DIY repair of small chips and scratches body and paint

In a previous post, when we discussed preparing your car’s paint for winter, one of the steps mentioned was using an applicator to fill in small chips and scratches. But surprisingly, even as simple as this seems, a follow-up, here, with some detailed advice might help you to achieve a better result.

First, in case you aren’t aware of it, car dealers sell small and inexpensive touch-up applicators that match the colour of your car. Similar, after-market applicators are available from stores selling automotive products. The main feature of these applicators is what looks like a nail polish brush and when used properly, this will help to hide those chips and scratches and in doing so, protect your car’s paint. As part of an autumn preparation, make sure to do this procedure after polishing, (if you are undertaking it) but before waxing.

After shaking the bottle thoroughly, use the applicator on each chip and small scratch. You might practice on a piece of scrap plastic or metal to get the feel of how much paint to have on the brush tip and how best to hold the brush. Only use a tiny amount and let it fill in chips on horizontal surfaces. Vertical surfaces are harder, as the gravity will pull on the paint causing it to drip and you’re also working on an awkward angle. Try using a dryer brush and consider doing two passes, letting the paint dry before adding the second application. In high traffic areas of a car, such as button snaps for a convertible, applying the new paint onto existing paint can actually cause this paint to lift, so just take your time and be willing to apply a little at a time, carefully.

If there is already rust, it will need to be removed first. If it’s mild rust, you might be able to remove it with products also available from auto parts stores, or a 120-240 grade sandpaper. Obviously, you don’t want to sand the adjacent surfaces, so extra care is required. If this is not to your liking, have the car looked at by a professional, but don’t leave the rust there and don’t paint over it either. Otherwise, using these applicators is an easy procedure.

One last tip is to buy an applicator at the time you purchase your car, new or used and keep it handy in the car. After a car wash, take a quick walk around, looking for chips, especially on the hood and for scratches freely distributed in your local parking lots.

Taking five minutes with the touch up paint applicator will help to prevent those spots from rusting as well as helping to keep your car looking its best. Over the years, your car might accumulate so many spots that it’s time to consider a polishing application, but that’s preferable to bare metal and rust. And when the time comes, give us a call at 905-953-0052 or look us up at www.lnerautomotive. LNER Automotive is a full-service and restoration company that has been servicing all makes and models of vehicles in the Newmarket area since 1996.

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