Rain After Waxing Your Car: Why It Is Not A Problem

Waxing your car is great as it protects against the elements and makes the paint last longer.

It protects the paint against rain damage, and car pros advise that you wax your car at least twice or thrice a year.

However, that isn’t the problem; will anything happen to the wax if it starts raining after waxing?

Quick Answer

As a general rule, nothing happens if it rains after you wax your car. Car wax has water repelling properties and will protect the cars paint from the rain. The only time you should worry about rain ruining the wax is if it starts raining while still waxing.

Therefore, you can drive your car in the rain after waxing without worrying about wasting time, money, and effort.

But how is that possible?

What Happens If It Rains After You Wax Your Car?

Fresh ceramic coatings are notorious for not bonding well with water.

If you drive your freshly coated car out in the rain before it cures, it will ruin everything.

This may make you wonder whether the same applies to waxing, especially since they perform similar functions and need time to cure.

Quick Answer

As a whole, nothing happens if it rains after you wax your car; besides the wax repelling the water and preventing it from damaging the car, you have nothing to worry about. 

Therefore, if you intend to wax your car before it rains, it’s all good, and you can even take your car for a drive in the rain. How? 

Wax Cures Quickly

It is safe to rain on your freshly waxed car because wax cures quickly.

A ceramic coating needs about 12 to 24 hours to cure, and even with that, you need to keep them away from water for at least seven days, which may make you think the same applies to wax.

However, wax cures for between 15 to 20 minutes. It bonds quickly to the car and starts functioning.

But, of course, it could exceed that duration depending on the type of wax, weather, or paint sealant. Otherwise, it’s all good. 

Wax Is Hydrophobic

Many people wax their cars because of their hydrophobic properties.

Wax repels water, including rainwater, so it’s okay to rain on your car after waxing, provided the wax has cured completely.

This might only fail if you don’t apply the wax properly; therefore, the rain will mess up the wax on your car, so you’ll need to start again.

Furthermore, you need to stop waxing your car if it starts raining unless you have a shade or garage to work in. 

How Does Rain Affect The Wax On Your Car?

A wax is a protective layer on your car’s paint and helps prevent damage.

One of the things waxing protects from is water, including rain.

However, can rain affect the wax on your car?

If you consider the short-term effects of rain on the wax, there’s nothing to worry about.

The effects are usually minimal and negligible because the wax is still quite fresh and prevents the water from damaging the wax or car.

However, the rain strips off the wax regarding long-term effects. 

With time and consistent rainfall, the wax gradually strips and exposes the paint.

Therefore, you must wax your car more frequently if you live in a location with frequent rainfall.


Rain hardly affects fresh wax on your car because it cures pretty quickly.

The only time rain can ruin a fresh wax is if you don’t apply it correctly; therefore, ensure you pay attention to that.

Furthermore, avoid waxing your car in the rain as it smudges the max over the paint and prevents it from bonding. 

Key Takeaways:

  • Waxes cure between 15 to 20 minutes or more, depending on the wax type and weather.
  • Waxes repel water from cars, preventing rainwater from damaging the paint.
  • You should wax your car often if you live in an area with constant downpours.