There are a many ways your vehicle’s paint can become scratched. Regardless of whether it was an accident, natural elements or just someone with a grudge, fixing scratches on your car is a high priority to make your vehicle look it’s best. Sometimes, minor scratches can be fixed with products at your local auto shop. Other times, however, your paint may require a professional.
Your vehicle’s surface has different layers. As seen in the graphic above, there is the sheet metal, then a primer coat, followed by the actual paint and then one or more layers of clear coat. Hairline and minor scratches in the clear coat can many times be filled in by using a “scratch removal” product. This liquid product fills in the open gaps of the clear coat and removes that scratch. Other times, a scratch removal product is not even needed. Many times what appear to be scratches or imperfections are just a buildup of dirt and other elements. An easy way to tell is by running your fingernail across the scratch. If it catches, chances are it needs some extra attention. Deeper scratches, however, go past the clear coat into the paint and require more effort to fix, many times by a professional detailer.
Start by giving your vehicle a good wash. Avoid drive-thru car washes when possible. The brushes at drive-thrus are rarely cleaned which means the buildup of dirt and grime is just rubbing directly onto your paint, which can cause even more scratches! It is always recommended to perform a wash by hand to avoid such problems. Then, park your car out in the sunlight, which will show any imperfections in the paint. If your vehicle is freshly washed, you should be able to run your hand over the surface, which SHOULD feel as smooth as glass. If it feels grainy, or your finger catches, it does not necessarily mean your paint is beyond saving, it just may need a clay bar and wax.
Clay Bar, Wax & DIY Scratch Removal
Many times, swirl marks and scratches in the top layer of your paint’s surface can be buffed out. How? A clay bar surface treatment will take any excess dirt and grime off the surface of your vehicle. Next, a wax and buff will help smooth out your paint. If after the clay bar and wax there are still scratches, you may wish to try some liquid scratch removal. If the scratch goes beyond the clear coat into the actual paint, however, you will need to order some matching paint from a dealer. Touch-up paint should match your vehicle exactly and can be applied by yourself or by a professional detailer.
More Options for Scratches
Sometimes, no amount of clay bar or wax can fix a scratch. Deep scratches require more attention, and the sooner it can be fixed, the better. If you are unsure (or just don’t have time!) about the type of scratch or how deep it goes, we can help with that. The first step it to schedule an appointment where we can assess your paint. Often times, a paint correction process is needed. Capitol Shine will first wash your vehicle and then inspect the paint for any scratches and imperfections. Then, we can give you some options on the best way to proceed.
Preventing Future Scratches
After any scratches and imperfections have been fixed, you may decide to invest in something that can prevent this problem in the future. Capitol Shine’s line of ceramic coatings provide a layer of protection unlike any other. Ceramic Pro or Opti-Coat Pro can help PREVENT scratches, fading, corrosion and more. If you would like to know more about ceramic coatings or to schedule a FREE estimate, please send us a message.
Capitol Shine can help repair and prevent scratches on your vehicle. Let us give it a good hand wash, a clay bar treatment, a wax, paint correction or ceramic coating. Not sure what your vehicle needs? That’s no problem. We can help you identify what works best for you and your car, truck, van or SUV. Head over to our website and schedule your initial service to get started.
*Please be sure to schedule your appointment at least 24 hours in advance to insure time and date*
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