DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home

Eric · Mar 14, 2021 12:00 PM

DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 01

Photo via: donielle

We’ve all been there, squeezing through a tighter-than-usual spot in a car park and ending up scratching the paint on your car.

But before you send your car to be fixed by a professional, did you know that you can attempt to fix it yourself?

DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 02

Light scratches like this might be removable. Photo credit: donielle

Depending on the severity of the damage, you may be able to remedy that right at home, without the need to go to a specialist.

DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 03

Photo credit: Avalonking

To remedy your paint problem, first you need to find out how deep the scratches are. Typically, a car’s exterior has four layers – clear coat, base coat (paint), primer, and metal.

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DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 01

If the damage looks like this, it's better to get a body/paint shop to fix 

If the scratch is deep, you’ll see a grey colour underneath, which is the primer. Often times, a deep scratch that reveals the car’s metal body or primer is better off remedied by a body shop.

DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 02

Otherwise, what you’ll see is a lighter scratch that has affected the paint and clear coat. Normally, lighter scratches like these can be fixed at home. You can also spray some water on the scratch to see if it disappears. Scratches that disappear with water often times can be polished off.

DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 03

Screengrab via: ChrisFix

The first thing you want to do is to wash the affected area thoroughly, as fixing the scratch while the car is dirty can potentially result in more scratches. Once the affected is clean, dry it with a microfibre cloth.

DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 04

Screengrab via: ChrisFix

Next, you’ll need to lightly sand the affected area with a 2000-grit sandpaper (higher the grit, the finer the sandpaper). Keep in mind that you’ll need to rub in the direction of the scratch, just so you don’t introduce more scratches in the process.

DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 05

Photo credit: Turtle Wax

After you’re done with the sanding part, take another microfibre cloth and apply some rubbing compound in small, but vigorous circles. By this stage, the scratch will start to disappear.

DIY: Scratch your car’s paint? Here’s how to fix that at home 06

Photo credit: Auto Warehouse

Once the scratch has been removed, the final step of the process is to wax the area. Wax can restore the clear coat that was worn down earlier.  High-quality carnauba wax should do the job just fine.

And that’s it, simple steps to remove light scratches from the comforts of your home, without sending to a paint shop.

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Eric

Editor

Started from the IT industry but somehow managed to find his way into the automotive industry. If he’s not gaming, he’s constantly tinkering with his daily/weekend car.

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