DIY Summer Project: Rust Repair

6 min

DIY Repair Rust On A Car

When we buy a car, it is one of our primary needs. We purchase it for its different purposes, and traveling is one of them. Responsibility for taking care of a car is a must. After a few years without care or if you can’t give your car time, it can rust. We’ve all seen the unsightly results of rust eating away at a vehicle. Rust can cause significant damage as well as ruin the appearance of your car. There are many ways to get rid of rust from your car, so read this DIY project idea for summer. If there is rust in your car, then it is time to maintain and repair. Here is the DIY summer car project idea you can do to get rid of rust.

First of all, buy paint and supplies mentioned here –

      • 40-, 600- and 1,000-grit sandpaper
      • Masking tape
      • Poly sheet
      • Primer
      • Paint
      • Tack rag
      • Polishing compound
      • Clearcoat
      • A sanding block
      • Grease
      • Wax remover
      • Fiber cloth

Let’s begin

Repairing rust on a car is not hard. Often waiting for paint and primer to dry between processes is time-consuming. This DIY project needs a calm, sunny day—blocks out the whole day to fix the rust spots on the hood and doors of your car. Buy automotive paint to use it in a spray gun, rollerball, or aerosol cans. Applicators you can use are pints and quarts for the paint.

Mixing automotive paint with a compound to match the humidity and temperature conditions can be involved. You can make this DIY project more comfortable by buying aerosol cans for more significant rust repairs. You can use breaker applicators to fix paint scratches on your car. You need first to find the car paint code, and it can be seen in the engine compartment or trunk of your car.

Many old models of the cars were painted with a base coat or bright coat paint. Basecoat is used majorly to finish the pain work for the car, but it consists of resin pigments. Mix these compounds in an equal measure. Also, buy epoxy primer to clasp into the car’s bare metal and a lacquer primer to hold the paint. At most retail car dealers, auto parts stores, and online retailers, the duplicate color brand is readily available. If not and you want to use touch-paint paint color, it is also available at a professional auto body supplier. 

1st step: Mask the car

Cover the whole car with a poly sheet from the paint overspray. If you want to paint the hood of the car, just spread the poly sheet over the fenders and engines only. Start by cutting a poly sheet and fitting it into the door opening and taping it. Lastly, cover the foot area and the repairing area. Start taping the edge of the poly sheet just a few feet away from the repairing area to have a place to apply paint into functional areas. 

2nd step: Clean

Start opening any paint can with a scraper. Apply the sandpaper of 40-grit on the rust. After this, brush up the paint edges. For uncovered areas, remove tag particles with the help of tack rag. Then, apply the prep solvent along with cleaning the sanded area. Fill the rust with body filler or apply multiple primer coats in case rust has created pits. On bare metal, apply sand on the rust. After that, increase the sanded area to make a space to brush up the edges. For the repairing area, use 120-grit sandpaper for brushing up the edges. Complete this process by feathering with 220 grit sandpaper. 

3rd step: Primer

For the first coat, use the self-etching epoxy primer, it provides a secure link to bare metal. You have to spray 2-3 medium coats and wait for 15 minutes recommended time between coatings. For drying, the primer will take a full 1 hour to touch; that is why sunny weather is essential for this DIY car project to remove rust; otherwise, it will take more time than usual to dry off in humid weather.

By using wet 1000-grit sandpaper, sand the primer (epoxy), and then, wash with water and let it dry for a minute. After drying, wipe the dried primer with a lint-free cloth. Then, apply 2 or 3 heavy coats of varnish filler primer and wait for 15 minutes of recommended time between coatings. Before sanding, let the primer dry completely for at least an hour. With the help of 320-grit sandpaper, sand drips, and sags sand the whole repair area. And then, cover the entire repair area by spraying the filler primer in heavier coats. Blend the can with the surrounding painted area by lightly moving the can away from the surface. 

4th step: Spraying the base coat

Start with spraying the repairing area by holding the spray can about 12 inches away from the surface. The color coat will look and apply better if you do it slowly. Let the base coat dry for at least an hour. If you didn’t have created sags, do not sand the base coat, especially with metallic colors. Sand carefully by re-spraying the touched-up repaired areas. You can start with the bottom of the repair area by applying the color coat in the manner and overlapping each other by some inches. In two to three coats, by allowing about 10 to 15 minutes between coats, they slowly build the color into the repairing areas.

5th step: Apply the clear coat

Applying a clear coat on the paint is the trickiest part because if not applied carefully, it will ruin your work. Before fixing the run in the clear coat with sandpaper and polishing compound, you have to leave it to try for at least 45 minutes, and then re-spray the sanded area. Avoiding ruining the work you can practice by spraying on a cardboard piece, and by this, you get used to the feel for the nozzle and applying speed.

At last, with the help of tack rag, clean the painted area. After the last step, start applying the clear coat. After applying the clear coat on the paint, let it dry for some hours before using the car. It will give a finished and glossy look by applying various coats of clear coat, allowing the suggested drying time before applying the next coat. Slowly apply the clear coat into the surrounding painted areas to achieve a smooth look. 

6th step: Wax

The last step is to hand-buff the repaired area using microfiber cloth and buffing compound; this process shields the layers of paint that you’ve added to the area and gives it a new look. After it’s dried, inspect to assure that there should not be uneven parts visible. Using a polishing machine for doing this step is not good. Applying wax should wait for at least 30 days.

Important points to remember:

If your car gets rust, you should not wait to get it to the mechanic or anything else. By reading this article on a simple DIY project for removing rust, you can remove the rust on your own with the most straightforward process.

Removing the rust by yourself can be an excellent way to assure that it is done right, and you can buy the products right and cheaper from online or from the store. You can find great products online with a comparison in quality, and quantity helps you to select a better product for your work. You can browse products online and order them to start your work as soon as possible.

The car you’ve planned to keep for years, and if it gets rust, it is terrible. By the interaction of oxygen and ferrous metal molecules, rust is a chemical reaction. When automotive metals are exposed to air and then cold weather, as well as saltwater, facilitate the process. Some vehicles have designs that allow moistures, and then the car starts catching rust. If rust is in a significant amount and has already caused much damage, don’t use simple rust repairs.

When rust causes high damage, the natural thing is to replace the damaged piece completely. During cold weather like during the winter months, make sure your car has multiple wax coats that will protect paint and quickly shed road dirt and water. Don’t let the snow and road chemicals expand while driving on snowy or salty roads. If it gets on the car, quickly wash them off. You have to pay special attention to a cold day to wheel wells and door jambs.


DIY projects consist of cleaning products, car detailing, parts store, car maintenance, deep cleaning, car air, cleaning car, car seats, and many more. And this project tells you about removing rust from your car in a quick way. Your car may have smaller rust spots, which are not even visible, and that is why cars need proper maintenance. With less time and money, your van will look like a new one just the way you like it.


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