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How can I fix a peeling clear coat without repainting my car?

Posted by tom zoebelein on Fri, Mar 29, 2013 @ 09:04 AM

Bel Air Autobody

I’m sure we’ve all seen it and it’s definitely not a pretty sight.  I’m talking about delamination.  That’s where the clear layer of paint on the surface of your car starts to peel away from the layer of paint below it.  Sometimes it will only happen in small circles, but often it spreads to large patches all over a car.   

Is this happening to your car?  If it is, it’s understandable that you might be bothered by it.  No one wants to see big, ugly delamination patches on their beloved car.  You are probably wondering what you can do to fix it.

Depending on how badly your clear coat is peeling, you might be able to have it repaired without needing a full repaint of your vehicle.  It comes down to these factors:

  • How wide is the surface of peeling?  If you have just a small coin-sized area of delamination, you can probably just have that area fixed.  If you have large patches of peeling all over your car, though, you would be better off having your car repainted.

  • How deep is the peeling?  Clear coat is one thing, but if the paint below it is peeling, that’s another story.  A typical car first has a layer of primer, then paint, and then a top clear coat.  Once the paint below the clear coat is damaged, new paint will be necessary.

  • What are the chances that your car will keep peeling?  If the area of peeling is a fluke due to a minor scratch or irritation to the surface, then you could get away with a simple repair.  However, if it looks like this is just the beginning of a widespread delamination plague on your vehicle, you’re going to need paint.  The problem is that your car might be the victim of a faulty paint job in the first place at the factory.  We’ve seen this in lots of cars built in the early-to-mid nineties.  In those cases, the paint and clear coat just weren’t compatible and started to separate over time.

    Bel Air Autobody

Looking for a way to repair a peeling clear coat on your own?

It’s possible, but we definitely don’t recommend it if you are not experienced with handling car paint issues.  What you can do is follow these directions from Popular Mechanics for how to sand away a scratch on your car.  You’ll need to be sure to obtain very fine sandpaper, keep it wet, and sand from the good area inwards to where the clear coat is peeling.   Be very careful! 

For peace of mind and a perfect paint job, bring your car to a professional.

Bel Air Autobody

At Bel Air Autobody, your vehicle's health and appearance are important to us.  If your car's clear coat starts to fail, give us a call and we'll be happy to get your paint looking brand new again.   We have built our reputation on being an honest and trustworthy repair facility.  We service the residents of Harford County and we too are proud Harford County residents.  If you are looking for a neighborhood body shop that you can trust, rest assured that you have come to the right place at Bel Air Autobody.  

Click here to  schedule a free estimate


Topics: Harford County auto paint, automotive paint problems, auto paint matching, clear coat failure, delamination, clear coat scratch, peeling clear coat, car paint delamination, repair paint delamination, prevent clear coat failure, DIY peeling clear coat repair