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Healing scratches

Question : I HAVE a 1996 Audi A4 that is metallic gold in color. A few light scratches have appeared in the paintwork on the door as a result of some inconsiderate person pushing a supermarket trolley against the side of my vehicle. I understand that light scratches can be removed. Can you advise?

Answer : SCRATCHES, chips and dents are all part of the harsh life a vehicle's paintwork has to endure. Fortunately, paint technology is a lot better than what it used to be and modern paints are better in withstanding knocks and scratches while presenting even higher levels of lustre that many vehicle owners desire.

Metallic paints consist of fine metallic particles suspended in a solid color base. The metallic base is first applied to the prepared (primed) metal surface, followed by one or more coats of clear lacquer that give the paint its final shine and depth of color.

Unfortunately, the lacquer layer can easily be scratched and this is the type of damage you are referring to.

The extent of damage depends on how deep the scratch to the lacquer layer is. If the scratch is only superficial, it can easily be "rubbed out" using a good quality wax polish or perhaps a fine grade rubbing compound.

Apply a little polish or compound to a slightly damp cloth and rub in the direction of the scratch using moderate force, reducing the amount of downward pressure as the surface dries.

Allow the polish to dry to a haze before gently buffing off with soft cloth. Never use a machine as in the hands of the inexperienced, is likely to wear through the lacquer layer, necessitating a complete respray.


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