Last Updated: September 28, 2020
No one is thrilled when their car needs a new paint job. After all, repainting a car is expensive, challenging, and time consuming, right?
Well, partially right. Repainting your car probably will be a little bit time consuming. But with patience comes good things.
As to the other two points, no. Repainting your car does not need to be difficult, nor expensive. At least not if you know what you are doing. Today, our aim is to teach you how to paint your car like a pro. Read on for a guide on how to get a professional quality paint job for your car, with a do it yourself price tag.
Location matters. Ideally, you want a lot of room to work, plenty of ventilation, and some access to electricity. If you can get some extension chords going and work in the great outdoors, that will be fine.
Otherwise, a spacious garage is going to be optimal.
Anytime you paint anything, you need to first make sure that the surface is unblemished. If your car currently has any significant dents or rusting, address the situation before putting paint over it.
You can’t just throw a new coat over your old paint. Sanding down to the metal of your car is going to take some time, but the effort really shows itself in the results.
Investing in an orbital sander will save you lots of time, but if that isn’t an option you can always do it by hand using circular motions.
Now that the vehicle has been sanded it is time to wipe it down. Use a cleaning alcohol solution to thoroughly scrub every inch of your ride. Dirt and grime can be disastrous for a new paint job, so be thorough.
As with any paint job, you are going to want to use painter’s tape on the surfaces that you don’t want painted. This includes windows, mirrors, wheels, handles, and anything else that you can think of.
Now it is time to lay on the primer. For cars you are going to want to use a primer that is corrosion resistant and self etching.
Once the primer is put on, you will need to give it some time to cure. Waiting periods vary, so consult the container for the primer that you used.
Now that the car has been sanded, cleaned, and primed, it is time to wipe it down again. This time, use a rag that has been slightly dampened with thinner.
Once you do it will be time to paint!
Now it is time to bust out the sprayer and get to work. This part of the process will actually go pretty quickly. Be sure to use a sweeping motion and keep the nozzle of the sprayer about six inches from the surface of your car.
Once you have completely covered the car in paint, and allowed for the drying period, you will want to use the same technique to cover the vehicle in lacquer.
Once it is dry, you can feel free to remove all painters tape as well.
Taking the time to buff out your car after the paint job will give it that nice, glossy, professional look that you are hoping for. And that is that! Once you have buffed the car, you can take your newly painted ride out for a spin, and brag to all of your friends about your high-quality do it yourself paint job.
As you can see, the process of repainting your car doesn’t need to be as stigmatized as it often is. While you are going to need to be patient, and follow some steps, the actual process of painting your car is not as hard as most people assume it will be.
Just remember to follow the steps illustrated in today’s guide, and you should have a car that looks better than ever before you know it!
David Janus is the founder and CEO of Paint Sprayer Magazine. He has over two decades of experience in the spray paint industry and still enjoys writing about new products and technologies.
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