How to Use T-Cut and When Not to
After picking up a scratch, one of the first questions many car owners ask is: “Can I fix it myself?” especially if it is the first cosmetic damage they have had.
When asking for advice on removing scratches from a car, T-Cut is a popular option that might be recommended to you. To help you out, we explain below what this product is, how to use it and when it might not be the best solution.
What is T-Cut?
T-Cut is a car scratch remover, sometimes called a rubbing or cutting compound. It is used to remove light surface scratches, marks and scuffs, particularly on car paintwork.
How T-Cut works
What is the car scratch remover good for?
T-Cut can be used on all types of car paintwork; it can also be used on caravans, boats and around the home.
However, it is not suitable for deep scratches and should only be used to rectify light, shallow, surface scratches. Keyed car scratches or deep scrapes from a wall or kerb can often be too deep for the cutting compound to fix.
Furthermore, as well as a car scratch remover, T-Cut is used by some as a cleaning process to restore vehicle paint.
What does it do to your car?
T-Cut restores paint finish by stripping the top coat of your paintwork and removing scratches, stains or scrapes. Your car paintwork is then stored to its original condition.
How to T-Cut a car properly
- The first thing to remember when “T-Cutting” a car is to ensure the paint is completely clean and dry, otherwise it will damage the paintwork.
- The next step is to put on some gloves and apply T-Cut to a clean cloth - something without fluffy fibres, which could also mark the paint.
- Then, working in a circular motion, rub the solution over the scratch firmly. In many cases, the cloth changes colour as the top layer of paint is removed, although not with metallic finishes as the lacquer on these is clear.
- Once the scratch is gone, you would take another clean cloth and remove the excess product.
- Since the top, protective layer has been removed, the car now needs to be waxed on a regular basis to prevent corrosion.
- If you wanted to restore an old paint job all over a car, the process is the same but it’s a more laborious job, since every panel will need to be treated, one at a time. The maintenance afterwards will also be higher, since the car will regularly need to be waxed all over.
Ultimately, using T-Cut will restore shine initially, but paint will always fade and the best way to give an old car a new lease of colour life would be a new paint job, which can be expensive.
When not to use T-Cut
- Deeper Scratches
T-Cut is only suitable for removing shallow, surface scratches from a car. Most of the common incidents which can scratch your car, such as scraping along a low wall, kerb, another car or vandalism (e.g. when cars are “keyed”) leave marks which are too deep for this fix.
- If you are unfamiliar with repairs
A certain level of expertise is required. Using the wrong cloth, or one which has been dropped on the floor, can inflict more damage. Also, you need to know when to stop when removing paint with T-Cut; it is easy to take off too much and reveal bare metal below, particularly on car corners. This is not something which can be rectified with wax.
- If you don’t have time for the finish or upkeep
It’s vital that all excess fluid is removed before finishing the job. If too much is left on, or the incorrect colour has been applied to scratches, it can be extremely difficult to remove. It’s a time-consuming process and requires additional care afterwards.
Is it safe?
T-Cut is a safe option for removing scratches from a car, however there are precautions that you should take which will be listed on the label of the bottle. First and foremost, you must wear suitable gloves as repeated exposure to skin may cause dryness and cracking. Furthermore, vapours may cause drowsiness and dizziness, so the car scratch remover should only be used in well-ventilated areas.
Can it be used on plastic headlights and window glass?
Yes, T-Cut Headlight Restoration Kit can be used to improve headlight clarity and light visibility by removing haziness from clear, plastic headlights. It can also be used on window and plastic glass to improve clarity and add shine.
Can it remove excess lacquer?
Lacquer overspray can easily be removed with the Original cutting compound.
Can it remove spray paint?
A small amount of T-Cut should be able to remove spray paint from your car paintwork.
Which T-Cut to use?
From their webpage:
The “Original Colour Restorer” - Used to restore original colour and lustre in minutes.
T-Cut Rapid Scratch Remover
Used to remove the lighter scratches described above, and to rejuvenate car lacquer coats for cars 2 – 5 years old.
T-Cut Color Fast Black
A version made especially for black cars, to rejuvenate darker paintwork.
T-Cut Color Fast White
To rejuvenate (For) white cars and lighter paintwork.
Designed specifically to restore the colour and lustre of metallic and pearlescent car paintwork.
T-Cut Color Fast - Range
Removes scratches, scuffs and blemishes whilst adding colour. Available in a range of colours for popular car shades.
Used after the above treatments to finish off and to give a glossy finish to your paintwork.
The ChipsAway Way
ChipsAway specialists are experts in car scratch repair. The unique and fully mobile paint matching system they use means that, not only are you removing the scratch, but repainting it with the correct, precisely mixed colour and finishing it with the same lacquer seal as before (see our video repair here). As this process restores the damaged area, there is no need for time consuming waxing afterwards.
In fact, ChipsAway repairs all come with a lifetime guarantee, all for less hassle and cost than going to a body shop or garage. In fact, most body shops would repair a scratch by repainting the whole panel, whereas ChipsAway specialists only need to repair the small area affected – and you can keep your car for the day as ChipsAway come to you.