How to Prep a Car for Paint at Home – DIY 5 Easy Steps

How to Prep a Car for Paint at Home diy

Whether you want to paint your car by yourself or get the services of a professional to do so, you still need to know how to prep a car for paint at home and the things that should be in place before repainting your car.

The way you prep your car before painting can positively or negatively affect the outcome of your paint.

With a few equipment and tricks, you will be well on your way to doing the job yourself and save on some much-needed funds. Without deviating, it’s time to get right into the process of prepping your car for a repaint.

Prepping a Car For Paint DIY Step by Step

01. Attend to the damaged spots

You can’t just dive into repainting your car without first discovering the dented parts of your car that need some repairing work.

Getting rid of as many dents as possible will give you a smoother painting surface to work on.

While some people can pound out the dented spots from the inside of the car with the help of a dolly or hammer, you can achieve this with just a suction cup.

Just apply some hot glue to the affected part, then after 1 or 2 minutes to allow the glue to harden, you then pull gently but firmly on the suction cup retractable tab until you can see it return to its shape. For a few dollars, you can get a dent repair kit for this purpose.

02. Give a thorough washing

When you are done fixing the dented parts of your car, you need to wash it to see if there are still areas that need some work.

Washing it also allows you to get rid of grease, dirt, oil, or fingerprints that you may have left behind. These things may seem little, but they can make a difference in your final result.

car washing

However, before washing your car, make sure it is parked in the open and that you blow out the dust on it with the help of your air compressor.

Using the blowgun of your air compressor will ensure that you reach hidden dust in cracks and corners for an even smoother finish.

Once you are done, you can wash with soapy water to get rid of all that grease, oil, and fingerprints. And when the water dries off, get a clean rag and wipe off the surface with any safe solvent of your choice.

03. Sanding

There is hardly any car repainting job that c can pull off successfully without the need for intensive sanding.

You can always get sanders or other vibratory types to help in hastening the sanding job. The only thing is that there are usually some parts of the car that are complex in shape and may require that you do that with your hand to get to those areas.

Since you may be starting new, you can begin with 400 grit, especially if you need to use body filler or have old paint that needs feathering.How to prepare your car for painting

But if it is to scuff a car that is in good body condition but needs repainting, you can make use of 600 to 800 grit to get the job done.

To get the sanding process moving smoothly, you should wet-sand, which means dumping the sandpaper in water as often as possible.

This will make it go more comfortable and faster, and you won’t need to use much sandpaper.

04. Apply primer/ Priming Part

It’s time to apply the first coating, which is the primer. Don’t paint the whole body yet. Start with the places that you body-filled and the sand-papered areas before moving to the bare metal.

But make sure you use the primer meant for the surface of your car so that you get a good job done.

For bare metal, you have to make use of one coating of self-etching primer at least once. However, you should not use this kind of introduction on the part of the body-filled car.

You will also need a primer-sealer, especially when coating over old paint, so there won’t be chemical reactions between the new and old paint.

When you are done coating the bare areas with primer, you can cover the whole car up to 2 to 3 times with the introduction.

It would be best if you stuck to the number of minutes or hours needed as contained in your primer direction before applying another coat.

Then go in with wet sandpaper to sand out scratches, drips, or any rough spot you can see.

Once you are done, you can clean the car with a clean rag using a solvent but not to the extent of wiping off your primer.

Check how long the manufacturer of your primer said you should wait before applying new paint.

05. The real painting

You have done everything you need to do to prep your car for art, and so you are ready to paint your vehicle. You can decide to take your car to the professionals or choose to do it yourself.

If you want to do it yourself, you should start by tapping off the windscreen, the headlights, and all parts of the car that do not need to be painted.

Covering up these parts of your car may seem daunting, but if you put your heart into it.

The Final Thoughts

You will be surprised to come up with an even better job than the guys at your local body shop who may not pay as much attention to the painting of your car as you would have to because of the demands on them.

And if you are bothered about what people would think about you being the one painting your car, you can always do it safely in your garage without fear of failure.

If you take your time and carefully spray on the paint, you will love the result in the end.


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