Fair - good condition vehicles
Minor correction achieved. No major imperfections removed.
Moderate correction will be achieved. Some imperfection will remain.
Maximum correction achieved safely depending on paint/clear coat thickness.
Maximum correction safety achieved resulting in a perfectly flat mirror imagine.
Paint correction is a process that removes a minimum safe amount of clear coat or paint (1 or 2 microns out of, say, 120-140) but to the maximum effect. In most cases, scratches, swirl marks, buffer marks, micro-marring, cob webbing and hologram effects can be totally removed from all types of paintwork, including scratch-resistant ceramic clear coats (otherwise known as nano-particle clearcoat). We do not use any fillers or glazes in our paint correction services. All imperfections are permanently removed safely.
Firstly, the paintwork is measured for thickness using digital paint depth gauges, which are capable of reading down to 1 micron. Depending on the paint thickness, it is then carefully re-leveled by 1 or 2 microns, so that any minor scratches, swirl marks, buffer marks, holograms or micro-marring in the paint's clear coat are totally removed. This also restores dull or faded paintwork to its original glory, as light can be perfectly reflected from this newly un-oxidized and re-leveled surface, before any polishes, cleansers and waxes are applied. Customers who have experienced this service often compare its effect to a full respray – at a fraction of the cost and inconvenience. And some have even said that the paint looks better than when it was new.
How can I tell if my vehicle needs paint correction?
you ever looked at your car in the sun and thought that it looked like
it was covered in a spider web? These are actually circular shaped
scratches and are caused by improper washing techniques. Many people
still wash & detail cars with the old, circular, “wax on, wax off”
technique and this is where these marks come from. While it is
impossible not to mildly scratch the surface during a wash (on an
unwaxed car), these circular movements are actually what put those
scratches in the paint, not remove them.
Why does paint correction matter?
Whether you have a Ford or a Ferrari, the first thing anyone who sees your car will notice is the paint. What they are really seeing is the reflection of the rest of the world in your vehicles finish. While a car might look “clean” and well taken care of from afar, often times the finish will be muddled looking due to what is known as “orange peel.” This is when a paint’s finish takes on a texture similar to an orange due to machine spraying at the factory, lack of finishing procedures at the factory, resprays and or improper painting techniques. If your vehicle has orange peel (most commonly seen on newer BMW’s) it isn’t always bad, but rather could benefit by colorsanding/wetsanding to alleviate the surface texture of your paint, which will result in a more crisp, clear, un-muddled reflection.
As you can see in the pictures below, orange peel/texture is leveled by wet sanding followed by compounding and polishing to achieve a perfectly flat paint finish.
How is paint correction achieved?
Step 1: Wash Process followed by a decontamination process.
The first step in correcting a vehicles finish is removing all surface contaminants.This starts with a thorough wash process, drying of the vehicle and then moving to the clay bar step. A common misconception is that once a vehicle has been washed, it is clean. While it may be clean to the naked eye, the surface is often still covered with stubborn contaminants that require an extra step to remove. This step is known as “Clay Bar.” Before we use the clay bar. We have a special spray could a deironizer that removes iron particles that are embedded in your vehicles paint that the clay bar does not fully remove, only shearing off part of the iron deposits. Have you ever washed your car and ran your hand on your “clean” dry paint and felt contaminants are still there? In some cases your paints finish might even feel rough like sand paper if it has heavy contamination or paint over spray. This decontamination process is important, as when you move to the next stages of wet sanding, buffing, polishing, etc you don’t want those contaminants being ground into your car possibly permanently damaging your vehicle’s paint.
In this process, the surface of the paint is sprayed with a special clay lubricant and then gone over with a soft detailing grade block of clay. As illustrated above, the clay glides though the thin layer of lubricant and picks up any stubborn contaminants left over from the wash process. This process is extremely important because if one was to begin polishing before these contaminants were removed then they would be ground into the paint causing scratches or other visible results. Once all of these contaminants have been removed, the paint must then be inspected to see what sort of correction will be required.
Step 2 Measuring thinkness of paint/clear coat
We use a special gauge made for measuring the amount of paint or clear coat on the vehicle. This step is vital in the paint correction process to ensure we have a safe amount of clear coat to remove without losing its protection properties such as UV blockers to protect the base coat(color) underneath. If vehicle is single stage same applies only we are measuring the amount of base coat, which in this case is the color.
Step 3 (if required): Wet Sanding or Leveling
Sometimes buffing and polishing isn’t enough to remove an imperfection from a vehicle’s surface. For the things like especially deep scratches or orange peel, they must be removed with a technique known as “wet sanding” or “color sanding.” This is the process of using a moistened series of specially designed automotive sandpaper with very fine grit to remove the top layer of clear coat. The surface then has to go though a staged extensive buffing & polishing process to bring the shine back.
Step 4: Compounding & Polishing
Step 3 and 4 (Sometimes more) of the paint correction process. It isn’t as simple as grabbing a polisher and going to work though. Depending on a number of factors such as the amount and type of clear coat, if it is single stage paint or not, type of material the vehicle is made of, the severity of the imperfections, the combination of machines, pad, and polish will differ from vehicle to vehicle. For instance, vehicles that have been wet sanded will required a multi-step polishing process including 3-4 different types of polishing pads and several different types of polishes.
After all correction has taken place, it is time to seal up the vehicle’s paint to protect it from further scratching. This step however is where some shops try and cover their poor paint correction abilities by using what is known as a “glaze”. Have you ever had your car detailed only to find it looking scratched up a couple weeks later? That is most likely because the detailers or dealerships used a glaze product. A glaze is a talcum & water based product that is applied to a vehicle’s finish that fills in scratches and gives the appearance of “corrected paint”. Since this product is water based and doesn’t actually bond with the clear coat like wax, it just sits on the surface and after a couple washes or some harsh weather will be completely gone.
We do not use glazes in our shop. We use different kinds of waxes and sealant. There are two kinds of waxes, there are polymer-based waxes and carnuaba waxes. While the polymer-based wax will last longer, the carnuaba will have a deeper shine but it doesn't last as long. We even layer some our waxes and sealants to give it that deeper shine and longer protection. We also have semi-permanent ceramic glass coatings that easier to maintain and last 2 or more years.