How to fix dents in a car

If you want to know how to fix dents in a car, you’ve probably got one of two battle scars on your car’s bodywork that you want removed. Some dents are manageable at home, while others will need some professional attention so the first thing to work out if whether you car’s dent is small enough for your own handy work.

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Professional help

One of the best ways to understand the problem is to ask an expert. Getting a body shop to take a look or asking a mobile mechanic’s opinion will give you an understanding of the size of the issue. Be aware though that you will be opening yourself up to some unscrupulous mechanics and bodywork specialists who will tell you that your minor bump is a major problem, so perhaps getting two quotes is a good idea.


If you’ve decided to carry out the work yourself, where should you begin? The process of filling the dent doesn't need any major equipment but you will need to buy filler. We’re not suggesting that a household filler like polyfilla will do the job, you should buy a filler designed for the job. To get the job done you’ll need glazing and spot putty, a rigid plastic spreader, sandpaper and the body filler. You’ll also need to set aside a lot of time.


No matter what process you’re going to use, make sure you clean the affected area before you begin work. The next step involves mixing the body filler which is a two-part epoxy. Once the filler’s mixed, you’ve only got five minutes to get it into the dent, so work fast and accurately. When it’s in place and it’s completely hardened, use your sandpaper to file the filler down. At this stage, use the spot putty which will fill in any tiny impressions in the filler. When that’s in place, you’ll need to do some more sanding. The penultimate stage sees you applying primer or sealer to the area. When that’s in place, you finish off with more sanding.

Final word

This isn’t a job to do in a hurry and it’s not one to do when you’re tired. Set aside some time at the weekend and do it right.

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