[Caution]Acetone Damaged My Car Paint

We can see acetone in auto repair shops for various purposes, including cleaning agents. But, is acetone safe on car paint? You wouldn’t want to be ignorant about how it reacts on the surface of your car after spilling, right?

In this article, I will discuss the effect of acetone on car paint and whether or not it can fix car scratches. I also mention the many uses of this compound.

You are about to find out why there is a need to exercise caution in the use of acetone.

Is Acetone Safe on Car Paint?

No, acetone isn’t safe on car paint because it composes of harsh chemicals that paint can’t withstand. Acetone is a common colourless, highly volatile, and flammable organic solvent. It is also called propanone. 

Its chemical formula is (CH3)2CO, a combination of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. This liquid has an extremely low boiling point of 56.3˚C (133.34˚F). This means that it will boil and vaporize at room temperature, producing a highly flammable vapour. 

So you shouldn’t leave the affected area unwashed for a long time. Use soap and water to wash the solvent away.


using Meguiar's G7101FFP Gold Class Car Wash in case aceton is on your car paint.

Meguiar’s G7101FFP Gold Class Car Wash

best product to use if acetone on car paint.

Chemical Guys CWS_110 Car Wash Soap 

How Does Acetone Damage Your Car Paint?

Acetone is potent enough to dissolve the paint and further cause damage to the car’s surface. It softens old dried-up oil-based paints that cause them to fizz and peel off the car’s surface. An example of such oil-based paints is enamel. This is also what happens when the paint is being removed in an automotive refinishing shop.

Acetone possesses a very low viscosity, drying or evaporating quickly. There is a high chance that you may not know it is on your car’s surface if the spillage wasn’t noticed. This compound leaves behind a thin coating of remnants when it evaporates. It will take a few hours for it to eat through the paint. So you have enough time to get rid of the spill.

Does Acetone Fix Car Scratches?

Yes, acetone can remove scratches or scuffs on car paint. It is easier to use it for such a purpose than most common paint solvents due to the following reasons:

  • Fast evaporation.
  • Lower surface tension.
  • Ability to dissolve oil-based paints that contain high amounts of refined oils.

What Is Acetone Used for?

1. Acetone is a multi-purpose solvent that is generall safe to utilize. You can find it in cleaning agents and paint supplies made for the auto body repair and maintenance industry. Small amounts of acetone are found in compounds used at every phase of the cleaning or painting process. Acetone is suitable for auto repair jobs that require speedy drying times due to its fast evaporation rate.

2. Solvent “blends” or systems utilized to prepare lacquers for automotive finishes contain acetone. It may also be used in making lacquer less viscous. The cleaning solutions poured into spray guns in auto body workshops also contain acetone. In this case, its purpose is to convert the harsh and potentially toxic chemicals auto body paints are made of into safer compounds.

3. Car paint finishing solutions, which are typically composed of acetone, are used in sealing paint to prevent it from cracking or flaking due to environmental factors. The acetone is an active constituent in the solutions, and it even makes the paint glossy. Pthis compoundVehicle window tint is produced using this compound.

4. Acetone is applied to thinning substances such as auto body paints and petroleum found in gasoline. It is easier for internal combustion engines to vaporize gasoline when petroleum is more diffuse. This boosts fuel efficiency.

5. On the other hand, paint is evenly applied to a car’s surface when thinned with acetone. This approach makes the paint dry faster. The technician wouldn’t need to worry about excessive pooling. An even coat will be produced when the chemical dissolves following the heating of the paint.

Other purposes:

  • Cleaning of car surfaces.
  • Degreasing of metal work.
  • Pre-paint cleaning to get rid of surface grease or grit on auto body parts that can negatively affect the smoothness of the new paint job.
  • Breaking up of petroleum-based oil sludge.
  • Removing adhesives, contact cement, fiberglass resins, epoxy resins, uncured lacquers, ink, latex paint, polyester, etc.

Note: Consult your mechanic before pouring acetone into your gas tank because the gas you use may already have it.

Besides Acetone, What Liquids Damage Car Paint?

Many liquids can harm car paint apart from acetone. They can destroy the paint and damage the car’s surface permanently if left unwashed after some time. See some of them below.

  • Vehicle Fluids: Brake fluid and coolant soften car paint fast, thereby making it easy for sustained damage. Wash them off immediately with water and detergent.
  • Egg Whites and Yolk: They contain materials that can corrode paint. Use water and mild soap to wash the egg away totally.
  • Shaving Cream: This can cause paint discoloration in foam form and left to dry on the car’s surface. Wet the area to clean off the stain.

Wash the affected area as soon as possible when you notice that any of these liquids have poured on the car’s surface. Do so with the right cleaning agent. It will be easy to handle fluids that only need the application of a wiping cloth, water, and soap to wash away.

Final Thought

It is a paradox that acetone, which is a solvent to thin oil-based paints for an even application on a car’s surface, can also destroy the paint job. Now you know what this compound is capable of and its great importance in the automotive repair and maintenance industry.

You may concern: Rubbing Alcohol On Car Paint

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