How To Fix a Sun-Damaged Car

Australia receives more sun than any other continent in the world.  The constant sun exposure can wreak havoc on your car’s paint.

Whether you park under a carport, in the shade, or use a car cover, eventually your poor car will absorb enough sun to weather and fade.    It might begin as a slight discolouration or hazing.  This means the clear coat has been eroded.  If left untreated, it can lead to worse damage.  Peeling, cracking and blistering are signs that your vehicle’s paint is seriously damaged.

If your car starts showing signs of sun damage, it’s best to take care of it as quickly as you can.

Preparing for Repair

The first step is to thoroughly wash your car.  Remove any dirt, dust or grime that may interfere with painting.  Use a gentle automobile soap and microfiber cloth.  You don’t want to further damage your car by scratching it during the cleaning process.

Take a close look at the affected areas and evaluate the extent of the damage.  Look for chips, cracks, or deep scratches.  Use a bright light and identify anything more than superficial damage.  Sometimes what looks like a minor issue can out to be more severe on closer inspection.

Essential Tools

You will need:

  • Sandpaper
  • Masking tape
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Polishing compound
  • Paintbrushes
  • Spray-gun or touch-up pen

Fixing the Damage

Start by sanding the affected areas with fine-grit sandpaper.  You want the damaged area to be smooth and even.  Don’t sand too deeply because you don’t want to damage the surrounding paint.

Apply primer.  Primer is essential as it helps the paint to adhere to the surface and improves the overall durability.  It fills in scratches and imperfections and creates a smooth base for your paint.

Paint the Damaged Area

Make sure you get an exact colour match car paint and choosing the right colour is crucial for a successful repair.  When you’re finished you want a seamless blend of old paint to new paint.

When you apply the paint, start with thin layers and build up gradually.  This gives you better control and reduces the risks of drips or uneven coverage.

Once your paint is thoroughly dry, apply a layer of clear coat.  This protects the newly painted area and gives it a glossy finish.  Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application and drying time.

A clear coat provides a hard transparent layer that protects the paint from harmful UV rays and oxidation.

Maintain Your New Paint Job

Regularly wash and wax your vehicle.  This helps protect your entire car, not just the newly painted area.  Avoid using abrasive cleaners that can damage and scratch your paint.

Apply a high-quality automotive wax or paint sealant with UV protection.  These products can act as a shield against harmful radiation and prolong the life of your car’s paint.

Dealing with the sun and its damaging effects is just part of life in Australia.  Learning how to prevent sun damage and repair it when it happens is just part of life Down Under.

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