Wet Sanding Mistake

Hey everyone, I was wet sanding this scratch down and I think I got a little too carried away… I was wondering if there’s anything I can do to fix this?

You can actually see a reflection through the white sanding mark, and spraying water over it remains visible which is probably not a good sign.

I’ve tried to polish it by hand but I’ve had no luck so far is that also a mistake?

It looks like you sanded through the color coat right down to the primer. Stop sanding and polishing or the next thing you’ll see is shiny metal.

Now you need to spray color over the spot and the clear the entire area. You’ll need to go as far as a body detail line so the clear coat edge doesn’t show. At least the scratch will be fixed, too.


I guess you did not try to watch any You Tube videos as one person suggested . As said you have now gone through the clearcoat and the paint . Your small area has become a large area to fix.

I was afraid of that. I’m guessing it’s not possible/ideal to use touch up paint/clear coat then some more light wet sanding to fix the issue?

I’m going to look into spray painting techniques, so thank you for the information.

I did look at many youtube videos prior to my questions but I still ended up with this issue. I didn’t have this issue on any other parts of my car that I’ve done this to.

Clear coat turns white when you sand it, you need buffing compound to remove the sanding scratches.

I would have used a dab of buffing compound on a towel for 20 seconds to smooth the original scratch.

I can’t tell what that is. What did you use for color sanding? 2000-3000 grit paper is what is used but it takes a lot of work to go through the clear and color coat. When you sand clear though, the residue is white. Hand polishing is also really time consuming even with 3000 grit sanding marks.

When spray painting we used to punch a small hole in paper to more directly aplly the spray paint and avoid overspray.

1 Like

Sorry this took awhile to get back, I used 3000-5000 grit sandpaper primarily. I got it into my head that 800 grit would’ve been a great idea if I used it very very lightly. But it turns out it wasn’t a great idea at all.

My goal is to make this not as noticeable and not peel.

A scratch like this is way too deep to repair with wet sanding,Only superficial scratches on the clearcoat can be taken out with this technique. A multicoat touch-up pen application would have been a lot safer to use on this scratch.

1 Like

Yeah… I found that out the hard way through my own ignorance.

I couldn’t just use a multicoat touch-up pen over this area that’s white now? Then like sand it to the level of the rest of the paint then clear coat it? I’m looking for inexpensive options but if that’s not possible I will do what needs to be done.

Sanding will leave the clear coat a foggy white, use buffing compound to remove the sanding scratches.

If you are sure you are beyond the clear and into or beyond the color, I guess a touch up bottle might work. If by tough up pen you mean the kind with a brush on one end and a finer tip on the other? Maybe. Overlay the color and fill it up with multiple coats of clear maybe and start over. I have used 400-600 grit wet before to level it a little faster, but the scratches then are deep enough that you need to power polish it.

I’m pretty sure I’m beyond the clear? When I was sanding I had some color come off on my sandpaper and that’s when I stopped. So basically hand polishing would be impossible anyways if the scratches are in this manner? It sounds like I’m digging myself a hole.

This is how it looks from further away.

And from the side

After looking at your pictures it seems like the clear is cloudy due to the wet sanding process.I don’t think you went through the paint unless the water turned out the same color as your car. You might be able to polish this out with a lot of effort if you don’t have a buffer available. Your best bet will be to call a paintless dent repair shop(PDR) because they are experts at polishing and buffing small area after a dent is taken out.They are cheap too!

I’m thinking that’s primer.

Could be! its very hard to judge with these pictures.

Sorry for the not-so-great pictures guys, I do appreciate all your input.

I am taking it for a quote just to see what someone in person has to say too.

When it comes to addressing paint scratches in vehicle paint, you start out with something less aggressive than wet sanding.

That’s why I recommended that this be tried first.

Because if it doesn’t remove the scratches, then it requires a professional to remove them.