What is Paint Correction?
Paint Correction is the permanent removal of a layer of the vehicle's paintwork to reveal another layer with less visible surface imperfections like swirls, love marks, holograms, pig tails scratches, etc.
Why do we need paint correction?
Over time with bad washing habits your vehicle can get swirls and scratches, or if someone recently polished your vehicle using the wrong pad or technique they can leave holograms all over the paintwork. Holograms and swirls are most visible in direct sunlight and on darker paint and scratches can be visible most of the time.
Cars with no protection on the paintwork can suffer the abuse of UV rays and paintwork dulls and oxidise.
We need paint correction to remove a layer of the oxidised, dull or scratched paint and reveal the nice looking underneath.
How many times can we correct the paint?
Well, depending on how thick the paint is. Manufacturers tend to use very little amount of clear coat on their vehicles to cut down on cost; leaving us with very little amount to correct. Too much correction is not in the favour of your vehicle, as the less clear coat you leave on your car, the higher chance this clear coat will fail over time.
What is a one step or two step paint correction?
There are 4 steps for paint correction; One step paint correction means the use of a polishing pad "fine less aggressive pad" and a fine polish to cut through minor imperfections. One step is recommended on daily drivers and before applying ceramic coatings.
When removing deeper swirls and imperfections we need more cut power so we use compounding pad "course and more aggressive than polishing pad" and a heavy cut compound to cut through deeper defects but unfortunately this step is only able to achieve cut but not finish hence the two step name as we need to follow up with a fine pad and fine polish to achieve perfect finish and this becomes a two step paint correction.
Three step paint correction means we need to cut through deeper scratches which is why we start with wet sanding followed by heavy cut compound to remove the sanding marks and then refined with a fine polish to remove the haze caused by the compound and it becomes a three step correction.
A 4 step paint correction is most likely required on show cars where after finished with the three steps there is another phase called "jewelling" where we try to achieve highest gloss possible by using an extremely fine polish and extremely soft pad.