Auto Body Rust Repair Tips

Auto Body Rust Repair Tips

Along with maintaining the function of your car, you should be taking care of the body as well. Whether restoring an older vehicle or just keeping your car for longer, rust can be an unwelcomed and damaging problem. Preventing rust is especially important for those who live in areas with heavy snow and ice. The salt used to remove these can be damaging to the paint, causing rust to form.


If you notice rust on your vehicle, first identify whether you can take care of the problem yourself, or professional help is needed. This decision is determine not only by how bad the damage is, but what kind of results you are looking for in the end with your car. If the rust is minimal, and you’re not concerned with high professional results, follow these steps to remove it.


Remove the Rust


The first and most obvious thing to do is remove the rust. Use a sandpaper with 100-grit in a sanding disc. Move slowly to avoid damaging the metal beneath. Sand a little further than the rust area to make a smooth area free of rust.


Sand the Area

Extensive rust damage

Once the rust is gone, upgrade to 150-grit sandpaper. Instead of using the sanding disc, do this part by hand. After you’re finished, use a tack cloth to ensure the metal is clean.


Prepare and Primer


Use masking tape and newspaper to cover the area around what has been sanded. Use self-etching primer. You will need to apply multiple coats, make sure you wait about 10 minutes between each light application of primer. Once you’ve applied the fourth coat of primer, let it dry 24 hours before continuing with the paint.


Paint the Car


Getting the wrong paint can be disastrous for your car. Check with an auto body paint shop. They’ll help match the paint exactly. Once you have the right paint, you’ll need to apply multiple coats. Doing many light coats will help your car look better than trying to do one thick coat. Once you’ve finished the last coat (about the sixth) let the paint dry 12 hours before removing the masking tape and newspaper.



hand car wash

Wait 48 hours before washing your car. Use a mild soap to do this, especially after the first wash. Use a light coat of wax all over the vehicle. This process may not look professional quality, but it will help prevent the rust from spreading, and can be a quick and easy fix.
If the frame itself is damaged because of rust, it is best to seek professional help. Don’t allow the rust to continue damaging your car. At Shine Collision, we can help repair the minor rust spots and the deeper problems, restoring your car to its previous condition. Come see us at one of our four locations.

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