As a car owner, there’s nothing quite as frustrating as discovering rock chips on the hood of your car. Not only do they look unsightly, but they can also lead to more severe damage if left untreated. In this blog post, we’ll discuss what rock chips are, how they occur, and what steps you can take to prevent and repair them.
What are rock chips?
Rock chips are small, circular marks on the paint of your car caused by rocks or other debris that hit your car while driving. These chips can be as small as a pinprick or as large as a quarter, and they can appear anywhere on your car’s exterior, including the hood, fenders, and doors.
How do rock chips occur?
Rock chips can occur for a variety of reasons. One of the most common causes is driving on gravel roads, where loose rocks and stones can easily fly up and hit your car’s exterior. Other causes include driving behind large trucks or trailers, where debris can fall from the vehicle and hit your car, or even just driving on highways or roads where construction is taking place.
Preventing rock chips
While it’s impossible to completely prevent rock chips from occurring, there are steps you can take to minimize the risk. One of the most effective ways to prevent rock chips is to avoid driving on gravel roads or roads where construction is taking place. If you must drive on these types of roads, consider investing in a set of mud flaps or a protective film for your car’s hood and fenders.
Another way to prevent rock chips is to maintain a safe distance from large trucks and trailers while driving. These vehicles often kick up a significant amount of debris, so it’s essential to keep a safe distance to avoid any flying rocks or stones.
In addition, applying paint protection film can prevent rock chips as the material is absorptive and self-healing: a very smart investing to protect your vehicle.
Repairing rock chips
If you do discover rock chips on the hood of your car, it’s essential to take action as soon as possible to prevent any further damage. Here are the steps you can take to repair rock chips on your car’s hood:
Step 1: Clean the affected area
Before you can begin repairing the rock chips, you’ll need to clean the affected area thoroughly. Use a mild soap and water solution to clean the hood of your car, paying extra attention to the area with the rock chips. Once you’ve cleaned the area, rinse it with water and dry it with a clean microfiber towel.
Step 2: Sand the affected area
After cleaning the affected area, you’ll need to sand the paint surrounding the rock chips lightly. Use a fine-grit sandpaper (between 1500 and 2000 grit) to sand the area gently, being careful not to sand too much of the surrounding paint.
Step 3: Apply touch-up paint
Once you’ve sanded the area, it’s time to apply touch-up paint to the rock chips. You can purchase touch-up paint from your local auto parts store or dealership, and it’s essential to choose the right color for your car. Apply a small amount of touch-up paint to each of the rock chips, being careful not to apply too much paint.
Step 4: Let the paint dry
After applying the touch-up paint, allow it to dry completely. The drying time can vary depending on the type of paint you’re using, so be sure to check the manufacturer’s instructions for the recommended drying time.
Step 5: Buff the area
Once the paint has dried, use a buffing pad to buff the affected area gently. This will help blend the touch-up paint with the surrounding paint, making the repair less noticeable.
In conclusion, while rock chips are frustrating and unsightly, they can be repaired with some patience and effort. By taking steps to prevent rock chips from occurring and repairing them promptly when they do occur, you can keep rock chips from ruining your paint.