How do you patch holes in a car body?

What’s the best method for patching holes in a car body? We had a pretty bad hail storm last week and my car got some small dents and holes in it.

Sounds like a violent storm; I hope everyone is ok!
Here are some steps to follow to patch up the holes in your car body:
  • Thoroughly clean your car’s body of any dust, wax, or rust.
  • Sand the areas with damage. Most car paint will require a #180 or #220 aluminum oxide sandpaper for this, but you can ask the employees at your local auto shop which sandpaper works best for your car.
  • Mix some body hardener-filler, like Bondo.
  • Make sure to put something beneath the hole, like fiberglass screening or fine aluminum chicken wire. Hold the patch in place using the filler, and allow it to dry before continuing.
  • Once the patch is dry, apply the filler. Try to keep it inside the holes and dents, not on the rest of the paint.
  • After the filler has started to harden, use a perforated file to bring the filler close to level with the rest of the paint.
  • Wait until everything is bone dry, then use medium-grain sandpaper to get the filler completely level with the paint. Once the levels are all even, prime and paint the areas. You can even use primer as a filler for the last bit if you layer and sand it properly.
If this seems like too much work, hail damage might be covered by your comprehensive coverage, so check with your insurance before investing too much time and energy into repairing your car.
Since you’re taking a lot of time to make sure that your car looks new, why not take a couple of extra minutes to update your car insurance policy using the Jerry app? Jerry helps you find the best rates on car insurance by collecting quotes from more than 50 top providers, including Nationwide, Allstate, and Travelers. All you have to do is choose the coverages and price that works best for you and your car. Once you find a policy you like, Jerry can sign you up and help cancel your old one for you!
Liz Jenson
Answered on Nov 11, 2021

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