Having a car keyed or scratched deliberately is an inconvenience and a discovery that every vehicle owner hopes he will never need to make. Keying a vehicle is undoubtedly the lowest of the low, and if you have a keyed car, you would certainly try to fix the damage as quickly as possible.
Fortunately, there are a few ways that can be helpful to repair such damage in a number of cases. Therefore, it can be a reasonably straightforward process to remove any of these scratches and then return your vehicle to its pristine condition.
In the following lines, you will find a few easy steps that should prove helpful in restoring your vehicle.
Why does a car get keyed?
Jealousy is among the main reasons for a car getting keyed. Jealous people can resort to discouraging or frustrating, and one of the ways of doing this is through keying the cars. It might be your co-worker, neighbor, or even a relative who may have something mind to make you tense.
A personal reason
Stalking is another motive for people getting their car keyed. It could be someone who hates you or simply wants to threaten you. There are cases where the offender has even gone as far as using a razor blade or other tools to slice into the paint of an expensive vehicle at night.
Some people also key cars because they feel that the owner lives too wealthy for their own good, and therefore attack them in order to ruin their vehicle's appearance. This, however, does not mean that this would make things easier to repair. You still have to take care of this damage by yourself once again if it occurs often enough.
There could be a possibility that your car may be keyed by mistake. Such instances happen when people move around the vehicles in busy, tight, or crowded areas. People having sharp-edged objects or keys may key the car without mean purpose, for example, after losing the balance.
It is very common to find vehicles with their paint scheme scratched or even keyed in outside parking lots. If you are visiting an area where the lighting is not appropriate, then there is a good chance that many people will end up scratching your car unknowingly.
Getting back at someone
Some of the most malicious cases of keying people's cars occur when they are trying to get back at each other. This may be because of having a personal grudge, but more often it arises due to workplace-related issues. It can also be the result of property damage or some other argument involving physical violence between two parties.
However, it might occur that simply giving dirty looks or acting rudely towards another person at work could cause them to key your car. Therefore, you must also watch out for people who may be giving you dirty looks whenever they pass by your vehicle or might even be plotting to vandalize it.
Getting back at someone through keying their cars is quite a common now a solution for people to take when they think that having a discussion would not yield any benefits. Although this may sometimes end up in an argument, there are mostly times when the victim is left frustrated and puzzled about finding out who did it to them. By making your car look like it has been damaged, the vandal forces you into understanding what he went through because of you. In addition, getting rid of such scratches can be very difficult because the chances of catching them become slim as time passes by.
Many people get a kick out of vandalizing others' properties, and for them, it may not be personal, or they may not be having a problem with you. They will go for it when they find an opportunity to make your car keyed or do any vandalism acts like smashing the mirrors or slashing tires.
People who are often caught committing these kinds of crimes may get charged for inflicting damage, but in some cases, they can be sentenced to jail time. Sometimes, the charges brought against them also include possession of a concealed weapon if they happen to have anything that can cause harm or injury when used as a tool.
Having your car keyed is no joke! Although you might think it is so because others seem to do this kind of thing just for fun and there's nothing worse about it. In fact, this case should be taken seriously because it could trigger anger in people that results in much more dangerous activities such as mugging or storage. That being said, when you know how much pressing the issue with the police will cost you, you might just give up. Therefore, it is wise to let go of this kind of thing and try to keep your car out of sight whenever possible.
As much as possible, do not park or leave your vehicle in places where there are lots of people so that you have minimal chances of being keyed by the perpetrator. Also, if leaving the vehicle for a longer time is inevitable, at least do not stay away from it for days because then it can be an easy target for vandalism acts that would definitely leave permanent marks on the paint job.
You must also think about getting insurance coverage since many companies offer discounts when you get their plans along with another type of insurance policy you own already. This way, any physical damage done to your property would be taken care of.
As for the scratches, there are ways to use products that can remove them in one way or another. However, the results may vary depending on the depth and how long it has been done already. If you have just noticed that your car got keyed recently, then the best thing to do is to take it to a paint shop immediately so they can send you home with an estimate if repairing your vehicle could be feasible or not.
To keep your car well-protected from these kinds of things, you should also take note of its appearance when leaving it somewhere where there are lots of people moving around like in front of a department store. This is because maybe some people might end up thinking that your car can be their target for vandalism acts.
Here are the steps to prevent further damage that will result from leaving it exposed for too long:
- Ensure that all windows are closed. This way, there is no space for anyone to slip something through.
- Lock the doors so nobody can open them without you knowing it.
- Do not leave any valuables in sight! If possible, hide them in the trunk where they would definitely not be found by these vandals. It might also help if you have a car alarm system since this will surely give out warning signals when someone attempts to touch your vehicle inappropriately even just by accident or by mistake. You should also note that these kinds of people will know how to go around this kind of protection so it would be best to take extra precautions.
That being said, if there are marks left because of keyed cars or any kinds of vandalism acts, you should have no second thoughts about repairing them since they will only get worse the longer you hesitate to do so. So touch up your paint job before these marks grow larger and deeper.
Different options to fix a keyed car
Basically, you have two options: take your vehicle to a professional body shop or repair it yourself. Auto shops are experienced in repairing such damages, which means that you can get assurance of a flawless finishing. But with the proper techniques and products, you can do some excellent repair work by yourself.
Taking the vehicle to a professional
When you go to an auto body shop, it may cost to get the repair done by a professional. Therefore, it can be an excellent idea to get it covered by your insurance. Different methods used by professional body shops for repairing key scratches entirely depend on how much a vehicle is damaged.
A rubbing compound can be used to cover up the scratches when there is a light and a clear coat scratch. But when it is about repairing the scratch that penetrates the clear coat and gets to the paint, then the professionals have to sand down such scratches to the level of the base coat and then go for a new layer of clear coat.
Doing it yourself
Before repairing any scratches on your car paint, you have to thoroughly wash the scratched surface to get rid of any additional dirt and debris that might be causing additional scratches. You can then apply around a coin’s worth of scratch remover and then rub it into the scratched area through a circular motion. When you are done, try not to allow any excess scratch remover to dry on the vehicle, as it can affect the paintwork. After that, you can then wash the car with lukewarm water and mild soap.
In case there is no scratch remover around, you can always use toothpaste. Before going to bed, apply a generous amount of toothpaste on the scratched area and leave it overnight so you can remove it in the morning before washing your vehicle, or at least leaving it for a few hours will do.
When using both methods above, make sure not to rub too hard otherwise it might damage your paint more than repair it! Just be sure to follow these steps closely with proper techniques and products when trying to fix keyed cars yourselves without having any need for professional help.
By taking care of your car yourself, means that you have saved money for the repair simply because you did it by yourself. This can be an excellent way to save your money in case your car is no longer covered with the warranty of newness since this means that you can do everything by yourself. It might not look like much at first sight, but when done correctly with proper technique and products, then you will end up saving quite a lot of bucks especially if you are not insured or yet under any kind of coverage.
But whatever method you choose, make sure to go through all these steps listed above carefully! Even when using professional help, always ask them how they are planning on doing something so that you can learn some additional tricks in order to handle future damages in the best possible manner. Remember that using your hands to rub your car paint is not bad, just be sure that the techniques and products that you use are good enough for such tasks.
A keyed car is among the things that you cannot control. The chances are that somebody must be keying your car just because they don't like you; therefore, you need to be prepared for such an incident. There are a number of ways to deal with a keyed car surface, and you can go for the one that can fit your budget. It would help if you also found out whether your car insurance package covers such occurrences.