How To Identify and Cure Automotive Paint Color Mismatch Defects

Tags: Enamel · Paint Defects · Urethane

Be Sociable, Share! Color Mismatch is a problem that many technicians have to deal with and the problem can be both formulation and technique used while applying paint.

When performing a spot repair it is to be understood that any formulation of paint mixed by the technician will not be an exact match to the color that is on the vehicle. This is true if you are picking colors from a chip book or using a analyzer that inspects the vehicle’s paint for color matching and mixing suggestions.

For this reason it is appropriate to blend colors across panels and not stop with a hard edge. However even if this technique is followed there will be times when a color is difficult to match or a problem occurs that can’t be compensated in the booth.

What Causes Paint Color Mismatch?

A variety of different problems can cause Paint Color Mismatch but the problem can be made worse when more then one problem caused the difference in color.

Improper paint color selection or variation on the OEM assembly line. Paint colors on assembly lines can actually change within the year, month or even in the hour of the day the actual car was painted. Only computer matching will provide this difference.

PSI too high or low when painting.

Incorrect application of paint Wet or Dry causing a variation in metallics.

Insufficient paint applied to hide primer causing show through

Color was not mixed sufficiently or settled in the paint gun cup.

Improper method of application not blending the color correctly into undamaged panels.

Color changes in the paint due to age of the vehicle.

How To Prevent Paint Color Mismatch

It is important to get the correct color to start so technicians should polish surrounding areas and if possible use a color analyzer to pick up any differences between the factory color and the paint on the vehicle.

Remember to stir your paint and keep it agitated while working. Paint should be viscous enough to suspend metallics while in your cup.

Spray a sample panel if the vehicle appears to have a color change due to age and then use that information to tint the base coat to the appropriate matching color.

Always check the sample panel and the vehicle in full sunlight for best color and metallic matches.

Use proper blending techniques to fool the eye. Never stop a blend on a body line that will expose your color difference.


How To Cure Paint Color Mismatch

If you have not yet applied clearcoat you can cure the paint that is on the vehicle and apply additional coats to blend or alter the color for a better match.

In some cases you will need to refinish the repair by sanding and starting over.

Remember to check your work in full sunlight when possible.






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