View Full Version : Washing car before paint

06-26-2007, 02:56 PM
I am finishing up priming my Civic with Kirker Perfect Prime and am going to bring it to my local Maaco to get painted. Should I scuff the primer before bringing it to get painted or let them scuff the primer since I am going to have them seal it with their sealer?

Also, what kind of soap/water should I use to rinse/wash off all the dust in on the surface, in the jambs, etc. I would think it would be a good idea to let the car dry out for at least a day in the sun to get all the water to dry up before bringing it as well?

Phil V
06-26-2007, 03:11 PM
Frankie, If you're confident that the bodywork and primer block sanding has the panels as flat as you would like then you could just hand scuff the primer with 600 grit just to remove an dust nibs. There is no need to wash the car before you take it to Maaco. Just use a blow gun and blow off the dust. Maaco will wash the car down with wax and grease remover before they do any sanding and taping. Sealer coat at Maaco is a good idea.

06-26-2007, 04:23 PM
The only problem I would have with NOT washing the car is then you're depending on Maaco to clean it before painting. In most cases washing may not be necessary but when you're taking it for a quick and cheap job any additional prep work you do can help insure a better outcome.

06-26-2007, 09:08 PM
To wash the car in the prep stage for paint id use a dish detergent such as dawn....
And i would personally block the primer before bringing it to maaco for paint. All maacos are different so its hard to judge..but i believe most of them just like red scuff pad it real quick before applying paint.

When i bring a car to maaco I have it all cleaned and sanded. I also fine line tape along all the moldings and rubbers etc. Again it depends on the maaco but alot of times you'll spend more time chipping the paint off the edge of the rubbers than if you just mask it yourself.

06-27-2007, 03:43 PM
Some Maaco's don't even scuff - my sister now has a car my dad had repainted and it's coming off in sheets....not scuffed.

Phil V
06-28-2007, 12:12 AM
Maaco guarantees their paint against bubbling and peeling. The only cars that are scuff padded with a red scotch brite are the cheapest bottom of the line paintjobs. I worked at a Maaco many years ago and we never had a car come back because of peeling paint. Most of the cars were DA sanded the same as any dealership bodyshop would do. The bottom line is let your wallet be your guide - If your wallet says " go down as dirty and cheap as you can get " then you'll get a scotch brited paint prep. Maaco's aren't for everybody - a critical point when dealing with a Maaco paint shop is "realistic expectations". You are NOT going to get a $12,000 custom show car paint job at a Maaco when you pay them $179.00 to paint your car. It never ceases to amaze me where people will go to a Maaco and actually expect to get a paint job that exceeds the original factory paint job, remove all the moldings, bumpers, all chrome then replace those moldingings, bumpers and chrome after the car is painted ALL FOR $179.00. My experience with Maaco is that they provide a much needed service to the public that is an affordable alternative to getting a several thousand dollar paintjob done on a car that is older, runs good but looks bad. A car that no one could justify putting several thousand dollars into a paintjob that exceeds the value of the car two or three times over. Maaco is capable of a good quality paintjob AS LONG AS they are charging enough money to make it worth their while. If you pay $179.00 for Maaco to paint your car then you will have to expect some less than perfect taping and stone chips will not be feather edged out, rust bubbles won't be repaired and dings down the side of the car won't be filled in and blocked either. It all gets back to that "reasonable expectations" based on what you are paying Maaco to paint your car.

06-28-2007, 12:37 AM
I worked at a miracle for a week and quit because it was just downright wrong what they were doing. This is basically the same thing as a maaco from what I understand. They don't ever block by hand...wait...they do block spot repairs by hand...Hand sand!!! They won't scuff crevices very well or even jambs. It's a constant rush there and you'll be lucky if you take your car there on a slow day. I'd even worry about masking there. I think the best thing to do is to prep as much as you can(including blocking high build), R&I everything, and tell the masker you'll give him a tip if he does a good job. The painters aren't bad there, it's the prep work. I've seen purple mufflers, black marker for overspray on rubber mouldings, but I never saw a grease and wax remover in the body area. I will say though that during that week working there I saw one guy who brought in a 3 hotrods in one week and did everything I mentioned and his jobs turned out great! I'm pretty sure he color sanded and buffed too. If you get a one stage maaco(metallic not recommended) DO NOT EVEN THINK of touching the paint for a good month or 2. Just keep it in the sun, then buff, and last put handles and moulding back on.

06-28-2007, 03:39 AM
$179 for a repaint?? how can they make $$$ from that.

06-28-2007, 07:57 AM
Whenever you take a car to a place that does a quick and cheap paint job why would you expect anything but quick and cheap. Look around, these places are there to make money and the advertising of a cheap paint job is what gets customers to the door then they try to increase the price by selling UP. You may go in for a $179 job but most likely you'll end up paying $300 or more and even then.... what can you expect for $300??

I have a quick and cheap job in here right now that I'm doing for a friend and I spent $200 for cheap paint and hardener. The customer removed the chrome and prepped the surface the way I told him to do it and delivered the car to me. I'll have my helper spend about $150 (my cost) in labor to finish prepping the car. I'll spray it for nothing then my helper will cost me about another $150 to unmask and clean it up. With masking, sanding and other materials and shop overhead I probably have $700 my cost in this job and my overhead is very small compared to most Maaco or other fast blast operations. So what can you expect for even $300 for a shop that has high overhead?

I've re-painted several jobs where the customer was unhappy with their Maaco (and other quick and cheap) paint jobs but they paid me a heck of a lot more than they paid for their original work. :)

12-02-2007, 12:49 PM
How did it come out? I'm looking at doing the same thing.

12-02-2007, 10:53 PM
at a Maaco. It was their version of competition orange. I looked the car over and he drove it to Kansas City from Leavenworth to get it painted. He must have hit a couple of pot holes as there was mud splashed on the rocker panels and they painted over it. Funny as all get out... You get what you pay for...
I would be curious if you did all your prep including masking and delivered the car on a flatbed truck and supply the paint if their painters would be better than a backyard paint job...