If your car has rust, you can be sure of one of two things: 1) the rust is not going away unless you do something about it, and 2) you have got rust in more places than the spots you can see. You basically, then, have two options on how to proceed.
Method one uses a body filler kit to repair the hole and protect it from the reoccurrence of rust. This method yields a strong, durable result, but it is time-consuming, messy, and involves many toxic materials. The item list for such a project will inevitably involve a body filler repair kit, breathing mask, drill with a wire brush, sandpaper, eye goggles, ball peen hammer, rust-resistant primer, paint.
- Self-Adhesive Metal Body Patch
- This product is highly durable
- This product is manufactured in United States.
Method two is less messy and less toxic, but it is also more time consuming and more expensive. You are going need a fiberglass repair kit and all of the tool and gear listed for the body filler job.
The Best Rust Repair is No Rust, but there’s also Bondo
While any auto-repair specialist will tell you that the best rust repair is not to get rust in the first place, which means proactively washing and waxing your car, as well as touching up salt spots and scratches with manufacturer’s paint from time to time.
However, you can’t always prevent rust, no matter how diligent you are, so you are going to need to know at least a little bit about some of your product options. For this blog, we have chosen Bondo products, which are available on Amazon, and come with a combined 3.75 rating by 355 customers.
Introduced in 1955, Bondo is a body filler or body solder owned by 3M. Introduced in 1955, Bondo is actually a two-part (resin & hardener) mix of polymers and talc based on a product developed by World War II vet and auto repair shop owner, Robert Merton Spink.
3M Makes ScotchTM Tape and Fiberglass Repair Kits
- Bondo Fiberglass Repair Kit 420 has everything needed for the Do-It-Yourselfer
- Includes easy how-to directions, fiberglass resin, and liquid hardener
- Includes other necessary items like plastic spreader, fiberglass cloth, mixing stick and mixing tray
With $30 billion in annual sales, 3M (The Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company) employs 90,000 people worldwide and produces more than 55,000 products, including adhesives, laminates, dental and orthodontic products, medical products, car-care products, and more. Founded in 1902, and with a 2017 net income of almost 5 billion dollars, 3M knows a thing or two about sticky stuff.
The Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company’s Bondo Fiberglass Resin and Repair Kit is available in a variety of amounts, but, for our purposes, we chose the 28.8-ounce-kit that costs of a hair under $26. With the kit, you will find the fiberglass resin, itself, and liquid hardener. You will also find a plastic spreader, a special cloth, mixing sticks, and a mixing tray.
The “Non-shrinking polyester resin” bonds to both metals and plastics, and it hardens up quickly for fast repairs.
This product has been known to be used in boat-building, the manufacturer notes, but it is also perfectly applicable to cars and other automobiles. The resin is extremely versatile and has been tested with wood, masonry, and metals of all kinds. Plus, it works well with most paint system and clear coats and has been proven as one of the best rust repair solutions out there.
Bondo Professional Gold Body Repair Kit
This Bondo repair kit is made specifically for metal work. It comes in a 32-ounce-kit for @ 22.34 and features a “self-adhesive metal body patch,” and an advanced resin technology for fast drying and easy application. Intended to be used with scratches, holes, and dents, in the box, you are going to get the resin, the body patch, the cream hardener, an application stick, and step-by-step instructions.
The formula is specially manufactured to bond with galvanized steel, aluminum, and other common auto body materials. It is easy to mix, easy to apply, and easy to sand, and features smooth even application in as little as 5 to 20 minutes. The finished results are non-shrinking, water-resistant, and non-reactive.
Best Rust Repair Wrap-Up
Popular Mechanics reminds us that it is best to correct surface rust as soon as you see it. This proactive step help to stop or retard the electrochemical breakdown of iron-based metals. This reaction happens when oxygen and the iron in metal (all metal has some amount of iron in it) meet, and the result is iron-oxide or rust. Auto manufacturers have invented crafty ways to try to “hide” the iron in metal.
But environmental variables like moisture and road salt can erode stainless treatments and metal polishes to expose the iron in metal. When this happens the iron is exposed to the air and rust begins to form despite metal treatments.
The best rust repair, is, of course, proper maintenance. But the fix for rust, once it happens, thanks to 3M and Bondo, is similar to touching up your paint job, and one must use an abrasive to sand off the infected rusty area until the clean, shiny metal is revealed. Next, wipe the area down with a cloth and apply your primer followed by a Bondo resin of your choice, sand, paint, apply a clear coat, and you are done.