How to Remove Swirls in Automotive Paint, Lacquer and Clear Coat

Heavy Swirls and Holograms on black painted panel

Swirls are most commonly caused by bad washing / drying techniques - but can also be caused by incorrect polishing techniques. 

Our range of Cutting Compounds are optimal for removing heavy defects and scratches, but swirl marks and holograms typically require a less aggressive application with a fine cut polish and finishing pads.

Below are our recommended processes - both via Rotary and Dual Action (Orbital) polishing systems. 

Remove Swirls... with Rotary Polishing

Below is our recommended process using our Professional Automotive Refinishing Range - in this case using our G360 Super Fast Finish - which for bodyshops will leave you with an industry accepted swirl-free finish by eye in minimal time.

Depending on your compounding system and the severity of the swirls you may require the use of a cutting compound first - the below process is based on the Medium Cut and Fine Cut stages of the G360 system but for lighter swirls you could just use the Fine Cut process

Medium Cut

Apply a small amount of G360 Compound to the sanded area on an automotive panel

Step 1: G360 Super Fast Compound

Apply product, using a small amount
Spread G360 Compound on automotive panel using G Mop Angled Yellow Compounding Foam

Step 2: Polish

Polish at 900 - 1300rpm, keeping the pad flat
Wipe automotive panel with a G Plus Finishing Cloth

Step 3: Inspect

Wipe clean with a G Plus Finishing Cloth

Fine Cut

Apply a small amount of G360 Finish to the automotive panel

Step 1: G360 Super Fast Finish

Apply product, using a small amount
Spread G360 Finish on automotive panel using G Mop Angled Black Finishing Foam

Step 2: Polish

Polish at 800 - 1100rpm, keeping the pad flat
Wipe automotive panel with a G Plus Finishing Cloth

Step 3: Inspect

Wipe clean with a G Plus Finishing Cloth

Products Used

G360 SUPER FAST COMPOUND - Range Photo of 1 KG, 500 G and 100 G SKU(s) on a white background

G360 Super Fast Compound is designed to rapidly eliminate sanding marks and minor defects from painted and lacquered automotive surfaces.

PLACEHOLDER

The G Mop Compounding Foam range has been specially designed for their excellent cut and gloss properties, minimal throw off (mess) and a low operating temperature when used with Farécla’s range of Compounds and Polishes.

G360 SUPER FAST FINISH - Range Photo of 1 L, 500 ML SKU(s) on a white background

G360 Super Fast Finish is designed to rapidly eliminate swirls and holograms from painted and lacquered automotive surfaces - ideal on darker colours after using G360 Compound.

PLACEHOLDER

The G Mop Finishing Foam range has been specially designed for their excellent high gloss properties, minimal throw off (mess) and a low operating temperature when used with Farécla’s range of Finishing Compounds and Waxes .

G PLUS FINISHING CLOTH - 1 Unfolded Yellow Cloths on a White Background

G Plus Finishing Cloths are ideal for quick cleaning and drying jobs. Its microfibre technology grips dust and small dirt particles, and the cloth’s edgeless finish prevents damaging and scratches. 

G PLUS CORDLESS ROTARY POLISHER - Photo of Front of Polishing Machine at a Slight Angle
New

The G Plus Cordless Rotary Polisher has been developed to Farécla’s own specification to be the battery powered equivalent of the popular corded polishing machine.

G PLUS ROTARY POLISHER - Photo of Front of Polishing Machine at a Slight Angle

The G Plus Rotary Polisher has been developed to Farécla’s own specifications to deliver the ideal polishing machine for bodyshops and trade professionals.

Remove Swirls... with Dual Action Polishing

A skilled bodyshop operative can achieve a flawless finish with a Rotary polishing system - but for clientele seeking a higher quality finish under the closest scrutiny, some bodyshops are adopting a Dual Action Polishing process as part of an end-of-line process for their ease of use and reliable attainment of a flawless finish.

For those customers, Farécla recommend the use of a Dual Action Polishing Machine and a dedicated D.A. Fine Polish and Pad.

Below is a partial Dual Action process on the basis that a compounding step has been used beforehand - depending on the severity of the swirl marks you may need to start with a D.A. Cutting Compound and Pad

An orange coloured foam pad being attached to a cordless Farécla polishing machine

Attach your Foam Polishing Pad...

The Farécla Dual Action Polishers come with this pad free in the box.
Pea sized dots of Fine Polish are being applied to an orange foam polishing pad attached to a Farécla dual action polisher

Apply the product

Add a few small, pea sized dots of polish to the pad - you can always add more later
Spreading Fine Polish onto the surface with the Farécla Dual Action polishing machine

Spread to the surface...and set your machine speed

We recommend around 3000 opm.
Dual Action polishing machine being used on a black automotive panel - with arrow suggesting working in a left to right motion

Polish from side to side...

Let the machine do the work, it should just lightly glide over the surface. Incorrectly applying pressure can create further defects.
Dual Action polishing machine being used on a black automotive panel - with arrow suggesting working in an up and down motion

...and then up and down.

Polish using overlapping movements, working side to side and then up and down.
Wipe automotive panel with a G Plus Finishing Cloth

Wipe and Inspect

Gently wipe clean with a G Plus Finishing Cloth

Products Used

G3 PRO D.A. FINE POLISH - Photo of 500 ml size SKU on a White Background

G3 Pro D.A. Fine Polish is a light abrasive liquid that removes minor imperfections for a mirror shine finish - optimised for use with a Dual Action Polisher.

G3 PRO FOAM POLISHING PAD - Photo of Foam Pad - Velour Side - Top and Side On View

The G3 Pro Foam Polishing Pad offers a light cut perfect for finishing and is ideal for OE and refinished paints.

G PLUS FINISHING CLOTH - 1 Unfolded Yellow Cloths on a White Background

G Plus Finishing Cloths are ideal for quick cleaning and drying jobs. Its microfibre technology grips dust and small dirt particles, and the cloth’s edgeless finish prevents damaging and scratches. 

G PLUS DUAL ACTION POLISHER - Photo of Polishing Machine at a Slight Angle

The G Plus Dual Action Polisher has been developed to Farécla’s own specification to deliver the ideal DA polisher for anyone looking to achieve a flawless finish.

Where to buy?

Final Cleaning and Protection

Spray Farecla Clean and Protect onto dusty automotive panel

Step 1: Spray

Spray a light mist onto the surface.
Wipe away Farecla Clean and Protect  from automotive panel

Step 2: Wipe

Wipe clean with a G Plus Finishing Cloth.
Wipe away Farecla Clean and Protect from automotive panel

Step 3: Buff

Use a clean, dry G Plus Finishing Cloth to buff to a shine.