If you are tired of how your car looks, but are not ready to trade it in for a new model, you should consider spray painting your car this summer in order to give it a new look. One of the best times to spray paint your car is during the summer months when it is both warm and dry outside, which are both ideal conditions for spray paint to dry.
The first thing you need to do is prepare yourself. You are going to want to wear old clothing that you don't mind getting spray paint on, as there is a good chance you'll get some blowback on you. You also need to protect your face from stray paint drops. The best way to do so is by wearing protective goggles and a face mask that covers both your nose and mouth. A face mask will also protect you from the spray paint fumes.
Wash Your Car
Second, you need to thoroughly wash your car. Washing your car will make the sanding process go easier; you will not have to sand away the dirt and the paint on your vehicle at the same time. Make sure that you wash the top and the undersides of your car well; a lot of dirt can accumulate in these seldom-seen areas. You'll also want to open up your doors and wipe down the inside edges where there is paint with a wet rag, if you plan on painting that area as well.
Park Your Car
The third thing you need to do is prepare your car for the painting process. Ideally, you should park your car outside so that there is plenty of fresh air circulating around. If you have to work on your car inside, make sure that the area is well ventilated.
Rub Down Your Car
Fourth, take aluminum oxide abrasive paper and use it to rub or sand down your car until all the paint is gone and only the bare metal is left. This step could take a while. You'll want to break your car down into sections and work each section top to bottom. It is easiest to break it up by the panels on your vehicle. For example, the front driver's side door panel, passenger driver's side door panel, rear driver's side tire panel, etc.
Although this job could be completed by hand, it will go much faster if you use a sanding tool. You will want to sweep up the dust particles and wash down your car again when you finish sanding it down to the bare metal.
Apply Rust Treatment
Fifth, take a rust treatment product and rub it into each panel. This will protect the bare metal from rusting and it will help prevent rust from developing on your new paint job. Let the rust treatment dry completely according to the directions on the product before moving onto the next step.
Protect Areas You Are Not Painting
Sixth, you need to protect any areas you are not painting. For example, if you are only painting one side or section, you'll want to use masking tape, plastic sheets or newspaper to cover up the area that you don't want to get paint on.
Apply The Primer
Seventh, take the primer, which should come in a spray can, and spray it onto your car. You'll want to hold the can back about a foot from your car, and use sweeping motions back and forth. After you apply one layer, wait for ten minutes before you apply the next layer of primer to give it a chance to set a little bit. You'll want to apply about three coats of primer to your vehicle.
When you've applied all the coats, let your vehicle sit overnight so the primer can fully set and dry.
Rub Down Your Car Again
Eighth, use some wet and dry paper, around 1200 grit, and rub down the area where you applied the primer. This will smooth out any little bumps or irregularities in the primer. Once you are done, wipe down the area with soapy water, rinse it off and dry it off with a microfiber cloth that will not leave behind lint.
Finish With Paint
Ninth, it is time to apply the paint. Shake the spray paint for about two minutes in a vigorous fashion to ensure that the paint inside the can is mixed properly before you begin. Hold the spray paint back about a foot from your vehicle, and use the same back and forth sweeping motions to apply the spray paint that you used to apply the primer. Wait at least half an hour in between each paint coat, and re-shake each can before you use it again.
Allow everything to dry and set. You may want to wash and wax your car within the next week in order to make your new paint job really shine. This entire project will take a two or three days, so do it when you don't have to drive your vehicle for a few days.
If you're spray painting your car to cover up damage from an accident, be sure to also bring it into an auto repair shop to have any other damage fixed.