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Favorite Pad & Polish Combinations


A while back, I wrote about my favorite combinations to use when doing paint correction.  Some of the products remain, some of them have been replaced.  Here are my personal favorite combos:

Using a Griots Garage 6″ DA with a 5″ Lake Country Backing Plate:

One Step Correction

Two Step Correction

Three Step Correction

Now, those are my “go to” combos first for MOST cars.  Depending on the condition of the paint, the hardness, color, and expected end result, there are other combos that I will try out and use.  Other combos consist of a mix between the following pads and products that I keep stocked on my shelves:

Pads (5.5″): Surbuf, Meguiar’s MF, Orange, Tangerine, Green, Blue, Black, Red (Green and Red are from Buff N Shine)
Products: Meguiar’s M105, M100, D300, Menzerna 300400, 2500, 4000, 4500 (now 3800), Sonax Perfect Finish

Of course this would be silly to stock if you only had one car to take care of every 6 to 12 months, but doing this day in and day out, I need to have a wide variety of products to handle anything thrown my way!

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Eric Schuster Envious Detailing
Eric Schuster
Envious Detailing
Orange County, CA

9 comments on Favorite Pad & Polish Combinations

  1. chris huelsman says:

    Eric, thanks for the knowledge on pass and polish combos. My question is regarding my ebony black 2013 kia optima. I would like to correct the paint from minor swirls and scratches along with knocking down the orange peel. How would you categorize Kia paint as far as soft our hard?
    Thanks, Chris.

    • eric says:

      I would put it in the soft to medium category.

      My starting point would be menzerna fg400/megs D300 with a hydrotec tangerine pad. Then step down to a black pad and sonax perfect finish, then blue with menzerna 4500.

  2. Adrian Gonzalez says:

    What about using a rupes or a flex 3401?? I like using the rupes yellow pad and sonax perfect finish. For all soft paints as a one step. What do you think about that combo

  3. Kevin George says:

    The Flex or Rupes argument is always going to be more on personal opinion. My personal opinion is that the Rupes is less physically demanding to use as it don’t require all the downward pressure on the unit due to the larger throw doing most of the correction work. I have also used quite a few of the products Eric refers to, however I also have a few others that are my personal favorites. Lately I have been using Optimum Hyper Polish a lot on various different pads. Great topic Eric!

  4. joe gram says:

    I have a black porsche cayman that had full paint correction done to it a year ago. The swirls are getting to me now. I have a PC7424 and menzernas fg400 and sf4000. What pad would be used for this product to be the lest aggressive. Also if I need to get more aggressive with the sf4000 what pad to use. Or should I buy a One Step Correction product.

    • clayR says:

      First you need to find out what is causing the swirls or next year you’ll be in the same fix and in seven years you’ll need a new paint job. Hand wash with two bucket method is best. I prefer to add a couple squirts of rinceless wash solution to the wash soap for added lubrication.

  5. woody byrd says:

    I just purchased a Rupes 21 and ordered a 5″ and 3″ backing plate. Will the 3″ work on this size machine?
    Thank you.

    • Reece @ DI says:

      Woody – The 3″ Rupes Backing Plate does not work on the 21 or 15. The 5″ and 6″ Rupes Backing Plates however are interchangeable. If you are looking to use smaller pads with a Rupes unit you are going to have to pick up the Mini or Duetto.

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