How to Repair a Chip in a Plastic Bumperby Carl Hose
Body work on an automobile can be costly. A small chip or crack in the bumper of your car may not affect the way it drives, but it doesn't do much for the aesthetics. You can avoid costly repairs and keep your car free of those unsightly dings by doing minor repair work yourself.
Use 80-grit sandpaper to smooth the damaged area. Make sure all rough spots are removed, especially around the chipped area. Sand about an inch and a half diameter around the actual damaged area.
Place filler putty material into the chipped area. Make sure the chip is filled and level. Do not allow any of the filler to flow outside the chipped area. Run your finger over the area to ensure the putty filler is flush. Allow the filler ample time to harden before you continue to the next step.
Cut a piece of mesh reinforcement that extends about an inch beyond the damaged area of your bumper on all sides. Place the mesh reinforcement over the damaged area, and use a clear adhesive to secure it over the damage. Use a small brush to apply the adhesive. Allow the adhesive time to dry before proceeding.
Apply repair material over the mesh reinforcement covering. Don't worry about applying too much at this point. It will be sanded down later. Spread the repair material evenly with putty knife. Push the repair material down into the damaged area as you spread it around, making sure to compact the repair material into the damaged area of the bumper.
Sand the repaired area until it is completely smooth. Run your hand lightly over it to ensure there are no imperfections. Use 80-grit sandpaper to accomplish this. Avoid power sanders unless you know how to use them well. Oversanding at this point is easy to do and will hinder your repairs.
Paint the repaired area of your bumper. Match the paint by consulting your car dealer and finding out what the name of the color is on your car, and if the dealer has some available for purchase. If you have no success finding the exact paint, you might want to take a picture of your car to an experienced paint supply store to see if the staff can blend paint to get the color you need.
Things You'll Need
- Putty or filler Putty knife Mesh reinforcement 80-grit Sandpaper Paint or finish
Carl Hose is the author of the anthology "Dead Horizon" and the the zombie novella "Dead Rising." His work has appeared in "Cold Storage," "Butcher Knives and Body Counts," "Writer's Journal," and "Lighthouse Digest.". He is editor of the "Dark Light" anthology to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities.