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When you own a car, it’s awful to discover a scratch on the paint or hear a bollard rubbing against your vehicle. To learn more about how much it will cost to fix the scratches on your car, keep reading.

How Much to Repair Car Scratches?

The type of paint scratch damage on your car, which is most important, will determine how much it will cost to repair the scratch on your car because no two scratches are alike.


The clear coat that car manufacturers apply over the paint is there to increase durability and gloss, and scratches that only slightly harm the clear coat are the simplest and least expensive to repair. Due to the lack of a color change, scuffs may be more difficult to detect than deeper scratches. Usually, hand buffing or polishing can fix a scratch of this depth. Scratch Wizard estimates auto body shops charge less than $100 on average torepair scuffs.


Repairing a mark with a more severely scratched clear coat is marginally more challenging. You won’t need to apply any touch-up paint to the scratched area if there is no color change when you look at the scratch because the metal and primer underneath the clear coat are still secure. Although they can be polished down to almost invisibility, these scratches can never be completely removed. Additionally, professional auto body shop repair for these kinds of scratches typically costs less than $100.


You will need touch-up paint to restore the scratched area if your scratch has penetrated the primer layer. If the scratch has penetrated the clear coat and the paint to reach the primer layer below, it will probably appear white. Even a small paint scratch can be expensive to repair once it penetrates the paint layer and requires extensive sanding, buffing, and repainting. According to Scratch Wizard, the cost of repairing these kinds of scratches can range from $400 to $1,000 or more.


If the scratch is severe enough—perhaps because you reversed into something or because someone scraped your car as they backed out of a parking space—it will go all the way through your car’s metal frame. Because exposed metal can rust if exposed to the elements for a long enough period of time, these scratches should be fixed right away. If the scratch has a silver appearance, it most likely struck the metal beneath the clear coat, paint, and primer. Deep paint scratches are the most expensive to fix; auto body shops typically charge between $800 and $1,500 to fix them.

How the Type of Scratch Affects the Cost of Your Repair?

Each scratch is unique, and depending on how bad it is, they may cost different amounts.

Clear Coat Scratches

The smallest and probably simplest to repair by yourself are these scuffs. A clear coat scratch won’t have harmed the primary paint layer beneath it; it will only have scratched the car’s outermost layers.

A basic scratch removal kit that you can purchase in any reputable auto shop for between $10 and $20 pounds will enable you to remove the scratch yourself. Nothing prevents you from hiring a bodyshop to handle it if you’re feeling particularly lazy, but keep in mind that doing so will significantly increase the cost.

Paint Layer Scratches

You’ve been lucky if you can see the car’s bare metal without having broken through the paint layer. These dings aren’t as bad as base layer dings, but they’re a little worse than a clear coat ding. You just need a buffing tool, some clear coat, and a top-up car paint pen to fix it.

As long as you have the right tools and know what you’re doing, a scratch that is fairly shallow should be fairly simple to fix.

However, a deep paint layer scratch will likely need specialized care from a professional.

Base Layer Scratches

The most severe scratches are those where you can see your car’s bare metal. Apart from rushing to your neighborhood body shop or garage as quickly as you can and having them fix it, there isn’t really any other option when it comes to fixing these. You can expect to pay between $150 and $250 on average.

How Much Does It Cost to Repair a Car Scratch - The Ultimate Guide
How Much Does It Cost to Repair a Car Scratch? – The Ultimate Guide

How to Fix Scratches on Your Car?

Even for minor scratches, auto body repairs can be an expensive and time-consuming hassle. Prices can range from $3.00 for a quick DIY job to $7,500 for professional repairs and a new paint job, depending on your car’s make, model, color, and location.

The size of the scrape is the most important consideration when choosing the best repair method for your car. Contrary to popular belief, the depth of the damage is more important than the size of a scratch because your car’s body has multiple layers of finishes.

Compared to dents and significant body damage, a light scrape is very different. You might be able to fix a minor scratch yourself in an hour, but a professional might need several days to fix a deep gouge. Start by analyzing which of the following paint defects you have:

  • On the outside: Your paint is shielded by the clear coat, a thin top layer. Using inexpensive sponges or cloths for washing and drying can result in light surface marks on the clear coating, which happen every day. The easiest scratches to repair are those that look like this.
  • Into the paint: The paint is harmed when a scratch pierces the clear coat. With your fingernail, you can feel a shallow divot at this level. This level of dings is more noticeable than surface scratches and can be more challenging to repair.
  • A deeper level of damage to the primer makes repairs more challenging because a multi-layer strategy is needed. It can be difficult to repair these kinds of gouges on your own, and you might need professional assistance to achieve a good outcome.
  • Down to the Metal: The deepest level of damage is when it is so severe that you can see the metal. Since contaminants are introduced as soon as the metal is exposed, this scratching needs to be fixed right away to prevent oxidation and rust.

Common Causes of Car Scratches

Car owners should be aware of how scratches typically develop. Some criminals are easy to identify, while others might come as a bigger surprise. In any case, it’s a good idea to look at the most typical reasons why cars get scratches before we begin our discussion.

  • One of the most frequent reasons for scratches in your car’s paint is auto accidents. Any bump from another driver, no matter how slight, has the potential to leave an unsightly mark on your car.
  • As you drive, chips and rocks that come loose from the road or from larger vehicles can also scratch your car. These dings might be the most difficult to avoid because the rocks or chips are so small that you might not even notice you’ve been hit until you see a fresh scratch on your car’s paint.
  • Even though it’s crucial to keep your car clean, excessive washing or vigorous scrubbing can damage the paint by removing too much dirt, which can lead to scratches and swirls. To avoid scratching your car, be sure to dry it with a microfiber cloth or chamois.

Does Insurance Cover Scratches on a Car?

If you have comprehensive auto insurance, it can save you a ton of money if you need autobody repairs. Some things are covered and some things aren’t when it comes to scratch repairs, but you’ll still have to pay your deductible. Here are some circumstances when comprehensive insurance might cover costs of scratch repairs:

  • Vandalism
  • Fire
  • Natural disasters
  • Theft
  • Water damage
  • Falling objects

A comprehensive auto policy also includes coverage for damage brought on by mishaps, such as body dings from collisions with other vehicles or from hitting trees, gravel, or mud on the road. In that situation, you might be able to submit a claim and have the insurance provider pay for the repairs, less your deductible.

Claims can result in premium increases, which is a drawback. You might have to wait a while for your car to be fixed because the insurance company may want to look into any claims.

Is It Worth Fixing Scratches on a Car?

Almost every car you see on the road has paint damage if you look closely. While some scratches can simply be wiped away, others call for more involved fixes, which can be quite pricey. You might find a quick, low-cost fix for the scratches on your car if you speak with a dealership to determine the level of repair required.

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