WHAT IS PAINT CORRECTION?
Paint correction, or machine polishing, is the art of perfecting the clarity of the painted surfaces. Over time, the the clear coat picks up defects such as scratches, swirls, micro marring, and numerous other defects. These defects are caused by poor washing and drying technique, as well as poor polishing technique from inexperienced detailers. The art of paint correction is to safely remove these defects and level the clear coat using multiple steps with machines, pads, and highly advanced micro abrasive polishes and compounds. This takes years to learn how to properly polish paint work. It takes a skilled eye, proper lighting , machines, products, and skill. So, lets dig into this!
SHOULD I GET CORRECTION, AND WHAT DOES IT DO.
WHAT DOES IT DO: Paint correction is really the next level in increasing the overall appearance of your paint work. The defects above can make your clear coat look dull and damaged. Gloss as we perceive it is reflection of light. The better light reflects off of a surface, the glossier it appears. These defects make light reflect poorly and appear dull. With paint correction, we safely shave off the top layer, if you will, to flatten the surface. This allows the light to reflect crisply, and gives true gloss. As depicted below.
Now that you have a basic idea of whats going on. Lets get a little more involved.The average modern clear coat is measured in microns or UM (1 um is about 1/1000th of a mm). Every manufacturer is a little different. Some manufacturers like BMW and Mercedes use relatively thick and hard clear coats, while others like Subaru and Toyota use thin, soft clear coats. The painted surface on modern vehicles usually measures from 120-210um. The clear coat itself is usually about half of that. To put this in context, the modern clear coat is roughly as thick as a sticky note.
In order to remove these defects, we safely remove small amounts of the clear coat to level the surface. This is done on a microscopic level. This is why its important to make sure this is done by someone who knows how this works. There is little room for error. Doing this properly takes skill and a lot of time to achieve high levels of gloss, and do it safely. This is why the cost of paint correction can be high.
SHOULD I GET THIS DONE: If you truly care about the appearance, yes. Yes you should. I could be a salesman here, but there is no need. If your vehicle is swirled, dull, you just get bothered when you see it in the sun. Then this service is for you. And i will gladly take the time to go over options, do test spots, and show you what can truly be achieved within your budget.
BUT I'VE HAD MY CAR DETAILED BEFORE, THE SWIRLS CAME RIGHT BACK!
If this is the case, you're in luck! Chances are, if this is the case, you've fell victim to the "buff & wax" trap. They filled the swirls with glaze or wax, and when the product washed off, the swirls were still there, or worse. This is not the case. In this process, we permanently fix the the problem. No glazes, no fillers, no waxes hiding things from you. This is not to say that you will never pick up swirls or marks again. But the current problem will be fixed, and with proper protection and care, this is not a service you should not need often. Opting for ceramic protection at this time, will help even farther!
-Chuck Gutscher / Owner & Detail Specialist