How to Fade Automotive Paint

Written by langstond
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How to Fade Automotive Paint
A spray gun sends out a fairly even blast of paint. (spray bottle nozzle image by Kathy Burns from

Automotive paint can make a clunker of a car look like a classic beauty with all the inner fixings. Paint can be extremely deceptive and greatly increase the value of your car. Blending multiple paints together in a scheme known as fading. Fading different colours together can bring out your personality as well as the car's inner beauty.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Select the first paint that you'll add to your car. A thick and solid colour is preferred. Select the second paint that you'll like to fade into. You can select more colours if you'd like to have a complex paint job, however this can become financially excessive.

  2. 2

    Prepare the car by taking it through part removal, paint removal, primer application, sanding and auto surface cleaning. These steps can be quite time consuming; however, if you wish to have a flawless paint job you'll need to spend time removing the parts and then removing the paint on these parts. Apply primer to the area and allow it to dry, and then sand away any imperfections. Then clean the area to prepare for painting.

  3. 3

    Use a paint spray gun to apply the first layer of paint on the top part of the vehicle or part. Work quickly so that the paint doesn't dry yet. Use a 50/50 mixture to paint the middle part of the car. This is the three-paint spray gun method for painting a fade. Paint the second solid mixture on the bottom of the car. You can iterate the painting procedure by using five paint guns. Use primary solid colour paint for the first paint gun and then a 75/25 mixture for the next layer. Place a 50/50 mix for the third middle layer. Next a 25/75 mixture for the fourth layer and spray gun. Finally, add the full secondary colour. This will produce a more even-tone fade.

  4. 4

    Allow the paint to dry, and the automotive paint fade should be completed.

Tips and warnings

  • Keep the car out of direct sunlight because it will cause the paint to begin to fade.

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