If your car seems to have a white chalky haze that you can’t wash off, chances are your paint has oxidized.
Oxidation happens when the clearcoat breaks down as oxygen causes other molecules to lose electrons. Basically, your car’s surface is falling apart. Heat speeds the process, which is why cars parked in the hot sun tend to lose their shine over time.
How to slow the progression of paint oxidation
You can’t stop oxidation, but you can prevent it from ruining your car’s finish so quickly by taking these precautions:
- When possible, park your car in the shade.
- If you have access to a garage or covered carport, use it to store your vehicle.
- Wax your car by hand or with a car polishing machine with a UV protecting formula.
- Clean and polish your headlights to prevent them from oxidizing, as well.
- If you must park your car in the sun for long periods of time, use a car cover.
Don’t wait to fix your oxidation problem
You may be able to restore your vehicle’s shine with a liquid abrasive compound. Detailing clay, widely available at auto parts store, will remove light oxidation from your car’s paint. Remember, if your clear coat is flaking off your vehicle’s surface, polishing can’t fix it. Clear coat that’s flaking has completely failed and is exposing your car’s paint to the elements. The only permanent solution to large areas of flaking clear coat is to have the vehicle repainted.
For less-severe oxidation, wash the car with a grease cutting soap. Dawn works well. Rinse thoroughly and dry by hand with a soft cloth. You’ll need a dual-action car polisher to take care of oxidation causing large areas of dull paint. Working with detailing clay by hand won’t allow you to apply enough pressure or rub the surface long enough to see results. You can start with a clay bar to remove dead paint and grime, though.
Use a cutting polish with micro-abrasive technology to take care of stubborn spots. It won’t hurt the intact paint, which is important since oxidation causes thin spots in your car’s paint. A finishing polish will get into the paint’s pores to reveal a nice shine. Doing this job by hand won’t get you the results that you’ll see with a dual-action car polisher.
It’s important to use only the finishing polish (not the cutting polish) on plastic bumpers and plastic mirrors. Those areas oxidize quickly, so they may look worse than the metal parts of your car. The paint is thinner on these parts, though.
To seal in all your hard work, use a paint sealant with an acrylic formulation. For a deeper shine, apply two coats.
If you aren’t into the DIY approach, but your car’s paint needs attention, call around to a few reputable detail shops and talk with them about your options. You may be able to get your car’s paint restored by a professional for a few hundred dollars.
Before you treat your car’s paint oxidation….
Take a close look at every panel of your vehicle in bright daylight. Can you see light scratches that are deep enough to feel with your fingernail? Small scratches and scrapes are easy to fix, but you should do so before attacking your oxidation problem. Over time, these small areas of damage can spread to cause paint bubbling, clear coat flaking around the scratch, and rust.
Use the Quixx Paint Repair Pen to cover scratches that go all the way through the clear coat. The pen has genuine clear coat, which covers the damage to seal out moisture and oxygen. It dries fast and application is easy.
For scuffs and scratches that damaged the clear coat, use the Quixx Paint Scratch Remover kit. Using Paint Deformation, this kit has everything you need to complete the two-step repair process. Paint actually flows back into the damaged area, erasing the scratch permanently.
It’s the only product on the market proven to remove small-to-medium-sized marks, scuffs to the clear coat, and scratches on all paint finishes.
Fixing car paint oxidation is a fairly intense process, but you always have the option of enlisting professional help. Whether you choose the DIY route or hire someone with a lot of experience, be sure to handle those small scratches and scuffs first for the best possible result.