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Product Review: Gtechniq C5 Wheel Armour


I don’t have a lot of free time in my life, so when I get an hour or so to take care of my own car, it can be difficult to convince myself to spend the time needed to properly clean up my wheels.  Thankfully, with advancements in wheel protection, this task is considerably quicker and easier than it used to be!

I have been experimenting with wheel sealants and wheel coatings for years, and it is pretty obvious that a good layer of protection on your wheels will help to make routine maintenance cleaning much more reasonable.

At Attention to Detailing, we have been using GTechniq C5 Wheel Armour with great results.

ATD | GTechniq C5 glory shot

C5 provides durable protection on your wheels that can last an entire year… that means no more messing with waxes every month or so with hopes that your wheels will stay cleaner.  C5 will hold up to high heat, and will repel dirt and brake dust better than traditional waxes.  Like all nano coatings, C5 provides good resistance against staining and contamination as well.  C5 enhances the finish of regular painted wheels, chrome, stainless, and even satin or matte surfaces.

ATD | C5 SRT rim shot

I have found that even with the high dusting pads on my vehicle, I only need soap and water to completely clean my coated wheels.  There is no need for expensive wheel cleaners.  With all of that being said, proper maintenance is still critical.  Be sure to wash your wheels on a regular basis to keep your coating clean.  This can have a big impact on the overall life of any nano coating.

Application is very simple.  Before beginning, make sure your wheels are thoroughly cleaned and decontaminated.  Use an alcohol based cleaner like GTechniq Panel Wipe to ensure the surface is free of any oils prior to coating.  Apply a small amount of coating to a lint free applicator, and spread evenly onto the wheel.  Continue spreading until the entire surface has a thin, even coat.  Remove excess coating from the wheel within 5 minutes after the start of application using a quality microfiber towel.  It is important to remember that the coating can only be applied in temperatures above 40F, and should not be applied in direct sunlight.  It is recommended that you work in a well ventilated area, and a respirator and gloves are always a good idea if you ask me.

After all the cleaning and prep work is completed, I find that we can generally apply 1 coat by hand to a set of 4 wheels, including barrels, in under 30 minutes when the wheels have been removed.

ATD | GTechniq C5 beading photo

C5 has become our go-to wheel coating lately due to its ability to enhance the appearance of various wheel finishes, ease of application, and good protection.  If you’re still waxing your wheels many times each year, give yourself a break and try a durable wheel coating.

Zach McGovern
Attention To Detailing Peoria
Peoria, IL

14 comments on Product Review: Gtechniq C5 Wheel Armour

  1. Bob says:

    Great review and even better photos:)
    My goal this year is to finally try a coating.

    What wash mitt are you using on wheels?

  2. Paul says:

    Nice pics and review Zac. Love the Hellcat 😉 Would like to know how this holds up 6+ months from now.

  3. Mike says:

    Did you also do the brake calibers? As an owner of a jeep srt I think I know a little bit about brake dust also. Having what they call spider monkey rims it can be a real pain to get in the smaller openings and around to the calibers. Is this the miracle coating I’ve been looking for?

    • Mike – yes, calipers were coated as well. I would not describe any coating as a “miracle product”, but when cleaned regularly, a coated surface will be quicker and easier to clean than an uncoated surface based on my comparisons.

  4. Tim L. says:

    Thanks for the review. I have used 22ple rim coating on a set of black satin wheels that left the results looking gloss in the end. As the results actually turned out great, I was not expecting the additional level of gloss it added.

    I now own a set of matte black HRE rims on my TTRS and am curious if you can tell me if this product might do the same? I would lile to keep the matte look, but am very hesitant about coatings because of my prior experience.

    One additional question, can one bottle do all four rims, including barrels, or only faces?

    • Hi Tim – we have used 22ple, CarPro, and GTechniq wheel coatings on a variety of satin and matte finishes (this article features a satin black wheel). None of these coatings have created a glossy finish when used on satin or matte wheels. The coating should add a bit of a sheen to the finish, as seen in the 2nd photo in this article, but it should not be glossy/shiny.

      The coating should be spread evenly onto the wheel, then excess product should be wiped away completely after a specific amount of time (refer to instructions on the bottle of the particular product). Did you wipe away excess coating after applying it?

      Yes, one bottle will do all 4 wheels completely.

  5. Tim L. says:

    Thanks for the response.

    I forgot to mention that the 22ple Rim coating was the first generation. If I am not mistaken, they reformultaed it and is now totally different than what I used. Maybe it was a fluke and call me crazy, but I followed the directions perfectly and they came out looking glossy.

    I will give this one a try and compare it to my prior experience.

    Thanks for all the info.


  6. Richard Manrique says:

    Dear Zack – for washing wheels you mention that just soap and water will do the trick. Is a light solution of Dawn ok, or do you have a different preference? I’m always leery of using ChemGuys Citrus Wash as it is so concentrated that it’s too easy to get it too strong. ONR seems a little light for the job. Any suggestions?

    • Hi Richard – I personally don’t like using dish soap for any part of the automotive detailing process. My theory has always been that dish soap is made for dishes, not cars. Chemical Guys citrus wash will not harm wheels or any other surface, though the heavily concentrated detergent can certainly effect the hydrophobic properties of any surface. My personal favorite maintenance shampoos are Meguiar’s Hyper Wash or Optimum Car Wash. Belive it or not, ONR is also a great option. Just last night I washed my entire vehicle with ONR, including the wheels. My wheels are always filthy as my Lexus creates a lot of brake dust, but ONR on a microfiber mitt washes it away easily. Let me know if you’ve got any other questions.

  7. How long do I need to wait to put a second coat after first application?

  8. Brandon L says:

    Can I use C5 on chrome wheels? Really looking to protect and make corvette wheels easier to clean.

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