Volkswagen Bumper Cover: How to Get Rid of Cracks and Dents
The resulting dents from hastily driving the Volkswagen in a reverse gear, failing to check the blind spot, or cringing at the crunch of bumper meeting barricade only means a quick trip to the auto parts store to get some cheap body filler and a can of spray paint. Plastic bumper parts require entirely different types of products. Instead of the old sheet metal bumper exteriors, modern cars hide the metal bumper under a plastic fascia in hopes that minor scratches might pop out more easily. But if your car meets the sharp edge of a 2-foot parking barrier, the semi-flexible plastic can easily rip, bend, or break.
Difficulty level: Moderate
Things you'll need:
- 3M general purpose adhesive cleaner
- 3M adhesion promoter
- 3m reinforcement patch or 3m EZ fix flexible patch (for minor bumper damage)
- 3M EZ sand flexible parts repair tube
- Bondo spreader
- DA sander
- Sanding block
- 80-grit sandpaper and 180-grit sandpaper
- Safety glasses and mask
Step 1: It's always a good idea to remove the plastic cover first if you want to do some repair works. To do this, you have to locate the bolts, fasteners, and screws that held the cover in place underneath the vehicle and along the wheel wells. Once these are removed, pull the bumper cover.
Step 2:Identify your plastic by looking for any of these stamps: PP, PPO, TPE, TEO or TPO (thermoplastics). This step is highly recommended to ensure you use only the right product or repair kit for your cover.
Step 3:Using a Scotch-Brite pad, start scrubbing the area that needs repair to remove any trace of contaminants from the surface. Be very thorough in doing this, making sure that you also do some washing both on the inside and the outside before you start using a plastic surface cleaner. For stubborn grime, you may opt to use lacquer thinner.
Step 4:Once the surface is already free from contaminants, you may start sanding down the repair area. You may use an 80-grit sandpaper to do this task until at least 2 inches of paint are removed. But be sure to sand the jagged or rough edges along cracks as well.
Step 5:Remember: when doing hood repair, always begin from the back. Take note not to rely too much on primer as this is found out to be not too effective in bonding plastics well. You may spray or wipe adhesion promoter instead on the area, and if there are tears, you may use a self-stick re-enforcing mesh patch.
Step 6:Create a mix of epoxy adhesive and body filler applicator and apply this to the tear. You may also use this to cover any rebar holes or grooves.
Step 7:After applying adhesive, check if there are excessive blobs that may have oozed through the holes. If there are, then build up the surface while still wet, and then wait for 20 minutes until it completely dries.
Step 9: Repeat steps 5 to 7 to repair the front bumper cover.
Step 10:Check if the surface is completely dry. If yes, then use 80-grit sandpaper to flat high spots and smooth rough edges. If this type of sandpaper is not enough, you may continue sanding using a DA sander. Do this until you're satisfied with the texture and shape of the surface. To complete the task, you may finish the surface up by hand blocking using 150- or 180- grit sandpaper.