How to Use Metal Polish Without Damaging Your Paint Job
The process of maintaining the condition and appearance of your car can include applying metal polish. In order to ensure that you don't damage the paintwork in the process, there are several steps that need to be implemented to complete the task effectively.
Step 1 - Inspection
Identify all the sections of the vehicle that require the application of metal polish. It is easy to overlook certain parts, such as the exhaust, so make sure that you consider every section of the vehicle. This will also give you an idea of how much equipment you will need to protect the surrounding paintwork.
Step 2 - Repair
In the event that the paintwork has been affected by oxidation, this should be rectified first to create an even surface. If the protective tape is not flush with the surface when it is applied, there is a risk of the metal polish leaking through to the corroded area.
Step 3 - Tape Off
Once you know where you will be applying the metal polish, you will be in a position to tape off the surrounding paintwork. This is necessary to protect it from the potential damage that metal polishing can cause to paint. In some cases, simply using masking tape along the edge of the paint where it meets the metal will be sufficient. For larger areas, the masking tape can be used to secure sheets of plastic or paper to the surface. Special care is required during this process for small sections of metal such as trim. Where necessary, cut the protective barrier to size rather than simply allowing it to fold and gather around unusual shaped lines.
Step 4 - Application
No matter what type of polish you are applying, you should do so by gathering the substance onto a cloth rather than applying it directly to the metal. Use only a small amount of polish at a time to avoid the risk of any excess finding its way to the car's paintwork. In the event that you are using a spray polish, you can spray it into a disposable cup or container before dipping your cloth into it. Alternatively, extend the amount of protective cover so that the spray doesn't end up on the paintwork. During application, have a clean cloth to hand that has been dampened with water to use to quickly clean up any accidents. After applying the polish, carefully remove the protective cover and wipe the paintwork with a soft clean cloth. This will not only remove any traces of adhesive, but also ensure that any polish is cleaned away.
- Reduce the risk of any damage occurring to the paintwork by ensuring that the type of metal polish used is the correct one for the job. For example, aluminum polish should be used where you are treating aluminum.
- Take your time when applying the polish because rushing can increase the risk of it accidently being applied to the paintwork.