How to Fix a Dent with a Stud Welder Gun

Accidents happen, and the only thing to do when fender benders and other automotive mishaps occur is to repair the damage and move one with your life. Unfortunately, such accidents can take a toll not just on your nerves but also your pocketbook.

One way of saving a little cash on dent repairs is to pull out the dent yourself using a stud welder gun. This is not an unusual DIY job, and many auto parts stores and online venues even sell stud welder kits with the necessary materials for this purpose. Although these kits aren’t cheap, it is less expensive to purchase one than enlisting a professional to do this part for you.

The process is relatively simple for those with a little handyman-style finesse, and you will have the materials on hand if you find yourself needing similar auto body repairs again.

Part 1 of 1: Repair the dent

Materials Needed

  • Bucket
  • Clean cloth or sponge
  • Dual action sander
  • Mild detergent
  • Stud welder kit
  • Water

person sanding down metal

Step 1: Sand down the metal. Sand down 4 inches past the dented area to the metal using a dual action sander.

This is because the studs that come in the stud welder kit can only adhere to metal.

soapy bucket and sponge

Step 2: Clean the dented area. Prepare a mix of soapy warm water in a bucket using a mild detergent like dish soap in the same concentration you would use to wash dishes.

Use a clean cloth or sponge to cleanse the dented area and remove any waxy or oily residue, then rinse thoroughly with plain water and allow to air dry.

person attaching studs to car body

Step 3: Weld studs. Weld studs in a cross-like configuration across the dent according to the directions on your particular stud welder kit.

You’ll want to begin just inside the edges of the dent and work your way toward the center. For larger dents of more than 6 inches in diameter, you may consider adding two additional lines that intersect your cross like a pie sliced into 8 pieces.

person pulling on studs

Step 4: Pull the dents out. Pull the damage out from the studs one at a time with the slide hammer, starting with the outer studs and working your way in toward the middle.

To do this, slip the slide hammer over a stud, holding it in place with one hand in the center of your tool, and then pull the end handle with your other hand to bring the metal surface toward you.

stud welder placed over stud, ready to pull it off

Step 5: Remove the studs. Remove the studs by placing the slide hammer over them and breaking them off in a quick, firm motion.

Sand down any part of the studs that remain attached to your car’s body.

Step 6: Have your car painted. Take your car to an auto body repair professional for painting, or paint your own car to return to car’s appearance to like new.

While pulling a dent on a car using a stud welder gun may take up an afternoon, it is a good skill to have in your wheelhouse for when future mishaps occur. You can choose to enlist professional help for far less than having both the dent pulled and the paint repaired, or you may choose to repaint the area yourself.

Regardless of the route you choose, bear in mind that the damage resulting from your automotive mishap is not the end of the world, and your car will be returned to its previous state. If your damage included more than just a dent, and you need a door handle replaced, have one of YourMechanic’s certified technicians come to your home or work to perform the job.


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Nolan

30 years of experience
200 reviews
Nolan
30 years of experience
Ford Explorer V6-3.5L - Exterior Door Handle Replacement (Driver Side Front) - Tucson, Arizona
Very Happy with his work, definitely will use this service again, Nolan was very professional and knowledgeable.
Toyota Camry - Exterior Door Handle Replacement (Driver Side Front) - Tucson, Arizona
Nolan is friendly yet very professional. I appreciated the 360 check of the whole car. I will certainly use Yourmechanic again.

Manuel

32 years of experience
580 reviews
Manuel
32 years of experience
Cadillac Escalade V8-6.2L - Exterior Door Handle Replacement (Driver Side Front) - La Mirada, California
Manuel was great. He knew exactly what to do and how to do it. He had been given the wrong part and was able to get a replacement part in about 25 minutes and be back on site. If I need more work done I will request him to do it.
Nissan Sentra - Exterior Door Handle Replacement (Driver Side Front) - Long Beach, California
This is the 3rd time in three months that Manuel has provided a service for me, and I cannot promote his level of professionalism and friendliness more. It might be a while before I need additional services, but I certainly will b requesting this gentleman again!

James

30 years of experience
873 reviews
James
30 years of experience
Nissan Rogue L4-2.5L - Exterior Door Handle Replacement (Driver Side Front) - Debary, Florida
James was on time, he was professional and polite. He got a challenging job done right!! Great personality and I will request him when services are needed again. Thank you, James!!!
Acura Integra - Exterior Door Handle Replacement (Passenger Side Front) - Winter Springs, Florida
James is a perfect gentleman and knows how to fix cars, especially since the doorhandle we need it has been discontinued. We were able to get a similar replacement and James made it work perfectly in record time

Travis

10 years of experience
156 reviews
Travis
10 years of experience
Chevrolet Tahoe V8-5.3L - Exterior Door Handle Replacement (Driver Side Front, Driver Side Rear) - Houston, Texas
I was skeptical because this appt was rescheduled twice. However Travis arrived on time, was personable & did a great job. I will reuse the device for my breaks in the very near future.

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