How to Fix the Rust on a Pathfinder

Written by sarah thomas
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How to Fix the Rust on a Pathfinder
Treat rust on your Pathfinder before it becomes worse (rust image by PeteG from

Rust is a common occurrence on vehicles that are driven in wet, moist climates. Rust on a Pathfinder may begin under the vehicle or beneath the paint, appearing as bubbles. If the bubbled paint breaks, it exposes the rust underneath. If you neglect to treat the rust on your Pathfinder, it will continue to grow and degrade the metal until it causes a hole to break through the metal. Once rust has created holes in your Pathfinder, you'll need more serious repairs such as panel replacement.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Masking tape
  • Newspaper
  • Sander
  • Sandpaper
  • Tack cloth
  • Primer
  • Paint

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  1. 1

    Section off the rusted area on your Pathfinder with masking tape. Leave several rust-free inches on each side of the area. Tape newspaper around the area to protect the rest of the vehicle during the rust-removal process.

  2. 2

    Sand the rusted area using a sander and sandpaper. Use a rough grit during the first sanding to remove as much rust as possible. Sand slightly beyond the rust to ensure that the finish is smooth and all of the rust is removed.

  3. 3

    Continue sanding the area, using a finer grit of sandpaper. Using a rough grit and then a fine grit will remove the rust and keep the metal smooth.

  4. 4

    Wipe the area with tack cloth to remove sanding residue once all of the rust is removed.

  5. 5

    Apply primer to the sanded areas and allow the primer to dry. If you had to remove thickness from the metal, you may need additional coats of primer to build the area up so that it is even with the rest of the vehicle.

  6. 6

    Paint the primed area with a touch-up paint that matches your Pathfinder, which can be purchased from an automotive supply store or a dealership.

Tips and warnings

  • If rust has already caused holes in the vehicle, you will need more extensive repairs. Take the vehicle to a bodyworks garage for professional assistance.
  • Wear protective clothing and goggles so that rust reside from sanding does not aggravate your skin and eyes.

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