Rick's Free Auto Repair Advice

Best dent repair kit

3M introduces the best dent repair kit for DIYers

3M believes if you can master the art of sanding, you can fix any small dent on your vehicle. That’s why they’ve introduced a Bondo Dent Repair Kit just for you.

If you’ve ever used automotive body filler you know dent repair kitthat the hardest part is figuring out how much hardener (catalyst) to add to the body filler. Well, worry no more. The body filler and hardener packets in the Bondo Dent Repair Kit are pre-measured to provide the exact ration of hardener to filler. That eliminates all mistakes from adding too little or too much hardener. The kit contains

The kit contains 80, 180 and 320 grit sandpaper. Start sanding the dent with the 80-grit sandpaper. Sand down to the bare metal to remove all paint in the dent. They feather out to the edges. The 80-grit sandpaper scores grooves into the metal and paint so the body filler can “bite” into the panel. When you’re done sanding with the 80-grit sandpaper, wash the surface with a wax remover product (find it at any auto parts store).

Mix the dent repair filler

The dent repair kit contains pre-measured pouches of body filler and hardener. Just empty the body filler packet onto a clean plastic or mixing bondoclean paper mixing pad. Then open the hardener packet squeeze the contents onto the puddle of filler. Using the included spreader, drag the entire mixture down bondo filler and hardenerthe mixing pad. When you reach the end of the pad, use the spreader to scrape the filler/hardener upwards on the pad until you reach the top. Then fold the mix onto itself and drag it down again. Repeat the process several times using a “Figure 8” movement until you get a consistent color. The Figure 8 scooping and folding technique results in a more complete mix of the two components without introducing air into the mix.

mixing bondo on pad

Avoid these common DIY body filler mixing mistakes

1)      Prep the entire dent area according to the directions before opening the body filler packets. You have a limited amount of “open” time once you apply the hardener to the filler.

2)      Do NOT use old cardboard as the mixing pad. Cardboard absorbs some of the resins in the body filler, robbing it of important chemical components. You’ll get a weaker dent patch if you mix the filler on cardboard

3)      Do NOT stir the mixture using a stick. That will force air bubbles into the mix which will show up when you apply it to the vehicle.

Fill the dent

Scoop up a very small amount of mixed body filler with the spreader. Then force the filler into the sanded grooves in the dent using firm hand pressure on the spreader. This is called the “tight coat” designed to fill the fill dent with bondodeep scratches you created in the first step. This is the most important step in the dent filling process. Your goal is to force body filler into the scratches and eliminate air voids in the repair. This will result in the strongest bond to the metal panel. Resist the temptation to fill the dent fully in one step. Keep the tight coat as thin as possible and feather the filler out to the edges of the dent.

Once you’ve filled the scratches, add the remainder of the filler to the dent, feathering it out to the edges. Allow the filler to cure.

Once the filler has hardened and cooled, sand the patch smooth with 180-grit sandpaper. Examine the repair and fill any voids or air bubbles with 3M Spot Putty. Allow time to cure and sand with 180-grit sandpaper.

Apply a thin coat of Bondo Glazing over the entire repair, feathering out into the painted areas. Allow to cure. Then lightly sand the entire patch with 320-grit sandpaper.

Prime and paint

Mask off the repair to prevent primer and paint overspray. Prime the repair with automotive primer. Allow to dry and lightly sand with 320-grit sandpaper. Wipe with a clean cloth to remove the dust. Then paint.

apply primer

Apply primer to the repair

Where to purchase touch up paint

First, find the paint code for your vehicle. Consult this site for the location of the paint codes by make and model. Purchase matching touch up paint in spray cans from automotivetouchup.com, duplicolor.com or from your car dealer. For tips on how to apply touchup paint, watch the automotivetouchup.com videos below.

©, 2019 Rick Muscoplat

FTC Disclosure

I have not been paid by 3M for this post. I have received samples of the products but that does not influence my posts. I have written many negative reviews on products I’ve received as samples. If you see an Amazon link for products on my site, be aware that I receive a small commission if you click on the link and eventually purchase from Amazon. The commissions help offset the cost of maintaining the site.

Posted on by Rick Muscoplat

Custom Wordpress Website created by Wizzy Wig Web Design, Minneapolis MN