English English Nederlands Nederlands Deutsch Deutsch Italiano Italiano Español Español Français Français 简体中文 简体中文 Português Português Русский Русский
    DetailingWiki Newsletter
    Get free and automatic updates on new articles
    We respect your privacy. No data is used for anything other than sending the newsletter!

    Advertisement

Water based vs oil based product

Written by:

A very frequent difference in liquid or paste products is the carrier within the product. This carrier can either be a water-based solution, or oil based. The largest quantity of a certain ingredients often determines what the carrier is. Within an emulsion, oil is dissolved into water with the use of an emulsifier. Technically speaking, the oil is still in suspension within the emulsion but is statistically distributed.

Solution or suspension

When substances are mixed together, one can either dissolve into the other, or one can be in suspension of the other. A good example would be the mixture of water and salt. In the beginning, the salt will dissolve into the water creating a salty water solution. The water is considered the carrier in this example. When the carrier is saturated, the carrier will not allow the salt to dissolve into the water. The salt will “float” in the water as tiny particles of grains of salt. The grains of salt are in suspension, with the water being the carrier. When the temperature of the water rises, or the volume of water is increased, the salt in suspension can dissolve into the water.
In many cases, polishing particles are actually in suspension in the emulsion of water and oils.

Water based products

Water based products are products that have been designed with water as the main carrier. The recipe might still contain oils or organic compounds, either in suspension or in an emulsion, but the largest quantity is made up of water. The advantage in most cases is that the product is water-soluble. Cleaning the product is generally more easy as the products is likely more affected by the use of water during application. Although the term is normally not often used, water is still a solvent, which nullifies the incorrect term “solvent based”.
A well know example for a water based product as an emulsion is the QD. QD’s are generally emulsions of water, oils (, wax) and polymers. Because most QD’s dissolve in water, the QD can be used on both wet and dry surfaces. This makes it a popular drying aid because of its affect on the surface tension of water.

A common misconception is that water based products mean that the surface doesn’t need to be degreased. Even the assumption that these are always body-shop safe products might not hold true as the use of polymers that change either the surface energy or the surface tension, can still be present. Both polymers and oils can still be present in water based products.

Oil based products

Oil based products are products that have been designed with a hydrophobic and lipophilic substance. These are normally referred to as “oils”, although the family of substances that can be addressed as an “oil” is very extensive. The type of oil used in the product is rarely discussed, even though this can have a large impact on the properties of the product.
Popular products that are generally oil based are paste waxes, (ceramic) coatings and tar and glue removers. Some polishes can be oil based, although most are either an emulsion of water based with oil particles in suspension. Some heavy degreasers can also be oil based, which can make them difficult to fully remove after use.
The choice to create an oil based product is often a conscious one. Water based products are easier to use, more versatile in its use and generally cheaper to manufacture. It can also be beneficial for the environment. However, the behavior and performance of a certain product, can be vastly different between oil based recipes and water based recipes. Despite the disadvantages, some manufacturers might still choose oil based recipes instead of water based due to the performance or behavior of the product. In some rare cases it can even be determined by the use of advanced polymer that don’t work in suspensions and are insoluble.

Pre-wax cleaners and glazes often have a fairly large quantity of oils in their recipe, even though they might be water-based. This means that they leave an oily layer behind on the surface. This will increase gloss and fill in small imperfections, but might interfere with sealants or coating. The effect on wax can often be negligible.

Different related articles

  • Killerwaxx
    Manufacturers
    Killerwaxx is an American manufacturer of detailing products. The company is located in California and its main audience is in the USA, with a smaller focus on Asia. ...
  • Microtex
    Manufacturers
    Microtext is an Asian manufacturer of products aimed at automotive detailing and general car care. The brand has not reached much customers in Europe yet, but has been in business since before 2010....
  • What is conservation
    Maintenance
    Conservation is a large part in the detailing process. It prevent wear and tear and is aimed at maintaining the original properties of the object. Conservation can also be financially rewarding, as is the case with most oldtimers or supercars....
  • Supernatural Machine Stick
    Protection
    The Supernatural Machine Stick came into being for two reasons. The first was that we are always looking at cosmetics packaging because waxes are quite similar in nature, and if we can find a better way to package something we will....
  • Commandant
    Manufacturers
    Commandant is a (from origin) Dutch manufacturer of car care products. The company is now owned by Valma, another Dutch care care manufacturer. The brand is known for their cleaner paste products....
  • What is a quick detailer
    Maintenance
    A Quick Detailer is a specific product that is used to give the current layer of wax a 'boost' when it is a few weeks old and starting to show wear. A quick detailer is often referred to as a QD....

Links to this article

There are no external links to this article. Yet.
Sidebar



Stay up to date with our free newsletter
Always be the first to know about new updates, articles and other informative content.
Don't miss out, opt in!
We respect your privacy. No data is used for anything other than sending the newsletter!