Best Car Scratch Repair Kit – Image via khaledshariar.com
Best Car Scratch Repair Kit – SCRATCH is small, maybe half an inch long. It’s hard to see unless you know where to look. But once you know, it’s the only thing you can see. That’s all I can see.
I only have a car for two weeks when the scratches show up. I shiver when I see it, right there on the hood. How did it happen? An accident in a car wash? A pedestrian I have blamed? A kind of mad animal? It’s not from another car or a falling flake, that’s for sure. But what can leave this defect, ruin my beautiful new Mazda CX-5 with a distance of less than 300 miles on the odometer, leaving a scratch so deep that I can run my nails in it? From the looks of it, it goes down to primary.
Best Car Scratch Repair Kit
I guess it does not matter. The real question is how to get rid of it.
My search for removing scratches took me to a car wash and a local centerpiece, which seemed to always do a good job. People with clipboard say that for $ 100 they will rub it and try to get it out. I crossed my fingers, but after detailing the scratches were still there. I asked the technician, the term I use is very light, to see again. They sprayed some paint onto the rag, rubbed it briefly and shrugged. There is nothing we can do, the scratch is too deep. I need to take more drastic action.
The consequences of that meeting took me to a place where I knew I could find a solution: the Internet. And as I suspected, I quickly discovered there was no lack of tactics and promising products to remove scratches from your vehicle, whether small or deep.
Car Scratch Fever
Even a cursory online research will take you to a rabbit hole that will reveal various approaches to mending scratches. One YouTube video shows I can only spray WD-40 on scratches to make it disappear. Another site said I could rub toothpaste on it. Many of these are very temporary improvements or final improvements, and if you spend more time doing research, you will find early improvements eventually leading to several different approaches, all of which I finally tested.
Before I explain it, you must first understand how automotive paint works. Modern cars have three levels of paint on bare metal: primer, then base color, then clear layer, which is the thickest layer of all three. A small or shallow scratch is considered a scratch that does not penetrate a clear layer and enters the paint, whereas large or deep scratches affect the paint, primer, or bare metal. The further down, the harder to fix but, like Novato, California-based car restorer Walter Jensen said to me, “Every scratch is different,” adding that scratches can be very complicated, shallow at one end, deep in the middle, and shallow again on the other side. “Honestly, scratches are harder to handle than blisters,” he said.
Small scratches can usually be rubbed with a polishing compound. The basic rule is that if your nails do not catch a scratch, it’s just a superficial overcoat that can be smoothed and made invisible. Scratches like this show because the light catches a V-shaped groove in a clear coat. This reflection is so strong that it can look white, especially on cars with dark paint, says Mike Pennington, a veteran director at Meguiar’s, which makes a line of well-known automobile paint repair and daily grooming products. The goal with a light scratch is to smooth that V becomes a wide valley, so it does not capture light, effectively making visible scratches.
For deeper scratches, the polish is not sufficiently abrasive to fix the problem. For deep scratches that look even as you wet, you should physically sand the area with a solid abrasive, like sandpaper. You can use hand strength or mechanical aids – and here you will find the widest range of approaches and products. For the worst scratches, I learned, you have to fill the V-shaped grooves with paint and / or fillers, like Bondo, then sand and polish.
Wax On, Wax Off
Before I handled my own car, I decided to experiment on the test panel that I got at the local junkyard. I scratched it with a box cutter, scratched various depths, and then inserted products from four different companies into tasks to try to remove them.
I started with the simplest, a collection of light products from Turtle Wax, including Rubbing Compound, Polishing Compound, Initial & Swirl Cleanser, and Carnauba Liquid Wax (total value about $ 20). The four came in the form of aqueous white goo which was applied with a cloth; pay close attention or you will not know what product you are using. While together they do a fair job of hiding the lightest surface streaks in the distance, under most of the lighting conditions even small scratches remain clearly visible. [Rating: 4/10]
Pennington has turned me into Meguiar’s Ultimate Compound, Polish, and Liquid Wax (total cost about $ 35), which I put for the task on the same stroke for the next test, again working by hand. The result is slightly better than Turtle Wax, but just barely. “If the streak does not come out after several times, you need to switch to the machine,” Pennington said.
Sure enough, it was not until I turned on the Power Power System Meguiar ($ 54 total) I saw very great results. The DA Power System is an impressive rolling polishing system attached to a standard drill, moving in an orbital motion (not completely circular), ensuring more even coverage. With a little electric muscle, the DA system does make the lighter scratches barely noticeable, though the inner and deeper ones remain. [Rating: 5 without power system, 6 with power system.]
But why do these products not work? “Most products will not completely eliminate scratches, but we can make it less visible,” says Kevin Ansell, a senior engineer at 3M (who also owns Meguiar’s). The key is to get the sanding action involved in the scratch. Given the depth of some of my test scratches, Ansell suggested the 3M Trizact Precision Scratch Kit ($ 20), an all-in-one system that also drills and promises to remove light and medium scratches. “Simple three-step process” includes sanding by hand using sandpaper, using drill connections to apply the rub compound, and finally using the drill again to polish.
Here you actually sanded the clear coat in your car, which was frightening, but it quickly became clear that sanding was needed to significantly improve most of my test scratches. The Trizact amps are simply magical on the front of it. After a few minutes of wet sanding, I had made great progress on a moderate scratch on my panel, even though I was obviously dribbling the paint, taking the glistening layer down into a foggy matte. Buffing with the compound and then polishing it with a drill attachment including everything shine, and sure enough my light scratches disappear, with the moderate barely visible. This system definitively fixes the deepest scratches, though still visible. The only beef I have with the kit is that while you can reuse the drill pads, polishing and polishing ingredients fit in packets that can not be re-closed and are not suitable for significant reuse. Also, the sandpaper provided is very small, just 2 inches square. It’s not only difficult to work with that measure, it will also run out soon. [Rating: 7]
A similar but even cheaper approach can be found from Quixx Repair Systems, in a kit that works through a “German engineering process called Plastic Deformation.” The Scratch Remover 00070-AS all-in-one-box cleaning kit is only $ 14, very minimal. I have to give points to Quixx for easy and thorough instruction, easily the best of this lot. It classifies scratches into four categories, and customizes the removal instructions for each. This package includes four small strips of sandpaper, two laps, polish, and final paste. Unfortunately, the system paled in performance in addition to the 3M kit. While Quixx does a decent job of hiding light scratches, the sandpaper is powerless against the bigger ones. [Rating: 5]