Dual Action Orbital Polishers
Want to learn the easiest way to wax your ride?
Skip to the good stuff:
- Want to learn the easiest way to wax your ride?
- The 5 Best Dual Action Polishers
- What’s the difference between a dual action and rotary polisher?
Are you looking for a faster and easier way to buff, polish, or wax an entire car? Check out our list of the best dual action orbital polishers for the money. The guys and I tested each and every dual action polisher in this list to come up with a comprehensive list of our favorite polishers.
Hi, Vince here. If you are reading this, congratulations. I have to admit not all car owners have the time or the energy to personally wax or polish their vehicles. Welcome to the awesome world of car buffs!
|1||Meguiar's G3500 Dual Action Power System Tool –...||404 Reviews||$33.91||Buy on Amazon|
|2||PORTER-CABLE 7424XP 6-Inch Variable-Speed Polisher||875 Reviews||from $117.44||Buy on Amazon|
|3||Makita 9237CX3 Makita 7" Polisher, 10 AMP,...||161 Reviews||from $212.99||Buy on Amazon|
|4||BLACK+DECKER WP900 6-Inch Random Orbit...||806 Reviews||$29.97||Buy on Amazon|
|5||Chemical Guys BUF Porter Cable 7424XP Detailing...||158 Reviews||$221.59||Buy on Amazon|
Both old and new cars demand more than just a regular wash. Besides the requisite maintenance items like oil changes and brake servicing, your vehicle will need to be polished and waxed regularly as well. This is not just an aesthetic issue, although nothing beats the look of a freshly polished and waxed paint job.
It is all about maintaining the resale value of your ride. If you were vigilant in maintaining the color and shine on your car’s paint, you can expect it to have a bigger resale value compared to a vehicle with a neglected and tired paint job, guaranteed.
Now, I still prefer the old method of polishing or waxing by hand as long as you know what you’re doing. But using a dual action or DA polisher is perhaps the fastest and easiest way to clean, polish, and wax the paint in your car.
The 5 Best Dual Action Polishers
Here are the 5 best dual action polishers you can buy today so you can begin detailing your car in your own garage.
- Meguiar’s G3500 DA Power System Tool – My favorite dual action orbital polishers for the money!
- Porter-Cable 7424XP 6-inch Variable-Speed Polisher – More expensive than my first pick, but still a great choice!
- Makita 9237CX3 7-Inch Variable Speed Polisher – If your budget allows, this is one heck of a car polisher!
- Black + Decker WP900 6-Inch Random Orbit Waxer/Polisher – This is the perfect cheap car buffer!
- Chemical Guys BUF_209 Porter Cable 7424XP Complete Detailing Kit – Includes 13 items with everything you need to get started buffing and waxing!
1. Meguiar’s G3500 DA Power System Tool
- VERSATILE: Excellent multipurpose tool for waxing, polishing and compounding to give your car a smooth, glossy finish free of swirls, oxidation and stains
- FAST AND EFFECTIVE: An easier way to detail your car by letting your drill do the work. Wax your whole car in less than a half hour!
- TAKE THE NEXT STEP: Bridge the gap between detailing by hand and professional machine tools. You get the speed, ease and professional finish of machine work in an accessible, easy-to-use home tool
My first choice for the best dual action polishers is not exactly a power tool itself. The Meguiar’s G3500 Da Power System Tool that easily attaches to most standard household drills. This particular DA polisher kit works well when used with a 3/8” corded drill that spins between 1,200 to 2,500 rpm.
That’s right, you save some cash because this is a tool you just attach to your Milwaukee or DeWalt drill!
This kit comes with a dual action head to deliver faster and better results without the risk of harming or burning the paint. I chose this kit because of the price. Since the actual power tool is not included, you only pay less than $33.91. Compare that to a complete DA or dual action polisher system that can reach hundreds of dollars, it is easy to understand why the Meguiar’s G3500 DA Power System Tool is an excellent DA car polisher for money.
The kit comes with a yellow polishing pad and is ideal for removing light to moderate scratches and swirl marks. You can also buy a separate set of Meguiar’s compounding pads and waxing pads that easily attaches to the head of the Meguiar’s DA Power System Tool.
I found the lowest price here on Amazon: Meguiar’s G3500 DA Power System
The head is designed to accommodate 4” pads. This is not exactly an issue unless you are planning to polish or wax a hulking SUV or camper van. But for normal jobs like waxing sedans, sports coupes, or crossovers, the 4” head is perfect for the job.
2. Porter-Cable 7424XP 6-inch Variable-Speed Polisher
The Porter-Cable 7424XP 6-Inch Variable-Speed Polisher is one of my favorite dual action polishers in the market. I find the 6-inch head to be ideal for medium to large jobs. This is a complete DA tool that comes equipped with a random-orbit head that spins anywhere from 2,500 to 6,800 OPM or orbits per minute.
The head is controlled with a variable speed dial so you can easily adjust the speed depending on the type of job. You can sand, compound, polish, or wax without changing tools. I also like the 2-position removable side handle for an ambidextrous operation. The side handle makes it easier to control the polisher as it spins on the surface of the paint. It is not as heavy as most corded drills which makes it ideal for home or DIY use.
I found the lowest price here on Amazon: Porter-Cable 7424XP
The Porter-Cable 7424XP 6-Inch Variable-Speed Polisher comes with a 6-inch polishing pad right out of the box. It also comes with a premium 3-year limited warranty with 1-year free service to give you complete peace of mind.
What I really like about this DA polisher is the professional feel and build quality. Holding this tool will definitely make you feel like a pro!
3. Makita 9237CX3 7-Inch Variable Speed Polisher
- Variable speed dial and trigger enables user to match the speed to the application
- Constant speed control maintains constant speed under load. No Load Speed (variable speed) : 0 - 3200 RPM
- Soft start for smooth start-ups and less fling off of polish, wax or paste
Makita is one of the best brands in the power tools industry. There is nothing intermediate about the Makita 7-Inch Variable Speed Polisher. This tool has the heft and feel of a professional-grade product. It weighs in at a rather portly 7 lbs. but the included loop handle makes it almost effortless to hold and control the DA polisher as it glides over the paint.
This orbital polisher is equipped with a 7-inch dual-action head. I did find the larger head to be a bit fiddly to use on those delicate corners on the vehicle body, but this tool was also manufactured for industrial and commercial use, hence the larger 7-inch head.
The Makita 7-Inch Variable Speed Polisher is great for automotive and marine use. It is also ideal for heavier jobs like polishing stone. The tool is equipped with a variable speed dial and trigger so you can easily match the speed of the head to the intended application.
I found the lowest price here on Amazon: Makita 9237CX3
What I really like about the Makita 7-Inch Variable-Speed Polisher is the soft start system. The head will slowly rotate upon start up to prevent flinging the polish or wax all over the surface. I also like the rubberized loop handle and included side handle so you can configure the tool to your exact preference.
Perhaps my only caveat on this DA polisher is the price. You can expect to spend a couple hundred bucks for this professional quality DA polisher. But for larger jobs that demand a precise and heavy-duty polishing tool, it is hard to find an equal.
4. Black + Decker WP900 6-Inch Random Orbit Waxer/Polisher
There are many things to love about the Black + Decker and it’s probably the best cheap car buffer that you can buy! However, there are a couple of things that you won’t like as well. Let’s start with the good.
This dual action polisher is light and compact, which makes it ideal for DIY use. It even comes with a two-handle design which makes it the most comfortable DA polisher in this list. It is equipped with a lengthy 10-foot power cord so you can work freely inside the garage. This feature also makes it ideal for working on boats or other commercial applications.
As an added bonus, the Black &Decker is one of the cheapest car polishers on this list. This makes it a great bang-for-the-buck DA polisher for those who have a tight budget.
I found the lowest price here on Amazon: Black + Decker WP900
But there things that I find a bit annoying as well. My main gripe with this dual action polisher is the single speed motor. It is designed to spin at 4,400 orbits per minute only, which only makes it ideal for waxing and light polishing jobs. If you are working on a deeply scratched, swirled, or oxidized finish, you’re out of luck.
I wish the Black + Decker WP900 Polisher came with a variable-speed setting. This feature alone would have made this the hands-down favorite to be the top dual action polishers for the value, even if they raise the price.
I also had some gripes about the build quality of the product. Yes, the plastic construction makes this tool incredibly light, but I prefer the heavier feel of other DA polishers especially when attacking deeper scratches and swirls.
On the other hand, the Black + Decker WP900 is the perfect DA polisher for waxing automotive paint. If you already have a DA polisher but can afford to plunk a few bucks for a new one, I highly recommend this tool for applying wax or sealants.
5. Chemical Guys BUF_209 Porter Cable 7424XP Complete Detailing Kit
Is this the best value-packed detailing kit that includes a Porter Cable 7424XP 6-Inch Variable Speed Dual Action Polisher? Yes! If you are new to detailing and you are looking for a complete detailing kit along with your very own dual action polisher, the Chemical Guys BUF-209 Complete Detailing Kit is the perfect choice.
For a higher price, you get the Porter Cable 6-Inch Variable Speed DA Polisher. Yes, it is the same tool in this best dual action polishers list, so you’re already getting a superb quality and professional-grade DA polisher.
I found the lowest price here on Amazon: Chemical Guys BUF_209
You also get a pair of microfiber towels, five Hex-logic compounding/polishing/waxing pads, and a spray bottle of pad cleaner and pad conditioner. The kit also includes a backing plate, counter plate, and wrench to seal the deal.
The Porter Cable DA Polisher can spin at 2500 to 6800 oscillations per minute. This is definitely one of the best DA polishers for compounding, polishing, and waxing. Nothing beats the convenience and flexibility of a variable-speed DA polisher. You can treat deeper scratches and wax the finish to a brilliant shine without changing tools.
In my opinion, the Chemical Guys Detailing Kit is the best dual action polisher for beginners. All you need is a bottle of polish or wax and you’re good to go!
What’s the difference between a dual action and rotary polisher?
A dual action polisher (or most commonly referred to as an orbital polisher) is the best choice when it comes to paint and automotive detailing. Dual action polishers are designed using a central spindle that also rotates over an eccentric offset, hence the jiggly motion of the spinning head.
The term ‘dual action’ was coined from the spinning head that not only spins in a circle, but it also oscillates as the head spins.
We all know the Earth rotates on its own axis as it also revolves around the sun, right? Dual action polishers work in the same way. The odd or irregular motion of the spinning head will prevent excess heat from accumulating over the paint surface to prevent irreversible damage. Best of all, most dual action polishers are equipped with a clutch that cuts out the power as the rotating head is pressed harder on the surface.
On the other hand, rotary polishers are constructed to spin in a constant orbit. This is the primary reason why inexperienced users should be careful in using a rotary polisher to clean or polish automotive paint.
But in the hands of a professional detailer, rotary polishers can equal or even surpass the results of a dual action polisher. Rotary or circular polishers are also ideal for deep compounding or when removing deeper scratches and swirl marks.
Dual action polishers are gentler compared to a rotary polisher and are ideal for DIY use. I tried using a heavy rotary polisher with a wool attachment and I was sweating by the time I polished an entire hood. You also have to be conscious about your actions. Just a second of inattentiveness is enough to completely ruin your pant job!
Want to know how to properly use a dual action polisher? – Click here – The article contains everything you need to know including the types of polishing and cleaning pads for each type of detailing job.
In this article, our primary focus is testing and reviewing the best dual action polishers for the money.
If you’re getting old like myself and tired of hand polishing your ride, then a portable DA polisher may be just what you need! I hope this guide has been enough to help you make the right decision. If you’ve got any questions, go ahead and contact us!
Be sure to check out our other sweet guides: