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Repairing your Chipped Car Paint (DIY)

Repairing your Chipped Car Paint (DIY)

Chipped paint is one of the common issues you can encounter on your car. Your vehicle is probably one of your most prized possessions and flaky paint on your car can reduce its lustre and value. Chipped paint will also expose your car to active oxidation which will eventually lead to rusting. There are a lot of factors that may cause your car paint to chip. In the middle of winter, chunks of gravel and grit help keep your car from sliding off the road. However, year-round, these stones can chip the paint off your car. Other factors that may cause your car paint to chip off include different weather conditions, accidents and strong chemical cleaners.

One of your options in repairing your chipped car paint is to go to an auto detailing shop and get a full paint job. Your car will certainly look shiny and new once the repair is done. However, you have to pay expensive detailing fees. If you have patience and you have the time, you do-it-yourself and repair the chipped paint. Before you go to a paint distributor to get your supplies, you have to remember that you would have to take care of three layers of your car – the body of the vehicle made of steel, the paint itself and the shiny top layer most commonly referred to as the clear-coat.

In some cases, you can simply use wet sandpaper to repair minor chips as long as the paint is still in place. There are touch-up pens you can purchase that you can use to prevent corrosion. However, most of the time, the do not blend with the vehicle’s paint. Needless to say, your car will look like a spotted vehicle with all the small and big dots of differently coloured paint. So, it is important not to jump right into the process without doing ample research. In this article, we have listed the steps you can follow to repair your chipped car paint.

Preparing your Vehicle

When you go to your local paint distributor, purchase small cans of paint with colours that you think exactly match your car. Some areas with chipped paint are not evidently visible so the first thing that you have to do is to run your hand along your car and feel if there are bumps on the surface. Remove these bumps prior to buffing the car so you can ensure that no swirl marks will be created and that the paint will render a spectacular glossy look. If the areas for chipped paint are small, you can glue a small piece of fine sandpaper to a new pencil’s eraser. Gently work through the chipped paint using a spinning motion. Remember not to sand deeper than the chip itself.

The next step you have to take is running the clay bar over the affected areas until the paint feels smooth. Remember not to use the clay bar if it already touched the floor! If your vehicle has serious scratches or chipped paint, you may need a rubbing compound. If a scratch is not that deep, a rubbing compound will be enough to remove it. Apply the product using an applicator pad and remove it using a micro fibre towel. For fine circular scratches or swirl marks, it is advisable to use a 3M swirl remover.

Applying the Paint and Finishing Touches

Use a toothpick or a barbeque stick to apply the paint. Use a dabbing motion and remember not to apply a thick layer. Let the paint rest for a day until it dries. Once the paint is dry, remove irregularities or bumps on the paint surface by lightly sanding over it. Most of the time, it will take several layers of paint, but you have to be patient and let the paint dry before adding another coat.

Once you are satisfied with the paint, use a sealant to protect the previously chipped areas. The final step to this DIY project is using a spray wax along with a micro fibre towel to remove dust and dirt from the paint in between washing. Remember not to use a towel alone, or even your fingernail when doing this process! Doing so will only damage the paint.

It is undeniable that fixing chipped car paint is a tedious process. So, you have to use all means to prevent this issue from happening again. One of the most common ways to prevent paint chipping is by parking in a covered area to avoid weather conditions or bird droppings. Also, remember to use certified cleaners to prolong the life of your car’s paint.

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