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Scratches All Over Car

My car has fairly deep scratches on the trunk, roof, and hood. It’s a red, 2008 Chevy Impala. I’d take pictures—but it’s too painful. There are numerous thin scratches on each of these surfaces. I’m going to take it to a body shop to get an estimate, but I know I am probably not going to like what I hear. No, my insurance does not cover this (I only have liability).

So…any suggestions? Any ideas on how much it might cost to fix this? Am I going to need a completely new paint job?

The clearcoat may just need a buff and polish.

Ever watch where they show the aerodynamics of the vehicle with smoke? You see the smoke move over the hood, up the windsheild, over the roof, onto the trunk lid and off the back of the vehicle.

Along with that airflow comes dust and dirt which can scratch the clearcoat.


Or you’re being overrun with cats if the car sits outside. :slight_smile:

That particular problem, along with scratches, happened with me about half a dozen years ago and led to my setting a trap. Twenty-three cats later (and some of them pretty violent) that problem was solved…

These scratches are pretty deep.

Take an image and show us how deep.


I agree with Tester that some clear pics might help determine if the paint is salvageable.

If the scratches have cut through the color coat pretty deep then polishing likely won’t help. Don’t buy into those scratch products advertised on TV because the commercials are misleading.

I’ll take some pictures and post them tomorrow.

If the scratches go past the color coat, down to the primer, then yeah, you won’t like what the body shop will tell you.

You’ll have to make a decision as to whether it’s worth repairing, or just driving and living with it. After all, you don’t see the paint when you’re in the car! :slight_smile:

The going rate around here used to be $150 per panel, but paint has been going up pretty fast. Could be animals of some type (like racoons) but I never got any scratches from cats when we had them. There would be foot prints all over the car but no scratches. Not saying its not cats, but I’d worry that it may not be cats and try to figure out what animal exactly.

It depends on how good of a paint job you want. Scratches are straightforward to fix, and paint is straightforward to apply. Not if I was doing it. For a paint shop I mean. If you insist the car be returned in like-new condition, hold on to your wallet. If you simply want to improve the appearance, willing to live with some glitches in the resulting paint job, the hit to your pocketbook shouldn’t be too bad.

Another factor is whether the red is solid red, or metallic. metallic is harder to match and repair. I know Impalas came with both, so I guess we’ll just wait for the pictures.

There are graphic decals that can be applied that are much cheaper than a paint job.

We used to own a pair of cats years ago

Never scratched our car’s paint

It could happen, naturally, but it didn’t happen to us

Cats were behind the scratches on my cars because not only have I seen them jump on the car and claw as they were sliding, I’ve also heard their claws screech on the paint as they slide.

One of them used to come running and jump on the hood every time I entered the car. It would sit there on the windshield howling to get in the car and sometimes park itself on the drivers side external mirror clawing at the door glass.

Cats can scratch up a car’s paint . . .

But dogs can do a number on a car’s interior . . .

…and exterior!
This guy’s dog “ate” his car.

Try some Meguiars Cleaner Wax. It works pretty good on minor scratches and can improve the appearance of deeper scratches. I’ve been using it for over 30 years.

At worst, you will end up with a freshly waxed car.

Ed B.

Here are pictures of the trunk, roof, and panel.

A few of those really bad looking streaks are just lighting, not scratches (like on the lower part of the hood towards the center of the image).

It looks like the clearcoat has been scuffed up. Which can be buffed and polished out.

What were you doin’? Following a dump truck dropping rocks out the back?

And, do you ever wax the vehicle?