Professional detailing: Overspray nightmare

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Want to see a car detailer or painter flinch? Whisper these two little words: Over. Spray. Or run them together — overspray! If you are not familiar with the word, overspray is when someone who is painting something fails to properly mask off or enclose the area, causing paint to land on items that were not intended to have paint on them.

Usually, the appearance is sort of like freckles of paint all over a surface, and you can feel them. Sometimes a little, sometimes a lot. Sometimes easy to get off, sometimes not. Your options if your vehicle gets oversprayed are limited:

  1. Drive it freckled.
  2. Try to get it off by yourself without ruining your paint any further (buy a polisher and watch youtube)
  3. Bring it to a professional
  4. Wish you already had ceramic coating so this mess would be easier to fix!

This colorful mess is NOT overspray.

Paint isn’t like any other thing that sticks to your car. Paint is physically and chemically designed to STICK TO SURFACES. That’s pretty much paints’ only job–stick to things. So we had a new situation in the shop last week. Shane has a shiny black work truck–a 2016 Ford F250. It was parked in the wrong place at the wrong time, and got brutally oversprayed with white paint. Every single panel. The painter agreed to pay for repairs but did not think we could get this paint spray off–it’s part of a 2-step process of a special paint to protect metal girders.

The guys got to work. It took a lot longer than we thought it would, because the polishers did not work against this paint. Didn’t even budge it. The only thing that worked was to hand clay bar every inch of this truck. It took days. But guess what? It looks PERFECT!

Initially, the painter who was paying for the repair was positive we couldn’t get it off, and this would become an insurance claim. He was upset at the dollar amount, so he came to the shop to inspect this truck himself. He came in mad and grumpy, but he left a believer!! It was expensive, but we saved the paint! No ruined finish, no insurance claim, and everyone’s happy.

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