Making the Most of Driving in Your Car

Making the Most of Driving in Your Car

Don't Know Much About Cars? The Importance of Checking the Paint Job in a Private Sale

Greg Sutton

Buying a second hand car from a private seller can be somewhat daunting if you don't know all that much about cars. You probably know the basics, as in having the vehicle's engine professionally inspected, finding out about the cost of insuring the particular make of vehicle, and even checking the Personal Property Securities Register to make sure that none of the previous owners sold the vehicle while still owing money on it, as this can jeopardise your ownership, even when you paid in full. But do you know that it can be important to check the vehicle's paint? Sometimes a bad paint job is just the result of an amateur trying to do something that would have been best left to a professional. But sometimes it can hint at a more serious problem. A small fridge magnet can be surprisingly helpful when you look at potential vehicles to buy.

Rather Obvious

Even to someone who doesn't know all that much about cars, an amateur paint job can look rather obvious. The colours used, along with improper techniques that might have caused paint to leach over the vehicle's weatherstripping can be a rather clear sign that the current seller or a previous owner painted the vehicle themselves.

Not a Deal Breaker

When buying a second hand car in a private sale, an amateur paint job is not necessarily a deal breaker, since a car spray painting company can quickly and easily give your car a professional new coat. Having said that, you need to be careful that the paint hasn't been hastily applied in order to mask an underlying problem. So what do you need to look for?

Runs and Drips

Runs in the paint don't look great, and it's a clear sign that the person who performed the job didn't quite have the expertise or the proper equipment. It's simply an overapplication of the paint, leading to drips down the body of the car as it dries. This often has the appearance of runs, or even sags in the paint.

Peeling and Bubbling

A look of inconsistency in the paint which has led to peeling and/or bubbling can be a cause for alarm. It can be a sign of underlying rust, which needs to be confirmed by a mechanic. It might also be a sign that the vehicle has been in an accident. Query this with the seller. You can also lightly apply that small magnet to the area. If body filler has been used, the magnet won't stick so well (or at all).

Colour Variations

Obvious variations in the colour of the paint can be a sign that it wasn't mixed properly prior to application, or that surface of the car wasn't properly prepared (primed for painting) before the paint was applied. Again, a company that handles automotive spray painting can easily fix this.

A bad paint job isn't always a sign that something is necessarily wrong with the vehicle, but it can sometimes be the case. It's always vital to be sure, otherwise you can make a costly mistake.


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About Me
Making the Most of Driving in Your Car

If you are interested in finding out how you can get the most out of your car, you have come to the right place. My name is Peter Gunn and I live in Sydney, Australia. If there is one thing I love to do, it is to spend the weekend playing around with my car. I am not a trained auto mechanic but I do have a good understanding of everything which is required in order to keep a car running, to repair its bodywork and to modify the interior so you can experience superior comfort. I have learnt all of this information from visiting auto garages and reading repair and modification manuals.