Orange peel is often the result of painting technique, or some technical reasons related to air pressure or paint viscosity. It can be caused by the quick evaporation of thinner, incorrect spray gun setup (such as low air pressure or using the incorrect nozzle), spraying the paint at an angle other than perpendicular, or applying excessive paint.

When it comes to aerosol spray painting, you don't have control over a couple of these items, namely, paint viscosity and nozzle size. Your ScratchesHappen aerosol can was filled with the correct viscosity paint, and the can contains the correct reducer and propellant combination, and air pressure, to properly atomize the paint. The nozzle on the can has been tested to properly atomize the paint.

However, there are a few variables that you can control. One is temperature. If you spray at a cold temperature, the pressure in the can will be reduced, and that can cause the paint to not properly atomize. Make sure the air temperature is at least 70 degrees. If it is colder, you can raise the temperature of the can by filling a pot with hot tap water, and immersing the can partially in the water to get the temperature higher. Don't boil the water...normal hot water from the tap mixed with cold water to a temperature that your hand can stand is adequate for this. Too much heat and it risks exploding the can. So proceed carefully if you try this. This is a good discussion on how to warm a can up

The other variable is your application technique. Applying the paint too heavy, or spraying at an angle that is not perpendicular to the body panel can result in orange peel. Our paint is best sprayed in several thin coats, instead of heavy coats. Practice this on a test card or test panel to see how your technique affects the final finish. With a little practice, you can eliminate the dreaded orange peel finish!

Note: if you are reading this article because you have some orange peel in your newly painted finish, it can be corrected. You will have to dry sand the orange peel area with 500-1000 grit paper until the orange peel is smoothed out, and then re-apply the base color using the techniques above. The same issues and solutions apply to clear coat that has an orange peel finish.