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Is there such a thing as "respraying" parts of a front bumper?

DCEV

Member
Mar 25, 2019
964
726
Washington DC
I've had my car "unprotected" for several months now and, unfortunately, there are now a few small scratches and nicks on the front bumper from rock chips and who knows what.

After much research, I have located a a PPF install with reasonable fees in the NOVA/Washington DC area but before the car is all "sealed up" in PPF, I'd love to have some of e small scratches and nicks on the front bumper fixed. Just about all the nicks and scratches are small and you almost need to know where to look to find them.

I do have the Tesla Paint repair kit but what is the best way to fix some of these small nicks and scratches? Is there such a thing as spot painting/respraying the few parts of the bumper affected and then wet sanding to make it all nice and shiny? Just looking to see what options are available short of an expensive entire bumper repainting.

For anyone in the area, we are doing a PPF Group Buy in the Washington DC area. If anyone is interested, please post on the following thread:

Anyone looking to have PPF in the DC area?
 

PhilDavid

Active Member
May 22, 2018
2,552
2,343
Philadelphia
Here's a video I found for a DIY solution.

I would personally NEVER do this type of paint work on my own car as a DIY solution but I don't see why an experienced body shop can't do something like this with excellent results with all the experience/expertise they have, rather than having to pay ~$1,000 for a full bumper repaint.

So the question is can/will a body shop do the equivalent of what's on this video at a reasonable cost? Sounds like your scratches are minor so painting an entire bumper makes no sense. What you want is someone who knows what they are doing to do what is shown on the video.


Has anyone successfuly spot treated their bumper?
 

cwerdna

Active Member
Jul 11, 2012
3,818
2,873
SF Bay Area, CA
No, you either touch up a tiny mark with your touch up kit or you pay $1K+ to spray the entire piece
My dad go into a minor accident with my former 06 Prius which scraped up one side of the front bumper cover.

The body shop did only respray one portion of the bumper and it looked perfect. I only realized when I saw issues (which were pre-existing) on the other side. That's when I asked and the body shop confirmed they only sprayed one side.
 
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A reputable shop wouldn't do this since they wouldn't be able to guarantee high quality results. It is impossible to perfectly match new paint to the existing paint. It's easy to spot painted car parts that are adjacent to untouched panels; not to mention on the same panel. That's really poor practice by that shop. Your dad got lucky.
 

cwerdna

Active Member
Jul 11, 2012
3,818
2,873
SF Bay Area, CA
A reputable shop wouldn't do this since they wouldn't be able to guarantee high quality results. It is impossible to perfectly match new paint to the existing paint. It's easy to spot painted car parts that are adjacent to untouched panels; not to mention on the same panel. That's really poor practice by that shop. Your dad got lucky.
It looked fine and the car is his now (years later).

FWIW, it was this location: Service King | Auto Body Repair - Santa Clara, CA, not a no name place. I believe Safeco had pointed me there before for a different unrelated repair on another car.
 

cwerdna

Active Member
Jul 11, 2012
3,818
2,873
SF Bay Area, CA
It seems like Car Bumper Repair Services | Service King even alludes to it. I haven't looked this up until now.
At Service King, our team meticulously performs the right repair for each bumper, and reconditions your bumper to erase any signs of dents, scratches, scrapes, or indentations. Many plastic bumper parts can be repaired, especially bumper covers, which are commonly damaged on a vehicle. By saving your bumper, the technician will also be able to blend the appended paint more efficiently and accurately.
 
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PhilDavid

Active Member
May 22, 2018
2,552
2,343
Philadelphia
A reputable shop wouldn't do this since they wouldn't be able to guarantee high quality results. It is impossible to perfectly match new paint to the existing paint. It's easy to spot painted car parts that are adjacent to untouched panels; not to mention on the same panel. That's really poor practice by that shop. Your dad got lucky.

I hear what you are saying but then the question is do you want to pay $1,000 to paint the entire bumper to perfection, live with an ugly scratch, or pay a coupe of hundred to touch up the affected area and make it look considerably better than it was and 80-90% of the way to perfection.

Personally, I'd be fine with 90% of the way there to save $800 and not see a scratch that's worse...

Also feel a good body shop with expertise should be able to do a much better job in general.
 
I would have said it couldn't be done until I saw a guy come to my neighbor's house several months ago with a mobile unit and repair and paint his dented late model Cadillac bumper. $400 was the damage and it took the guy about 2 1/2 to 3 hrs. Looked factory new. Cadillac had quoted him over $2500. Paul Guye, United Bumper Repair, Las Vegas, NV 702 574 3996.
 
Adding onto this because I'm currently down this pathway, I purchased my 2017 P100D through CARMAX and they drilled four holes in the front bumper to affix the front license plate without my consent. They repaired it, but in the process re-painted and re-coated sensitive "radar" areas behind the bumper. Per TESLA repair guidelines, the ultrasonic radar is calibrated to work with the front bumper with only 1 coat of factory paint and 1 coat of re-paint, or 300 microns (12mm). Anything additional will throw off the autopilot. Now I'm driving around my car without any autopilot until I can get an appointment to get it fixed :( https://rts.i-car.com/images/pdf/oem-info/tesla/body-repair-tech-notes/33400.pdf
 
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