Can You Paint Over Existing Auto Paint?

How to Do it Yourself on a Budget

If you are restoring a vehicle, a major milestone in the process is when you paint the vehicle. At that stage, although still far from completion, the project really begins to take shape. Depending on your skill level and ambition, you may want to tackle the paint job yourself.

If you’ve never painted before, the idea of ​​painting your vehicle can seem like a fun project, or it can seem overwhelming. While there are reasonable techniques to learn about spraying, nothing is outside the realm of an amateur who is willing to practice and learn. To get you started, Eastwood provides books and DVDs, paint guns, paints, supplies, and all the technical advice (check out the Eastwood How-To Center, forums, blog, or YouTube channel) you need to paint your vehicle. When you look at your freshly painted vehicle, that sense of accomplishment will be your biggest reward.

Different people have different reasons for painting their cars. Maybe you want to say that you did “all” yourself, maybe you can’t afford to paint it, maybe you want to learn something new, maybe you want to learn something new from that job. Do you love Want to be sure of what’s going on in the vehicle before and during painting. ..the list goes on. Regardless of your reasons, there are a few things that need to be considered for a successful paint job.

To get started, you need to develop a game plan. The keys to a successful paint job are planning your steps, taking your time, and preparing the surface properly. If you’re in a hurry, don’t attempt to paint your car. If you cut corners to prepare the vehicle for paint, it will be very noticeable in the final finish or soon down the road. To properly paint a vehicle, there is much more involved than just spraying paint on the vehicle.

Things to Consider:

  • Do you have the space to prepare and paint the vehicle?
  • Do you have the tools you need (or are you looking to buy) to paint a vehicle?
  • Are you painting the entire vehicle (door jambs, trunk area, underhood, etc.) or just the outside?
  • Will the vehicle be stripped to bare metal, or are you going to paint over the existing finish?
  • What type of paint are you planning to use?
  • Single stage, base coat / clear coat? urethane, acrylic enamel, acrylic lacquer, water based?
  • What brand of paint system are you going to use?
Right Place

If you are considering painting your vehicle, first think about where you are going to prepare and spray it. When you are preparing the vehicle do you have a dry place to store the vehicle? Ideally, you’ll want to spray in a clean, mess-free, temperature-controlled environment. Are you going to rent a spray booth, paint in your garage, or paint in your driveway? Is it legal to spray a vehicle there? All of these factors should be considered before even thinking about getting a paint gun. Tip: If it’s illegal to paint your vehicle in the area you live in, you can still take it down and have it ready for a body shop. This is a good way to save money.

Right Gear

You will need the proper tools to paint the vehicle. At a minimum, you’ll need a paint gun, an air compressor that can meet the demands of your paint gun, and a moisture separator. The moisture separator will ensure that you have a supply of dry air (moisture in your air supply is an easy way to ruin a paint job). Another option is turbine paint systems, such as the 5 Stage Turbine. It doesn’t require an air compressor, and makes sure you have a supply of dry air.

There are two common paint gun designs: HVLP gravity-feed and siphon-feed. In gravity-feed guns the cup is placed over the gun, and in siphon-feed guns the cup is placed under the gun. Due to environmental regulations these days, most paints are formulated for spraying with an HVLP gun, and luckily for home users many of these sprays are fine with a small home compressor. To learn more about types of spray guns, check out this expert blog post on the Eastwood Blog.

In addition to spraying equipment, you’ll also need safety equipment such as painter’s coveralls, an approved respirator, goggles and disposable nitrile gloves. For a more comprehensive explanation of painting safety gear, click here.

How Much to Separate

When deciding to paint your vehicle, how much will you disassemble the vehicle? Are you going to remove the hood, trunk, doors, glass, etc., or are you going to tape it up and paint it keeping it together? Taking everything off allows you to make sure there’s no hidden damage, and it allows you to paint in nooks and crannies. However, you’ll have to deal with gaping panels, reinstalling glass, replacing seals, and more.

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