Automotive Buffer Review
Helping You Make the right selection the first time!

Trying to find the best automotive buffer will likely prove to be an extremely frustrating proposition for most of you reading this; and likely this is not the first place you have gone looking either! As I tell my children; get used to being has just begun!

Welcome to the digital age. You are now drowning in a bottomless sea of free information and endless free opinions.

"And all you want is to find the best car buffer so you can have a really shiny car!"

csi ceram-x car polisher with car buffer

Any session within the hundred or so online forums will be a frustrating experience with opinion after opinion; most of which are nothing more than inexperience people misrepresenting themselves. (not that I have an opinion!)

Unfortunately with this overabundance of bad information, many of you will be making a decision based on partial information at best, and bad information at worst.

Like everywhere else in life; nothing is created equally. This holds true with automotive buffers as it does with anything else.

The Right Buffer For The Job

Isn't that the million dollar question? And if you had that answer, you most likely wouldn't be here. Many of you will struggle to find the perfect automotive buffer for the job. So follow along as I break it down into bite sized pieces and lay the dots out for you to connect based on you and your world.

using the automotive bufferHere I am am polishing the back end of a Chevy truck with a Griot's Garage random orbital car buffer

Random Orbital Buffers

Random orbital automotive buffers (also called dual-action, or DA buffers) have been around long enough that most beginners and professionals now accept that these car buffers are the first point of entry whether you are trying to wax your car or polish your car.

Considered by everyone to be the safest car buffers due to what is called a free floating spindle/bearing assembly. These dual-action buffers are called dual-action specifically because there are two moving components of the buffing plate or pad. (unlike  a high-speed, or rotary polisher that simply spins with a direct drive gear on a single axis point)

automotive buffer

Without over-loading with information, the key component that makes these car buffers so safe is the free floating spindle/bearing assembly. This is very different than the rotary, or high-speed car polishers that are notorious for leaving swirl marks, holograms, buffer trails, etc., and burning edges (polishing the paint off any edges on your car due to excessive friction).

Unfortunately many people have grown up under the old-school thinking shown to us by our fathers and the days of those bulky, orbital polishers. Those old-school orbital buffers still exist, but much of the public still associate random orbital buffers with these bulky, outdated car buffers we saw our fathers use.

"Today is a world of modern technology and the age of high performance random orbital car buffers."

And it is very likely that you are hear as a beginner looking to choose a top rated automotive buffer now that you have become part of the "enlightened".

Why a Random Orbital Automotive Buffer?

  • The winning balance between performance and safety.
  • As versatile as any auto buffer can be, while still performing at a professional level.
  • Safely and effectively used for waxing to high-end paint correction.
  • Virtually 95% of all professional auto detailers use random orbital automotive buffers as their only tool for polishing cars.
  • Safe and effective from simply wax applications, mild paint defect removal, to heavy paint correction.
  • Any "out-of-the-box" beginner can now have the confidence to safely and effectively create an award winning shine to their car.

Black and Decker Automotive Polisher

Black & Decker WP900 6-Inch Random Orbit Waxer/Polisher

  • One of the most popular random orbital buffers. (in case you think the herd mentality means something)
  • Top rated orbital car buffer on Amazon.
  • A winning combination of price and performance for any person who simply wants a car buffer to apply wax ONLY.
  • Use for light polishing and wax applications.

Darren's Note: This buffer has serious limitations for anything other than car wax applications. If you are actually looking to create a lasting and professional looking shine to your car, this buffer should not be your pick. I get that many of you are so fearful of taking a buffer to your car, but this will buffer will end up being a waste of your money if you have more intentions of simply applying wax to your car.

The "Better" alternative:
Enthusiast and Professional grade orbital buffers

Griot's Garage Paint Correction Kit

Griot's Garage 11620Z Orbital Correcting and Wax Kit

  • You can purchase a car buffer separately, but this kit contains everything you will need to produce an award wining shine at a professional level. (generally when you buy any of the many "kits", you save money over buying things individually. The trade-off is that you may either not want everything in the kit, or the kit may not have the exact products you really want. But trade-off's right?)
  • The exact car polisher I started with as a professional when I switched to using a random orbital (also known as a DA, or dual-action car polisher)
  • Enthusiast/Professional grade equipment.
  • Can be used for wax applications to heavy duty paint correction. (all based on pads, compounds, and polishes you choose)
  • Can't go wrong with this one with the reviews to back it up.
  • Also ideal for waxing your car in a fraction of the time it normally takes. (no more endless rubbing by hand)
  • Comes with a hook and loop (Velcro) backing plate and finishing pad. (The hook and loop backing plate means you are free to pick and choose from an endless selection of polishing pads that are easily swapped out and replaced as needed.)
  • This kit even comes with "detailing clay" which is a critical step for professional results. (detailing clay is used to decontaminate your paint prior to polishing or waxing)

Torq Random Orbital

Maxshine M21 Pro DA Dual Action Polisher

  • Top rated car polisher
  • Enthusiast/Professional grade
  • Likely the last car polisher you will ever need
  • Will perform to professional standards
  • You will be amazed at the results you are able to produce! (seriously!!!)
  • The trade-off with this kit versus the one above is that you will need to purchase some form of clay bar kit to decontaminate your paint prior to polishing it
  • This polisher is also more expensive, but also has a more professional look and feel to it (once again; trade-off's)

Automotive Buffer:
The ultimate kit (almost)

Griots Garage BOSS G21 Long-Throw Orbital Polisher Deluxe Kit

How do you like the "almost" part?!

It seems everywhere in life you are trying to find the perfect combination. But there is always going to be trade-off's no matter what.

The trade-off with this kit is you will still need some form of detailing clay to decontaminate your paint with, prior to performing any polishing, paint correction, or even waxing. Don't underestimate this part of the process. So this kit is very comprehensive, but still lacks that one critical part of the process.

  • A true professional grade automotive buffer.
  • Comes with true, professional grade compounds and polishes, and even a paint sealant (sealant is simply a different type of "wax". Think of sealants as synthetic motor oil versus conventional motor oils)
  • Unlike the other Griot's car buffer kit above, this kit has micro-fiber cloths that you will also need. (we are once again back to the infamous trade-off moment)
  • Also comes with an interface plate many professionals like using when polishing.
  • Don't forget about the really cool Griot's Garage, custom bag!

Darren's Professional Tips:

griots automotive bufferUsing the Griot's Garage automotive car buffer to paint correct this black Acura

Like many other areas of life, we often learn after the fact that we have made a decision with partial information. Hopefully I have revealed more information in attempt to help you be a more informed consumer. Hopefully you are now ready to make a decision and take your polishing to the next level. A lot of satisfaction comes when the right motivation meets up with the right tools! So good luck and go make it shine!

P.S. If you find yourself still sitting on the fence and really don't enjoy the painful "science" of review after review, I would simply go with the first Griot's Garage kit. If you have the cash to burn and you really like the feel and appearance of true professionalism, then I would go with the Griot's Garage BOSS kit at the bottom of the reviews. (The ultimate kit)

  • You will be more than happy
  • You will have everything to get you started on the road to a shinier car and being the envy of the neighborhood
  • Likely you will never have to endure this task of shopping for the best automotive buffer in the future!

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