One of the worst things that can happen to a car owner is that their car gets scratched. Nothing ruins a nice looking car exterior faster than an unsightly scratch. Unfortunately, it is all too common for a beautiful car to get scratched. Now, if you are unlucky enough to have your car get scratched, then you may be wondering what you can do to get the car fixed. One of your first stops may be to an auto detailer since they tend to be good at making cars looking as good as new. But, does exterior detailing actually remove scratches? Well, the answer is maybe, it depends heavily on the type of scratch. Let’s look at the different kinds of scratches and which kinds exterior detailers are actually able to deal with.
“Light scratches are scratches that only extend into the 3rd or 4th layer. These scratches can be dealt with by a detailer”
The various levels of scratching
It is helpful to think of scratches as being categorized by which layer they penetrate to. So, think of your car’s exterior as being made up of 4 layers. The bottom layer is the actual metal that the car is made out of. The 2nd layer is made up of primer. Think of primer as a sort of glue; it helps make the paint stick to the car better and it provides an extra layer of protection for the metal layer of your car. After that you have your 3rd layer which is essentially the first layer of paint. Finally, there is the 4th and final layer which is the clear coat, which is intended to give the first layer of paint some protection and give it a nice shine. So, with this in mind let’s look at the various levels of scratching.
So, we are including this, even though it is not technically a scratch. But, people often mistake light markings for scratches. Sometimes your car will graze a post or another car and you will notice markings that appear on the car. The markings may appear to be scratches, but they are not. They are quite easy for detailers to handle. All the detailer needs to do is really give the area a good washing (which they would be doing anyways). The detailer will get rid of the marks by using soap and water to wash the area and then applying some polish to get rid of the marks.
Light scratches are scratches that only extend into the 3rd or 4th layer. These scratches can be dealt with by a detailer. Technically a detailer cannot “fix” a scratch, but they can make it unnoticeable. The detailer will sand down the surrounding paint of the car so that it becomes level with the damaged part of the paint. The end will result will be that your car looks like it did before it got scratched.
These types of scratches reach down into the 2nd layer, the primer. If a scratch goes this deep then it cannot be fixed by a detailer or a body shop, it will need to be taken to the dealer to get the area repainted with the same color of paint that was originally used.