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How to fix a bent car hood

Updated February 21, 2017

You may get a dent in your car bonnet if an object falls on it or you sat on the bonnet and it bent. You can save a trip to the garage and money by solving the problem at home. With a few basic tools, you can repair your bent car bonnet without the need of professional assistance.

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  1. Assess the damage. If the car bonnet has completely buckled, you may not be able to fix it unless you are a mechanic. However, if the bonnet is bent from daily wear and tear (from sitting on it, for example), you can hammer out minor dents.

  2. Remove the bonnet of your car. Unscrew it from the hinges, which are usually located underneath the front windscreen. Refer to the car's manual if you are unsure about how to do this because each model of car is different. Get a friend to help because the bonnet may be heavy.

  3. Place the bonnet upside down on the grass or an old piece of carpet to prevent scratching the paint while you repair the bonnet.

  4. Use the hammer to knock the dents out of the car bonnet. Strike the bonnet with firm, steady hits directly on the bend or dent. Knock the dents out slowly. It is better to use several, gentler hits instead of one strong hit that may cause more damage to the bonnet.

  5. Use the block of wood on areas with large dents. Place the wood on the area and hammer the wood, instead of directly hitting the car bonnet. The wooden block will spread the pressure out over a greater area and help fix the dent.

  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 until the bend has been removed or minimised to your satisfaction. Turn the bonnet over if you need to work at the bends from the opposite side.

  7. Paint the damaged area, if necessary, with car paint that matches the original colour of the car. Let it dry.

  8. Replace the bonnet by screwing it back onto the hinges. Align the bonnet correctly with the grill so that it closes properly.

  9. Tip

    Get a friend to help you steady the car bonnet while you hammer out the bend. Your hammer hits will be more accurate when the bonnet is stable. You can also use a metalworking hammer or dolly to hammer out the bend.

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Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Rubber-headed hammer
  • Block of wood 20 inches by 10 inches by 3 inches
  • Car paint matching your car's colour
  • Paint brush or sponge

About the Author

Philippa Jones

Based in Bristol, Philippa Jones has been a music journalist and script writer since 2007, working across a range of radio programs in the U.K. and Australia. Her articles have appeared in "Impact Magazine," "The Mic" and in local newspapers. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in politics from the University of Nottingham.

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