The Bear Claw pad from Chemical Guys is a large synthetic wool wash pad suitable for all paint surfaces.
The large pad measures about 25 cm x 25 cm, with the fabric strands being about 6 cm long. The pad is easy to grip, holds a large amount of suds and cleans safely and effectively. The long strands agitate the shampoo very well, which helps soap stay on the paint longer. Users may find that small pieces of dirt can become caught in the wash pad, which is something to bear in mind.
I incorporated this wash pad into my microfibre arsenal, using it frequently with a variety of shampoos. I mostly used it with maintenance shampoos in a bucket, such as Carpro Reset and Gyeon Bathe, but I also applied Meguiar’s Wash Plus directly to the pad to see how it performed.
When washing followed my usual process of washing top to bottom, cleaning one or two panels at a time before rinsing the pad using running water. Cars were moderately to very dirty but were always pre-washed with snow foam.
I typically prefer using wash mitts that fit over my hand like a glove, as it stops me dropping it. Dropping the Bear Claw pad has not been an issue, as it is so large and the strands are very long, giving plenty of grip between the pad and hand. It is easy to manipulate with the hand around intricate areas.
Chemical Guys claim this wash pad can hold up to five times its weight in water, and I can well believe it. The amount of suds that can be transferred from the bucket to the paint is really impressive, squeezing the pad releases a lot of suds, aiding cleaning and lubrication. It will easily hold enough soap to wash the entire upper half of a vehicle without re-dunking in the bucket.
Built Quality 8.5/10
The quality is very good, I did notice any strands coming off at any point, nor have any of the seams come undone. As mentioned, the pad is a synthetic fur blend. After use and washing the fibres do clump together, but this does not hinder the performance.
Dirt Removal 8.0/10
The long fibres make dirt removal very easy, as the shampoo is easy to agitate. The long fibres made it very easy to clean more intricate areas, such as in and around badges and grills.
One thing I did find frustrating was that dirt could be hard to remove from the fibres, both with running water and rinsing in a bucket. Occasionally I had to pick debris out by hand, so it is important to quickly inspect the pad before dunking in the shampoo bucket.
Value for Money 9.0/10
The Bear Claw wash pad is listed at £7.79 ($8.73 USD) on Chemical Guy’s website, which I think is a fantastic price for a mitt of this quality, definitely a good investment. It is comparable in price to other synthetic and microfibre wash solutions, which as a whole are cheaper than genuine wool mitts and pads.
This wash pad is safe for use on all exterior surfaces, a separate pad could be used on the wheels. Chemical Guys also sell the Bear Claw as an enclosed mitt, although in my experience mitts do not hold as much water as pads.
Chemical Guys are a well-known California based detailing company, where the products are manufactured. They have a large range of products, although many of the different products serve the same purpose. Chemical Guys popularity has grown due to their extensive social media presence, many UK retailers now stock their products.
For anyone in the market for a new wash media, the Bear Claw pad from Chemical Guys is something well worth considering. I was impressed with the cleaning ability, with the large pad being able to cover a lot of area quickly. The absorbency is excellent, the pad transfers a lot of suds to the paint. The pad is good value for money, my only word of warning would be to check for any debris in the fibres to avoid inflicting swirl marks.
Is Bear Claw a mitt or a pad?
Both are available and having used the pad, I think that would be my preference.
Is the Bear Claw pad lambswool?
While the Bear Claw looks and feels similar to lambswool, it is in fact a synthetic material.
How should the Bear Claw be maintained?
During a wash, the pad should be rinsed in clean water before re-adding soap. It can be machine washed at 40 degrees Celsius, using a dedicated microfibre wash, or a non-bio detergent with no fabric conditioners.