Fixing Your Car’s Exterior: How to Remove Scratches on Your Own

Remove Scratches on Your Own

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Home >> Fixing Your Car’s Exterior: How to Remove Scratches on Your Own

The paint on every vehicle out there plays a major part in aesthetics but it is also an essential form of protection from the elements and other external factors. Your car’s paint is made of three layers, a primer, a base color coat, and a clear coat.

The primer is the first layer that is applied in order to make the metal panel uniform and allow the paint to apply to it evenly. The second layer is the base color coat which is a semi-gloss layer and the panel’s final color.

The third layer, the clear coat, is a layer of clear lacquer which is there to protect the base color layer from UV oxidation and degradation. Although the total thickness of all three layers is between 67 and 198 microns we all know that the paint job can get nasty scratches.

How to Remove Car Scratches

Moderate Scratches

1. Start this DIY auto repair process by giving the scratched area a good wash. Clean the surrounding area by spraying it with a gentle water stream and then use a chamois or a microfiber cloth to dry it off.

To make for an even faster car scratch repair you can apply some rubbing alcohol on the scratch to remove dirt and dust particles. Avoid anything that contains powerful degreasers as it can remove the protective sealant provided by the paint’s clear coat.Remove Car Scratches

2. The first step of this car scratch repair process is to apply a small amount of scratch remover. Squeeze a bit on the buffing pad provided in your scratch repair kit or a clean microfiber cloth if you don’t have one and apply it directly to the damaged area.

Work in the damaged area from one end to the other by moving the pad in smooth and tight circles. This will wear down the rough edges of the scratch and make for a uniform surface. Buff until the polish/ scratch remover has disappeared.apply scratch remover

3. After you’ve done that, get a clean microfiber cloth and clean the damaged area from excess polish/ scratch remover. This will give you a better view of the result that you’ve achieved and whether or not you need to repeat the previous step or not.

If you can still see the scratch you’ll need to apply polish/ scratch remover again. Don’t go overboard though, as scratch remover/ polish can buff away paint too. In case you see paint on your pad stop applying the polish/ scratch remover.

Deep Gauges

1. The same goes when removing deep gauges, start by cleaning the scratch with rubbing alcohol or a gentle water stream. When applying rubbing alcohol tough, make sure you do so with a soft cloth or a sponge over the scratch and the surrounding area.

Wiping down your vehicle is especially important if you’ve had it waxed or resealed as of recently. car putty

2. This is how to fix deep scratches on a car. Fill in the scratch with glazing putty by applying a blob of it the size of a dime beside the damaged area. Use a spreader tool or a squeegee to spread the putty into the gauge. You should do this if you can see bare metal underneath the scratch.

3. Allow the putty to cure about 2 to 3 minutes depending on the product you are using. When the putty has cured, apply some (1-2 fluid oz/ 30-59 ml) liquid paint leveler using a detailing towel or a clean microfiber cloth.

Make sure you pour the leveler on the center of the cloth/ towel and then work it in by going back and forth over the scratch with light pressure.

Applying Paint

1. Use touch paint for this part of the process and a fine brush to apply a thin line. Make sure you dab the paint with the tip of the brush into the gauge and avoid wiping or brushing it. Carefully apply a thin coat until you have the scratch concealed completely.Applying Paint

2. Let the paint dry anywhere from 8 to 12 hours and although some will dry over the course of a couple of hours, it’s best that you leave the paint overnight for the best results. In case you are still able to see damage beneath the first coat of paint, you can apply up to two more thin coats the same way you did the first one.clear coat applicator

3. Seal the paint with a clear coat applicator, again make sure you apply a thin coat of sealant. Just slide the tip of the pen over the length of the paint line for the best results. Allow the sealant to dry overnight and sand it with a sheet of wet/dry 1,500 – 2,000 sandpaper. Apply light pressure in swirling motions to avoid taking off too much of the clear coat. Sand the damaged area until it blends in with the finish around it.