How can I remove a car dent with a plunger?

Can a plunger really pop a dent out of my car? I got into a minor fender bender and there's a dent in my bumper, but it’s not severe enough to take to the body shop to get it fixed. I’ve heard people using a plunger to pop dents out of their car. How does this work?

Phoebe Mah · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
As silly as this sounds, a plunger can serve more than one purpose; you can also use a plunger to remove a car dent! This method works best to fix the plastic parts of your vehicle, so you can apply this technique to straighten out your bumper.
To use a plunger to remove car dents, you’ll need a pot of hot water and a clean plunger.
Once you have your supplies ready, follow these steps:
  • Pour hot water over the dented area you would like to fix. The hot water will soften the plastic.
  • Put your plunger over the dent. Pull the plunger straight out to pop out the dent. You should see the dent flattened out.
  • You can also try to reach behind the bumper with the plunger to push the dent out.
  • Repeat the steps as many times as needed to correct the dents.
To avoid the risk of ruining your car’s finish, perform this method in warmer weather as warmer temperatures will make the plastic surfaces of your vehicle more flexible.
While this technique will work for minor
, please do not attempt to fix chipped windshields or repair damage to the roof with a plunger. These scenarios require an experienced mechanic.
If you discover damage on your vehicle that requires more than a DIY to fix, consider reviewing your car insurance policy on the
app to ensure you have the best coverage for any situation. Jerry compares personalized rates from the top 50 providers and delivers the best deals to your phone in minutes for free. The average Jerry driver saves $879 a year on car insurance!
MORE: What to do after a fender bender
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