Paint can be repaired in several different ways. Polishing is very popular one amongst detailers, but not the only one. Some forms of paint repair are: respray, spot-repair and filling in chips. The need for what form of repair often depends on the size of the damage and/or the location.
Why the need for paint repair
Paint can get damaged, either by being of a bad quality or via outside sources. The severety of this defect can differ greatly, but if polishing won’t solve the defect, paint repair often can. A scratch can be to deep to be polished out, a stone chips might have chipped away the clear coat, or the clear coat is flaking. In these cases a form of paint repair can help to fix the paint defect.
Forms of paint repair
Some forms of paint repair can be:
- Spot repair
This is a technique where the painter tries to respray an area in such a way that you can’t see where the repair starts and the original paint ends. This can often only be done if the paint defect isn’t very deep and the area allows for fading the new paint.
- Filling in chips
Stone chips can be filled in by touching it up with touch-up-pens. With a very small brush or soft tip, a drop of paint can be laid in the chip and left to harden. After wards the area can be polished to make it invisible.
This form of repair means that the entire panel gets a complete respray. The old layer needs to be sanded down and the painter sprays a complete new layer of paint or clear coat over the panel.
In some cases the scratch can be removed or made less visible by polishing the area.
If polishing isn’t enough, wetsanding the area can be enough. In this technique, you use wet pieces of special sanding paper to remove a layer of paint in a very controlled way. This step needs to be followed up by polishing.
Not really a form of repair, but a form of covering the imperfection. A wrap is a big sheet of thin, flexible plastic foil. It is applied on top of the old surface and can be made in various colors or patterns.
Trying the least agressive option first
It pays to start out with the least agressive option. Polishing isn’t very expensive, and could be the option. Many people who think there car needs a new paint job, can be helped by getting a proper polishing service. Even oxidised paint can be fixed by only polishing. Respraying or spot repair is more expensive and is not always needed. Therefore it might help if you start out with the least agressive method first. It will often also be the cheapest way to fix the problem. Consulting a professional might be needed to get the most out of it.