How To Fix Blotchy Spray Paint

Spray painting is often sold as the stress-free alternative to painting with a brush. If you look at any company which sells a spray-painting gun they will advertise a perfect finish, and effortless application, which can lead you to believe that spray paint has no negatives.

But this simply isn’t the case. In fact, a lot of the problems that you experience with regular paint you can also experience with spray paint, including blotching.

Blotching has to be one of the most frustrating things that can go wrong with paint, and it isn’t any less frustrating when it occurs with spray paint. When this happens it can be difficult to know what to do to fix it, that’s why we’ve put together this guide to help you.

How To Fix Blotchy Spray Paint

What causes Blotchy Spray Paint?

Before we take a look at how to fix your blotchy spray paint, let’s take a look at what causes it. There are a lot of different things that can cause imperfections in your spray paint that can make it look blotchy.

But the main three things that will cause a blotchy finish in your spray paint are: paint drips, fish eyes, and orange peel. So let’s have a look at what causes these three imperfections in your spray-painting.

You may not have heard of the other two types of blotching, but the chances are that you have heard of paint drips.

If you use regular paint and a brush to apply paint to a surface then paint drips are very common, and this is one of the main reasons that some people choose to use spray paint instead.

However, it is a common misconception that spray paint cannot suffer from paint drips, because it actually can. Paint dripping is rarer in spray paint, but it can occur if the paint has not been thinned properly, so be careful when thinning paint for your spray gun.

You may think that you don’t know what fish eyes are, but the chances are that you have encountered them if you have painted before.

Fish eyes are craters which occur in the paint’s finish and are caused by the paint being contaminated by oil from your skin or other painting tools.

This can also be caused by the paint encountering water or oil when in the spray gun, so ensure your equipment is completely dry before adding paint.

Finally, there is a fair chance that you haven’t heard of orange peel, but this type of blotching is also incredibly common.

Orange peel occurs when there are inconsistencies in the surface that the paint is being applied to, or if the paint is applied at the wrong angle, or if too much paint is applied to an area at one time. So let’s take a look at how you can fix these types of blotching.

How to Fix Blotchy Spray Paint

Unfortunately, there is no easy way to fix blotchy spray paint. Instead, it is best to avoid this in the first place by taking precautions.

This might not be the news that you want to hear, but this doesn’t mean that your paintwork is ruined by blotchy spray paint. However, it does mean that you will likely have to repaint.

The best way to fix errors in your spray paint is to sand the surface where the bad paintwork has occurred. This is especially important for fish eyes and paint drips as they can cause there to be bumps in the surface of the material.

You should sand away these errors and once the material is flat again, you can reapply the spray paint, and you should get a better finish if you follow the precautions that we are going to outline below.

You should also sand the surface that you are working on if the orange peel finish may be caused by inconsistencies in the material.

Once you have sanded away any errors in the paintwork, you should then repaint it, using the steps below to avoid any blotching occurring again.

How to Avoid Blotchy Spray Paint

When it comes to spray paint, it is easier to take precautions to avoid blotching than to fix it. The steps you should take to avoid blotching are actually very simple, so let’s take a look at what you should do in order to get a perfect finish with your spray paint.

The first thing that you need to do is prepare the surface that you will be applying the paint to. How you should do this will differ depending on whether you are working with metal, plastic, or wood.

With both metal and plastic the most important preparation step is cleaning the surface to ensure there is no dust or oil on it. Whereas with wood one of the most important steps is to sand the surface to ensure it is smooth when the paint is applied.

Once the surface is ready, you should then practice using the spray gun, especially if it is new to you. Test it out on a spare piece of material to ensure you have mastered how to use it before you get started.

When you are comfortable with the spray gun, you will then need to think about maintaining a proper distance from the material to ensure the paint gun can work properly. It is easy to encroach on this distance, so take precautions to ensure that you do not use it.

After you have found the correct distance, you will then need to find the right angle to spray from. You should never spray directly onto the surface so bear this in mind when you are painting.

After you have found the correct angle, you can then begin applying the paint to your surface. When you are done, simply wash the equipment thoroughly to ensure they are ready to use next time.


In short, it is easier to avoid blotching in spray paint than it is to fix it. So before you start spray-painting, follow the steps above to avoid any imperfections occurring in your paintwork.

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