Palette of auto paint choices awaits drivers

By: Eric Czarnik | C&G Newspapers | Published March 16, 2015

A car with chipping, scratches, fading or worse cannot hide under winter grime forever, but repainting options exist just in time for a spring makeover. 

Allan Edwards, owner of Maaco Collision Repair & Auto Painting in Shelby Township, said drivers get their cars repainted for a number of reasons, such as collision work, corrosion restoration or a simple refreshing.

“A lot of times, they’ve just got older cars looking pretty bland,” he said. “Sometimes they want to do a totally different color.”

Edwards said the age of a vehicle should play a role in whether to do a paint recoloring, adding that a full job on a vehicle five years old or younger could devalue it.

Edwards explained that today’s auto factories often apply two-stage or three-stage paint jobs that include a base coat of color with a clear glossy coat on top. This offers the vehicle protection from sunlight and fading, he said.

Single-stage paints exist and tend to be cheaper for shorter-term projects, Edwards said.

To maintain a new paint job, Edwards recommended that no wax be applied until the new coating of paint is at least two months old. Afterward, he said, a car-wash soap may keep the vehicle clean, while a high-quality wax may be applied once or twice a year to add polish.

While customers may need paint as part of a larger collision repair project, Art Markarian, manager at Van 8 Collision in Warren, said one of the most common reasons his customers come in for paintwork is that they’re turning in a leased vehicle and need to make some last-minute touch-ups on scratches.

“If it’s bigger than the size of a dollar, they charge you,” he said.

Markarian said his company doesn’t use urethane-based paints and prefers instead to use water-based paints like the kind that the auto factories use.

To maintain the new coating, Markarian said he preferred to have the car washed by hand. Besides paintwork, some customers also ask for full detailing work that involves a thorough cleaning of the vehicle’s exterior and interior, he added.

Learn more about Van 8 Collision, 23670 Ryan Road in Warren, by calling (586) 759-4424. Find out more about Maaco Collision Repair & Auto Painting, 14080 23 Mile Road in Shelby Township, by visiting or by calling (586) 566-8200.