How to Fix a Huge Dent in Your Car at Home Without Ruining the Paint Job

Having a dent on your car is like walking around the mall with a huge ketchup stain on your white tee—it's unsightly. You can ignore it, but other people won't and they'll unfairly judge you for it.

My ride currently has a dent on the passenger side door and a broken rearview mirror that still needs repaired, but I trust a mechanic just about as much as I do a Fox News reporter.

In all seriousness, taking your car to a shop can become really expensive. I have a friend with his own shop and he offered to fix my dent for $200—and that's his discounted rate.

Luckily, there are some DIY methods for fixing dented cars. You can use compressed air and a blow dryer or dry ice to fix small dents, but if you're like me and have a huge one, the only other alternative is a costly dent removal kit.

Unless...you've got some hot glue lying around!

I haven't used a hot glue gun since elementary school, but always had a fondness for them. First gun I ever held. Now, thanks to Tom George, I'm going to be holstering it again. In his video below, Tom shows how he removed a dent using hot glue, wooden dowels, and some screws.

You can get wooden dowels at Home Depot, Lowe's, and most crafts shops, but if you have an old school closet like I do, you can use the wooden rod that you hang clothes on. Obviously, if you need it, don't use it, but that's what I'll be using.

Step 1: Make Your Grips

Tom cut about five 4-inch sections from the dowel rod, then screwed a woodscrew into each side as grips. If you don't have any woodscrews, you could easily use bolts. Just drill a hole all of the way through your five pieces and slide the bolt in.

These will form the handles you'll be pulling from.

Step 2: Clean the Dent Area

Clean the space around the dent and use a blow dryer to heat up the area. You don't need to use water and soap or anything, just wipe it down with an old rag to get rid of any dirt that could mess with the gluing process.

Step 3: Glue Grips to the Area Around the Dent

Heat up your glue gun and apply a generous amount of glue to the flat end of your dowel opposite the grips.

Place each dowel around the dented area and not directly on the dent itself.

Step 4: Pull Out the Dent

Let all of the dowels cool for about ten to twenty minutes, then you can begin to pull the dent out while ripping off the dowels.

Do not just yank each dowel, but really pull on them and take note of whether or not the dent is being affected. Pulling on a dowel at the top and then a dowel at the bottom may be more effective in popping out the dent.

Step 5: Repeat if Necessary

If the dent is still visible after one go, repeat the process until you're satisfied, and this time it's okay to place them directly on the dent.

The dried hot glue should scrape off fairly easily, and you're paint job should still look good.

Cover photo by Shutterstock

3 Comments

Interesting Method! thanks for this post

very useful thx. Can't wait to try it out on something. Tip: as you said you didn't have a rubber mallet, instead you could always wrap the head of the hammer with a decent amount of masking tape, should stop the marking from the hammer. Yes I used to work as a beater/sprayer.

That's what I call perseverance! I have big dent where I backed into my wife's car. It may be too much for your method, but it certainly is worth a try! I'll let you know if it works.

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