Should you bring your car back to your Tucson auto body shop for a color match re-spray?

You just got your car back from a body shop in the Tucson area and after a day or so you can’t help but notice the paint color doesn’t match. You may be wondering if you can take the car back to have it repainted, or if the body shop will even be able to match the paint a second time. Is it worth the time and frustration? This is the topic for today’s post.

A body shop gets paid to fix your car one time. If you have to take it back, that auto body shop is doing the re-work on their own dime, and it is costing them money on an already thin profit margin. A great body shop will have minimal “go backs” because they have the proper training, staff, equipment, processes and inspections in place already. Smaller shops, or shops that have been hit with a sudden high volume may be struggling to get the work out and might cut corners.

As a car owner, the last thing you want to do after getting your car back from a body shop is to have to bring it back in to re-do the work. It is frustrating for both sides. But nonetheless, there are times when you just need to do it.

Our answer is yes, by all means take the car back. But when you do take the car back, here are some suggested discussion points to bring up with the body shop:

1. Pick a slower time- If you can live with the paint for a little while, it might be in your best interest to work out a date with the shop when the paint booth is not so busy. When a painter isn’t rushed, they will have more time to match the color to your existing body work. Mondays and Fridays are the busiest days for a body shop, so perhaps there is a Wednesday that would work better and the shop can do a re-paint with minimal down time to you.

2. Color Matching Earlier in the Process- Again a rushed paint shop with a busy painter will have to contend with several alternates on a color combined with an inconsistency with manufacturer paint codes. Auto body painters in a time crunch will be forced to choose two or three alternates and paint the closest one. If you’re concerned about an exact color match, get the shop involved now with a more detailed, complete sprayout before the cars gets to the paint department, and get a second opinion if need be.

3. Discuss color matching in a brighter area of the shop– if the color didn’t match the first time, don’t rely on that same location to make color match and sprayout decisions. Dimly lit areas make color matching difficult, so give yourself the time to make sure the vehicle is in proper lighting. Natural light is the best way to look at the car.

4. Simplify the Tinting Process -This may be a bit advance for most car owners, but if you are really struggling with a paint match for your car, consider telling the shop to alter their tinting approach. Tell the painter to start with a deficit color and work forward. Instead of trying to take the their six toners and trying to make it right. Find that one color that you have too little of focus on one color instead of focusing on five or six.

For example, pearl white is the most common color that has to be tinted to match. Painters will often spray a pearl that is too white or too yellow for the color they are matching. Suggest to the shop that the painter try mixing 20 to 30 percent less of the predominant color, mix the rest of the formula straight out and then do a sprayout from that. From there the painter can tint up instead of whitening down the base color.

5. Equipment age –Every couple of years, paint equipment companies design new paint guns to keep pace with the paint suppliers who are constantly updating their liquid paint materials. If the shop you are using has outdated spray guns, the older fans will not be able to break up materials and provide proper atomization.

Most painters don’t realize that using different guns or different settings will result in different sprayouts. This can really cause problems for metallic paints that most cars today have.

Everyone deserves to get their car back looking as though no car accident ever happened. Paint and color quality are the most noticeable areas of any autobody repair. While it may be frustrating to have to send the car back, hopefully these conversation points will help guide your Tucson auto body shop to a perfect color match.

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