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How to Paint Over a Chip in a Plastic Bumper

by Sarah Arnette

Chips occur when a rock or other item hits the vehicle and removes a piece of paint. Chips in the paint can be more difficult to repair than the typical scratch in the paint of a plastic bumper. Repairing the chip professionally can be very expensive, but repairing the chip at home can be easy to do, and the results can look very professional.

Step 1

Use autobody filler compound, which can be purchased at an auto parts store, to fill in the divot that the rock or other item created in the plastic. Apply this per the instructions on the container. Each type of autobody filler has slightly different instructions for use so read the instructions carefully. Allow the auto body filler to cure for the time period noted on the package on the auto body filler.

Step 2

Sand the autobody fill compound with fine-grain sandpaper so that it is flush with the plastic and paint surrounding it to ensure a smooth surface.

Step 3

Use an exact paint match pen if the chip is very small. You can order the matching paint for your vehicle online or through the dealership. The paint code is typically on the inside of the driver's door. Use the spray-on version if the area is slightly larger, such as a scratch. If the chip is considerable, taping the hood and fenders may be necessary as the bumper may need to be completely repainted to ensure consistency in the paint job.

Allow the paint to dry completely, following the instructions on the paint container, to avoid any dirt or contaminants becoming stuck to the paint before operating the vehicle. Wipe off any excess paint with a soft cloth. Buff and wax the paint to ensure a beautiful and streak-free finish.

Warning

  • Always use a mask when working around paint or autobody compound.

Items you will need

  • Autobody filler
  • Fine-grain sandpaper
  • Color-matched paint pen or spray
  • Micro-fiber cloth

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