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Repairing Plastic

Hey all!

So, I discovered that my nephew put about a 10 inch scratch on the top of my dashboard from his action figure. It wasn’t intentional, and I didn’t notice it until I was dusting my dashboard yesterday. Is there any type of paint or way to cover up/fill in the scratch so at least it’s level with the rest of the plastic around it?

Also, I have 2 small nicks on the plastic trip that surrounds my speedo. I was thinking about trying the heat method, but I don’t want to make it worse than it is. Any ideas?

Again, I know it’s just a car. It’s not the worst thing in the world, but if I can make both look better, great!


Well, you can always try one of these kits for the dash soft area…

There may be pros around who do this for local car dealers. They are likely to get much better results than you can. Same for the speedo trim.

Ask your local car dealer where he send his used cars to be prepped for resale.

I’d leave it alone. Scratches repaired with a repair kit often look worse that the scratches. When light hits them at different angles everything changes.

Can professional companies usually complete a uniform repair? My concern is it not matching in certain lighting conditions.

I guess I’ll just let it be and see what I can do when I trade-in.

How long ago did the nephew do it (if he did… Oh, sure, blame the nephew!)? The thing is that didn’t notice it, right away. Now you cleaned it (took some dust off) and you are conscious of it and know right where to stare.

Others may not even notice it. Besides, you could just leave a little dust there.

Could I get a Make, Model, and Model-Year? It could make a difference. I need to determine if you need to take drastic action or if you’re just a little whacko.

A minor scratch on a 1988 Dodge Aries could be a different ballgame compared with one on a 2017 Maybach.


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That’s a common sense answer?

The point is that a repair of this type can look fine under the shop lights and terrible when the sun hits it. Whether you choose to take this chance is entirely up to you. It is, after all, only a mild cosmetic fault. But I think you’ve made the right decision in letting it be.

I’ve used the vinyl repair before but color matching is a beast. The problem is you match the color perfectly, then need to heat it to cure it and the color changes. So there is no way to predict the final color. You can use it to fill the dent and then you would have to respray the entire dash with a product like SEM plastic and vinyl coating to get a decent match. So kinda agree to leave it alone.

I found that to be true too.
The kit I bought even warned the user of that problem.

One way to handle it might be to mix the wet color to match, put it on a scrap piece and let it dry. Then check the color. Add or remove color to make the dry color match. You might need to repeat a couple of times. Clearly, you can’t use much of the kit matching color, but filling the scratch shouldn’t require a lot of mix.

That’s the closest I could come to (thinking about them and missing them) a Tom & Ray answer. :heart_eyes: It was meant in good taste, peace and tranquility, with of course some humor thrown in!

Tom and Ray were always sizing up their listeners for the rational/whacko responses from the audience (and they were good at ferreting out both).

P.S. I have caught my self going a little whacko on car related matters at times. Sometimes, one needs to step back and re-assess and let some things go. :slight_smile:

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I wonder if rubbing on a little Armor-All might help? I’d probably try that first. If it is a severe problem, a deep crevice, I’ve repaired plastic nicks like that in non-car things with a product that snow skiers use to repair the bottom of their skis when they ski over a rock. It comes in the form of a 6 inch long plastic stick of various colors. Choose the best matching color, then melt the end and drip the melted plastic onto the nick. Use a scraper/sandpaper to smooth the surface.

The scratch has been there at least a week. Like a poster said above, I noticed it today when I dusted the dash, and the bright sun was hitting it.

Anyway, now I just keep staring at it and it’s driving me nuts!

Has anyone else had a similar incident? I’m going to call a company that does this stuff for a quote. If it’s a lot, I’ll just learn to live with it :slight_smile:

Try rubbing along the scratch with a candle of similar color. Or just try rubbing it w/ clear paraffin wax.

Another idea, a crayon.

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it seems fairly obvious, but it is a car, correct?
Make, Model, and Model-Year, please?

Excellent question. I was going to look for a link to a site that sells dash covers to try to help you out, but not having the information made that impossible.