5 Simple Steps On How To Paint Your Car Like A Pro


Car painting is the most time consuming and difficult project to carry out. Painting your car needs 100% attention for you to get a perfect result. Do you want to paint your car yourself and prevent paying experts extra money to paint for you? Painting your vehicles needs some basic skills. Painting your vehicle yourself gives you enough satisfaction and save your time and money. In this article you will learn the step by step basics you need in other to paint your car yourself.

What You Will Need

These are all what are needed to be ready for car painting:

  • Time: Car painting is time consuming. You need to set a convenient time for yourself like around two to three days. It is advisable to paint your car during weekends. This is when you can be free from all your works and will have enough time to do the painting from start to finish.
  • Paints: These are the most important materials you will need to start painting your car. The quantity of paints needed for car painting depends on the type of vehicle you have. For example, you need one gallon of basecoat paint, around three gallon of top coat, and two to three gallon of clear coat for small or medium sized vehicles while for larger vehicles like trucks, you will need something more than that. Though experts will use less than this but for you who are new to painting you need more than enough paint possible that you can use when you make mistakes.
  • Air compressor and a Paint spray gun: These are used for spraying paints on the vehicle.
  • Electric or air powered sander: This is used for smoothing the vehicle for effective painting.
  • Wet and dry sandpaper: You need around 1200- and 2000-grit sandpaper for proper smoothing the places where an electric sander will not be suitable.
  • Face mask, undercoat and safety glasses: All these are necessary to protect you from the hazard usually caused by the chemicals used in making the paints
  • Masking tape and old newspapers: These are used for covering your walls and floors from stains that may occur during painting. When you cover your walls and floors it will be easy to remove paint stains. It is also used for masking areas you don’t want to paint like the windscreen, mirrors, the tires and rims, and much more.

Procedures: How To Paint Car

Step 1: Preparing your working area and the vehicle that needs to be painted.

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This is the first step to take when painting your vehicle. Before doing any painting, you need to make cleaning and removing all the dusts in your working area and your car. It is advisable to paint outdoors for better illumination. Make sure you clean the area with the use of hose and also make sure you are not painting under a tree. This is to prevent any falling object like leaves from contaminating the paints. Prepare your car by washing down all forms of dirt that may be found on it like grease and road grim.

Note: Put on your safety glasses, undercoat, and the face mask.

Step 2: Sand the vehicle.

The next thing is to do is to make your vehicle suitable for painting by sanding it all over to get a smooth and an even surface. All vehicles require back to metal sanding but if you do not have enough time, it is not compulsory that you sand to bare metal. What you just need is a smooth and even surface. However, this depends on the type of surface smoothness the vehicle panels need.

After getting the required smoothness and evenness, remove dust from the car surfaces by wiping it with the use of a clean rag and thinner. Make sure you wait until the residue of thinner applied evaporates before you continue with the next step.

Step 3: Priming the car.

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Priming the vehicle is the application of the basecoat layer. Before priming ensure that the entire surface you don’t want the paint to reach are covered with newspaper. Mix the primer with the thinner using the recommended ratio which is usually written on the paint cans. Note that the ratio to be used varies for different paint. After you’ve gotten the required mixture, start the priming from the roof of the vehicle and ensure applying it in an even thin coat. To get better result, it is advisable to apply around two to three coats and wait for the required time for the primer to dry as it is specified on the primer can.

The primed surface will have a powdery finish so you need the 2000-grit wet and dry sandpaper to make the surface smoother and have an even finish.

Step 4: Painting

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When done with the primer, mix the paint with the thinner in the right proportion as recommended on the paint can. Spray the top coat like you did for the basecoat. It is also advisable to spray around two to three times. Application of each coat will take around 10 minutes and the drying time before you apply the next coat is around 20 minutes to 1 hour or as recommended on the paint can. 

Before you apply the last coat ensure you remove any residue with the use of 2000-grit wet and dry sandpaper and clean the dusts with the use of a clean cloth. Then reapply the top coat on the car. Apply the clear coat using the same procedure you used for spraying the top coat to get a better result.

Step 5: Preparing the car for use.

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Remove all the newspaper used for covering the parts you don’t want the paint to touch. Make sure the newspapers were removed before the applied clear coat cures. You need to be very careful not to let any paper or masking stuck on the wet paint. Check the car for any imperfection. If any is found, sand the area with the 2000-grit sand paper and respray.

After the paint has perfectly dry, wash the whole vehicle with the appropriate things needed and be ready to show off your newly painted car.


After reading the article, you may have learned the basics you need to know before painting your car. Know how to paint cars does not only give you satisfaction but saves your time, money and mostly reduces stress you pass through when you need to employ someone to do it for you.

Hello everybody! My name is Morris Rollison and i'm a automotive reviewer. I have some reviews in car blog. I choose this job because I feel as though I would have a lot of personal experience to bring to you.

Morris Rollison
Author of Article

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