As with almost everything in our modern life, automotive paint has evolved with technology. If you are needing a fresh paint job for your car, you probably don’t think much about what goes into the process or what is needed. You just want it done right. Having it done correctly is important, but as a customer, you should know some of the basics as well so you can be more informed in your choices.

Let’s talk about “primers” and “topcoats” for instance. When should you need either one, or both? Your automotive paint professional selects a coating system, typically based on the following:

 

  • The desired finish and color
  • The type of application and substrate
  • The durability required
  • The price
  • The efficiency of the coating

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In a lot of cases, your automotive paint professional will use both a primer and topcoat system to satisfy the criteria listed above. However, depending on the priority of each characteristic previously listed, a direct to metal (DTM) topcoat can be an alternative solution. So, what exactly does DTM processing involve?

A DTM topcoat system substitutes a two coat, two-product process with a robust, high solid, single product system that doesn’t require a primer to adhere to properly prepared metal. By eliminating a step, you can reduce application time, increase throughput, and have the labor cost decrease. Those efficiencies can lead to powerful results, however, there are some limitations to be considered.

If you were to break down a DTM coating, often you will find a UV durable resin that is typically used in primers. Once that resin is selected to maximize adhesion and corrosion protection it will be modified to improve gloss. Those modifications provide the opportunity to mimic the color palette of a two-coat process. Both types of systems have pros and cons… When the time comes to evaluate your coating system, make sure to prioritize the characteristics you require and select a system that meets your needs.

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At Pete Solis Collision Center, we use only the finest Sherwin Williams Automotive Finishes. All of our paint technicians are expertly trained and certified by Sherwin Williams for quality and professionalism. We use state of the art Garmat USA Spray Booths for optimal auto paint application and performance. So, when your ride needs new paint, come see us at Pete Solis Collision Center. We are located at 1434 Lomaland Dr. in El Paso, Texas. Give us a call today at (915) 599-8666. Or come on by, we are open Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 5:00pm. And we offer free estimates!

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