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Product Review: Meguiar’s DA Microfiber Pads and Polishes

by

The time has finally come!  Meguiar’s new polishing system is out in the open and having been one of the lucky few to try and test the product in its early stages, I’d like to post a bit about my experience.  Due to a small flood in my basement, I unfortunately lost all my photo/video documentation, so this article will be a text-only review of my experience with the new DA system from Meguiar’s.

The system

The system consists of two liquids and two pads.  It’s as simple as it can get and I believe it’ll be a new go to product for many detailers out there.  Personally, I’ve already adapted it into my M105, M205, 106ff, 85rd arsenal that I use on almost every detail.  The system is very well done and works wonders at not only removing scratches but finishing down well and leaving protection on the paint.  After testing it for a couple months, mostly comparing to M105/M205, on a few different paints, here are my thoughts on each of the liquid/pad combos as well as evaluations of the system as a whole.

Correcting Compound

The Correcting Compound with its corrective pad is, in short, amazing.  There is absolutely no dusting with this compound and splatter is a thing of the past.  It has a fairly long work time for such a compound and is very easy to use, compared to something like M105.  The pad aids in the use as it’s very small compared to a regular foam pad and the microfiber is very easy to control, both on the Flex DA and a PC 7424XP.  Comparing it again to M105, the Correcting Compound seemed to be a bit less aggressive, but coupled with the cutting microfiber pad it could easily match the correction M105 does with something like a Lake Country Orange pad.  However, the fact that it’s so much easier to use, doesn’t dust and is much easier to remove, the new system really takes the cake.  I have yet to do side by side testing on all the different pads, but the Correcting Compound so far looks like huge competition to M105 and is definitely a product I will use regularly.

Finishing Wax

The Finishing Wax is the perfect name for the second member of this polishing system.  It’s exactly that… a wax that lightly corrects paint and leaves a great looking, protected finish.  As with the Correcting Compound, it is simply a pleasure to use.  Dust and splatter are non-existent and the lubricity of the product is plentiful.  Work time isn’t as long as one would imagine after pouring the product and working with it, but it is very long indeed and does good correction along the way.  It easily corrects the slight swirling left behind by the compound and finishes down really well.  In comparison to M205, I would say the Finishing Wax has very similar work time and finishes down just as well.  It also has just about the same cutting ability.  As with the Correcting Compound, the Finishing Wax is easily one of my go-to products now, especially for one-step detailing work.

Pros

Some of the pros of the Meguiar’s DA Microfiber System:

  • Extremely easy to use, even for a beginner such as my new detail assistant Dan, with only 5 hrs polishing under his belt
  • Delivers on the promise of great correction and a nicely finished surface
  • There’s really no dusting, splatter or any of the usual annoyances we get with polishes in general
  • Work time is nice and long for both liquids, making them very easy to use
  • Wiping off residue after polishing a surface is the easiest I’ve encountered so far
  • The different pad sizes allow the user to easily adapt to odd areas, surfaces or tasks
  • Small 3” pads work great for spot correction and headlight restoration

Cons

The only negative I have experienced is that the system is too aggressive for very soft paints.  I own a BMW with jet black paint, aka paint from hell, and the Finishing Wax with its appropriate pad is simply too aggressive to finish down good enough to call it done.  Whether used with the PC or Flex DA, it would always leave micromarring on the paint, making it a bit “cloudy”.  This is easily fixed by using the Finishing Wax on a gentler finishing foam pad, so I was left wishing there was a third pad in the system, designed specifically to solve this issue.  Can’t complain much though as the system definitely does what it sets out to do, offer great correcting ability on a DA polisher.

Conclusion

As you can easily tell, I’m extremely happy with the new system from Meguiar’s.  I think they’ve once again out done themselves as they did with the introductions of M105/M205 a few years back.  This new microfiber system will definitely find its way into most or all detailing shops, and, more importantly, into the hands of DIY enthusiasts’ with no rotary experience.  It definitely helps to bridge the gap even more between DA polishing and the more aggressive, potentially dangerous, rotary polishing process.  Of all the great things about this new system, I believe the ease of use is what will set it apart from any other competition and make it a favorite to many that have been waiting for some time now.

As always, I hope the article was a bit informative and thanks for reading!

Ivan Rajic Lustr Deatil
Ivan Rajic
LUSTR Auto Detail
341 Lively Boulevard
Elk Grove Village, IL 60007
LustrDetail.com
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12 comments on Product Review: Meguiar’s DA Microfiber Pads and Polishes

  1. Great review Ivan…you had many of the same findings that I did.

  2. HJ says:

    Nice review.
    I have both a 3401 and a PCXP, one of which I am going to sell away, and I wonder if 3401 makes noticeable difference, I mean is it far better than XP when used with this system?
    And I guess that the durability of this microfiber pads would be far shorter than foam pads, whats you thoughts on this?
    HJ

  3. Ivan Rajic Ivan Rajic says:

    Thanks Todd and Thanks HJ!

    HJ, I believe “3401 vs PCXP” is bound to come up a lot with this new system. I have both and I have tried both with the new Meguiar’s system. I prefer the Flex for the power it has, but I haven’t noticed a huge difference between the two. Granted, I haven’t had enough time to compare the system side by side on as many paints as I would have liked. I prefer the 3401 due to the optional power as well as less vibration, but PCXP is quite a bit easier to use as it’s easy to handle and weighs less. If I had to choose, I would choose the 3401 just because of the machine, not necessarily it’s efficiency with the new polishing system as compared to the efficiency of PCXP in the same situation. You can always slow down the 3401 and mimic motion and speed of the PCXP a bit more, but you can’t go vice-versa with the PCXP.

    As for the pads, in all honesty I haven’t had them or used them long enough to give an actual review on durability. They seem to be very well made and other than a couple random fibers you really don’t get any loose fibers coming out of the pad, during both polishing or cleaning. From my experience and knowledge of MF pads compared to foam, they probably wouldn’t last as long, but I wouldn’t go as far to say that durability will be much shorter. Again, I really can’t comment as I haven’t put them through enough testing to say how durability is, but hopefully Todd or a couple other guys can chime in.

    Thanks again,

    Ivan

    • I’ve been using the MF Cutting Disc exclusively for 3 months now…every single car that I’ve done major paint correction on. This process included the testing phase where I purposely used too much pressure, too much speed, and everything in between as I used them every way I could think of to mimic ways the general public might use them. On really hard paints, I put a tremendous amount of pressure on the pads, and ran them very hot as well. I also washed them in every way imaginable.

      After all of that, the pads are still going strong 3 months later, and cutting just as well as my new pads.

      Unless you consistently run them too hot, too fast, or with a backing plate that transfers too much heat (all of which could potentially cause a delamination issue of the hook and loop material), I’d say that these pads will have extremely good durability!

  4. Mike says:

    Good review!!!

    Question…

    You said, the only negative you experienced is that the system is too aggressive for very soft paints.

    I have a Lexus LS 460 and wanted to try the DA system on it. The color is dark blue/ looks black.

    Your comment that it was too aggressive for your BMW got me second guessing the product for my car…?

    Do you consider Lexus’ paint hard or soft?

    Thanks

    Mike in ATL

    • Ivan Rajic Ivan Rajic says:

      Thanks Mike,

      I haven’t had too much experience with Lexus, especially with all different types of models, colors, etc., so I can’t speak specifically for Lexus.

      My BMW paint is jet black and extremely soft, so the microfiber finishing pad leaves a somewhat dull surface. It’s absolutely nothing against the system as a whole, rather the finishing pad is simply a bit too aggressive for the softest of paints out there.

      That said, I wouldn’t second guess this system for your car, rather just purchase a black and/or white Lake Country Pad along with the Meg’s MF system in case the microfiber one is too aggressive for your paint.

      Hope that helps.

      Ivan

  5. nate says:

    Ivan-
    I too, have a Jet Black BMW. The paint can be difficult. I just picked up a 5″ MF DA kit and am hoping to tackle the car this weekend. Would you recommend…
    1st step 300 with cutting MF pad
    2nd step 301 with finishing MF pad
    3rd step 301 with white or black Lake Country pad?

    That seems to be what I got out of your above comments. I currently don’t have black or white LC pad, but I do have the white pad that comes with the PC. Does anyone know how that pad compares to the LC’s? The PC box describes it as a “polishing pad.”

    • Ivan Rajic Ivan Rajic says:

      Hi Nate,

      To answer your question simply, yes I can pretty much guarantee you’ll need something other than the finishing MF pad for your BMW. As to what you’ll need, I don’t have enough experience with the D301/white but from experience the white pad MIGHT be too aggressive for the jet black paint. I would probably say go with a black LC pad and D301 to finish down.

      Regarding the PC “polishing pad” I tried it a few times and it worked similarly to a white LC pad, but I simply didn’t trust it enough so it’s put away for the time being.

      Long story short, you’ll almost definitely need something less aggressive than the D301/mf pad combo. My suggestion is either D301/black or Menzerna po85rd with a black or crimson pad.

      Hope that helps!

      Ivan

  6. david tobin says:

    Ivan

    what speeds did you use for the flex. I know 4 is recommended for the DA systems

    • Ivan Rajic Ivan Rajic says:

      David,

      When I was initially testing the system, I tried pretty much everything in terms of speed and pressure. From speed 6 down to 2 on the Flex as well as the PCXP and from heavy pressure to very light/no pressure. This was obviously done to thoroughly test the system.

      Currently, from this system I mostly utilize the D300 Correction Compound with either an orange Lake Country pad or sometimes the microfiber cutting disc, I find that starting with speed 5-5.5 and heavy pressure then moving down to speed 3 and very light pressure works great with the Flex. In my experience it’s the random orbital polishers that work better with slower speeds with this system and a bit higher with the Flex D/A.

      Hope that helps!

  7. Gregg says:

    I have a black 2011 Camaro, and a black 2007 Charger. With the knowledge I got from DI, I did full corrections on both 2 years ago. Both have some light swirls and scratches…is the MF pads too agressive to use, or could I use with just less pressure? Thanks!

    • Ivan Rajic Ivan Rajic says:

      Gregg,

      I find that for most black paints the MF pads may be too aggressive to use without a follow-up polishing. They usually cut very well and finish down well for the amount of cut they have, but as I said, you’ll rarely find a paint hard enough where they won’t leave some light marring. One some medium paint, it’s definitely possible to have a perfect finish after using MF pads, but that requires the right product and technique. I typically recommend doing a finish polishing with a foam pad, especially on sensitive paints like you probably have.

      Hope that helps!

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