Touch-up Paint Jobs

Yes, it can be done. Touching up the paint on your vehicle can be an easy do-it-yourself project. It gets easier when you use touch-up paints provided by CPCA member companies who have years of R&D behind them in developing new and innovative touch-up paint for your valuable asset.  Companies provide paints that can be matched to the colour of your vehicle. There are literally thousands of colours available for every type of vehicle on the market. ‘How to’ YouTube videos and other instructions are most helpful when applying the many paint colours available for scratches and dents. Most paint products also provide instructions. Rest assured the quality of the paint will last when applied properly and make your vehicle new again and prevent rust. 

Things You Need for D-I-Y Touch-Up Auto Paint

It requires a few supplies, such as sandpaper, soft rags, and the paint itself, but the full repair can be finished in up to three hours. Kits are available at retail outlets that include all the items you'll need to do the touch-up work. 

Colour Selection

You can search for the paint for your car by make, colour and year, via colour matching sources provided by our member companies. You can find which paints match your car's colour. Then look for a suitable retail outlet near you to buy your perfect match. You can also search by manufacturer’s colour code or the name of your car's colour if you have it.  

Give it a Light Sand

While the original scratch or dent needs a light sanding, it is recommended that you not sand between touch-up base colour paint, the clearcoat, and primer coats. However, if a little ends up in the paint, let the paint dry and sand out the speck. If you're having an issue with too much texture or getting runs in the paint, you may want to sand as well.

Clear Coating

A clear coat needs to be sprayed, and for a very small area that you'd be using touch up paint for, it really isn't necessary to have a clear coat on top of it, the area is much too small for it to matter. Your car's paint surface is very sensitive and scratches really easily. For larger surfaces, it may be needed, but for those you may also need to have it professionally done in more difficult cases. 

Wet Sanding

If taking on the larger touch up DIY project, you must wet-sand the base coat before starting the clear coat. Wet sanding makes the surfaces smoother. If you wet-sand the base coat, wash the vehicle with soap and water after this step, not before. Once the base coat is smooth and clean, start spraying on about three to four layers of clear coat for the finish.

Plan for Multiple Coats

Plan for 2-3 coats for a larger touch-up project. When applying multiple coats as recommended, the first coat should be applied lightly. Doing so helps prevent shrinkage, which causes cracks. All preceding coats should be full and wet!

The Bottom Line: Even the best paint jobs need a touch-up now and then if you want to get the most out of a valuable asset like your car. When done correctly touch-ups should blend well with the surrounding paint area and last up to 4 or 5 years depending on the wear and tear. While touch-ups may not be exact every time and only you will know the difference. The most important point is it will extend the life of your asset, which saves you money in the long-term.  

Watch it. Do it.

Check out Ratchets And Wrenches and Scratch Wizard on YouTube to Learn
How to Do Paint Touch-Ups Paint Step-by-Step.

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