Kids are a marvel and yet — when one day you discover a huge deep scratch on your car, you start re-evaluating the whole ‘marvel’ concept. After the initial frustration is gone, you’re left with a question of how to remove scratches from a car. The good news is that unless we’re dealing with a really deep dinge, there is an affordable solution that does not involve your local repair shop. But, even when dealing with a deep car scratch, it is possible to come up with a temporary solution that can help you out before you scrape up enough money for a full repair.
As we’ve already mentioned — there are several suggestions on how to fix scratches on the car. When dealing with minor ones, it’s possible to fix them all on your own. Deep scratch repair, however, presupposes full car body repair — and there’s no other way around it. But, since we know full repair is pricey and takes time, we can offer several temporary ideas that will mask the damage rather than fix scratches on car entirely. So, here goes.
1. Use high-quality scratch repair kits
Using a car scratch remover is one of the best ideas on how to get scratches out of the car in an instant. Once again, this goes only for light and moderate scratches when the base coat of your car is not affected. If this is your case, you will be able to repair the damage quickly and easily.
When dealing with deep scratches, though, even the best scratch removers can only temporarily hide the damage. Standard kits come with a filler you should apply to auto coat base. This should keep you going for a couple of weeks without catching the eye too much. Afterward, you will still need to go full body repair.
As for the minor scratches, such kits are a very effective permanent solution. So, it’s a great idea to have one in your garage — just in case. They can effectively remove small damage from dust, dirt, and regular cleaning, thus making sure your brand new car always looks… well, brand-new. Just make sure you pick a reliable manufacturer and carefully go through the manual — like any other job, applying a car scratch repair filler requires some time and attention to detail.
2. Apply some toothpaste
Surprisingly, this is one of the best ideas on how to fix a scratch on a white car. Of course, it won’t last as long as a scratch remover, but it still does the trick. Toothpaste abrasive qualities will help you fill in any mark and smoothen the surface, making it even. If the dinge has any foreign paint it (and we all know it happens more often than we’d like), toothpaste will also remove those alien particles.
Then again, the disadvantages of this hack are obvious — a layer of toothpaste will not last longer than a week. And, of course, going minty-fresh on your car is definitely not a good idea when looking for a black car scratch remover, as it will leave a mark making the damage even more obvious.
However, if you decide to go for it, apply toothpaste to a soft damp cloth and softly rub it into your car surface. If the damage has not penetrated your car coat base, you will see it disappear. Why? Simply because toothpaste acts as a sanding tool. So, it only solves problems that could be solved by sanding. Toothpaste may come in handy when you do not have fine-grit sandpaper at hand, but that’s pretty much everything it does. It does not fully hide away paint scratches, and we would not advise you to apply any spray paint after ‘sanding’ with toothpaste. Not unless you’re ready to clean it up later and start all over — this time, with fine-grit sandpaper.
3. Cover it with duct tape
Covering long deep scratches with duck tape is not the most esthetic of solutions, but it’s the most reasonable one if you want to prevent further damage. Even though duck tape comes in many colors, it is still difficult to find the exact shade that actually suits your car paint. And, even if you do, this solution does not really mask the damage. On the other hand, it makes sure no other dirt or sand gets into the score mark, making sure further scratch repair is easier and more effective.
If for example, you need to take care of a small dinge (that is, something a car scratch removal kit can help with), we recommend using any duck tape color you’ve got before you can lay hands on a quality kit. If you plan to keep driving with duct tape for a couple of days, the main trick is to apply this tape without creating any crease-lines — or any other distracting lines, in that matter.
4. Cover it up with car-color spray or touch-up paint
Another idea that’s not as cheap as toothpaste or duck tape, but may prove a permanent decision. If of course, we’re talking about minor scratches that only damage the paint coat and do not affect the base coat.
The upside of this approach is that touch-up paint kit has a pen-like design, so applying a new color of paint is as simple as using your kid’s coloring book. Another benefit of car color-spray is that it can effectively cover up large surfaces, so they are helpful not only with scratches but also with scuffs.
So, how to get rid of scratches on a car with color-paint, exactly? All it calls for is a little focus and concentration. First, you should pick a hue that fully matches your car paint — only in this case can you hope for a permanent result. Then, it requires some minor prep work. The key is to thoroughly clean the scuff, remove all dust and dirt, and sand it with fine-grit sandpaper. Make sure you do it carefully — you do not want to make those scratches even deeper, right? Once you’re done, carefully apply new paint with a pen-like device and let it dry. The last step is applying a finish coat (comes with a kit), and wax your car.
5. Consider turning the scratch into an artwork
Sometimes, the question of how to remove a deep scratch from a car does not have a clear answer. Damage may be too deep, a car may have other maintenance issues, going full car scratch repair may just be out of your budget range, and so on. In this case, all you need is a bit of creativity and imagination. If you think of it, practically any damage can be turned into a work of art. When dealing with not-so-new and not-so-business-class cars, it can even give your vehicle some extra charm.
Simple stickers, for example, can already do a lot to hide car damage. The obvious upside of going with stickers and other decorative layers is that they can hide even the deepest of scratches and no one will ever guess you’re masking something. That is, of course, if we’re not talking about long scratches. But even if we are, there is always a way out. You can add more decorative elements to this mark, turning it into anything — from a thunderbolt to a decorated Christmas tree.
Of course, such an approach can only be successful with certain cars. And, even this solution often calls for a professional decorator or a pricey paint job. So, before you get creative, figure out the costs of getting rid of car damage entirely. Sometimes, even professional repairs are more cost-effective than going ‘hipster’ on your car.
We know all too well that scratches are unavoidable. Dust, sand, gravel — all of those take a toll on any car. The best suggestion would be to polish them as quickly as possible before any more damage is done. So, a car paint scratch remover may be one of the essential tools in your garage kit — at the very least, it will give you a chance to independently deal with minor scratches before they turn into deep ones.
When dealing with serious damage, however, it is best to take your car to a professional repair shop — once again, as quickly as possible. Remember that deep damage to your base coat may lead to rust, which once again, is a permanent process that should be dealt with asap. While the hacks we described above can temporarily hide any dinge, neither of those are permanent solutions for deep scratches. Cleaning, sanding, spraying, applying a clear coat, polishing, and waxing, on the other hand, are. Those take a visit to a local car repair shop, a couple of days work, and a cheque (not necessarily a fat one). But, they do help you deal away with damage entirely rather than hide it with hacks.