Car Scratch Repair Cost

How Much Does Car Scratch Repair Cost? Full Cost Guide

Car scratches can be a frustrating and unsightly problem for any vehicle owner. While some minor scratches may go unnoticed, others require immediate attention to prevent further damage and rust formation.

The car scratch repair cost can vary depending on several factors, such as the severity of the scratch, the type of paint used on the vehicle, and the chosen repair method.

In this article, we will delve into how much to fix scratches on car to help you make informed decisions about maintaining your beloved ride’s aesthetics without breaking the bank.

Car Scratch Repair Cost With Types

Different types of car scratches require other treatment methods. Understanding the various types of blemishes can help you determine the appropriate approach for repair and prevent further damage to your vehicle. Let’s review every kind of scratch and the cost for each.

Clear Coat Scratch

This type of scratch occurs when only the top layer of the clear coat is damaged, leaving the paintwork untouched. Clear coats are designed to protect the underlying layers of paint from damage and provide a glossy finish.

They can still be susceptible to scratches caused by various factors such as keys, fingernails, or even small debris on the road.

Car Scratch Repair Cost

Evident coat scratches can range in severity from minor surface-level marks to deeper cuts that expose the primer layer beneath. Superficial scratches are usually easier to fix and can often be resolved with simple DIY methods like polishing or using a specialised scratch remover product.

Deeper evident coat scratches may require professional attention and repainting if they extend beyond the transparent coat layer.

What Will It Cost If You Have A Clear Coat Scratch?

You can expect to pay around $25 to repair a small clear coat scratch. This damage is usually superficial and doesn’t penetrate the paint layer, making it relatively easy and inexpensive to fix.

If you’re dealing with a more severe scratch that has penetrated the clear coat and reached the base coat or even the primer layer, you may need to prepare yourself for a higher price tag. Repairing a deep clear coat scratch can cost around $250 on average.

These types of scratches require more extensive work as they often involve sanding down the affected area and applying multiple layers of paint and clear coat for proper restoration.

Primer Scratch

These types of scratches occur when the top layer of paint and protective clear coat has been penetrated, exposing the underlying primer layer. Primer scratches can be caused by various factors, including accidental bumps or scrapes against hard surfaces, vandalism, or even harsh weather conditions.

Car Scratch Repair Cost

One key characteristic of primer scratches is their white or grey appearance. This is because the primer layer beneath the topcoat typically consists of light-coloured material. Unlike superficial surface scratches that can easily be buffed out with some polishing compound, fixing a primer scratch requires more extensive repair work.

This involves sanding down the affected area to remove any loose paint or rust and then applying fresh layers of primer and paint to restore the damaged section to its original condition.

What Will It Cost If You Have A Primer Scratch?

If you have ever noticed a primer scratch on your car’s front bumper, you might wonder about the cost of fixing it. Brace yourself, as the price tag ranges from $400 to $1,000 for such repairs. While this may seem quite steep for what appears to be a minor issue, several factors contribute to these high costs.

The paint used in modern cars is highly specialised and requires a meticulous process to ensure a perfect match. This means that even a tiny scratch will necessitate repainting the affected area and adjacent panels to maintain consistency.

Labour costs play a significant role in driving up the overall expense. Skilled technicians spend hours prepping surfaces and applying multiple layers of paint and a clear coat for a flawless finish.

Deep Paint Scratch

The most dreaded type is the deep paint scratch, which can significantly impact the appearance and value of your car. These scratches penetrate the clear coat and colour layers, reaching the primer or bare metal beneath. They often occur due to accidents, vandalism, or contact with sharp objects.

Car Scratch Repair Cost

Identifying a deep paint scratch is relatively easy if your fingernail catches on it as you run it over the surface; chances are it’s a deep scratch. You may notice that the affected area looks duller than the surrounding areas or that visible marks are cutting through multiple layers of paint. If left untreated, these scratches can lead to further damage, such as rusting and corrosion.

What Will It Cost If You Have A Deep Paint Scratch?

The cost of fixing a deep paint scratch primarily depends on the extent of the damage and the type of vehicle you own. Repairing a deep paint scratch can range from $700 to $2,500.

Repair costs are generally lower for minor scratches that haven’t penetrated through multiple layers of paint or primer. If the scratch has extended to bare metal or affected larger areas of your car’s bodywork, expect higher repair prices.

Protect Your Car from Future Scratches

Protecting your car from scratches is essential to maintaining its pristine appearance and resale value. Whether you have just purchased a brand-new vehicle or want to preserve the sleek look of your current one, taking preventive measures can go a long way.

One of the most straightforward steps is applying a high-quality ceramic coating to your car’s exterior. This protective layer protects against scratches, UV rays, and chemical contaminants, helping keep your paintwork flawless for years.

Another effective way to safeguard your car’s surface is using paint protection film (PPF). This transparent adhesive film protects against rock chips, minor abrasions, and bird droppings. Applied by professionals, PPF adheres seamlessly to the contours of your car without altering its appearance.

A practical method to prevent future scratches is by using a rubber mat. This durable and versatile accessory acts as a protective barrier between your car’s surface and potential scratch-causing objects. The rubber mat can be easily placed on the ground before parking your vehicle, creating a cushioned layer that absorbs impact and prevents scratches. 


The car scratch repair cost can vary widely depending on several factors. Minor scratches can often be fixed with DIY kits or touch-up pens at a relatively low price. More significant scratches may require professional assistance and could cost several hundred dollars.

Car owners must weigh their options carefully and consider factors such as their budget and the value of their vehicle before deciding on a course of action. Investing in scratch repair is essential not only for maintaining the aesthetic appeal of your car but also for preventing further damage that may decrease its resale value. 


Which is the best car scratch remover?

The best car scratch remover will depend on the severity of the scratch and the type of paint on your car. A mild abrasive polish or rubbing compound often does the trick for light scratches. You may need a more aggressive scratch remover with stronger abrasives for deeper scratches. 

Can car wax remove deep scratches?

No, car wax cannot remove deep scratches. Car wax primarily protects a vehicle’s paintwork and enhances its shine. It is not designed to repair or remove scratches, intense ones that have penetrated the clear coat and reached the underlying layers of paint.