How to Paint a Car Hood

by Jenny Carver

Car paint fades for many reasons, but most commonly fades from the weather conditions. Direct sunlight, rain, snow and pollution can cause fading, peeling and cracking in the paint of the hood and top of a car. Faded paint makes even an otherwise nice car look old and run down. Learn how to paint a car hood and get your faded car looking like new again.

Open the hood of the car and mask off the fenders and front grill area. Start the tape under the hood, so that no paint gets into the cracks, and then shut the hood. Continue to place paper and tape down the fenders, over the headlights and grill, and over the windshield.

Sand the entire hood with 300 grit sand paper and a dual action sander. Repeat the sanding step with 800 grit paper to smooth the hood. Clean the sanding dust off the hood with a rag and wax and grease remover. Do this several times until the hood is completely clean.

Spray a thin coat of primer on the hood, starting near the middle of the windshield and working towards the front of the car. Use one long stroke from the windshield to the front of the hood. Move back, and spray another stroke just below this one, starting at the windshield and ending at the front of the hood. Do this until one side of the hood is complete. Move to the other side of the car and repeat the same pattern. Apply two thin coats of primer and allow them to dry.

Apply three or four thin coats of paint to the hood, spraying in the same pattern as the primer was sprayed. Allow each coat to become tacky before spraying the next coat. Allow the paint to dry completely before moving on.

Spray three or four coats of clear coat paint, using the same spray pattern as the paint and primer. Allow the clear coat to dry for about 30 minutes before removing the masking tape and paper.

Tip

  • check Always wear a painter's mask when spraying primer and paint.

Warning

  • close Don't spray thick coats of primer, paint or clear. Runs will occur and have to be sanded and repainted.

Items you will need

About the Author

Since 1997 Jenny Carver has served as editor and freelance writer for many offline and online publications including lovetoknow.com, autotropolis.com, "Hoof Beat News," "Import Tuner" and others. Carver owns a custom automotive shop where she has been doing paint and body work, custom interior work and engine building for over 11 years.