just mask odors.
    Like Angry Orange, this stuff has a powerful smell. That means you’ll either want to dilute it as per the instructions, or go light – one spray of the concentrate under your floor mats should be more than enough, and can even be overwhelming if you’re sensitive to smell.
    Since this spray from Chemical Guys aims to mimic the freshly-tanned leather and clean rubber and plastic of a new car, it’s going to have an artificial chemical smell. If you’d rather a more natural scent, you might consider something like Angry Orange, an equally potent natural solution.
    This spray is meant for fabric only, and it can damage your dashboard. You’ll want to avoid spraying it on your dash or in the air. You’ll also want to give the spray some time to set and dry – we recommend spraying when you’ve got a few hours to let it set.
    Whether you’re combating stale smoke odors or just looking to keep your car smelling crisp, this is a great choice for keeping your car smelling as close to new as you can get.

    Concentrate means it will last for a long time
    Odor-fighting enzymes to eliminate odors at the source
    Strong smell will overpower foul odors

    Chemical smell can be overwhelming
    Can cause damage to dash if used inappropriately

    4. Best Pet Odor Eliminator: Rocco & Roxie Supply Professional Strength Stain and Odor Eliminator

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    Why we like it: Formulated with enzymes, it will break down organic odors at the source and eliminate stains as well.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Spot spray
    Type of odors: Organic/pet odors
    Safety: Safe when dry
    Surfaces: All water-safe surfaces
    If you frequently travel with your pets, then you’ll want to pick up a bottle of Rocco & Roxie Supply’s Professional Strength Stain and Odor Eliminator. One of the best pet stain and odor eliminators on the market, it’s great for combating foul pet odors like wet dog smell and pet accidents. The company also offers a 100% money-back guarantee.
    Containing a powerful blend of enzymatic bacteria that will tackle the worst organic odors and stains, it’s safe for use around pets and children. It’s also safe on virtually all surfaces, and is certified by the Carpet and Rug Institute as safe for all carpets.
    Keep in mind that this product has a strong fragrance. The smell of this spray might not be as strong as some of the other products we’ve listed, but just know it’s not totally scent-free. However, the smell fades as it dries, and it sure beats foul odors from pet accidents and the like.
    If you’re looking to rid your vehicle of smoke odors, this product may help. However, the company recommends you use a product designed for smoke odors – something like the Armor All Smoke X Car Odor Eliminator is a perfect solution for dealing with smoke odors.
    Other than potentially not working for smoke odors, the only real issue we see with this product is the price, which is rather high compared to other products on this list. Still, given its effectiveness and stellar money-back guarantee, you don’t really have anything to lose.

    Works great on pet odors and stains
    Safe for nearly all surfaces
    Certified safe for all carpets

    Strong smell
    High price
    May not work on smoke odors

    5. Best Aerosol Odor Eliminator: Meguiar’s G16402 Whole Car Odor Eliminator

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    Why we like it: This little can can clear your whole car of foul odors, reaching hard-to-reach spots, with the press of a button.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Fogger
    Type of odors: All
    Safety: Flammable and toxic (direct exposure)
    Surfaces: All
    Since 1901, Meguiar’s has been making car care products for car lover’s the world over. If you want to deodorize your whole car quickly and easily, then Meguiar’s Whole Car Odor Eliminator is a good choice for you.
    This little can of aerosol makes it effortless to have your car smelling like new. With a locking trigger on the can, you can simply set it and forget it (for 15 minutes). After letting your car air out for an additional 10-15 minutes, it’s now ready to drive, free of the foul odors you’re looking to rid your car of.
    You won’t have to worry about this causing any adverse reactions with the interior of your car. It won’t stain fabrics or ruin leather, plastics, or other components of your car’s interior.
    Like other odor eliminating products that aim to emulate that “new car smell,” this stuff might not hit the nail on the head. However, it does leave a fresh and clean smell behind, getting into hard-to-reach places that other odor eliminators can’t.
    Aside from personal smell preferences, there are really only 2 downsides to this product. First, you should absolutely not have any living things in your car when you spray it, as it’s highly toxic if you’re directly exposed to it. It’s also flammable, so you’ll want to keep it away from sparks and flames, and store it in a cool area.
    That aside, it’s not as versatile as other odor eliminators like the Febreze odor eliminators. If you want something you can use in your car and home, then this might not be right for you. But of course, Febreze is generally made for fabrics only, making Meguiar’s an excellent choice if you’re looking to make your entire car smell good.

    Works quickly
    Simple to use
    Works in hard-to-reach places
    Leaves a fresh and clean smell

    Can be toxic and flammable
    Not as versatile as other odor eliminators

    6. Best Fragrance-Free Odor Eliminator: Basic Concepts Bamboo Charcoal Air Purifying Bags

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    Why we like it: Non-toxic, odor-free, and easy to use. You can set them and forget them, and these bags will last for 2 full years.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Charcoal bag
    Type of odors: All
    Safety: Non-toxic
    Surfaces: All
    If you’re sensitive to smells, it can be hard to find a good odor eliminator that doesn’t carry an overwhelming odor itself. However, the Basic Concepts Bamboo Charcoal Air Purifying Bags are a great fragrance-free odor eliminator that are great for small spaces like your vehicle. They’re also natural and non-toxic, making them great for anyone looking for a natural alternative to chemicals and sprays.
    Made with activated bamboo charcoal, these bags sit idly by and adsorb odors that permeate the air. They do so by trapping the odors within the confines of the hundreds of square meters of surface area the activated charcoal has, thereby blocking odors from reaching your nose.
    Of course, this means these bags aren’t good for taking care of odors at their source. As such, they aren’t great at tackling particularly offensive odors that need to be dealt with immediately, such as pet urine.
    Rather, charcoal bags like these are better at controlling perpetual odors like smoke or mildew, or in situations where they’ll have time to work (which can take a while, depending on the severity and source of the odors).
    They also work great in combination with other odor eliminators. Sprays that tackle odors at the source, such as Rocco & Roxie Supply’s Professional Strength Stain and Odor Eliminator, are great at zapping smells from the source, while these bags can help lessen the intensity of the spray’s fragrance.
    Given that these bags are useful for up to 2 years, they are a worthy consideration as both a stand-alone and a supplemental purchase. They won’t harm your car or your loved ones, and they’ll stop your car from smelling bad.

    Natural and non-toxic
    Works for up to 2 years

    Won’t eliminate odors at their source
    Can take a while to work

    7. Best Odor Eliminating Gel: Ozium 804281-4 Smoke & Odors Eliminator Gel

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    Why we like it: Made by a reputable brand, this works around the clock, great against recurring odors, and lasts for months.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Gel
    Type of odors: Smoke
    Safety: Non-flammable
    Surfaces: All
    Ozium is a popular odor eliminator, and the Ozium Smoke and Odors Eliminator Gel is a great way to keep your car smelling great for months. It deals with foul odors by attaching to airborne bacteria, odors and contaminants as it evaporates. Made to eliminate smoke and other lingering odors, it leaves a fresh fragrance in its midst.
    Since this is a passive air eliminator, like Basic Concepts’ Charcoal Bags, it works around the clock to slowly eliminate odors. Likewise, it can be placed anywhere in your car to effectively eliminate odors wherever they are. Unlike charcoal, however, it will eventually reach the source of odors as the gel slowly evaporates and permeates the air.
    This gel has a very synthetic, cleaner-type smell. If you’re sensitive to chemical smells, you might be better off going with something like the charcoal bags. However, they do have an adjustable vent cap. This allows you to control the amount of fragrance emitted from the can, giving you some control over the smell.
    Because the gel is formulated for use in cars, it won’t melt in high temperatures that are common in vehicles during warm weather. It will, however, evaporate at a quicker rate in high temperatures, meaning the duration of their effectiveness will depend on how warm your car typically gets.
    Overall, given their effectiveness on foul odors and their long-lasting effects, they’re perfect for taming recurring foul odors or just keeping your vehicle smelling clean.

    Works for months
    Adjustable vent caps
    Heat-resistant gel won’t melt in high temperatures
    Works great on recurring odors like smoke

    Won’t last as long in high temperatures
    Works slowly to eliminate odors
    Has a strong synthetic smell

    8. Best Odor Eliminator for Smoke: Armor All Smoke X Car Odor Eliminator

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    Why we like it: Made specifically for smoke odors, it will take away smoke smells quickly and effectively.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Fogger
    Type of odors: Smoke
    Safety: Flammable and toxic (direct exposure)
    Surfaces: All
    Whether you’re an ex-smoker or you’ve just bought a car from someone who smokes, you’ll find that smoke smells linger long after the smoke has cleared. Armor All’s Smoke X Car Odor Eliminator fogger quickly eliminates lingering smoke odors for good.
    Unlike spot sprayers, this will work well to reach smells throughout your entire car, including inside your vents and ducts. It’s also easier to use than traditional odor eliminating sprays – simply trigger the can’s locking mechanism, turn on your air conditioner and set it to recirculate, and let the eliminator work for 15 minutes.
    Like other odor eliminating foggers, this stuff is toxic if inhaled. You’ll want to remember to give your car time to air out after using it, and keep plants, pets and people clear of the vehicle during use.
    While this stuff works great on combating foul odors, it won’t work as well on other foul odors as it does on smoke odors. It also has a scent that’s reminiscent of an 80s cologne, which certainly isn’t for everyone.
    If you still want to go the fogger route, you might want to consider using Meguiar’s Whole Car Odor Eliminator. However, Meguiar’s eliminator is not specifically formulated to work on smoke odors, so it might not be as effective as Armor All’s solution for eliminating smoke odors.
    If you’re specifically combating smoke odors, you’ll certainly want to give Armor All’s Smoke X Odor eliminator a try. Given it’s relatively low cost, it’s worth a try if you want to stop your car smelling like a stale ashtray.

    Specially formulated to combat smoke odors
    Quick and easy to use

    Can be toxic and flammable
    Not as versatile as other odor eliminators
    Smells like cologne

    9. Best Vent Odor Eliminator: Armor All Car Vent and Duct Odor Eliminator

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    Why we like it: It makes eliminating odors from your vents easy, it has a pleasant light scent, and it kills mold and mildew.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Vent and duct aerosol
    Type of odors: Mold and mildew
    Safety: Flammable and toxic (direct exposure)
    Surfaces: Vents and ducts
    If you live in a warm climate with high humidity, then you’ve probably dealt with a musty smell coming from your vents at one point or another. Unlike most other odor eliminators, the Armor All Car Vent and Duct Odor Eliminator is great at combating odors from within your car’s AC system.
    You’ll want to spray this into your car’s interior vents as well as the intake vent on the outside of your car. It will help kill any mold or mildew residing in your ducts, as well as any other lingering odors. To help it maximize its effectiveness, you’ll want to check out our recommendations below before using it.
    The scent of this vent and duct cleaner is a light and pleasant tropical smell. However, the smell of the spray doesn’t last very long – a few days at most. This could be good or bad, depending on your preferences, but it would be nice to see a longer-lasting fragrance.
    Because this spray is only for your ducts and vents, it won’t work if the source of the foul odors in your car reside elsewhere. It may also work best in combination with another effective odor eliminator, like Meguiar’s Whole Car Odor Eliminator.
    Given its relatively low price, using it with another odor eliminator will help deliver a 1-2 punch to foul odors inside your vehicle. But even by itself, it’ll work wonders for musty and malodorous vents.

    Kills mold and mildew
    Light tropical scent
    Low price
    Works great as a supplemental odor eliminator

    Only useful for ducts and vents
    Smell doesn’t last very long

    10. Best Non-Toxic Odor Eliminator: Van Den Heuvels R86 Industrial Odor Eliminator

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    Why we like it: Coming in a powdered form, this stuff is useful for all sorts of odors and is non-toxic, hypoallergenic, and biodegradable.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type of eliminator: Powder
    Type of odors: All
    Safety: Non-toxic, hypoallergenic, and biodegradable
    Surfaces: All salt-safe surfaces
    If you have a particularly pernicious foul odor plaguing your car, you might want to consider using an industrial-strength odor eliminator. Van Den Heuvels R86 Industrial Odor Eliminator is one such product that’s meant to tackle stubborn odors like skunk smell, smoke, vomit, and decay.
    What’s fascinating about this product is that, despite being an industrial-strength odor eliminator, it’s actually non-toxic, hypoallergenic, and biodegradable. But don’t let its natural makeup fool you – this isn’t your granny’s baking soda, though it works similarly.
    The actual odor eliminator is a proprietary blend of odor-absorbing salts and essential oils for fragrance that you can use wet or dry. That means you can simply sprinkle it on your carpets and seats and vacuum it off later, or you can mix it with water and put it in a spray bottle.
    The smell is often described as being either a vanilla or banana smell – sweet but not flowery. This can be off-putting to some, but it entirely depends on your preference. And while R86 is marketed as having a faint fragrance, some people might find it too strong. However, the smell will fade in a few days, and isn’t as overpowering as other odor eliminators like Angry Orange.
    This odor eliminator is best used on the source of the odor, and you may need to leave it on for a while to work. You’ll also want to be careful with this stuff around metal in your car. Since it consists of salt and essential oils, it can damage your car’s finish or accelerate rusting on unfinished metal.
    Overall, it’s a great product meant to treat horrendous smells. It’s a bit pricey, but if you’ve tried other odor eliminators to no avail, it could be worth your while to give this stuff a try.

    Great for all types of intense foul odors
    Non-toxic and environmentally friendly
    Can be used wet or dry

    Fragrance may be off-putting for some people
    Can cause damage to metal and paint

    Everything You Need to Know About Car Odor Eliminators

    We’ve covered some odor elimination basics and a number of great products for all smells. Before using an odor eliminator in your car, you should consider a few things to maximize their effectiveness and ensure you’re banishing offensive odors for good.
    Why Old Odors Come Back
    You may have used an odor eliminator in the past, only to find that the foul odors you’re trying to eliminate don’t leave permanently. There’s actually a perfectly reasonable explanation for this.
    You see, sometimes smells will naturally fade on their own as they dry out. For example, as urine dries, the uric acids eventually crystallize and cease to emit urine’s pungent odor. Without removing this residue, the source of the smell still resides in your carpet or upholstery, but sits dormant.
    Many odor eliminators like Febreze also contain molecules that trap odors. These odors will stay trapped within those molecules, and lie inert on the surface of your carpets, upholstery, and other surfaces where the odors originally resided.
    In both cases, the re-introduction of moisture can trigger the return of foul odors. For odors like urine, the introduction of moisture allows the uric acid to begin emitting the smell back into the air. Meanwhile, odor-trapping molecules will release trapped odor-producing molecules on contact with moisture.
    That’s why you may find things like Febreze an ineffective long-term solution. Even something as seemingly benign as high humidity can cause odors to resurface and re-offend.
    This leaves you with 2 options: mechanically remove the source of the odor from your car, or break them down chemically. Some odors, like wet dog smell and pet urine, can be broken down with enzymes like those found in Rocco & Roxie Supply’s Professional Strength Stain and Odor Eliminator, while others may need to be removed with an upholstery or steam cleaner.
    Maximizing the Effectiveness of Your Chosen Odor Eliminator
    Car odor eliminators are a great alternative to tearing out your interior and doing a full detailed clean. After you’ve chosen an odor eliminator, you should make sure to do a few things to maximize their effectiveness.
    Remove the Source of Offending Odors
    Ashes and dirty gym bags will diminish the effectiveness of any odor eliminator. If you want your odor eliminator to completely eliminate foul odors, you should make sure to clean your car before using them. A good vacuuming and a quick once-over to make sure any stray malodorous objects are removed will help keep odors away for good.
    For stubborn odors that have seeped into your car’s seats and carpet, you may need to bring out the big guns. A good steam cleaner will help any odor eliminator go the extra mile in effectively eliminating foul odors from your car.
    Replace Your Cabin Air Filter
    Even after you’ve cleaned your car and removed the source of the odors, you might notice offensive odors still faintly lingering. There’s a good chance that your cabin air filter is at least partially responsible for this faint lingering smell.
    Because the cabin air filter filters out dust and debris from your car, it’s likely that some of the lingering odor molecules are trapped in your filter. The best solution for dealing with this is to replace your cabin filter if possible.
    Cabin air filters are relatively inexpensive, and are a great way to keep the air you’re breathing clean. It’s also good practice to routinely change your cabin air filter regularly, both to keep your car smelling fresh and for optimal performance.
    Use Removable Seat Covers for Pets
    If you’re a pet owner, having a removable seat cover is a must to avoid pet musk. This could be anything from a blanket or sheet to an actual seat cover. A seat cover won’t prevent all accidents and smells. But having something you can easily pull out of your car and properly wash will save you the time and hassle of constantly cleaning and deodorizing your car directly.
    Avoid Storing Most Odor Eliminators in Your Car
    It really goes without saying, storing most odor eliminators in your car can lead to disaster. Many sprays and aerosols contain flammable substances that can cause a fire. This is especially prevalent with aerosol sprays, which can explode inside your car in extreme hot or cold temperatures.
    Fire and explosion hazards aside, you’ll want to keep leakage in mind. Accidents happen and sometimes things leak. Guess where it’ll end up if you keep it stored in your car?
    If you’re going with a passive odor eliminator, such as Ozium’s Smoke & Odors Eliminator Gel or Basic Concepts’ Charcoal Bags, then you shouldn’t have to worry about temperature problems or leakage. For everything else though? You might just want to leave your car’s smell-good at home.
    Wrapping Up
    Beating bad odors in your car doesn’t have to be an uphill battle. Keeping your car smelling great will keep you and your passengers happier. It will also help preserve your car’s resale value, meaning a small investment now can yield you greater return in the future.
    Beating bad odors in your car doesn’t have to be an uphill battle. Keeping your car smelling great will keep you and your passengers happier. It will also help preserve your car’s resale value, meaning a small investment now can yield you greater return in the future. More

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    The 10 Best Car Undercoating Paints to Buy 2021

    Your car is one of the most valuable and most utilized investments that you can ever have in your life. Unfortunately, its underside regularly comes into contact with a wide variety of substances. It can get splashed with water, doused with chemicals, and hit by debris and dirt that you encounter on the road. This exposure can cause major rusting or corrosion on your vehicle, compromising its road-worthiness as well as your safety over time.
    Undercoating your vehicle is an excellent way to guarantee that this isn’t going to happen. In this article, we present to you the ultimate guide to undercoating. Not only will we help you choose the best car undercoating paints for all your needs, but we will also tell you everything you need to know about the hows and whys of undercoating your car.

    Factors to Consider in Car Undercoating Paints
    With the vast choices available for undercoating your vehicle, you may get confused about what makes them all different from each other.
    In order to choose the right undercoating paint for your needs, there are several factors that you need to consider first, such as type, function, filling power, durability, volume, and shelf life.
    Although all undercoating paints are designed to protect your car from physical damage and natural elements, different types address different needs. It’s important to know what type of paint you need exactly before making your purchase.
    One, there are different types of materials that undercoating paints can be based on, such as petroleum, asphalt, silicone, rubber, ceramics, and fiberglass. Two, undercoating paints differ by application as well. Some need to be manually painted; others come in pressurized spray cans for convenient application.
    Simply put, different types have different features and benefits. If you want to learn more, this will be discussed in further detail below.
    The most basic function of your undercoating paint is to prevent corrosion and rust on the surface of your vehicle. Other functions that you might want to consider are applicability, sound deadening capabilities, the drying period after application, and aesthetics relative to the design you are going for.
    Filling Power
    This factor refers to how well your undercoat paint covers and spreads through the tiniest nooks and crannies that are present in the underbelly’s surface so that it can smooth out its surface. This is because the more even the surface of your vehicle’s undercarriage is, the better base it provides in case you may want to paint a topcoat of decorative covering.
    The best undercoating paints can last for up to several years, while others can only last for several months. Keep an eye out for the durability of your coating since this will dictate the reapplication times of your paint as well as the money you may spend for initial and continuing costs.
    Undercoating paint products come in various volume denominations. Some come 16 ounces per can, while others yet contain 5 gallons of material. If you’re DYI-ing your undercoating job, you should factor in how much paint you need for the initial coating, as well as the amount you need to buy for future maintenance. Obviously, bigger vehicles have a bigger surface that needs to be coated, so keep this in mind, too.
    Shelf Life
    Undercoating paints also come with different shelf lives, which comes hand-in-hand with volume. Most products have a shelf life of at least 1 year after being opened, but sometimes they can be shorter or longer. Let’s say you’re using undercoating paint that only has a shelf life of 6 months. How many times are you planning to reapply undercoating in 6 months? If the answer is “0,” you should buy only what you need for one paint job.
    With the wide variety of car undercoating paints present in the market, you may find it difficult to find the best option for you.
    Fortunately, that’s what we’re here for. We’ve screened through the most common undercoating products in the market right now and determined the good, the bad, and the ugly. Take a look at the list below to choose the best undercoating paint for your specific needs.

    Top 10 Best Car Undercoating Paints 2021
    1. Best Overall Undercoating Paint: 3M Professional Grade Rubberized Undercoating

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    Why we like it: The smooth, top coat-ready, protective finish of the 3M Professional Grade Rubberized Undercoating certainly lives up to the 3M quality brand name.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: Rubberized, Asphalt-Based
    Method of Application: Spray
    Drying Time: 1 hour
    Shelf Life: N/A
    3M is one of the leading brands of automotive chemical manufacturers, which is why it’s no surprise that the 3M Professional Grade Rubberized Undercoating delivers so well. Although it primarily serves to protect the undercarriage of your car from abrasion, rust, and corrosion, it’s actually a multipurpose coat, which means it also works perfectly in quarter panels, under the hood, and on fender interiors, trunk lids, and wheel wells.
    It has an asphalt-based formula that dries to a completely smooth rubberized finish. This not only inhibits rust and corrosion but is also the perfect base for a long-lasting topcoat. It also provides good sound deadening, able to reduce both road and engine noise.
    It comes in an easy spray can, perfect for touching up small or narrow parts of your vehicle, but not so much when applying over a wide area. Its no-run formula ensures that the application is never messy. However, it doesn’t offer a lot of coverage for its volume, so you’ll have to apply multiple coats just to get proper coverage. For more intense coverage, consider Dupli-Color’s Professional Rubberized Undercoat.

    Multipurpose use
    Strong, asphalt-based formula
    Easy, no-mess application
    Sound deadening properties
    Good for small or narrow parts

    More pricey than the competition
    Difficult to apply on wider areas
    Needs multiple coats for proper coverage

    2. Best Premium Undercoating Paint: POR-15 Rust Preventive Paint

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    Why we like it: The POR-15 Rust Preventive Coating isn’t just great for undercoating–it’s also an amazing choice for all-around protective coating, making it a premium product worth the premium price.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts:
    Type: Oil-Based
    Method of Application: Brush or Spray
    Drying Time: 4.5 hours on average
    Shelf Life: 2 years if unopened, around 6 months if opened
    POR-15’s best-selling Rust Preventive Coating is a high-tech coating that functions splendidly in protecting your car’s underbelly from the elements and preventing rust from forming.
    The best thing about this product is that there’s no need to remove rust completely before applying this to your car. It is specifically designed to be applied to any metal surface, as long as it is prepped properly beforehand. The material dries into a non-porous finish that is as hard as a rock and will never crack or peel. It also lasts a long time, provided that you apply it properly.
    That said, even premium products have their own downsides. For this one, shelf life is a little subpar at 6 months. It’s also UV-sensitive, so it can’t be directly exposed to sunlight. For a UV-resistant undercoating paint, take a look at Rust Bullet Automotive. If you’re planning to apply POR-15’s paint to areas that will be facing the sun for a while, you should always apply a topcoat. This is not necessary when applied to unexposed areas, though, making it the ideal undercarriage coating for your vehicle.
    It works best when used with POR 15’s 3-step rust preventive system, which consists of a cleaner/degreaser, a metal prep, and this rust preventive coating. If applying to exposed areas, finish it off with the POR-15 Top Coat.

    High-quality performance
    Protects any kind of metal surface
    Can be bought in several container sizes
    Lasts a long time if properly applied

    Has a short shelf life after opening
    Messy application as it stains everything
    UV-sensitive so not ideal for surfaces exposed to the sun

    3. Best Budget Undercoating Paint: Rust-Oleum Professional Grade Rubberized Undercoating Spray

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    Why we like it: The Rust-Oleum Professional Grade Rubberized Undercoating Spray is a fantastic option for people who want to protect their car’s underbelly completely, especially those on a tight budget.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: Rubberized
    Method of Application: Spray
    Drying Time: Dry to the touch in 1 hour; can drive in 24 hours
    Shelf Life: 5 years if unopened
    Rust-Oleum’s Pro-Grade Rubberized Undercoating Spray is called Pro-Grade for a reason. It dries into a protective high-quality rubberized material that prevents rust and protects against salt, chemicals, moisture, and environmental exposure. Since it’s rubberized, it can even save your car from minor road damages like chips or dents. It also has sound deadening qualities that make for a smooth, quiet ride.
    Despite its name, this product comes in both spray and paint form. The spray version comes with the brand’s special any-angle technology and a custom spray tip that makes application easy and convenient, even for complete beginners. The material also dries exceptionally fast compared to other rubberized sprays, becoming dry to touch after just one hour. Keep in mind though you should still wait for 24-48 hours before using your car.
    That said, this undercoating spray lets out heavy fumes, so make sure you have your protective gear ready. Also, the standard 15 oz can only cover 10-15 sq. ft., which may be too small depending on the size of your vehicle.
    If your undercarriage is rusty, you should either grind the rust down first or use the Rust-Oleum Rust Reformer Spray before using this undercoating spray.

    High quality, professional-grade product
    Ease of use with all-angle spray technology
    Fast drying for a rubberized spray

    Spray can only covers 10-15 sq. ft.
    Releases heavy fumes upon us

    4. Easiest-to-Use Undercoating Paint: Dynatron Dyna-Pro Rubberized Undercoating

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    Why we like it: Dynatron’s Dyna-Pro Rubberized Undercoating is an easy-to-use, instant protection against the harsh elements of your day-to-day commute.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: Rubberized
    Method of Application: Brush, Roll, or Spray
    Drying Time: 24 hours
    Shelf Life: 1 year if unopened, 4 months if opened
    Backed by 3M, Dynatron’s Dyna-Pro Paintable Rubberized Undercoating is a very versatile undercoat that can be used on all types of vehicles. It was specifically formulated to protect your vehicle’s undercarriage from chemical corrosion, rust, and chipping.
    It has a good coverage and can be easily applied using a brush, roller, or spray. Once it hardens to its thick, rubberized finish, it becomes tough enough to secure your car against the multitude of minor scrapes that it encounters every day. It also has sound-reducing properties to prevent unnecessarily noisy rides.
    You can buy the product in 1-gallon cans that are compatible with paint refinish systems, which means it can be easily matched with any desired OEM colors. Unfortunately, this can also be a big downside, since the shelf-life of the Dyna-Pro is quite short compared to competitors.

    Strong protection against everyday wear and tear
    Sound deadening properties
    Compatible with other paint systems

    Pricier than the competition
    Short shelf-life

    5. Most Versatile Undercoating Paint: Rust Bullet Automotive

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    Why we like it: Tough, versatile, and low-maintenance, Rust Bullet’s Automotive rust inhibitor paint is ideal for undercoating your vehicle and any outdoor metal product that can benefit from its super-strong protection.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: Non-Rubberized Polyurethane
    Method of Application: Brush, Roll, or Spray
    Drying Time: 24 hours
    Shelf Life: 2 years if unopened, 1 month if opened
    Rust Bullet’s Automotive rust inhibitor paint not only fights against rust and corrosion but also keeps your undercarriage safe from abrasions and minor damages. You also don’t need to use a primer or topcoat to use this coating. You can apply it directly on rusty or previously painted surfaces, but it’s always best to clean metal surfaces thoroughly first to ensure optimum performance.
    It can be applied to a wide variety of areas including undercarriages, floor pans, frames, suspensions, and rocker panels. It can even be applied to areas exposed to the sun, since it’s completely UV-resistant. It’s a little thinner compared to other paints but that only means that it’s much easier to apply and spread. That said, you’ll need a minimum of two coats for it to last a long time.
    Do keep in mind that due to its polyurethane formula, this rust inhibitor paint will start hardening almost immediately after you open the product. This means you should only buy the amount that you actually need for one use. It also tends to stick to everything, so be careful when applying it to your car.
    It also does not offer any noise deadening benefits. If you’re looking to reduce noise, consider Dupli-Color’s Professional Rubberized Undercoat instead.
    For best results, apply Rust Bullet Rust Treatment first to rusty areas of your vehicle before using this paint.

    Convenient one-step process
    Completely UV-resistant
    Protects from physical and chemical damages
    No heavy metals to damage your vehicle surface

    Very short shelf life once opened
    Sticks to everything and therefore may get messy
    No noise deadening capabilities

    6. Best Undercoating Paint for Aesthetics: Dupli-Color Professional Rubberized Undercoat

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    Why we like it: Plain, simple, and effective, Dupli-Color’s Professional Rubberized Undercoat is a good choice for anyone looking for an easy-to-use undercoating.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: rubberized
    Method of Application: spray
    Drying Time: 2 hours
    Shelf Life: N/A
    Dupli-Color’s Professional Rubberized Undercoat is a quick-dry, paintable-finish formula that aims not only to protect your car’s undercarriage, but also to improve its aesthetics. It dries to a rubberized matte finish that is perfect for top coating and can help the paint retain its color even after a long time.
    It provides good protection against rust, corrosion, and minor abrasions from daily use. It also has great noise deadening capabilities because of the rubberized finish. Coverage is good, provided that you prep the surface properly before application.
    Although the formula is rather thick, application is quite messy. The nozzle on the spray can is also not very durable and easily breaks. Lastly, it’s not UV-resistant, so you should only use this strictly for your undercarriage or areas that are unexposed to the sun.

    Rubberized, matte, textured finish
    Noise deadening capabilities
    Relatively cheap

    Not UV-resistant
    Messy application
    Flimsy nozzle

    7. Best Undercoating Paint for High-Contact Areas: 3M Non-Rubberized Undercoating

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    Why we like it: Although it does not perform as great as the brand’s rubberized version, 3M’s multipurpose Non-Rubberized Undercoating is a great, long-lasting, and reliable product in its own right.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: Asphalt-Based
    Method of Application: Spray
    Drying Time: 30 minutes
    Shelf Life: N/A
    This version of 3M’s undercoating paint dries solid and very hard. It’s perfect for those areas in your undercarriage that can potentially be exposed to more physical contact with the environment than normal, such as the fenders and wheel wells. Its primary use is to protect the metal from rust, build-up, and abrasions, but it’s also fairly decent at reducing road and vehicle noise.
    That said, the substance does take a while to dry. It can take anywhere from 30 minutes to a full 24 hours for it to fully cure. It also requires you to thoroughly prepare your undercarriage before application, or else it could peel off prematurely.

    Dries into a hard, protective coating
    Comes in either paintable or non-paintable variety
    Covers marks on metal surface
    Decent sound deadening properties
    Easy spray application

    Takes a long time to dry
    Required prior preparation

    8. Simplest Undercoating Paint: Rusfre Automotive Rubberized Material

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    Why we like it: Rustfre Automotive Rubberized Material’s beauty lies in its simplicity – it doesn’t offer anything revolutionary, but its protective properties are certainly worth your dime.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: Rubberized
    Method of Application: Brush or Spray
    Drying Time: N/A
    Shelf Life: N/A
    Rusfre’s Automotive Rubberized Material is an automotive undercoating, pure and simple. Although it does not offer anything new aside from the standard abrasion protection, rust and corrosion inhibition, peel, crack, and chip resistance, and noise reduction, it does deliver on all its promises.
    The formula comes out as a viscous substance that semi-hardens into a protective layer. It can be applied using a roller, a paintbrush, or a spray. Although it sticks very well, application can be a bit messy. Not to mention, due to its thickness, it takes a while to dry.
    Also, using this product is not a one-step process. Your undercarriage needs to be fully prepped before using this product, which means thorough cleaning and rust removal are required.
    If you need to apply it to small nooks and crannies where thick liquid can’t go, you only have to dilute the product with an appropriate solvent like an enamel reducer or even mineral spirits.

    Very strong, tough bond
    Different application methods available
    Reduces vehicle noise
    Relatively cheap

    Application can be messy
    Takes some time to fully cure and dry

    9. Best Restorative Undercoating Paint: Fluid Film Rust & Corrosion Protection

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    Why we like it: Fluid Film Rust & Corrosion Protection is a multipurpose coating that can not only be used for your car’s undercarriage, but also to any metal surface that needs protecting from rust and corrosion.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: Petroleum-Based
    Method of Application: Brush or Roll
    Drying Time: N/A
    Shelf Life: N/A
    Fluid Film has made a name for itself in the aircraft and aerospace industry as a maker of top-of-the-line lubricant and rust inhibitor products. Now, the brand’s bringing it over into the automotive market with this Rust & Corrosion Protection.
    This product provides great value for money in terms of preventative coating for your vehicle’s undercarriage. It provides trustworthy protection against moisture and chemicals, and its thixotropic fluid formula makes sure it gets into the littlest corners of your undercarriage. Not only does it protect the metal from corrosion, but it can also salvage surface-level damage by digging into the metal itself and lifting out the rust over time.
    However, do keep in mind that this undercoating doesn’t harden and will not protect against debris or abrasion. It is very gooey and may make a mess. It also has strong fumes that may take some getting used to. You may notice some white smoke during your first few drives after applying this, but rest assured that it’s not flammable enough to catch fire. The white smoke is merely caused by the fluid evaporating when it gets to the exhaust pipe.

    Versatile use
    Digs into the smallest spaces of the vehicle
    Reliable rust and corrosion prevention
    Salvages reasonably rust damaged metal

    Doesn’t dry completely
    Very strong fumes
    No sound deadening
    May produce white smoke at first

    10. Most Stylish Yet Simple Undercoating Paint: Penray Rubberized Undercoat

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    Why we like it: If you’re looking for something simple and a bit fancy at the same time, Penray’s Rubberized Undercoat is a great choice.
    Editor’s Rating:

    Quick Facts
    Type: Rubberized
    Method of Application: Spray
    Drying Time: 2 hours
    Shelf Life: 5 years if unopened
    Penray may not be as prominent as the other brands on this list, but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t deserve a spot.
    This rubberized undercoating will keep your undercarriage pristine over long periods, protecting it from rust, corrosion, moisture, dirt, and chemicals. It also has great sound deadening properties.
    When it comes to aesthetics, it dries to a matte black finish that looks both buffed and classy. It doesn’t need a primer or a topcoat to do its job, but it’s completely paintable with no bleed through in case you want a splash of color. A spray extender comes with the product so you can easily reach narrow areas.
    However, make sure to cover up your nose when using this product as it smells quite bad. You should also clean the undercarriage thoroughly before applying this, because while it’s typically adherent to surface material, it does have a hard time bonding to greasy surfaces. Lastly, although Penray markets it as a quick-drying formula, it still doesn’t dry as quickly as we would like.

    Convenient application
    Sound deadening properties
    Dries to a matte finish and can be painted over
    Doesn’t need much preparation

    Requires multiple coatings for proper coverage
    Hard to apply to greasy surfaces

    The Ultimate Guide to Car Undercoating Paints

    Undercoating your car is a complex job to undertake. You have to consider a lot of factors in order to protect your vehicle in the most efficient way possible. This section of our guide will provide an exhaustive source of all the important information you need to use and apply undercoating paints.
    What Are Undercoating Paints?
    Undercoating paints provide the most vulnerable part of your vehicle an added layer of protection against harmful elements that you may encounter every day, such as rocks, debris, salt, water, and other minerals that could negatively affect your car.
    This kind of paint is typically applied to the car’s exterior, especially the undercarriage. It can also be applied to floorboards, suspension parts, frame, gas tank, pans, and wheel wells of your vehicle. If you’re buying a second-hand vehicle, you should always apply undercoating paint to prevent additional damage to its already fragile underbelly.
    How Long Do Car Undercoating Paints Last?
    How long your undercoating lasts depends on many factors, like what type of undercoating you used, how well you applied it, how you use your car, and even where you live. Generally, though, car undercoating lasts at least a full year.
    If you often use your car on rough terrain or if you live near the ocean, where the chance of rust, corrosion, and chemical damage is greater, there’s a good chance you’ll have to apply undercoating at least once every six months.
    Different Types of Undercoating Paints
    There are several types of undercoating available in the market, such as water, petroleum, rubber, asphalt, and polyurethane-based paints. Each type has its own strengths and weaknesses that you should consider before picking out which paint is best for you.
    Here’s an explanation of each one in a nutshell.
    Water-based undercoating paints are the most commonly used paints for DIY undercoating projects. Like other water-based products, they have a thin consistency and dry faster than other types of undercoating paint. They’re also generally sold in aerosol cans for easy application.
    The biggest disadvantage of water-based paints is that they wear out faster than other types. This means you’ll need to redo the coating more often for maximum protection, which could be a problem for those who don’t like high-maintenance vehicles.
    Wax or Paraffin-Based
    Wax or paraffin-based undercoating paints are some of the cheapest options around. They never actually harden and instead seep into the nooks and crannies of your vehicle to protect it from most elements. They are also stronger than water-based paints and can withstand more abuse and exposure.
    This type of paint can be either painted on or sprayed, making application quick and easy. However, they still wear off pretty fast, which means you still need to redo the coating at least once a year.
    Oil or Petroleum-Based​​​​​
    Petroleum-based undercoating is a step above both water and paraffin-based options, as it offers much wider and stronger protection. It can repel road salts, oils, and debris much better than most other types of undercoating paints. Also, petroleum-based compounds are known to be effective at preventing corrosion in vehicles.
    However, they’re harder to find in the market, and some petroleum-based undercoating like the Fluid Film Rust & Corrosion Protection never really dries fully – something not everyone likes.
    Rubberized formulas are the second-strongest undercoats available on the market. This type of substance is designed specifically for rugged terrains and can withstand stronger exposure and abuse than any other formulas mentioned. They also offer additional features like sound deadening and resistance to dents.
    These formulas are very easy to apply and can be painted on or applied as an aerosol spray. They can even be painted over in case you make a mistake and can be removed easily with any undercoating paint remover.
    Polyurethane is one of the most expensive undercoating options out there. It is self-sealing, which means it will seep into the smallest corners and cracks, sealing the surface where it’s applied and pushing out all the salt, sand, dirt, and moisture in the process. Due to this, it’s a great option if you want complete protection for not only your car’s underbelly but also its exterior in general.
    This type of undercoating can be purchased in pails or canisters for coating guns. Keep in mind that you have to spend extra time prepping your car’s surface before you apply polyurethane. This includes doing tasks such as degreasing, sanding, and applying an etching primer to metal parts.
    Asphalt-based undercoating is designed for military all-terrain vehicles that often see rugged use. It contains some rubber material in it that can help in sound deadening as well.
    Compared to other types of undercoating, asphalt-based undercoating is the strongest and the most long-lasting. It does have three downsides worth considering, however. First of all, it’s the most expensive undercoating option in the market right now. It’s also not paintable, which means it can only be used for your car’s underbelly. Lastly, asphalt-based undercoating takes the longest time to fully cure.
    Benefits of Undercoating
    Not everyone takes the time and effort to undercoat their car. Not that it’s a surprise, considering how many people see undercoating as an expensive waste of time. However, the benefits that come with undercoating can’t be denied.
    Here are some of the most significant benefits of undercoating your car.
    Provides Additional Protection
    Daily wear and tear, when left unattended, can eventually result in irreparable damage to your car. Every time you take out your car for a spin, it accumulates dust, grime, and salt. It also gets exposed to moisture, chemicals, and oxidation. This can lead to rust and mold, two of your car’s biggest enemies.
    A good undercoating can prevent all that from happening. It can even protect your car from physical damages like chinks, dents, or scratches. And since all the important parts are covered and water-proofed by the coat, undercarriage cleaning becomes much easier and less risky.
    Saves You Money in the Long Run
    Anyone who has ever owned a car before will know that repairs are expensive – sometimes, unbelievably so. For instance, it’s not unusual to see repairs for structural damage amount to more than the value of your car.
    Remember, the undercarriage is the part that is always exposed to rough terrains, harmful chemicals, and other debris present in the road and the environment. By providing a solid layer of protection to a vulnerable part of your vehicle, undercoating can save you money in the long run. You wouldn’t have to spend so much on repairs if there’s nothing to repair in the first place, right?
    May Help Offset Insurance Costs
    Insurance providers base their quote on how high-risk your car is. For example, second-hand cars cost a lot of money to insure because they’re more likely to need repairs. Reducing your risks by providing your vehicle more protection may qualify as a discount towards your premiums, especially in states that see high cases of corrosion in vehicles.
    Makes Your Vehicle Run Quieter
    Undercoating typically contains rubber, allowing the formula to seal the entire underbelly of your car completely. The rubber layer not only protects the surface of your undercarriage from damage but absorbs road noise, as well. The added noise suppression in your vehicle’s interior results in a quieter vehicle and a significantly better driving experience.
    Undercoating vs. Rust Proofing
    Although people often use the two terms interchangeably, rust proofing and undercoating are technically not the same.
    Rust proofing usually refers to applying rust inhabitant on specific spots where rust will most likely form on your vehicle’s body. It usually involves using a thin substance to coat your car and prevent it from developing rust over time.
    On the other hand, undercoating is applying a thick, durable, and protective layer of material to the underbelly of your vehicle. It’s meant to cover the floorboard, frame, and the wheel wells – places that are very susceptible to physical and chemical damage in the long run.
    Pros and Cons of Undercoating
    When you apply undercoating, you’re providing protection to your car’s underbelly against all kinds of damages, rather than just rust. In addition to that, undercoating can also reduce the noise that your car generates on the road, something that plain rust proofing can’t do.
    However, undercoating is merely a preventative measure, which means it’s more advisable for newer cars. If your undercarriage has already begun to rust, you’ll have to completely remove all the rust first before you can apply undercoating. Depending on the condition of your vehicle, this can be extremely expensive.
    Pros and Cons of Rust Proofing
    Rust proofing is meant to lengthen your car’s lifespan as well, and for a typically cheaper price than undercoating. Unlike undercoating, you can still apply rust proofing to areas that have already begun to rust. Rusting is a chemical process, and like all chemical processes, it can always be delayed or stopped – if caught early.
    However, rust proofing is becoming less and less popular with the arrival of newer, more rust-resistant materials that cars are made of. Galvanized steel, for example, greatly increases the resistance of car surfaces to rust, making rust proofing a costly redundancy. On the contrary, this doesn’t apply to undercoating, as undercoating protects your car from more than just rust.
    Rust Proofing or Undercoating?
    If you’re on a tight budget and can only choose one of the two, you should look first at the specific problem you want to solve.
    For example, if owning a vehicle for you is all about keeping the exterior spotless and looking good, rust proofing is enough. However, if you’re more concerned about how your car will hold up over ten or so years, then undercoating is a better option.
    However, if you have the means to avail both for your car, you don’t have to choose at all. Rust proofing and undercoating are not mutually exclusive – in fact, they complement each other pretty well. Getting both can give your beloved ride the best protection it needs and deserves.
    Methods for Applying Undercoating Paints

    Different types of undercoating may need different methods of application. Here’s a quick explanation about the two main methods used to apply car undercoating paints.
    Brush or Roll
    One way to apply undercoating paints is by using a paintbrush or a roller brush. Water-based, wax-based, paraffin-based, and rubberized undercoating typically use this method. It’s very straightforward even for beginners because you can easily control the brush, which means you can paint more than just your car’s undercarriage. The only downside is that it can take up a lot of your time.
    This is the most widely practiced method for applying undercoating to vehicles. Spraying makes sure that the material will adhere properly to your vehicle’s underside to protect it from the elements. However, it can be quite difficult to get an even spread. It’s best to use this method on a new car the day you bring it home.
    How To Apply Undercoating Paint
    Undercoating your vehicle, although simple in theory, can be an arduous task. To help you out, here’s a step-by-step guide to applying undercoating paint to your car.
    Disc grinder and grinding pads
    Dry rag
    Workshop safety goggles
    Protective gloves
    Thoroughly clean your vehicle’s undercarriage with a good degreaser. Make sure that no part is left uncleaned.
    If there’s any rust present, grind it down with a disc grinder.
    Sand down any rust that remains. There should be no rust present before you begin undercoating.
    Once that’s done, it’s time to prime the clean undercarriage. If you’re using polyurethane undercoating, etching primer is needed for bare metal parts. Allow the primer to dry completely before proceeding.
    Liberally apply undercoating to the undercarriage of your vehicle. Cover all of the exposed parts such as the wheel wells, the frame, the floorboards. Let this first coat dry for at least an hour.
    Once the first coat has dried, apply your second coating of undercoat.
    Let the undercoating dry for 24 hours at a minimum before you use your vehicle.
    If you want to remove undercoating from your car, apply the appropriate paint remover product for the type of undercoat you want to remove. This includes solvents, aircraft strippers, or paint strippers. You can also use a heat gun to soften the undercoating first.
    Once the undercoating has already softened, use a scraper to scrape off the undercoating paint, taking care not to damage your vehicle.
    What’s the Best Method for Cleaning My Undercarriage?
    The best method is to get a professional car wash service to clean your vehicle’s undercarriage thoroughly. However, if you prefer–or don’t mind–doing it yourself, power washers are the best way to get all the dirt and grime off your car. If you don’t have a power washer, a regular garden hose is the next best option.
    That said, keep in mind that you’ll have to check more thoroughly if you’re using a garden hose since the pressure may not be strong enough to remove dirt that has already hardened over time.
    Also, both power washers and garden hoses aren’t the be all and end all of the undercarriage cleaning. You still have to apply a degreaser and then grind down any instances of rust before applying the undercoat.
    Should I Remove My Wheels When Applying Undercoating?
    Yes, you should. It may seem like a chore, but you should always remove the wheels of your car before you apply undercoating, especially when using spraying methods. Undercoating is a substance that hardens over time, so if you get it on your wheels, it will form a lump that may throw off your vehicle’s balance while driving.
    Once again, always remove all removable parts of your car before undercoating to ensure that the whole process goes smoothly. It’s better to be safe than sorry, after all.
    Tips For Undercoating Your Car
    Here are some additional tips that you should keep in mind before you undercoat your car.
    Never apply undercoating to a dirty undercarriage. Once your car has been undercoated, you won’t be able to clean the surface underneath it anymore. Any dirt, mildew, or rust trapped there will slowly corrode your car’s undercarriage.
    It can be a real pain to clean the mud, dirt, and dust from the underside of your car. To easily rid the undercarriage of road gunk, use a pressurized washer. Once it dries, you can proceed to grinding and sanding down rust, if any. You can also use a rust remover to make sure that no rust remains.
    Most undercoating products will never stick to greased surfaces, no matter how long you dry it out. Always use a degreaser to completely remove grease from your car’s surface.
    If you’re using an aerosol spray, do a trial spray first to see the can’s fan pattern. Spray up and down if the paint comes out in a narrow stream, but if it comes out tall and fan-like, spray side to side.
    Always use safety goggles and a sturdy mask when undercoating. During the process, you’re going to be exposed to a lot of harsh chemical fumes, so it’s best to protect yourself.
    Final Words
    This list showed you the best undercoating paints that you can get on the market right now. All of them are great options–some more suitable for your situation than others.
    Regardless of what you pick though, undercoating is a great way to protect your car from daily wear and tear, prevent rust and corrosion, and prolong its lifespan. Not only does it save you money in the long run, but it also saves your car from otherwise preventable damages. More