How to Repair Scratched Aluminum

Aluminium can become scratched and dull over time. No matter where you find aluminium -- on boats, cars, trucks, motorcycle rims or anywhere else -- scratching and dulling are bound to happen. Keeping aluminium free of scratches takes a bit of elbow grease and a few common hand tools.

When repairing scratched aluminium, exercise caution so that you don't damage the metal itself or create new scratches.

  • Aluminium can become scratched and dull over time.
  • Keeping aluminium free of scratches takes a bit of elbow grease and a few common hand tools.

Clean the surface of the aluminium with dish soap and warm water, using a clean cloth. Rinse with water and dry with a towel. Rinse out the bucket and refill with fresh water.

Dip 400-grit sandpaper into the water, lightly dampening it. Begin to sand away the scratch in a gentle, circular pattern, not pressing down. This will begin to "erase" the scratch. Continue to dampen the sandpaper as necessary, then wipe dry with a towel to remove all dust.

Refresh the water in the bucket by pouring out the old water and refilling the bucket. Lightly moisten the 600-grit sandpaper using the fresh water and continue sanding the scratch on the aluminium with gentle, circular strokes. This will remove the scratch. Re-wet the sandpaper as needed.

  • Dip 400-grit sandpaper into the water, lightly dampening it.
  • Lightly moisten the 600-grit sandpaper using the fresh water and continue sanding the scratch on the aluminium with gentle, circular strokes.

Rinse the bucket and refill. Sand the scratch with dampened 1200-grit sandpaper but do not sand in a circular motion. Instead, sand gently in one direction only. This will finish the aluminium. Wipe dry with a towel.

Apply a thin, even layer of aluminium polish with a brush or cloth. Dry as long as suggested by the manufacturer. Polish with a microfiber cloth to make the aluminium shine.

  • Rinse the bucket and refill.
  • Apply a thin, even layer of aluminium polish with a brush or cloth.
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