How to use Spray Cans to touch up car paint scratches like a pro!

How to use Spray Cans to touch up car paint scratches like a pro!

Greetings from Right now we are are going to show you how
to repair a vehicle’s damaged paint job using spray cans. We are
repairing the paint damage on this work truck today. Notice the large areas of unpainted
surfaces from years of abuse. By the end of the process we will have a freshly painted
door panel, good as new. Okay here we go! First, Tape off the Surrounding Area
Using automotive quality masking tape and protective paper, mask off the areas you wish
to protect. Do not simply outline the damaged area with tape as you will create a distinct
paint line which will show up when you remove the tape. Professional shops will often paint
to a boundary such as a panel line, molding, or the edge of a door. The idea is to blend
the paint from the damaged area into a larger undamaged zone without leaving any noticeable
paint lines. Also, make sure you cover any door handles, windows, mirrors, or anything
else you do not want to paint. Second, scuff the area within the tape’s
boundaries. Using 100 grit sandpaper, sand the area you
wish to paint over. You can sand by hand, but if you have either a dual-action or a
random orbit power sander, use it. It can save a lot of time and energy. When using
a power sander, it’s important that you use a mask. Work the damaged area, removing
paint chips, rust, and any other imperfections, but also lightly scuff the undamaged areas
too. You are trying to feather the damaged paint area as smooth as you can. Third, Clean the Area: Apply our
wax and grease remover with a clean rag and thoroughly wipe the scratch and surrounding
area. If you don’t clean the area, the touch-up paint won’t adhere properly. After the area
is clean, wipe it down with a tack rag just before painting. This will remove any dust
or debris, allowing the paint to adhere properly. I should mention that the following steps
require important safety precautions. Automotive paints contain hazardous materials, protect
yourself with a dual cartridge respirator, protective gloves, clothing, and proper eyewear,
and make sure you are in a ventilated workspace. Also, it is extremely important to practice
with each of the spray cans before spraying any paint onto your vehicle! Practice on a
surface such as a metal can, a spare bit of wood, or the glossy sheet of paper provided
with your order. Practicing will give you a good feel for the spray, an indication of
drying time, and a look at the applied paint. Practicing also allows you to test your color
match, ensuring you have the correct paint for your repair. Okay, back to the process. The fourth step
is to apply Primer: It is necessary to apply primer to all unpainted surfaces for the basecoat
to adhere properly. When you spray your vehicle, the first coat
of primer should be misted on the surface. Try to make the surface tacky. Then apply
the primer in light, even layers. The goal is not to have any paint blobs or runs. Allow
the surface to dry completely between layers. It helps to use a blow dryer to aid in the
drying process. Make sure all unpainted surfaces are sufficiently coated and dry before moving
on. Once dry, lightly wet-sand the primer before using 600 grit sandpaper. The sanded
primer provides an optimal surface for the base coat to adhere to. Fifth, apply Basecoat: When the primer is
completely dry and sanded smooth, you can apply the basecoat. Like the primer, the first
layer of basecoat should be misted on the surface allowing it to become tacky. Then
apply light even layers. Use a smooth, even pressure when spraying,
and don’t get too close. Allow the surface to dry completely before adding another layer.
Again, use a blow dryer to help in the drying process. You can test how dry the paint is by touching
the protective paper instead of the painted panel. If you have any paint blobs or runs
at any point in the process, let them dry, and then wet-sand the uneven paint using #1000
grit sandpaper or the rubbing compound. After the imperfection is smoothed and dried,
resume spraying the basecoat until you have an even and fully coated repair. If you make
a large mistake, you can use the automotive lacquer thinner to wipe the paint away and
start over. The goal of the basecoat is to completely and evenly coat the damaged area,
and to have blended fresh paint within the larger undamaged area without any noticeable
paint lines. Check your work often and do not rush! Sixth, apply clearcoat: The clearcoat is the
top layer that protects your basecoat from damage. Spray the clearcoat in the same manner
as the basecoat and primer. If you spray too close, you will create runs in the paint.
Again, use a hairdryer to dry between layers. Let the clearcoat dry overnight, before resuming. Once the clear coat is completely dry, remove
the tape and protective paper. And lastly, polish with rubbing compound:
The rubbing compound is used to polish and shine the clearcoat. Squirt a small amount
of rubbing compound onto a clean, dry, cotton cloth, such as a clean t-shirt. Rub the repaired
area in circular motions until the surface is shiny. Do not use a dirty rag or any paper
products. They will leave scratches and you won’t get a smooth, glossy finish. You can also use a power polisher. The use
of a power polisher will save time if you are working a large area. Spread the rubbing
compound over the entire area, and then work the power polisher smoothly over. Be careful,
it can remove or burn your clearcoat if you stay in one place too long. Keep adding rubbing
compound as needed. And remember, when you’re done, wait at least 30 days before waxing. Alright, we’ve completed showing you how
to repair a scratch using spray cans. Remember, don’t rush your paint
repair. The primer, basecoat and clearcoat each need to dry completely, so make sure
you have enough time to properly do the repair without rushing. It’s best to work in a
space out of direct sunlight, free of dust, and ideally with temps around 70 degrees Fahrenheit,
with humidity below 50%. Fixing paint scratches yourself can save time
and money. Ordering products matched to your particular vehicle is simple at
and we are happy to assist you with any customer service needs. Go to to get
started now.

60 thoughts on “How to use Spray Cans to touch up car paint scratches like a pro!”

  1. Question for you. How come when putting my clearcoat on white paint it has a yellowish tint. Three times i have resanded down the hood of my car, then painted, let it dry and finally clearcoat. The results keep coming out the same. The paint is a perfect match until the clearcoat. Any ideas on how i can eliminate this problem?

  2. Using the hair dryer makes the possibility of having a run more likely. Major automotive paint manufacturers have a suggested "tac time" which means your next coat goes over a layer that is not 100% dried. This gives the most recent coat something to bond to. Not enough tac time and you can get "solvent pop" or very small pinholes in your finished paint job. To get the correct amount of tac time, all you have to do is keep an eye on the clock. Over drying can require a light sanding between each coat which is unnecessary when observing correct tac time.

  3. Looks good but depending on the thickness of the original paint, wouldn't you want to use some filler to hide the ridges?

  4. ? it sure looked like he was holding the spray can about 4 inches from the door…
    the orange peel was horrible !

  5. To tell how far back to hold the can , just touch the can to the body and put your other hand at the other end and that is distance that you hold the can.

  6. I would like to know when you apply the finish coat over the door ! Don't you have to take off the rest of the clear coat off door our can you pant over the clear coat.?

  7. Awesome Video &Product! I recently purchased your product (auto paint) and I, who has never even changed my own oil and needed help to install new windshield wipers, after watching this video painted my car to near perfection. Received many compliments! Thanx

  8. why wouldn't you remove the door handle and window rubber? i guess they look better with over spray and scratches

  9. You're not supposed to start and stop the spray can while it's still pointed at the piece you're working on, that makes the paint pool up. You're supposed to start and stop after your spray tip has passed the piece you're working on.

  10. I followed these steps and all was going well until the clearcoat stage. It went on completely matte, even though the can says high gloss. Can polishing fix this?

  11. unfortunately I'm not patient to do this kind of work i wish if i can .. i don't mind paying someone to do it for me .. even that not many people around to do cars body work like that.. upstate New York are very poor solving any problems /need especially regarding cars issues in general !!!!

  12. Can I still drive my car and everything but still use the rubbing compound in 3 days? Will that cause a problem with matching?

  13. thank you !!! this is exactly the kind of repairs I need to do on my Road Trek… can't afford complete paint job so this gives me all the info I need to make repairs… again thank you!!!!

  14. Your spray paint products work great on my old 97 F250. Perfect color match. I am extending the life of a ranch truck, not trying to impress the Starbucks drive through crowd.

  15. Question
    I was always told to wait a week or so before applying the rubbing compound due to the paint needing to breathe and cure properly. The compound seals the top and the paint cant cure correctly. Any input on this.?

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