Help on Paint Problems

To place your order, please start at our Home Page.

Select the product you ordered below and we discuss common problems for each item including problems with paint shine, whitish streaks/haze in the paint, powdery paint, flow problems, etc.
Paint Pens Brush Cap Bottles Spray Cans or using your own spray gun or using your own spray gun Leaking Paint Pen
You have followed the directions for using the paint pen, (Detailed Paint Pen Instructions) and the paint just runs out and is very thin. Solution - we have mixed your formula too thin and we need to send you another paint pen. Please fill out the problem form so we can assist you.

Scrapes off or dissolves the paint I just applied
When you apply a second coat or the clearcoat with the paint pen, the underlying paint scrapes off or dissolves making it difficult to build up the paint layer.

Solution - You need to float the paint. You basically want to put a layer of paint (or clearcoat on) while barely touching the underlying coat. This does take practice, so practice off the car first!
- You may not be letting the paint dry long enough. Make sure it is dry and reapply the paint.
- The second reason is the felt nib is too hard or is not wet enough. Depress the paint pen, wipe off the excess and make sure the tip is wet and reapply.
- The temperature could be too hot (above 80 degrees) and the paint is drying on the paint nib. Apply the paint in cooler temperatures.
- You can keep the nib clean by rinsing it in automotive lacquer thinner (sold on our site Please note: regular lacquer thinner is not the same as automotive lacquer thinner so don't use the stuff from Home Depot, etc.) and this will also soften the nib up making it easier to apply the paint.

Wont Flow-Too Thick
You try the paint pen by depressing the tip and nothing comes out or it comes out very thick.
Solution -  It may be too hot and the paint has dried around the valve or the nib is dirty making it difficult for the paint to come out. Take out the felt nib and soak the paint pen and nib in some lacquer thinner. We may have mixed your paint too thick and if the paint still won't flow properly, please fill out the problem form so we can assist you.

Flows Out too Fast-Too Thin
You try the paint pen by depressing the tip and it runs out like water.
- Make sure you have thoroughly shaken the paint pen. If the paint is still coming out way too fast, we may have mixed your paint too thinly. Please fill out the problem form and we will send you a new paint pen.

Nib Problems
If the nib seems clogged and not working well, you may have cleaned it with the wrong kind of lacquer thinner. You must use automotive lacquer thinner only and not the stuff sold at Home Depot, etc. You may have to contact us for a new paint nib as it can become damaged using the wrong kind of thinner.

Paint Blob
Because this paint dries so fast, it is very easy to get a paint blob as when you apply it to your vehicle, it simply adheres as a ball of paint rather than going on smoothly. One trick is to really cool the surface and the paint down before applying and it won't dry so fast, letting you put on several thin coats. 

Solution - Apply some automotive lacquer thinner (available on our site) to a soft cloth, wrap the cloth around a Popsicle stick and gently wipe back and forth removing the excess paint. (This is basically what Langka is for those that know about this product.) Do this before applying the clearcoat. You can also use rubbing compound before applying the clearcoat to bring the level down. Don't use sandpaper, it will just dull the surrounding surfaces.

Too dark
You have applied the metallic paint and it is too dark. Solution - We don't have a good one for you! Metallic paints will look somewhat darker because of the way the metallic flakes lays down. Picture each metallic flake as a little mirror reflecting light. These flakes end up at different angles due to the fact you are brushing or applying the paint with a paint pen versus spraying. Even if you sprayed the paint, you cannot exactly match the angle of the metallic flakes and you must blend the paint. This is the main reason you should not use the brush or paint pen to repair areas larger than a dime. Rubbing compound will help, but will not completely eliminate the problem.

Poor or no shine
1) You need to polish with rubbing compound to make the paint shine. For Single Stage paint, the only difference is you will be polishing the paint and not the clearcoat. Please consult the directions if you still have questions.
2) You may have not applied enough clearcoat. If you have gone through the clearcoat, you will end up polishing the basecoat which will not shine! Solution - apply more clearcoat and compound the area again.
3) You are using polishing compound or heavy duty rubbing compound. The polishing compound will do nothing for the paint and the heavy duty compound will dull the finish. Solution - use a medium duty rubbing compound. You may have to apply more clearcoat.
4) You may have such a large area that trying to compound by hand is just too difficult. Solution - use a power buffer or hire a detail shop to compound the area. See the warning above about using a power buffer.
5) You have used paper cloth, have a dirty cloth, are using a terry cloth towel or a cloth with grit in it. Solution-use an old clean T-shirt.
6) You didn't apply any clearcoat! Don't laugh, but this has been a common problem. The basecoat will not shine no matter how much rubbing compound you apply. Solution - Apply clearcoat!

Fish Eyes in the Paint when Spraying
Fish Eyes look like little craters on the moon where the paint pulls away from the center. (Looks well, like a fish eye and hence the name). Fish eyes occur immediately upon spraying. Fish eyes are caused by contamination of the surface you are spraying. Water, oil and silicone are the three major culprits. Also, if you leave the wax and grease remover on too long before wiping it off, it can cause fisheyes. When you wetsand out imperfections in the basecoat, sometimes there will be traces of water left causing the problem. To be honest, we had jobs where the fish eyes occurred and we had no idea what caused them as we could find no rhyme or reason for it.

If we had a job that fish eyed, we would start over again by washing off the paint with automotive lacquer thinner. Once the surface fish eyes, the paint should be removed as something has contaminated the surface. You don't want to just sand down the surface and repaint as the problem will usually not go away. In all my years, we never found the paint or clearcoat itself to be the problem as often we would use the exact same paint and clearcoat again without difficulty. We started to think perhaps some truck was driving by spraying something with silicon in it as often we just could not come up with a reason for it!

Paint is not Spraying Correctly.
This only applies to the 2oz. size. The pints, quarts and gallons of basecoat, midcoat, clearcoat and primer are ready to spray. You may have used the wrong thinner/reducer or forgot to thin the paint. When using a spray gun, thin the basecoat and midcoat paint 1:1 with automotive lacquer thinner. (not the lacquer thinner from Home Depot, etc.) The clearcoat is usually thinned with 1 to 2 parts thinner to one part clearcoat. Check the label for instructions. There are other types of thinners/reducers available to use with our paint (DuPont ChromaBase) and if you want to use these products, I would consult with your local auto body supply store.

Whitish Haze or Streaks
This is caused by high humidity conditions.  Solution - Wait until the humidity is under 50%. Scuff down the clearcoat, apply more color coat and reapply the clear.

Fine Scratches in the Clearcoat
If you are seeing fine scratches in the clearcoat after using our rubbing compound (cutting creme), it can be caused by a number of factors.
1) You didn't put enough clearcoat on and are actually going through it to the basecoat.
2) You are using too abrasive of a cloth. The best cloth to use is an old, clearn t-shirt or any 100% cotton fabric.
3) This can also be caused by high humidity and temperature. See the next paragraph here and also the section on Haze.
One more solution if you feel you have done everything correctly it to try a very fine polishing compound. Often this will take out the fine lines you are seeing and result in a glossy surface.

Spider Veins
This is caused by either spraying the paint too far away or the temperature is too hot and the paint is drying before it hits the surface. Solution - Apply the paint closer to the surface and do not paint when the temperature is above 80 degrees.

Peeling paint
Peeling paint can be caused by a number of factors. If the surface was contaminated with wax or oil, the paint will not adhere properly. If you painted over an unprimed surface, the paint will fail and peel off. If you are painting a non-metal surface and do not use the SEM adhesion promoter as the first layer, the layers of paint including primer, basecoat and clearcoat will fail and peel.

To fix peeling paint, you must first remove all of the peeling paint and start over again using proper surface preparation.

Powdery Paint
This is similar to the spider vein problem. The temperature was too hot to spray and the paint has dried in mid-air before it had a chance to adhere to the surface. Solution - Sand the powdery paint off, wait until it is below 80 degrees and reapply.

Drying Problems
After applying the clearcoat, you notice that the painted area is soft and can be easily indented with your fingernail. Here is what may have happened:
1) You didn't let the basecoat dry long enough before applying the clearcoat.
2) There was high humidity when you sprayed the paint and water was mixed into the paint. If you were using a spray gun, you would notice alot of water in your trap. Solution - Just wait and let the paint dry. Don't damage the paint by testing it with your fingernail, etc. until several weeks have passed. If water got mixed in with your paint, you may need to remove all the paint and start over again. I would consult with a local auto body shop.

Too dark
You have applied the metallic paint and it is too dark.
Solution - Metallic paints will look somewhat darker because of the way the metallic flakes lays down. Picture each metallic flake as a little mirror. These flakes end up at different angles and reflect the light differently and always make the paint darker. There is little you can do when you use a paint pen or the brush. If you need a much better match, you must spray the paint. If you are spraying the paint, you can blend the paint.

Tape Line
You taped off around the repaired area and applied the paint. When you remove the paint, there is a noticeable line where you painted versus the original paint. Solution - You must blend the paint. You can try polishing the line down with rubbing compound, but if you don't blend the paint, you will always see the new paint versus the old paint and it will be quite noticeable. So, don't tape in the middle of a panel and read the blend link above.

To place your order, please start at our Home Page.