Scratch repair is a fact of life for just about every car owner. No matter how careful you are or how meticulously you maintain your vehicle, it’s likely that you’re going to suffer a few fine scratches eventually. While scratches aren’t always something you can control–after all, you never know when a careless shopper is going to launch a grocery cart into your parked car while you’re inside shopping–scratch repair is.
As with most types of car care, there are several methods at your disposal if you want to remove surface scratches. The best method depends on the severity and depth of the scratch, but the three most common car scratch repair methods are removing the scratch by hand, removing it with an orbital polisher, or removing it with a circular polisher.
If the scratch is very light and near the surface, you can effectively and inexpensively remove it by hand. What you’re going to actually do is remove the top layer of paint (or the clear coat) that contains the scratch to reveal the fresh paint underneath. This task requires a scratch removal rubbing compound that you can purchase at most automotive centers, along with an application pad. A little elbow grease is all it will take to get the job done.
For slightly a slightly deeper car scratch, you may need to use the orbital polisher method instead. First, you will compound the scratch with a wool pad. Second, you will polish the affected area before sealing it with wax or paint sealant. The orbital polisher will ensure professional-quality results, but they have limitations. They’re recommended for mid-depth scratches because they are unable to penetrate too deeply into the paint or clear coat, which is safer for do-it-yourself repairs.
If you have a deep scratch, a circular polisher is recommended. They use a three-step process similar to the orbital polisher method, but are capable of penetrating your car’s paint layers more deeply. You will probably be required to apply some touch-up paint if you use a circular polisher, and if you’re not confident in your ability to handle one, leave the job to the pros. Deep scratches can be difficult to remove, and you risk causing further damage if you attempt to do so incorrectly.
When it comes to completing scratch repair for your vehicle, be sure to use caution and always wear the proper safety equipment. Also, be sure that you do not become to aggressive and damage the paint and body of your car. Further, keep your eyes open for car scratch repair kits, they often present the best solution for your car care needs. Happy buffing!