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Easy Car paint touch-up! How to Repair Car Paint Rock Chips & Scratches + Real world tips

Blog_Cars_Easy Car paint touch-up! How to Repair Car Paint Rock Chips & Scratches + Real world tips

In today’s post I’m going to show you a paint touch-up tool that can give you great results when repairing paint chips and scratches.  Don’t use typical paint touch-up pens as they do not work well and give you results that look horrible.  Even using a toothpick will give you better results.

I started repairing paint chips on my first car using paint pens you buy at the dealership and have since moved on to other methods like the Fine Line painting pen and Dr. ColorChip, which is another good DIY way to repair rock chips yourself.

Always use the right tools for the job and it will always make your life easier!

Dr. ColorChip paint chip repair before and after comparison

But today, I’m going to show the good and bad of using the Loew-Cornell fine line painting pen.  I first learned of this from another YouTube channel, AMMO NYC and decided to try it out.  Find a link to his channel and to buy the paint pen further down below.

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As you can see from the best results I obtained, it can work well if used properly.  The dried paint looks great and you can’t tell it was repaired or touched-up without looking up close.

Now, on the other hand, sometimes you can get less than ideal results, which I will go over later on and give some tips to avoid this.

But first, let’s see how to use this paint pen.

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First, you want to mark off all the chips you plan on repairing, if there are more than a few.  Then prep the chips by sanding any surface rust off while trying not to sand into the surrounding paint too much.  Though, any loose paint around the chip should be sanded off.

You can use a sanding pen instead which is easier to use than sandpaper (Check below for a link to all the products).  Next, wipe off the area with some Isopropyl alcohol and let dry.  

Buy a Sanding Pen


Order paint from a local car body shop, dealership or buy Dr. ColorChip online.  Make sure not to get a paint pen.  You want a small bottle of paint.  If you choose to order Dr. ColorChip, you will be able to use the Dr. ColorChip paint chip repair system and also use the paint in the Loew-Cornell paint pen.  Two ways for you to repair paint chips!  Dr. ColorChip is a great way to repair a lot of chips in one area, like road rash at the front of the hood.

To start painting, you first shake the paint bottle up to mix the paint.  Then take the brush and drip a little fresh paint down the side and into the paint reservoir.

Prep the pen by tapping it on a paper towel until the paint starts to flow out when you dab the towel.  You can also use the cleaning tool to help start the flow.

Then paint by dabbing the tip into the chip.  When the paint has properly filled the tip of the pen, touching the tip on any surface will cause it to draw or pull out more paint.  If the paint is flowing well when in full contact with the surface, then use a drawing motion to fill the chip.

Fill out the chip and note that the paint will shrink a little once dried completely.  Add a second coat if needed after the first dries for a few minutes.

Gravity can help with paint flow so sometimes doing this on a vertical panel, like a door, is more difficult as it may not flow as well.  This can result in a bad paint chip or paint scratch repair.

Use the tips below to avoid these issues.

Use our affiliate links below to purchase the tools for this DIY repair!


When using this tool here are some pointers so that you can avoid getting less than stellar results.

TIP 1:  Good paint

Always start with good quality paint.  Do not use paint that has dried a little and thickened.  It will not flow well and will not work in the pen.  Sometimes, to keep your paint longer you need to transfer to a better container after buying new paint.  For example, this plastic one that comes from the paint shop does not keep the paint too long.  

Also, keep the time the paint bottle is open as short as possible.  Properly close the paint bottle as soon as you are done filling the paint pen to keep the paint from drying out.

TIP 2:  Ideal weather

Don’t do chip repair on cold or rainy days as the paint will be more viscous or not dry well.  Ideal temperature is between 15 – 24 degress Celsius with a humidity around 40 – 50%.

Here is a really good tip for paint that has thickened… It worked WONDERFULLY!

TIP 3:  Use thinned paint

You are supposed to use thinned paint with this paint pen so that it flows through easier.  This is similar to what is done for paint used in spray guns.  If you have the appropriate thinner or lacquer to thin the paint a little, then that can help.

Make sure to have the correct thinner for your specific paint.

** Here is a really good tip for paint that has thickened.  I  have successfully used Isopropyl Alcohol to thin the car paint that has dried up a bit.  I did not have any paint thinner around and decided to try this as a last resort.  It worked excellently!  The paint came out very easily and all the paint chip repairs we completed with ease.

All I did was add a little Isopropyl Alcohol at a time while stirring.  I added until the paint thinned enough to be slightly thinner than when I bought it new.  It worked WONDERFULLY!

Though this won’t work for all paints, you can always ask your paint shop first to see what can be used to thin your paint.

TIP 4: Tap on damp towel

Tapping the tip onto a damp paper towel can help get the paint to flow.

TIP 5:  Prep chips first

Have all chips prepped and marked before you start painting so that you can paint all at once.  The longer you take to paint, the more the paint starts to dry up in the fine line paint pen.

When this happens, it will be harder to paint and give you results that you aren’t happy with.

TIP 6: Applying paint evenly

If the paint isn’t coming out evenly then stop, clean the tool and put fresh paint in and try again.  The paint may have dried out too much already.  Continuing in this way will result in uneven paint application.

Same thing applies to paint already painted in the chip… If it is stringy then don’t keep touching it to perfect it.  Let it dry and apply another layer later.  When the paint is stringy dabbing will result in uneven blobs of paint.

Also, when not painting, keep the pen tip covered with damp paper towel to prevent drying.

TIP 7:  Clean tool after

Clean the paint tool properly so that it is ready for use the next time you use it and isn’t clogged.  Use Isopropyl alcohol or nail polish remover.  You can dip the tool into a small cup of it and stir around.  Also use the cleaning tool to push or scrape out any paint left inside.

Hope you found this post useful and now have another way to properly fix chipped or scratched paint on your car.  If you want to try it out and want to get the tools use our affiliate links above to purchase.

Let us know how it goes!