How to Paint Fender Flares

How to Paint Fender Flares

If you have recently purchased a set of Fender Flares, or plan on doing so soon, then you know that nearly all manufacturers ship them in a matte black finish that can be easily painted to match the color of your vehicle. What may not be as obvious is the level of preparation and attention that goes into properly painting a Fender Flare. In this article, we explain how to paint your Fender Flares using high quality enamel, or polyurethane automotive paint for the best results and longevity. Anyone can paint Fender Flares if you have some patience and don’t mind getting a little messy – well, maybe more than just a little, unless you plan on getting a can of spray paint and going wild – which will certainly ruin the Fender Flares, as well as exclude your vehicle from any kind of respectability on the road. So put on your painters gear and get ready to save money, we’re going to create a work of art here – albeit being uninspired by anyone like Dali or van Gogh – we want a solid, single color finish (as seen on the right) that will blend in seamlessly with your vehicle color.

Tools Needed
Rubber gloves 2000 grit scotch brite pad Tack cloth Grease remover
200 grit sand paper Adhesion promoter Flex additive Automotive paint of choice

Pre-Painting Steps

Step 1: Before starting the painting process, hold the flares to the vehicle surface to verify a correct fitting. Once you confirm you have the right flare, move to step 2 – finding the correct paint for your Fender Flare.

Step 2: Of course, painting must always be done prior to the actual installation of your Fender Flares.  So this step in the process will entail finding the paint code for your vehicle color. Some auto supply shops list them in a book by model, make, year and color. Otherwise, you can call the dealership where you purchased the vehicle, check the vehicle manual and if all else fails, check the vehicle manufacturer website or give them a call. Once you have verified the paint code and obtained the paint, as well as all the necessary supplies, follow the paint manufacturer’s manual and recommended procedures. This will ensure the best warranted process from your coatings manufacturer.

Note: Your color coat must have a flex additive to prevent the paint from cracking.Step 3: Clean the outer surface with a good quality grade degreaser. Don’t use Lacquer thinner reducer as a degreaser because it will repel the paint. Wipe the outer surface of the flares thoroughly with a tack rag before painting. Any dust on the flare will cause the paint to flake and peel.

Tip: Do not fit the extrusion or any of the hardware to the Fender Flare until the paint is completely dry.

Painting Steps

Step 1: Sand the surface of the flare with a 200 grit sand paper to remove imperfections and rough surfaces – this allows the primer to stick on the Fender Flares. After preparing the paint area, wipe the entire surface with a tack cloth to ensure no dust is on the flare.

Step 2: Apply the adhesion promoter to the surface of the flares. Sand the flares again with a super light sanding of 2000 grit scotch brite pad.  Wipe down with the tack rag.

Step 3: Apply the paint of choice to the fender Flare using a slow, sweeping motion. For better results apply two to three thin, but even coats on the flares to avoid runs or sagging paint.

Step 4: Dust or mist the first coat of paint onto the flare then allow it to dry for around 30 minutes. Then, check the manufacturers guidelines for specific drying time.

Step 5: Continue adding coats of paint to the flares until the desired coverage is achieved. Let each coat dry for a couple of minutes before adding the next coat of paint.```

Step 6: Allow the flares to dry for 24 hours to completely harden the paint.

Note: Do not remove paint from the Fender Flare before re-painting. Never use a paint stripper, as it will ruin the flare by soaking into the plastic and causingthe next coat of paint to peel off. The best thing to do is to just leave the paint on the Fender Flares. Work on the surface with some light sanding, primer and repaint of your flares.


You have now successfully completed painting your Fender Flares! If you need help with the installation process, check out our article regarding installation of Fender Flares.

For other information regarding Fender Flares, from buyers guides to product reviews, check back on our articles page or blog regularly.


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Posted on February 13th, 2013
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