The Basics of Painting A Car From Home!

It’s Tony from LearnAutoBodyAndPaint! This is all about The Basics of Painting A Car From Home! I hope you enjoy reading this blog!

A car cannot be painted well just anywhere… Ok, there are exceptions, but it also depends on what kind of finish you are looking for. Do you want an El Cheapo job? or maybe you just want a super sick paint job 🙂

You need to discover a spot out of the climate, with great ventilation, a lot of space for you to manoeuvre, legitimate lighting and power. Your carport is likely an incredible spot to begin however be careful for security issues (water warmers or heaters that could cause a fire risk due to paint vapour). Collect all that you will require for the activity and sort out it so everything is anything but difficult to reach and not in danger.

The Basic Equipment and Materials You Will Need For painting a car from home:

Paint sprayer
Sandpaper, sanding blocks
Safety goggles and gloves
Masking tape
Hand tools to remove trim etc. before painting

Before You Begin
Repair all body dents or blemishes so they won’t be visible after you paint and remove all rust from the car.
Take off the chrome or plastic trim on the car.

This is fairly easy. Today nearly all body panel moldings found on cars can be ”popped” off and back on easily. But do not force them off if they are resistant. Go to an auto supply store and pick up the special tools they sell to remove them more easily. You don’t want to damage the melding or chrome. Next, sand the paint.

You have to sand it down either to the bare metal or the original primer and at least enough to create a surface that your new paint will adhere to. For the very best results, sand the paint down to the bare metal, which will mean you’ll have to reprime the surface before you can apply paint.
Then meticulously clean all of the car’s surfaces.

Use denatured alcohol or mineral spirits because you don’t want any oil whatsoever on the surface when you paint.
Cover all surfaces that you want to remain paint-free with masking tape and paper.

This usually means windows, glass, trim, handles, grills and mirrors. Take care to make sure there are no pinpricks or perforations in the paper and that the masking tape is smooth and adheres well. Otherwise, overspray from the paint gun will get through them and ruin the job.
Applying the Paint
Prime the surface with a good primer.

If you have removed all of the car’s paint down to the bare metal, you should use a corrosion-resistant, etching primer. Also, be certain to prime well all surfaces you used body filler on or surfaces that you removed rust from. Take the time to do a smooth transition in these areas. Make sure to apply plenty of paint to fill all scratches or pits that might remain on the body from sanding, etc.

Check the directions on the primer and allow enough time for the primer to dry thoroughly.
Now sand all of the primed surfaces until they are completely smooth. Watch out that you don’t sand too much and expose the bare metal again. With a wax/grease remover or acetone, thoroughly clean all surfaces that you primed to remove any dust or oil that has settled on it during priming and sanding.

Now you are ready to apply the finish paint to the car. Follow the paint manufacturer’s directions. See if a hardener or catalyst is recommended to be used with the paint. Thin the paint properly for the particular equipment you are using. Allow the paint to fully dry. Next apply Clear-Coat for a deeper, glossier look.

There are other finishing touches and techniques you can use once you’ve reached this point, but these are the fundamental steps you need to follow to get a good paint job on your car and in the process save hundreds of dollars by doing it yourself!

For more help and step-by-step videos to customize and know Exactly what to do on your special project make sure to check out the famous VIP Membership Course Here, where thousands of VIP members from across the world learn how to fix, customize and paint cars, trucks or bikes themselves while saving THOUSANDS of dollars! Not to mention the self-satisfaction you feel when you take a step back and say….

WOW, I did that!

Thanks for reading today’s blog about The Basics of Painting A Car From Home! See you in the next one!



14 thoughts on “The Basics of Painting A Car From Home!”

  1. OMG this is great info … Tony i have BMW 323 i and my hood paint is coming should i sand it to bare metal ?
    other Q: can i sand bumpers too with same sander or there is something else for plastic?

    • It depends on how far gone it is… You can use the same sandpaper. You should take a look at the VIP course. It will show you all on video how to work with what you got. It is hard to explain this in text lol. This is why VIP was created.


  2. i have a 1997 cavalier and its my first car. The clear coat is chipping off causing the paint underneath to fade. This car already has almost a 180,000 miles on it so i dont wana spend more on a paint job than what the car is worth. Can you help me out with some info? im only 16 so i dont know a lot about mechanic work or auto body work

    • hey Curtis, You need to assess the damage then sand, prime, and prep for paint. This is why I have created the VIP course, so you can watch the step-by-step videos within the course. Have you looked at our VIP course? Check out the VIP Membership Preview Click Here!

  3. Hi there,

    I have a special 1950 bus that I am restoring to ‘nice’ condition, I do not desire perfection like a showroom. The paint is very old, weathered and expense is a concern since it is a family project and we’ve spent a lot just obtaining the bus. It is a double decker bus, red in color and stands 14′ 2″ tall. We have a bus warehouse/garage we work in.

    Suggestions on how to tackle this? We have photos to share with you.

    • Yes, take it step-by-step sections at a time. I would start and tackle the rust, if any, then the dents. Work your way around the bus, fix your dents, and prime. As time goes on you’ll start to have all of your prep done. Because this is such a large project you may want to paint it into 2 or 3 sections. Roof, top floor and then the bottom. If you are new to bodywork and painting I think you will enjoy our VIP Members Club where you get access to over 50 hours of organized videos that will take you through the entire process to completion. Good luck!


  4. Hi Tony,
    I bought Peugeot 405 ,colour white.I just want to know if i need to sand some parts or i can use some spray cans to do the job,


  5. i was wondering how much i would look at in material costs. like.. sand paper, and i want to 2 stage the car. is it possible to do it at home?.. i am just tight with money. let me know


  6. okay so lets say i wanted to paint my 1997 ford aerostar van jet black with gloss. how much am i lookin at puduct wise? like do i need 2 gallons base coat? what stores would i go look at paint around my city riverside…

  7. I have a 69 Galaxie. I bought it from an associate who basically knew nothing about the vehicle. He put black spray paint on for a temporary solution. I assume for prevention of rust. Nonetheless, I want to sand it and prime it . The are some dents and spots where rust has been covered by (black spray paint). I of course want to do it from home, I just don’t have the knowledge about getting the primer on and removing the dents. How should I go at it?


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