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We’ve all done it, haven’t we? Dinged something in the parking lot, drop something on our trunk or hood.  We’ve accidently scratch up our cars one or twice before. Not all scratches have the same costs. Some only have surface-level damage, and a properly trained technician can fix them fairly cheaply. Others can seriously hurt the overall car value and make it just look plain bad. Let’s get into the knitty gritty involving vehicle paint scratches.

How much does a scratch cost to repair? 
Even a small scratch on a car can have a high cost. The type of scratch you have can fall into one of three categories: scuff, primer, and deep paint. Car paint has many layers of different thicknesses, making each scratch different.

  • Scuffs, Shallow Scratches, Clear Coat Damage
    These represent the least severe type of damage to a car. A shallow scratch only affects the topmost layer of the paint. People differentiate these types of scratches by how long the scratch extends. Fixing either type of shallow scratch costs less than $300, unless the scratch goes across a large chunk of the body. A small scuff might go for as little as $50. This might seem like a high cost to repair for such a small thing, but later on, we’ll go over why even a small scratch should be a priority fix.
  • Paint Scratches
    This type of scratch goes a little way into the paint, without fully penetrating it. This requires new paint as well as a new clear coat in the area. Some people call these primer scratches. The cost to repair these can go as high as $1,000, depending on the part of the vehicle to which they happen. A primer scratch requires a full repaint of the part regardless of its size, since the whole piece will almost always need to be repainted to as many layers as were lost.
  • Deep Scratches
    If you can see bare metal or plastic, you have a deep scratch. These get pricey fast. A deep scratch can be thousands of dollars’ worth of repainting. The good news: paint holds up better than you think. Most scratches won’t get this deep. Deep scratches often come from a collision.

What happens if I don’t fix it? 
Don’t give in to the temptation to put off repairing a scratch, especially if it goes to the bare metal. Exposed metal can begin rusting as quickly as a few days after the incident. This compromises both the value of your car and its overall structural integrity. The climate out here in Eastern Oregon, Western Idaho we have the weather that will promote rust, quickly.

Don’t take the risk!
If you got home and noticed, “Oh, my window is broken,” you’d try to fix it as soon as possible, right? Treat your car with the same level of urgency the next time you find yourself saying, “Oh, there’s a scratch on my car.”

Whether you’ve got a shallow scratch or a deep gouge from an accident, Steve’s Hometown Collision Center we can help with your auto body repair needs. Don’t wait. Call us today.