In every industry there are technical terms that have long histories that everyone within that certain field knows about but that those who are outside that area of expertise have little to no understanding of. Sandblasting is one of those terms within the auto industry (and sometimes within a wider range than that!) and it is a shame because the action the term refers to is very useful. If you have a problem with rust, corrosion, dents, scratches or any imperfections on the surface of your car, then sandblasting can help you fix that in a hurry.
What Exactly Is Sandblasting?
Sandblasting is a term used to describe the use of a high-speed stream of coarse material to change the surface or shape of an item. Originally this material was nearly always sand, which is where the term originates from. However, as the industry has grown and tested different methods, now a variety of materials are used. Sometimes sand will still be used, but often other ingredients (referred to as 'media') will be used in its place including glass beads, plastic, silicon and even baking soda. These different media are split into two groups: hard and soft.
What Is the Difference Between Hard and Soft Media?
Sandblasting is, as was described above, used to change the surface or shape of an item. When you use harder media, you are going to have a more drastic effect. So when you use material like metal shot or glass beads on your car, the procedure removes rust, reshapes the surface or even just strengthens it. When you use softer media like sand or plastic you generally remove the surface layer of paint and smooth out some scratches. You don't really need to worry about which type of media is used on your car as your mechanic will make that choice depending on your needs.
Does Sandblasting Damage the Car?
Sandblasting is completely safe and used all over the world. It is a method that is much faster than other techniques that would do the same thing (such as sanding or grinding the surface of your car) and one that is very responsive. Sandblasting doesn't take very long, and often you can have your car back within the day or at the most after a couple of days, if the repair is a big job. If the car is too far gone and sandblasting won't actually help solve the problem, then your mechanic will let you know. But other than that, it is a perfectly safe and popular method of car modification.
Talk to your mechanic to learn more about sandblasting.