Best Way To Alleviate Paint Oxidation On Your Car or Truck

by David Bynon

If your vehicle is not garaged or covered when parked, the paint and trim will oxidize from the harsh UV sun light. If you can't provide appropriate care with regular polishing and waxing, the paintwork will oxidize.

The fortunate news is that oxidized paint can be revived up to a point. That point is normally based on the kind of automotive paint used and the color. On a car or truck with a clear coat you can revive the finish up to the point that clear coat failure starts ( splotchy white areas ).

On a typical vehicle paint finish without a clear top coat, you can renew the surface until the color coat wears away and reveals the primer. When one of these two situations occurs, the damaged body panels or the whole car or truck will have to be repainted. If you have got to park your auto outside, you can protect against fading and oxidization damage with repeated polishing and waxing, and by using a car cover.

Left unguarded and out in the weather, your vehicle will speedily oxidize. You can't see the damage over a period of a few months, but it will be there. After twelve months parked outside without protection, your car's paintwork will be dull and rough.

Paint oxidization is not the kiss of death. Early oxidization is simply removed thru periodic paint cleaning with a clay bar. Once the paint surface begins to oxidize and fade, you'll need to clean away the oxidization with detailing clay and revive the shine by polishing. Excessive oxidization, diagnosed by a chalky surface, is beyond complete restoration. Nevertheless even heavily oxidized paint can be polished to restore most of the gloss.

Use the least abrasive polish available to get results. Even moderate paint oxidization causes the paint to become thin. When you polish, the dead paint will be quickly removed. Once the clearcoat fails from heavy oxidization, it can't be revived by polishing.

An effective way to revive the gloss and color lost to oxidization is to buff the damage away using a dual-action car buffer, such as the Porter Cable 7424XP.

Here are the basic directions to renew a paint finish that's noticeably faded. The first step is to totally wash your vehicle and then use a detailing claybar to get rid of the dead paint.

As your vehicle's paint oxidizes, tiny bits of the paint flake off. This needs to be cleaned away. A clay bar is the convenient method to get rid of the dead paint and bonded contamination.

The cleaning step was the straightforward step. Now the fun starts. You need to shine your vehicle with 2 levels of paint polish. The 1st grade is a cutting polish, typically called a rubbing compound. The second grade is a finishing polish.

A lot of people ask me if it is possible to do this job by hand. The answer's "yes," nevertheless it won't be easy, fast or the best job. To use a micro-abrasive cutting polish, like Meguiar's Final Compound, you actually need to apply the polish with a dual-action auto buffer. I highly recommend the Porter Cable 7424XP.

If your automobile's paint is badly oxidized, take care polishing plastic fender caps, plastic mirrors and anywhere there's a raised edge. Painted plastic parts oxidize more quickly than painted metal parts. Be careful and polish these parts by hand with finishing polish. Don't use a cutting polish on painted plastic parts. Take care on raised edges, as well, as the paint will be thinner.

About the Author: