Save Your Paint Job – How to Repair a Car Scratch

It's Friday night and you have just left a card game with the guys and then it happens; time freezes. Your jet black paint job from MaCCo is ruined by a white key scratch. What kind of person would do that, what kind of sick and twisted individual would do such a thing as scratch a fresh paint job? As you become the focus of the humor on the highway; you begin to think, "How on earth will I get this fixed before my next date?"

The Do it yourself Car Scratch Remover Guide

Removing scratches can be a very simple task; but very costly if it is not done correctly. Most people because of convenience go directly to professionals when they simply do not have the time. But in most cases you have to go to the professionals simply because the scratch is too deep to remove with a scratch remover / repair. Most car scratches, such as key marks and pebble marks from driving on the highway can easily be removed; here are also some other minor scratches that wont cost you a bunch.

a) Random / miscellaneous scratches.

b) Cob-web effects.

c) Pore-Imbedding strains.

d) Oxidation (Rust)

e) Acid Rain Spots.

f) Dried bird droppings (parking under trees in the summer)

g) Buffer Swirls (from buffing too hard the last time)

These scratches are normally 1000-600 grit which can easily be fixed or buffed. But at 2000 grit the scratch has penetrated to deep into the surface. That's when the professionals have to step in; the conventional compound or scratch remover would not suffice.

Car Scratch: Getting the Right Tools to Secure Your Paint Job
As you begin to walk through the isles of your local AutoZone or Advanced Auto Parts you begin seeking the right tools. Many online stores also carry variations of paint leveler since the standard compound hurts newer paints. The new paint levelers have heat reducing abrasives that flatten under heat; pretty cool since this now works on almost all modern paint jobs. Now that we have the basics let's get started. Remember your date is tomorrow and you only have one day. First let's get the tools squared away.

Things you will need to repair a minor scratch:

a) Body Compound found at chains such as Auto Zone or Advance Auto Parts.

b) Primer Paint found at your local dealership service center.

c) Sandpaper. (Cut into squares)

d) Two towels or pieces of cloth (one wet and one kept dry)

e) Two buckets (one with soap the other plain water).

f) Small paint brush; about an inch to two inch brush .. (Home Depot or local hardware store)

g) Car Polish.

h) Any scratch removing agent such as (Quixx Car Scratch Removal)

Now that we are all on the same page with the materials let's remember that some scratch removers may vary in price, so make sure while you are at AutoZone that you select the correct scratch remover. Older model cars and light scratches work fine with standard body compounds; and do not require all of the supplies listed above. But for deeper scratches you will need all the supplies and sunshine. Now let's begin; but first before you even think about buffing or polishing; wash your vehicle clean. Dirt and grime will make for a very bad paint job, making it appear like melted bird droppings.

Repair Minor Car Scratches

For minor scratches it's pretty simple:

1. Using the wet cloth; apply the polishing compound to the damaged area.

2. Gently rub the compound into damaged area with circular motion. (Allowing it to harden)

3. After applying to damaged area use the soap and water to wash area.

4. Apply wax to towel or sponge and gently dub the area in a circular motion.

5. Using a clean piece of cloth gently rub the surface clean.

Repair Deeper Car Scratches

1. Now that was pretty simple. Now back to reality. This key mark was pretty big and a simple duff and polish would not do the job. So you now need to spend a bit more money and spend a bit more time. Do not worry; here are the steps to repairing that deep emotional scar; which we call paint terrorism.

2. Using one piece of sand paper, carefully sand the area. (Clean area immediately after)

3. Apply compound directly to the scratch. (Allowing it to harden)

4. Using the sand paper gently sand the body compound. (Do not sand to hard or to long you may end up doing more harm than good)

5. Clean the area of ​​all dust and deposits.

6. Using the one inch brush apply the primer paint to the scratch; just like in elementary school stay within the lines.

7. Put the paint brush in water so it can be re-used for applying the touch-up-paint.

8. Allow the paint to dry; which may take a while. (Grad a bite to eat and watch the 5th inning)

9. Take a trip down to the dealer service center to get the exact paint match for your vehicle; this is the most important step. (Supply your VIN to the dealer to get the exact color)

10. Gently apply touch-up paint to the scratches.

11. Now it looks like new. (Well almost)

You have followed the steps and are now ready for the date. The scratches are gone; you picked up your dry cleaning and your date is sending promising text messages. Then you get the call from your crazy ex-girlfriend; her evil laugh sends chills down you spine. It's the paint terrorist, she called to claim responsibility for her actions and boast about how great it felt. Little did she know; you have taken care of the problem. Your care is back to being a Superhero and heroes always save the day.

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