How can I get rid of light scratches on my car?
I accidentally grazed a plastic garbage bin when reversing.
It left some scratches on the left rear fender of my seven-week-old car.
There is no dent, but the scratch is very obvious and a somewhat ugly blemish on an otherwise clean and shiny red bodywork.
A friend suggested I send it back to the dealer to have it repaired and resprayed.
What is the best solution?
You are lucky the garbage bin was not a metal one as that would have caused more damage.
The scratches caused by the PVC bin are likely to be superficial.
As long as you do not see a different colour beneath the blemish, the car’s surface finish paint has not been penetrated.
Before you even consider sending it to any body shop, you must make an effort to get rid of the light scratches yourself.
It is not as complex as it may sound. Everything you will need is available at car accessory shops or petrol station marts.
Get wax polish and a polishing cloth. Try to avoid the rather abrasive rubbing compound for a start.
The wax polish will most likely “clean up” the scratches, removing dust or grit.
In most cases such as yours, the ugly marks can be polished off – with repeated treatment – without cutting deeper into the paintwork.
Getting a respray done for such a minor blemish is the last thing you should do.
A factory paint finish can never be duplicated by third-party refurbishers because none will have the process knowledge nor the capability to restore bodywork to factory standards.
A manufacturer’s original paint finish is therefore the best and most durable.
Even if you do notice some minor signs after your own polishing work, as long as it is not starkly unsightly, you are best leaving it as it is.
Remember, nothing even comes close to the original paint finish.