How to Paint Bondo


Bondo is a two-part putty manufactured by 3M for auto-body repair, and wood repair around the home. Bondo is epoxy-based, strong and resistant to extremes of heat, cold, water and other chemicals. Mix the two parts in equal amounts, and apply the putty; it dries in approximately 30 minutes. Bondo will not shrink or crack.

Things You'll Need

  • Rags
  • Plastic container
  • Putty knife
  • Gloves
  • Bondo
  • 10-inch auto body file
  • Face mask
  • Sandpaper
  • Auto spray primer
  • Auto spray paint
  • Wear gloves to protect your skin from sticking to the Bondo. Clean the surface to which you are applying the Bondo.

  • Mix the two parts in a small, plastic container with your putty knife. It has the consistency of chewing gum when properly mixed.

  • Spread the Bondo on your repair. Spread the putty and push it into dents with a putty knife. Wipe off the excess. It is better to apply too much Bondo than too little.

  • File down the excess Bondo. File as closely along the surface as you can.

  • Put on a face mask. Sand the spot being repaired with medium-grit sandpaper; sand in a circular motion. Switch to the fine-grit sandpaper when the putty is flush with the surface.

  • Wipe the sanded area with a damp rag. Wait for it to dry completely. Put on your face mask.

  • Spray auto primer onto the repaired surface. Wait one hour for it to dry, and then spray the auto-body paint color of your choice.

Tips & Warnings

  • Work with Bondo and auto paint outdoors, or in a well-ventilated room.

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  • Photo Credit putty knife image by Jim Mills from
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