How to repair atv plastic scratches

How To Remove Scratches From ATV Plastics? Best Scratch Removal Method – Mud Bandit

I was washing my four wheeler the other day and seen fine scratches all over the fenders and wondered how I could remove them safely and effectively, so here is what I found out.

How to remove scratches from ATV plastics? In order to remove scratches from your plastics, you will need a heat gun. If you plan to remove all of the scratches from all of your plastics, then, you will need to first remove your plastics to prevent the heat gun from damaging the paint or materials of other objects that may get in the way. First, clean the plastic with rubbing alcohol. Then, turn the heat gun on high and slowly remove the scratches by applying the heat in a circular motion while moving the gun up and down, side to side, etc. DO NOT apply heat directly to one spot. Keep the heat gun moving. This will prevent melting your plastics.

If you are interested in removing all of those annoying fine scratches from your ATV’s plastics, I have more information on this topic below.

Using a heat gun to restore your plastics is a great option. The heat gun will remove all of the fine scratches, some of the deeper scratches and can also remove some of the faded areas caused by your plastic getting bent or damaged by the sun. Here are the steps to removing scratches with a heat gun.

  1. Clean your ATV’s plastics with a shop towel and some rubbing alcohol. This will remove any oils and dirt from the surface of the plastic to ensure that the heat gun will do its job properly.
  2. I recommend doing small sections at a time, no larger than 10” x 10”. So figure out your first area and make sure you will not burn any surrounding materials.
  3. Turn your heat gun on high and position it approximately 1” away from your plastics. Begin applying heat in a circular motion while moving up and down or side to side. DO NOT apply heat directly to one spot.
  4. Once the scratches go away, immediately remove the heat and move on.
  5. Shine the plastics with Armol All to protect them and give them some shine.

Why use a heat gun over sanding and buffing?

I prefer a heat gun over sanding and buffing because it is just faster and less costly to get near the same results. Also, when you sand your plastics, you have to ensure you are using the proper grit sand paper and then you have to buff out all of the new scratches you just added. Not to mention, the cost of a descent buffer.

At the end of the day, this is an ATV we are talking about. Scratches are just inevitable on the trials and especially mudding.

How to restore faded ATV plastics?

When I first got my Yamaha Big Bear 400, the previous owner had it sitting in the weather for years. The plastics were faded and scratched. At the time, I did not know what I was doing so I took some gritty sand paper and some WD-40 and began sanding. Let me tell you… those plastics got so scratched up, it was unreal. It was only a small section but, on the other hand, the WD-40 ended up fixing most of the faded areas. It surprised me.

Along with applying WD-40 with a wrag, you can also remove faded areas with a heat gun using the same procedure for removing scratches.

Will a heat gun remove deep scratches on my ATV’s plastics?

I do not recommend trying to remove deep scratches with a heat gun. In order to remove a deeper scratch or gouge, the heat gun would end up causing more damage to your plastics than just a deep scratch.

If you have an older ATV like mine and do not care if the plastics get damaged anymore than they already are, give it a shot. Just make sure you keep your gun moving and allow the surface to heat up evenly.

What causes those fine scratches on your ATV plastics and how to prevent them?

If you have ever owned a brand new ATV, I bet there was probably a scratch or two already on the machine before it even had its first owner. Scratches blow my mind some times. Just makes you wonder, “How did that happen?”… “There’s no way.

Most scratches come from getting on and off your four wheeler. You throw your leg around and your boot barely touches the plastic. Boom, some type of scratch or scuff. Especially if the plastic has mud and dirt on it when your boot hits it. Your boot pushes the dirt across your plastics creating those beautiful scratches. I cringe whenever someone writes on a dirty vehicle with their finger. Nooooo!!!!! Scratches everywhere!!

The best way to prevent scratches is to not touch your plastics at all whenever they are dirty and too pressure wash your ATV before hand washing to ensure you are not sliding dirt across your plastics with your wash wrag.

Cracks, Scratches, And Fading – AtvHelper

Cracks and scratches on your ATV plastics are bound to happen sooner or later. You could maintain and clean your ATV after every use, and still, you’ll end up with faded or scratched up plastic eventually.

To some people, scuffed up plastic on their quad is not a big deal. I mean, it’s not like it affects performance, handling, or anything important anyways. But there’s just something about the way it makes the machine look that I don’t like. So I went ahead and found the best ways to fix some of the most common ATV plastic damage you’ll encounter.

Fix ATV Plastic Fading

It’s a good idea to know why plastic fades to help you understand why the methods here work for restoring faded plastic. Basically, plastic starts to look faded because the oils in the plastic evaporate over time. The evaporation of oils in the plastic is sped up when the plastic sits in the sun for long periods of time.

Plastic is made from refined oil, and as the oil in the top layer of the plastic evaporates, the plastic is weakened and looks faded. Your plastics become more prone to cracks too the more you let it fade and weaken.

You could simply sand down the top layer of plastic, until you get to the part where the oil hasn’t evaporated yet. Then buff it out until it looks nice and new. But with this approach, you’re still weakening the plastic because you are actually removing layers of the plastic each time you do this.

Another method I’ve tried, is using a heat gun to help bring the oil in the plastic to the surface. This does work pretty good and makes the plastic look nice. But again, you’re not actually restoring oil to the plastic so over time, the plastic is getting weaker and weaker.

My preferred method, and what I recommend you try first. Is to get this Premium Plastic Restorer From Car Guys found here on Amazon. This way you’re not removing plastic, oil, or anything else from your ATV parts. In fact, this stuff is actually adding additives to the plastic to help get them to the condition they were in when they were brand new. This particular plastic restorer also has some nice UV protection to help keep the plastic from drying out and fading in the future.

Keep in mind, this is not to repair scratches or anything like that. It is specifically to restore dry faded plastic. There are some other brands out there that will do the same thing, I’ve just had the most luck with this one. To be honest, this is way easier than sanding or using a heat gun anyway, and I don’t have to worry about the structural integrity of the plastic being compromised.

Fix ATV Scratches

There are two types of scratches you’ll encounter most often, light scratches or deep scratches. Light scratches are the ones caused by branches or bushes hitting the plastics and leaving little visible marks. A lot of people don’t even bother with these types of scratches, and just chalk it up to wear and tear. But for someone spending a lot of money on a quad or ATV, I can understand wanting to remove even the littlest of scratches.

The best way I’ve found for removing light scratches is to go with some 1500 Grit Wet Sandpaper. Just use the sand paper over the areas with scratches and buff it out when you’re done. You could finish up with a coat of the plastic restorer I talked about above to make it look brand new.

Using wet sand paper could even work for medium to deep scratches, but I don’t like removing that much plastic from my ATV parts. For the deeper scratches you end up having to start with 400 grit or worse, and work your way up to 1500 grit to get a smooth surface. For me, it’s not worth all the time and energy sanding to just end up compromising the integrity of the plastics. Don’t forget, the more plastic you sand away, the easier they will crack.

So for deeper scratches I’ll use a plastic bonder/filler. My go-to is this JB Weld Plastic Bonder Gap Filler found here on Amazon. I’ll use this to actually just fill the scratches. It’s pretty easy to use, you push out some of the goop from each tube. It’s a 1 to 1 ratio and comes out at the same time. Mix it together and fill the deep scratches with it. The stuff sets in about 15 – 20 mins and you can sand it down after a half hour.

If you use a putty knife to clean off the excess after filling the scratch, it makes the sanding after much easier. This does set in a black color, so if you don’t want to have to paint afterwards, don’t use this method. I don’t paint after, and I don’t mind having the black filler here and there on the plastics. It’s better than having deep gouges in your plastics just asking to be cracked.

Fix ATV Cracked Plastics

If you haven’t taken care of your ATV plastics, they could dry out over time and eventually crack and break. Or the more likely option, you hit something didn’t you? That’s ok, cracked plastics can usually be fixed without too much trouble. If you don’t want to spend the money buying new plastic parts, you’ll need to do it yourself.

For small little cracks you could try using the JB Weld I talked about above, but that only really works for cracks less than a few inches. But, you probably really messed your toy up bad, and for that, you’re gonna need something better.

I recommend using what’s called a hot staple gun. Like this Astro 7600 Hot Staple Gun Kit found here on Amazon. This thing is amazing and I’ve used it on more than just my ATV. It works by heating up these specially designed staples it comes with. The staples get set into the plastic making a nice strong bond, but still allowing the plastic to be flexible.

You just line up the pieces you want joined, and use the staple gun to staple them together. The staple is heated to it can sink into the plastic a bit, making a super strong bond. I always do the stapling on the underside of the plastic, that way you don’t see the staples. If you use this method, you will still see the crack on the upper side of the plastics. You can then use the JB Weld to fill in the crack, and then sand away any excess making a nice smooth surface.

Discolored From Bending

Sometimes a piece of plastic from an ATV gets bent but doesn’t crack. That’s good, you don’t have to repair any cracked plastics now. But it can leave a discolored looking area on the plastic that doesn’t look right.

For fixes like this, I like to use a heat gun. It’s really kinda cool how well it works, you can watch the plastic change color as you hold the heat gun to it. Be careful though, too much heat can melt the plastics and there’s no coming back from that. Hold the heat gun a few inches away from the plastic and keep it moving side to side the whole time.

Any old heat gun will work for something like this. Heck, I’ve seen people use a propane torch with success. If you’re unsure what type of heat gun to use, check this Heat Gun from Amazon for starters.

That’s all there is to it. If you want to paint your ATV plastics a new color, check out this article: How To Prep And Paint ATV Plastics.

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How to remove scratches on the plastic panels of a car

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December 18, 2020

Even the most careful driver can face the problem of damage to the plastic parts of the car.

Inside the cabin, the “weak” point is the dashboard and doors. Knowing how to remove scratches from plastic in a car, the car owner returns the parts to their original appearance, saves on expensive repairs or replacement of plastic components.

We remove scratches in the car interior

The slightest plastic defects and chips on the dashboard visually "age" the interior of the car and give it a careless look. Few manage to avoid injury. They accidentally dropped the keys - there is a scratch, they pressed a little harder - a chip. You can just open or close the door unsuccessfully. There are several ways to repair plastic.


  1. High temperatures come to the rescue.
  2. Small plastic scratches can be removed by wiping them with special repair wipes or towels.
  3. Deep scratches on the plastic will help remove wax car crayons.
  4. Scratches on a glossy dashboard are removed with a polish or abrasive gel.
  5. Damage to the paintwork of the dashboard, or when deep cracks and chips appear, require a major overhaul of the part or its complete replacement.

Remember that corrugated surfaces cannot be repaired, much less polished or heat treated. They are completely replaced.

How to remove scratches on plastic with a pencil or tissue

It is very easy to remove mechanical damage to plastic parts with a repair pencil, special wipes, as well as towels and microfiber cloths.

Before you start removing scratches on plastic, you need to know a few rules.

  1. Napkins and towels will help to remove only minor defects on the plastic.
  2. A special pencil will cope with deep scratches. The gel fills the cavities of chips and masks scratches, the surface becomes even. This tool can be purchased at specialized automotive stores. The original pencil is not cheap. However, only he can really deal with the problem. The use of inexpensive analogues will not help to remove the defect in a quality manner.
  3. Special scratch remover pastes and wax correctors are recommended for minor damage to plastic parts.

High temperatures to help car owners

Hair dryer

Before proceeding with heating the plastic, it is necessary to carefully clean the damaged area from contamination using fine-grained sandpaper. Then treat this place with an automotive degreaser. After that, we direct a working hair dryer to the defect (at maximum power). The distortion should disappear. In this way, only minor damage to the plastic can be removed. By melting plastic with deep defects in this way, you can achieve the opposite effect: the scratched place can deform even more.


The lighter is brought as close as possible to the damaged area of ​​\u200b\u200bplastic. The fire must cover its entire surface. Remove soot from the cooled surface with a swab dipped in alcohol. With the right actions, the plastic should recover. This method is also only suitable for removing small scratches.

Remember to take precautions when handling fire.

Automotive restorers

Restorers are polishes and gels. Means remove damage after repair and give the product its original appearance. The polishing process is especially important when repairing glossy surfaces. The polish is applied with an abrasive paper or a grinder.

Make sure that the tool runs at low speeds. This will allow you to control the process of polishing the plastic. Eliminate minor scratches in this way is not worth it, the measure is excessive.

Work on scratched plastic is carried out according to the following scheme:

  1. Washing;
  2. Drying;
  3. Degreasing;
  4. Application of funds;
  5. Gloss polishing to shine.

The method is suitable for removing small scratches on a glossy plastic surface.

How to remove scratches from a glossy surface correctly

The disadvantage of plastic is the rapid appearance of defects. Perform the following steps to repair deep scratches and chips:

  1. Wet cleaning of the car interior;
  2. Wash the damaged area again and degrease;
  3. Clean out scratches with a grinder;
  4. Application of a special polish or abrasive paste.


If the above methods do not work, take extreme measures.

  1. Dismantling the part;
  2. Cleaning and degreasing;
  3. Primer defects;
  4. Grinding;
  5. Painting;
  6. Drying;
  7. Lacquering;
  8. Polishing.

It is not so difficult to clean deep scratches and chips on your own. Follow the rules and take into account all the subtleties of plastic processing and then the repair will be of high quality and efficient.


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How to remove scratches from car plastic

Plastic damage can cause inconvenience to the owner. Most motorists are concerned that other people who notice scratches may think that the owner is not properly monitoring and caring for the car. This article will highlight five ways to remove scratches from the plastic of a car.

Types of damage to the plastic of the car interior

Small marks on the plastic. This damage is usually characterized by very small scratches. The easiest way to remove them is to use special tools.

Deep scratches on plastic. Cleaning them takes longer. There are several effective methods that will help you avoid the expensive costs of buying an entire plastic part of a car, which we will discuss below.

UV rays from the sun. Direct UV radiation significantly affects the color of the plastic. If, in addition, several marks appear, the appearance deteriorates sharply. This complex damage to the plastic in the car interior can only be repaired by a general surface resurfacing.

The main ways to eliminate scratches on the plastic of the car

  • warming up;
  • Polishing;
  • Using a special pencil;
  • Flame smoothing;
  • Overhaul (replacement of components).

Blow dry

In this technique, you can use not only a building hair dryer, but also a home one, its power is enough to remove deep marks on the surface of a car. The hair dryer recovery rule is very simple. We clean the pre-treated area of ​​\u200b\u200bthe cabin from dust and degrease, then we warm up the plastic. As a result, the grid of scratches is tightened or becomes almost imperceptible due to the reduced volume.

Important! The hair dryer must be carefully driven over the entire deformed area so that the heat is distributed evenly.

Removal with lighter

Removing plastic scratches in the cabin with a lighter is very similar to the previous method, preheating with a household hair dryer. Only in this case we use an open flame. Run the flame of the lighter quickly over the damaged surface, let it cool, then wipe the soot with alcohol wool.

Scratch polishing

The most effective way to eliminate scratches in the car interior is to polish with a sanding paste designed specifically for this purpose. To do this, the plastic is thoroughly washed, dried, then the paste is spread, and the surface is polished by hand or with a grinder at the lowest speed.

Using the pencil

If the damage is minor, scratches can be removed with a special pencil. When you buy it, you must choose the color as accurately as possible. By applying a special composition to the scratch, we fill the grooves so that they disappear from the surface.

Machine overhaul

Panels are being refinished and varnished.

Learn more