Over time, it's only normal for your car to develop some chips and scratches. Because of this, your average auto parts store offers a full line of touch-up paint that is supposed to be used to cover up these imperfections. Many dealerships sell this paint, too, and market it as a good thing. However, it is best to have your scratches and chips repaired by a professional auto body repair shop. These are a few reasons why.
It's Not as Easy to Apply as You Might Think When you look at the directions for applying this type of paint, you've probably noticed that the touch-up paint manufacturers make it look really easy. However, it's just not that simple. If the car is not clean or if it has residue from your detergent or wax, the paint might not take. Applying touch-up paint during periods of high humidity can also affect the look. Plus, if you apply too much by accident, your car could look worse than it did before.
It Might Not Match Every car's color is different; if you think that your car's paint job looks exactly like the paint job on a similar make and model, you're probably wrong. Things like fading from the sun or the type of cleaner and wax that you use on your car can affect the paint job, even if you can't tell it. This means that the touch-up paint that you purchase probably isn't going to be a perfect match, even if it's marketed for your vehicle's make and model. If the color is "off" even a little bit, it could be more noticeable than you think, especially if the scratches or chips are on noticeable parts of your car.
It Could Affect Your Warranty Coverage Your vehicle's warranty should cover things like the paint job, at least for a certain length of time. However, since scratches and chips can make the paint more prone to flake off -- even if covered with touch-up paint -- your coverage might not cover the problem if something happens. If you have them repaired by a certified professional, however, there's a better chance that your coverage will still be valid.
It Could Reduce Your Car's Value Vehicles depreciate enough as it is; you don't need anything to make your car less valuable in the event that you choose to sell it. Chips and scratches that have been covered up with touch-up paint can be quite obvious in some cases and can reduce the number of interested buyers and the prices that you might be offered if you put the car up for sale.
As you can see, touch-up paint really isn't the right solution for chips and scratches. If your car has imperfections, consider taking it to a good body shop, such as Aldrich Auto Body & Repair, Inc., instead.