Optimum Opti-Bond vs CarPro PERL


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For the last 2 weeks I've been trialing a test of Optimum's Opti-Bond vs CarPro PERL.

This was very subjective, and hopefully honest test. Spoiler alert - I will start out by saying both products are fantastic and are more than worthy of purchasing.
I didn't get any great photos as it was too hard to tell the subtle differences between them so you will have to take my word for it. Both products are water based
and can be diluted if needed/desired.

Optimum Opti-Bond

+ Leaves a perfectly smooth high gloss finish with no greasy residue
+ Can be diluted further to reduce gloss (I wouldn't go past 1:1 as the consistency gets... weird)
+ Very good value for money (as usual with Optimum)
+ Although not really obvious, can be used on external (and even internal) plastic trim and rubber
+ Still going strong after 2 weeks in a daily driven car in a variety of weather
+ Does not appear blotchy or streaky if applied unevenly

- The smell is hard to describe, but it's not great
- Has trouble bonding to older rubber that has started to dry
- The high gloss look may not be desirable for some


Applied undiluted to the tyre.




+ Produces a fantastic satin finish on everything it touches
+ Has some kind of darkening effect built in that makes rubber look new
+ Smells amazing!
+ Can be diluted down for use on leather and plastic if needed
+ Very good value for money when purchased in the 1 litre size

- Produced an unsightly cheap silicone look in direct sunlight when used at full strength (on tyres at least)
- If you are after a high gloss, wet look, this may not be the best choice
- Durability on tyres is only average. Starting to noticabley drop off after 2 weeks
- Due to the darkening effect, it can appear 'patchy' if you don't apply it evenly


Applied undiluted to the tyre.



Both products perform great once you get the hang of the quirks each have. For instance - PERL will leave a streaky finish if not wiped down soon after applying and Opti-Bond turns into a really weird consistency if you dilute it too much. I will say that a huge downside to PERL is when applied at full strength to tyres it has a horrible cheap silicone dressing look to it when hit by full sunlight. I took my car to a friends house to actually show it off after washing it on the weekend and this actually made me embarrassed  when he saw it.

I would happily choose and love using either product, but if I had to go with only one I would give the very slightest advantage to Opti-Bond. I think the name should be changed to Opti-Bond External Trim and Tire Gel as in my experience it actually outperformed PERL on external plastic. I applied it to my mothers car which had very faded external plastic trim, and upon seeing the car weeks later it was still performing well even though it sits outside 24/7.

If you have any experiences with either of these products please let me know!

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  • 3 months later...

Thank you, Thiiing! (I feel like Gomez Addams when I say that!)  I've been an avid user of Aerospace 303  Protectant for the last eighteen years, and have only recently found this great Optimum product line; it seems that the Optibond will be the new replacement (along with the OPP) for trim, tires and interior plastics.  Your pictures are very helpful in showing the level of gloss that Optibond produces.  Can you relay any durability results?  303 is great, but tends to attract dust.

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In my experience you will get 2+ weeks in great weather for PERL or Opti-Bond. If it rains or you drive through puddles they do perform poorly as they are water based.

They both look great but PERL is slightly more finicky (i.e it needs to be wiped down after about 10-15 minutes otherwise you can get streaks). Opti-Bond is almost impossible to mess up.

I actually really like the look and ease of application from 303, but I would get about only a week of durability even in perfect weather.

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19 hours ago, A&J said:

Say what now???


It was talked about on either the Synergy podcast or the Rag Company podcast with Yvan.  Old age stops me from remembering which one.  I am guessing this is a Pro only product but it would be nice if it was sold to us consumers

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  • 3 weeks later...

So I bought a bottle (well, the gallon size "bottle"!) of Optibond right after reading The THiiNG's review,  and have tested it on my Suburban with excellent results! I diluted it 1:1 to see what type of sheen it would produce, and it is a very nice semi-gloss.  I cleaned the tires first with power clean at 4:1 dilution, then applied the Optibond with a foam tire dressing sponge applicator.  It did last at least two weeks (more like four), as I intentionally overlooked the wheels when washing the car with ONR after two weeks.  The deep black of tires was still evident when I washed the tires again, this time a spray of ONR. The application of the Optibond was easier this second time, and the tires are somehow a richer shade of black! The wizardry of Optimum synergy never ceases to amaze me!  I have included the Optibond application with four of my clients' vehicles, and each one has remarked on the improvement/enhancement of the sheen and color of their tires. I tried to submit a picture, but it exceeded the bitrate, or something technical .       - Sorry, 303, but you are taking a well-deserved rest on my product shelf. 

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interesting observation Edmund about your second application seeming to have a richer shade - Dr G told me years ago that many of Optimum's products have a cumulative effect (ONR, Wax, Seal, Protectant Plus, etc) but I assumed he was being a "homer".  Over time I've noticed (as have others) the truth of this comment.  My cars stay cleaner and are easier to wash with ONR, etc.

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On 9/17/2018 at 3:52 PM, Lowejackson said:

Not noticed any dust attraction with either product.  On tyres I would say both are about 4 weeks but I guess a lot depend on where you live. 

Opti-Bond is unique among the tire dressings I have used, in that it is completly non-greasy feeling, even when you get it on your fingers.

On 9/23/2018 at 2:54 PM, Lowejackson said:

Looking forward to the release of the new OPT tyre coating

I missed this...should be interesting, hopefully not pro-only as you suggested in another post.

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