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best car polisher

The Best Car Polisher 2019

The best way to remove visible defects and improve the finish of the paintwork is by using a car polisher machine. They are available in a range of different types that include rotary and dual action orbital polishers.

The best car polisher is the Meguiar’s MT300, which is a dual action option that has variable speed control and an ergonomic design designed for extended use.

When used with the correct polish and buffing pads, a car polisher can effortlessly restore the original showroom shine back to the paintwork. There are several polishers available that are suitable for both professional or beginner use.

Car Polisher Comparison

Car PolisherTypeWeight
Meguiar's MT300Dual Action5.4 LBS
Rupes Big FootDual Action5.4 LBS
DEWALT DWP849XRotary6.7 LBS
PORTER-CABLE 7424XPDual Action5.8 LBS
TORQ TORQXDual Action4.3 LBS
Flex XC3401 Positive DriveRotary-Orbital5.7 LBS
Griots Garage 10813STDCRDDual Action7.0 LBS
Adams Swirl Killer MiniDual Action4.125 LBS
Maxshine M8SDual Action5.0 LBS
Neiko 10671ARotary9.3 LBS

The use of a car polisher is not just for removing defects as they can be used for working a car wax into the paintwork. However, it’s important that you have a mixture of buffing pads available that allow you to work in the detailing product efficiently.

Investing into a polishing machine for your car is a big step in the correct direction. It allows you to achieve far better results than using a polish or wax by hand.

Below is a list of the best car polishers that include both rotary and dual action orbital polishing machines.

The Best Car Polisher


1. Meguiars MT300 Dual Action Polisher

The Meguiar’s MT300 is a dual action polisher that is designed for wax, polish or compound detailing products. Whether you are an advanced or beginner user, the MT300 is an easy to use car polisher with an ergonomic construction for extended use.

As this DA polisher is produced by the reputable Meguair’s brand, there are plenty of accessories and various backing plates available to use.

Other features of the Meguiar’s MT300 include:

  • Dual action polisher
  • 8 mm orbital through
  • Weighs 5.4 LBS
  • Soft starting functionality
  • Multi position D handle
  • Thumb adjusting speed control
  • Digital torque management
  • Billet counter weight multi bearing design
  • Includes a 1 year warranty

The Meguair’s MT300 is the best dual action polisher with everything you need to remove all defects from your cars paintwork. There is not one feature it doesn’t have and the reduced weight and ergonomic design is the perfect combination for extended use.

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2. Rupes Big Foot Random Orbital Polisher

One of the most popular car polishers among professionals is the Rupes LHR 21ES, which is nicknamed “Big Foot”. It’s give this name because it provides a unique 21 mm throw, which allows you to cover more surface area than a standard orbital polisher.

The longer throw of this car polisher allows it to run much smoother and correct the defective paintwork faster, which is ideal for professionals.

Other features of the Rupes LHR 21ES Big Foot include:

  • Random orbital/dual action
  • Italian design and craftsmanship
  • Soft start to reduce accidental application
  • Designed to use 6 inch pads
  • Powerful 500 watt motor
  • Weighs 5.37 LBS
  • Variable speed control with 6 settings
  • 11 foot power cord

When used with a quality detailing product, the brand state that the Big Foot can remove heavy paint defects and leave a flawless finish.

The long 21 mm throw of the Rupes Big Foot makes it the best car polisher for those that use larger buffing pads. It does come with a premium price tag but the build quality and performance makes it a worthwhile investment that you won’t regret.

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3. DEWALT DWP849X Rotary Polisher

The DEWALT DWP849X is one of the most highly rated car rotary polishers on the market and for good reason. It follows the brands great reputation for superior build quality and powerful performance, which will last for many years.

This car polisher uses a 12.0 amp motor with an all ball bearing construction to provide effortless performance for long periods. It also has unique features such as a wool ingestion shield to eliminate ingestion into the motor.

Other features of the DEWALT DWP849X include:

  • Rotary polisher
  • 6.7 LBS in weight
  • Variable speed trigger
  • 12.0 amp motor
  • 3 year limited warranty
  • Non mar rubber gear case
  • Ball bearing construction
  • Soft start functionality for control
  • No-load speeds from 0-600/0-3,500 RPM

DEWALT also offer a 20V cordless option for those that don’t want to be limited to the length of the power cord whilst polishing their car.

The DEWALT DWP849X is the best rotary polisher that is built to the highest of standards and provides excellent performance. Although it comes with an expensive price tag, it’s backed up by the reputable DEWALT brand and comes with a long warranty.

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4. PORTER-CABLE 7424XP Orbital Polisher


The Porter Cable 7424XP is by far the most popular car polisher on the market and is often included in complete detailing kits. It’s a 6 inch variable speed polisher that is suitable for both automotive and marine applications.

In order to make this polisher versatile, it is able to accept 5/16 to 24 spindle thread accessories, which can be switched over with ease.

Other features of the Porter Cable 7424XP include:

  • Random orbital/dual action
  • Weighs 5.8 LBS
  • 8 mm throw
  • 2.4 meter power cord
  • 3 year warranty against defects
  • 1 year normal use warranty
  • Able to move control handle to either side
  • Speed ranges from 2,500 to 6,800 OPM

Although it’s a cheap car polisher, the brand have built it to last with a heavy duty construction. This is proven by the impressive warranties that are provided with the polisher.

Whether you are removing defects with a rubbing compound or perfecting the finish with a wax, the Porter Cable 7424XP is a great option. It’s the best car polisher machine for the money and backed by long warranties for peace of mind.

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5. TORQ TORQX Random Orbital Car Polisher

Another popular option is the TORQ TORQX, which is a random orbital car polisher machine, which is available as a complete kit. The brand states that it’s ideal for applying car glaze, wax or sealant to the paintwork in a matter of minutes.

In order to improve the usability of this car polisher, the brand has integrated advanced vibration reduction technology. It also has a lightweight construction that weighs just 4.3 LBS, which is one of the lightest available.

Other features of the TORQ TORQX include:

  • 8mm dual action orbital throw
  • Powerful 680W motor
  • Weighs just 4.3 LBS
  • Variable speed controls
  • Balanced ergonomic design for extended use
  • Accepts 3, 5 and 6 inch backing plates
  • Safety support ridge for increased stability
  • Lightweight and heavy duty construction

The brand have designed this car polisher for enthusiasts and professionals with many easy to use features. The lightweight design and the random orbital motion allows you to remove swirls, light scratches and defects from all painted vehicles.

TORQ TORQX combines value for the money and performance to produce an excellent all-round car polisher that won’t disappoint.

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6. Flex XC3401VRG Rotary Orbital Polisher


The Flex XC3401 is a positive drive rotary orbital polisher that is designed for professionals or detailing enthusiasts. It uses a high powered 900W motor that can handle extreme loads with an orbit rate between 3,200 to 9,600 OPM.

The orbital rotation is similar to the circular motion of the human hand whilst polishing and the positive drive ensures a uniform movement under load. This results in a more precise and smooth finish, which is required for hologram-free polishing.

Other features of the Flex XC3401 include:

  • 8 mm orbital movement
  • 900 watt motor with soft start
  • Weighs 5.7 LBS
  • Spindle lock and removable knob grip
  • Accelerator trigger switch
  • 10 foot long power cord
  • Variable speed control
  • Multiple safety protection functions
  • Includes a one year warranty

The permanent direct drive is a very desirable feature that ensure the surface is evenly polished regardless of the pressure, angle or slope.

Although the Flex XC3401 is one of the most expensive car polishers, it’s a worthwhile investment for enthusiast or professionals. The powerful motor and orbital motion provides superior performance but it does require more user input for the best results.

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7. Griots Garage 10813STDCRD DA Polisher


The Griot’s Garage dual action polisher is another high performing option developed by a reputable brand. It’s available with a 10 or 25 foot long power cord and is suitable for both beginner or advanced users.

It uses a powerful 850 watt motor and 8 mm throw to provide effortless results on neglected paintwork full of defects.

Other features of the Griot’s Garage DA Polisher include:

  • Dual action
  • Weighs 7.0 LBS
  • 8 mm orbital throw
  • Uses a 7.0 amp, 850 watt motor
  • 6 inch random orbital head
  • 10 foot 18 AWG power cord
  • 6 speed settings
  • Max 6,800 OPM

Griot’s Garage have put a large amount of effort into ensuring that it’s comfortable to use for long periods. Features such as the six position adjustable handle and rubberized palm grip make a huge difference and maximize your control of the polisher.

Overall, it’s an excellent all-round dual action polisher that offers great value for the money. The brand also offer an array of pads to use with the polisher to best suit your requirements.

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8. Adam’s Swirl Killer Mini Car Polisher


Adam’s Polishes are a highly reputable brand in the USA and have recently released a selection of car polishers. The Swirl Killer series features a number of different sized polishers and even a cordless model.

Unlike many of the alternatives, this DA polisher has a long throw of 12 mm, which is very desirable by many detailing professionals.

Other features of the Adam’s Swirl Killer Mini include:

  • 12 mm throw
  • 3 inch backing plate size
  • Adjustable speed settings
  • 5,500 RPM with soft start
  • Weighs 4.125 LBS
  • 25 foot long power cord
  • Compact design with minimal vibrations
  • Large on or off rocker switch

As this is the “mini” DA polisher, it’s the best car polisher for tackling hard to reach spots. However, the brand offer larger alternatives that feature the same desirable features.

The Adam’s Swirl Killer Mini is a highly rated dual action polisher that offers excellent value for money. For peace of mind, the brand provide a 110% satisfaction guarantee and state that it’s the best mini car polisher on the market.

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9. Maxshine M8S Dual Action Polisher


The Maxshine M8S is an affordable DA polisher that uses a powerful 900W motor for improved polishing efficiency. In order to improve the ergonomics for extended use, it has an exquisite design and soft touch head for comfortable usage.

To maximize control of this DA polisher, it has 6 variable speed settings that range from 2,500 to 6,500 RPM for flexible polishing.

Other features of the Maxshine M8S include:

  • 8 mm orbit throw
  • 900W motor
  • 3 meter power cord
  • Weighs 5 LBS
  • Removable D-handle
  • Sliding safety switch
  • 6 speed variable speed control
  • Available in blue, yellow or grey

The Maxshine M8S is the perfect car polisher for beginners due to the ease of use and affordability. Although it may not be as rated as some of the premium option, this dual action polisher offers a cheap solution to begin polishing your car with a machine.

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10. Neiko 10671A Rotary Polisher Machine

One of the cheapest car polisher machines on the market is the Neiko 10671A. It uses a 300W motor with six variable speed between 1,000 and 3,000 RPM to tackle a range of paint defects. Although it’s cheap, it is packed full of premium features such as a heavy duty die cast aluminum head and ball bearing mechanism.

To ensure that the car polisher is comfortable to use, it has a multi-position side handle, ergonomic soft grip and a trigger lock for constant operation.

Other features of the Neiko 10671A include:

  • Rotary polisher
  • Weighs 9.3 LBS
  • 1,300 watt
  • UL/CUL certified
  • Adjustable side handle
  • Ball bearing mechanism
  • 7 inch backing pad
  • Motor head constructed of aluminum

The Neiko 10671A is a powerful and heavy duty car polisher that is excellent for those on a budget. However, it’s fairly heavy at 9.3 LBS but this is mainly due to the heavy duty materials used within the construction of the car buffer.

Overall, the Neiko 10671A is the best car polisher on a budget and can be used with a range of accessories due to the 9 inch backing pad.

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Car Polisher Buying Guide

Although you can achieve great results by hand, the combination of a car polisher and the best car polish product is far more superior. The orbital motion works the polish into the paintwork to effortlessly remove defects and restore shine.

However, in the wrong hands, polishing machines can ruin the paintwork and introduce more swirls or holograms. Therefore, it’s important that you research the various options available that best suit your requirements.

To help you make an informed buying decision, we have produced the below guide using car polisher machines.

best dual action polisher

The Process of Polishing Your Paintwork

Properly polishing the cars paintwork requires you to round the edges of the scratches or buff away an extremely thin layer of paint. This has the effect of eliminating the visibility of the imperfection on the paintwork.

The removal of a microscopic paint layer requires a delicate touch, which is determined by the amount of force applied. If you have never used a car polisher machine before, we highly advise that you test it out on an older vehicle that you aren’t worried about.

It’s important that you use the correct buffing pad for the polishing task in hand. Whether you are waxing or using a compound, each product requires a specific pad.

Types of Polishers

There are many different types of car polisher machines but the two main types include a dual action polisher (also known as a DA polisher) and a rotary polisher. Both have their own benefits and drawbacks and are suited towards certain applications.

Rotary car polishers function on a single axis where the head spins in a regular circular motion. This results in the build up of heat and friction that allows you to work a cutting compound into the paintwork.

Dual action polishers that are often referred to as DA polishers spin in two different motions (hence the term dual action). In short, the head spins in a concentric circular motion on a spindle, which results in a wider circular motion. This type of circular motion prevents excess build up of heat or friction, which prevents damage to the paintwork.

Advanced dual action polishers are equipped with a positive drive action. They still allow the polisher to wobble in order to disperse heat and friction, but the wobble movement is actually purposefully driven as opposed to being the random result of oscillation.

Dual Action vs Rotary

Rotary vs Dual Action

When it comes to choosing between the two different types of car polisher machines, there is various pros and cons for each. Rotary machines are normally cheaper and can be used for light to heavy paint correction work.

However, in the wrong hands, there is potential to cause damage to your paintwork resulting in swirl marks, hazing and other defects.

Dual action car polisher machines therefore are great for beginners that want to carry out light to moderate paint correction work. However, you may struggle with heavy duty correction work and they generally cost more too.

Buffer Machine Weight & Ease of Use

One of the most significant considerations to make regarding a polishing machine is the weight. This is due to the fact you must be able to easily control and direct the tool in order to effectively work the cutting compound into the paintwork.

For beginners, the lighter polisher machine is highly recommended as there will be less weight being pressed against the paintwork. This will reduce the heat and friction and will prevent the risk of causing any damage.

The weight of the car polisher machine is one of many factors that define how easy the tool is to use. Of course, there are many other factors such as the ease of switching between the speed settings, switching between the pads, hand control aids and much more.

Orbital Throw

Many car polisher manufacturers will state an orbital throw, which usually range between 6 to 10 mm. However, there are certain polishers such as the Rupes Big Foot that offer a much larger throw of 21 mm.

Longer throws allows the pad to cover more distance and provides more power, which allows you to correct the defective paintwork quicker. To ensure the polisher operates smoothly upon the surface, it uses counter weights and a clever motor design.

The main drawbacks of the longer throws is that you have to use larger pads (often 5 inches and above) and they often cost far more. The standard throw of around 8 mm allows you to use standard pads and is far cheaper to purchase.

best da polisher

Common Mistakes Car Buffing Mistakes

Using the wrong technique when polishing your car can cause expensive damage to your paintwork. However, there are many easily avoidable mistakes that you should avoid in order to preserve your cars paintwork and these include:

  • Using the incorrect buffing pad or cutting compound
  • Buffing one area too hard or for too long
  • Setting the speed/RPM too high to begin with
  • Not using tape to mask off plastics and other components
  • Using too much or too little cutting compound
  • Not fully cleaning the vehicle beforehand
  • Using a dirty buffing pad
  • … and much more

Technique is key to ensuring that you are actually correcting the paintwork and not making it worse. We highly recommend that you watch various video tutorials for helpful tips. Below are some tips to help you get started and safely polish your car.

Preparing the Paintwork

Due to the speed at which the polisher machine turns the buffing pad, it can be enough to cause damage. This can include causing permanent marks to plastics, headlights and other components. Therefore, before using any polisher regardless if it is a rotary or DA polisher, we highly recommend using masking tape around certain areas.

In the below photo we taped up the brake lights, plastics and edges of the convertible roof. To ensure that the sun does not dry out the cutting compound, a carport canopy is was also used to block the sun, which is highly recommended.

best car polisher machine

Conclusion

There are hundreds of car polishers available that are suitable for both beginner or professional use. Dual action polishers are the most popular and you can perform excellent paint correction with very little effort. If you are new to using a car polisher, we highly advise that you watch a few tutorials beforehand.

All of our recommendations are suitable for a range of applications and budgets. Keeping to a polisher that best suits your skill level is highly advised. Attempting to use a professional machine can be far less forgiving and result in damage.

Once you have find the perfect car polisher, we advise that you test it out on an older car beforehand. Once you have perfected your technique and tested a range of products, you should feel confident enough to correct the paint on your pride and joy.

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