Clearcoat problems - Should I try to do the entire hood?
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  1. #1
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    Clearcoat problems - Should I try to do the entire hood?

    Some of you may recall that my clearcoat started peeling last year due to sun damage . I repaired two major spots by peeling, sanding, and applying spray clearcoat. Not pretty, but it is still protected.

    Well, as you would expect, it has gotten a lot worse. Many many small spots have developed on both my hood and the top of the car. The rest of the car is in decent shape (for now).

    I don't want to repaint the car - it just is not worth it compared to the value of the car. I have so many small spots on the hood, that it doesn't make sense to do each and every one individually. Do you think it makes sense to cover up the rest of the car, prep the entire hood, and apply a few coats of the clearcoat to the entire hood?? My general strategy would be to peel up any obvious loose clear coat (use an exacto knife), sand, and then spray.

    My main question is how should I prep the existing clearcoat? Should I try to sand down to the paint? Or should I just rough up the clearcoat? Am I making a mistake by trying to do the entire hood? Should I consider removing the entire hood from the car for better access (and eliminate possibility of over-spray)?

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  3. #2
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    Hope nobody minds if i bump... kind of curious if anyone was any input on a second round. I have the same problem quickly becoming more impending. It's spreading to my A pillars too now. I suppose it's just a matter of time with the constant FL heat, rain, and hot rain... ^^.

    My .02, I've asked around to alot of mechanics and friends who have been in the business a long time. There's no good way around it it seems. You'll have to commit to repainting eventually. The stuff we buy in the spray paint aisle just isn't meant for that.

  4. #3
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    if you want to save some dollars just prep the hood yourself and bring it into a body shop and have them shoot some clear.
    usually about 100-150 bucks and it should last much longer.

  5. #4
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    I did the roof of my pickup when the clear coat peeled. I wet sanded the clear to a point where it was barely noticeable and shot the roof with rattle can clear coat. I didn't sand enough as some of the old clear coat edges were visible but it was only the roof and it looked 1,000 times better. Your hood will require some wet sanding finesse to get it right but you can do it for the cost of a couple of cans.

  6. #5
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    LineInTheWater - "Some of you may recall that my clearcoat started peeling last year due to sun damage . I repaired two major spots by peeling, sanding, and applying spray clearcoat. Not pretty, but it is still protected."

    I was wondering if you could post some pictures of your finished product. I have some spots on my hood and trunk lid where my clear coat has come off, exposing the paint under it. There is no bare metal, but I would like to keep it that way.

    Thanks,
    Matt

  7. #6
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    Well, I finally did it. My clear coat had so many spots peeling, that I decided to try to get it all off my hood. Call me crazy. So, I spent the whole day painstakingly using an exact blade and lifting every square cm at a time. I probably got 20% of the hood done. Brutal.

    So I was covering the finished area for parking it outside overnight ... and I was just about to use packing tape to secure trash bags over the hood. (Can you believe this? Using packing tape on my car!!! .... something I would NEVER EVER consider unless the spots were so bad!!) Anyway, a little light bulb went on over my weary head ... WAX THE HOOD!! No, I'm not talking about car wax. I'm talking about hair wax (well, kind-of). So I took a piece of tape, applied it to my hood right up to where the edge of where I was working, and pulled it!! Bingo ... A nice piece of clear coat came up!

    So, anyway, it appears I'll be able to strip the rest of the clear coat tomorrow (fingers crossed). Now, where do I go from here? My original plan was to patch all the spots with the same acrylic lacquer clear coat that I had used to patch my roof 2 years ago. But, now that I'm clearing the whole hood, I'm planning on taping off all the other areas of the car, and trying to apply several thin coats over the whole hood. My thought: it couldn't look any worse than 10 patches. Maybe I'm wrong.

    My question is: once I get all the clear coat off, should I think about sanding or cleaning the paint? There are some scuff marks on the paint from rubbing by the exacto blade. I was thinking of some really fine grit paper - maybe a water sanding. But I'm worried that there isn't enough paint to handle any sanding whatsoever? Anyone have a feel for this?

    Any help would be much appreciated. I'm probably in over my head here, but please consider that the hood was already hosed ... so I don't know how much worse I can make it.

  8. #7
    Super Stealth Retired Moderator JayTheSnork's Avatar
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    what about buying a used hood at a junk yard? might be far less time...

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by JayTheSnork View Post
    what about buying a used hood at a junk yard? might be far less time...
    Hi Jay.

    Hmmmm ... interesting idea ... what is the probability I could find one that is my color? And how much would it cost? But think of all the fun I'd be missing ... ...

    Do you know how hard it is to remove the hood on the passat?

    BTW, I searched for hoods and found one that ships pre-primed for $190 on ebay. Anyone know how much a decent paint and clear coat job would cost only on the hood (as a separate piece)?

  10. #9
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    Well, the tape really did the trick. Here is a picture after I layered many strips of tape. It takes a few tricks, but once you get the hang of it, it goes very quickly (relatively speaking). I don't know if this would work on most cars, since the clear coat probably needs to have separated from the paint (from sun, etc).



    And now I'm left with this (see below). I would like to somehow lightly sand this to even out the paint and eliminate many off the odd marks left by using the exacto blade and tape. As mentioned, I'm unclear how much paint is actually on the hood, and if it could withstand sanding.


  11. #10
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    So, I'm at my wit's end (as those of you who read my original post probably predicted). I tried to wetsand the marks off the paint, and accidentally went with a 800 grit sandpaper. Now, I very lightly applied it, but it still left some fine marks. I probably should go get some 1500-2000 sandpaper and try to clean it up.

    Anyway, my current question: how long will my paint survive without clear coat? I'm worried that if I clear coat my hood with the current marks, it will act as a magnifying glass and actually look worse. I would pay to get the hood repainted if it was the only panel that was peeling (my roof is also peeling). I also have lots of maintenance issues pending, so I'm a little wary of pouring money into this car. Love the car, but I've had plenty of problems.

  12. #11
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    Well, I sanded too much and I can now kinda see primer (pink) coming through ... it's not like it is a surprise. I'm still confused why wetsanding with 2000 grit seemed to make it even worse. I must be doing something wrong with the wetsanding. It is smooth, but too many marks. It actually looks worse than after the 800 grit. The mission was doomed from the beginning, but it would be nice to know where I went wrong.

    Anyway, now what to do with this car (and hood) ...

  13. #12
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    So I brought the car to a recommended auto body shop in-town, and he said it "wasn't as bad as he thought" when he first talked to me on the phone. He basically said that my time wasn't a complete waste because since I taken off all the clear without going completely through the paint, he can roughen up the paint (that I've already sanded), and apply new paint directly to the original base coat. And he said since the original paint is for the most part not showing through primer, he could use the original with new to blend and mostly match the fenders. Anyway, he offered to do it for like $200. He sounded like he knew what he was doing, and he wasn't try to push the option on me.

    I wouldn't mind a sanity check, if anyone has experience with painting. Is it really possible to paint over the existing paint, if prepped properly? And will the blending be more straightforward?

  14. #13
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    Hello I have spots of clearcoat bubling on my hood since I bought the car. What I did was wet sand the hood with 2000 grit and then had a professional compond job done on the whole car. Solved my issue, still not perfect but since this is the only blemished part of the car it bothered me. Now my car is spectacular , like a mirror keep posted for the PW unvieling of my car next month in the showroom section.

    For the time being here is what the hood looked like after the wet sand

    Last edited by A.K.; 04-23-2010 at 08:10 PM.

  15. #14
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    A.K. - forgive my naivete, but what is a "compound job"? Your hood pic looks very similar to my hood's current state (but I don't have any clear coat). Any help you could provide would be MUCH appreciated.

  16. #15
    I'm just itching to be Banned NEWMAN'SOWN's Avatar
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    If I was you I would get a few cans of plasti dip and coat my hood and roof with it.

  17. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by LineInTheWater View Post
    A.K. - forgive my naivete, but what is a "compound job"? Your hood pic looks very similar to my hood's current state (but I don't have any clear coat). Any help you could provide would be MUCH appreciated.
    Compounding uses rubbing and polishing compound to remove the top layer of clear and get down to the next layer. It creates an awesome shine, but obviously in your case, it would do nothing.

  18. #17
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    I decided to let the auto body shop have a go at it ... hopefully applying the new paint over the existing (with the right prep) will do the trick. Keeping my fingers crossed.

    Eventually I have to address the peeling on the roof too. Maybe if the hood turns out nice, I'll consider the same process. Hate dumping money into this car given its age.

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    So I got my car back yesterday ... my initial reaction was "wow .. looks great". And, for the most part, that is still my reaction. I could take a pic if anyone cares ....

    Anyway, after washing the car, I looked at the hood in direct sunlight. And, it does look almost brand new. But when I focused in on the section of the hood that was starting to show-through primer when I had been sanding, I could tell there were still lighter patches of red (albeit, nowhere near as obvious). Anyway, you would have to be staring at the hood, in the right light, and the right angle to see it. Am I being too nit-picky to mention this? Or did the body shop miss something? I didn't expect it to be perfect, and it looks absolutely great if you aren't inspecting it. Hard to explain without showing someone first-hand.

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    Pictures!

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    Here's one:


  22. #21
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    With it looking that good call it a day and work on gettng the whole car cleaned up. After all the car is 10 years old and counting. Just my 2 cents

  23. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by A.K. View Post
    With it looking that good call it a day and work on gettng the whole car cleaned up. After all the car is 10 years old and counting. Just my 2 cents
    I looked at it again in full sun, and the paint variation is almost unnoticeable. And, like you say, compared to the rest of the car, it looks like it is brand new.

    Unfortunately, the body shop revised their estimate for my roof higher after completing my hood. They said the paint was much more expensive than they had expected ... something to do with the red and pearls etc. So, instead of $250, they are now saying $400. That is kind-of the difference between me being interested and not. As an alternative, I was thinking that maybe I could prep (trim, lightly sand) the 4 or so major patches on the roof and possibly convince the shop to hit each with clear coat in their shop. Maybe they would do it for less than $50. Either that, or I'm going to have to do it myself. Either way, probably a good interim solution for the next year or two. My original patch is still holding, even though it looks like crap (did it outside, in too much wind). Fortunately, the roof is far less noticeable than the hood (was).

  24. #23
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    I've got the same problem on the roof of my passat. It's nice to know there's hope of repairing this at not too great a price. Afterall, it is a 12 year old car...

  25. #24
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    New hood looks great.

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