BMW I4 M50 in Frozen Portimao Blue paint

BMW Touch Up Paint: Which Is Best and How to Use It? (Guide)

Imagine you’re sipping your morning coffee and notice a small scratch on your beloved BMW. Ouch! It hurts, we know.

So, how do you keep your car looking as polished as ever?

You guessed it – touch up paint!

Whether it’s a tiny scratch or a small chip, the right touch up paint can make it look like nothing ever happened.

But before you dive in, it’s essential to know which touch up paint is the best for your BMW and how to use it correctly. That’s exactly what this guide is all about!

Let’s go!

What is the best BMW touch up paint? (+ Where to buy it)

Let’s dive into the exciting part, finding the ultimate touch-up paint for your BMW.

With so many options, it can be like looking for a needle in a haystack. But don’t worry; we’ve got your back!

Below, we’ve compiled a list of the best BMW touch up paints and where to buy them:

1. Genuine BMW Touch Up Paint

First, we have the Genuine BMW Touch Up Paint:

BMW touch-up paint sticks

This is an original BMW touch up paint, which means that it is directly produced and sold by BMW.

2. TouchUpDirect Touch Up Paint

If, for any reason, you’re not looking for a genuine BMW product, then there are always products from third-party manufacturers you could buy.

TouchUpDirect is a highly-rated producer of touch up paint for BMWs and other makes.

TouchupDirect homepage

3. ScratchesHappen Touch Up Paint Kit

If you’re looking for a slightly cheaper kit, you might look at the kits from ScratchesHappen, a small business located in Utah, US:

Scratcheshappen homepage

4. Ouzorp Rim Touch Up Paint

If you have scratches on your BMW’s wheels, then there’s a special touch up paint for that as well!

Wheels are easily scratched, especially if you’re parking sideways.

A kit like the one below can help you repair scratches and slight dents:

Ouzorp car wheel scratch kit

Where do you find the paint code of your BMW?

As you’ve seen by now, before you can buy some touch up paint, you must have an essential piece of information: the paint code of your BMW.

A paint code is a unique code that tells you the exact color of your car. BMW has many shades, and even if two colors look nearly identical, there’s a good chance they are different. That’s why knowing the exact paint code is crucial.

BMW 1 Series 128Ti in Alpine White
BMW 1 Series 128Ti in Alpine White

So, where can you find your BMW’s paint code? Typically, you can find the paint code on a sticker or a metal plate inside your car.

The most common locations for BMWs are:

  1. Inside the engine bay: Look for a sticker on the strut tower or near the fender. It’s usually close to where the hood closes.
BMW color code location example
  1. Driver’s side door jamb: Open the driver’s side door and check for a sticker or plate on the door jamb or the side of the door.
BMW color code location example door jamb
  1. Inside the glove box: Sometimes, the paint code is tucked away inside the glove box, so don’t forget to peek in there.

Once you find the sticker or plate, look for a sequence with three- to four letters and numbers. That’s the code you need!

If, for some reason, you can’t find the paint code or you’re not sure if you’ve got the right one, don’t worry.

You can also look up your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), and enter it into a VIN decoder like

How to find BMW color code from VIN number

Tip: Interested in seeing some of the best BMW colors? Check out our article!

How do you use BMW touch up paint? (Instructions)

So, you’ve found your BMW’s color and got your hands on the perfect touch-up paint.

Now, let’s roll up our sleeves and get down to business – the application!

Let’s break it down into steps.

Preparing the car for paint application

Before you start painting, you need to set the stage:

  1. Cleaning the area. Your car needs to be spick and span before you start. Wash the area you’ll be painting with soap and water, then wipe it down with rubbing alcohol. This will ensure that no dust or grime is trapped under the new paint.
  2. Assessing the damage. Take a good look at the scratch or chip. How deep is it? If it’s down to the metal, you might need a primer. Also, check the size. Larger areas might need a different approach than small chips.
  3. Gathering materials. Aside from the paint, you’ll need a few more goodies: a fine brush or applicator, primer (if the scratch is deep), clear coat, rubbing alcohol, sandpaper (if the area is rough), and a clean cloth.

Applying the touch up paint

Now, it’s showtime! But let’s do this safely and smartly:

  1. Safety precautions. Ensure you’re working in a well-ventilated area or outside, as paint fumes can be intense. And wearing gloves to keep the paint off your hands is not a bad idea.
  2. Technique for using paint pens. If you’re using a paint pen or bottle, shake it well before you start. Apply the paint smoothly, in the same direction as the scratch.
  3. Layering the paint for an even finish. One coat might not do the trick, so be patient. Let the paint dry for at least 20-30 minutes before applying another layer. Repeat until you’re happy with how it looks. The goal is to make the touch-up paint level with the rest of the paint.

Drying and finishing process

We’re on the home stretch! But before you take your BMW for a victory lap, we need to make sure that the paint job is ready.

  1. Allowing adequate drying time. After applying the last coat of paint, let your car sit and allow the paint to dry thoroughly. It’s recommended to wait at least 24 hours, but if you can give it 48 hours, even better!
  2. Applying clearcoat. Clearcoat is like the magic potion that gives your paint job that glossy finish and helps protect it. Apply it just like you did the paint, using smooth, even strokes. If you’re using a spray, keep it moving to avoid pooling. Let it dry for another 20-30 minutes.
  3. Sanding and polishing the area. Now that the clearcoat is dry, it’s time for the finishing touch. Use ultra-fine sandpaper (2000-grit or higher) to gently sand the area until it’s smooth. After that, polish it with a small amount of car polish and a clean cloth. Voila! You should have a flawless finish.
BMW M3 Competition in Individual Imola Red II
BMW M3 Competition in Imola Red

Post-application care

You’ve done the hard work; now let’s ensure it lasts!

  1. Washing and waxing. It’s better to wait before hitting the car wash. If you can, wait at least 30 days before washing your car with soap. And as for waxing, give it a good 90 days to ensure everything is fully cured.
  2. Long-term maintenance tips. Treat the touched-up area like the rest of your car. Regular washing and waxing are key. Also, keep an eye on the area to make sure the paint is holding up. It might be time for a touch-up if you notice any peeling or fading.

FAQs about touch up paint

Here are some more frequently asked questions about touch up paint!

Does BMW touch up paint work?

BMW touch up paint definitely works for little scratches and chips. It’s specifically designed to match your car’s original color and blend seamlessly. The trick is in the application – take your time, prepare the surface well, and apply it carefully.

Is it good to use touch up paint on a car?

Using touch-up paint on your car is a fantastic way to keep it looking its best. Not only does it improve the appearance, but it also protects the car’s surface from rust and further damage.

How long does BMW touch up paint take to dry?

BMW touch up paint typically dries to the touch within 20-30 minutes. But it’s best to let it cure properly. Ideally, you should let it dry for at least 24 hours before applying any clear coat. And if you can wait 48 hours, that’s even better for the paint to really set in.

Does touch up paint need clear coat?

Yes, indeed! A clear coat adds that glossy shine, and more importantly, it protects the paint from the elements. So, after you’ve applied the touch-up paint and let it dry, make sure to add a layer or two of clear coat.

Can I use touch up paint on deep scratches?

You can use touch up paint on deep scratches, but it gets a bit trickier. For deep scratches that go down to the metal, you’ll need to use a primer first. After applying the primer, you can then use the touch-up paint.

Also, deep scratches might need a few more layers of paint to get them level with the surrounding area. Remember to be patient and allow drying time between coats.


It’s incredible how a little bottle of touch-up paint can make such a difference, right?

But remember, the secret lies in choosing the right paint and applying it with love and care.

We wish you all the best with applying your touch up paint!

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