How to Fix a Cracked Bumper Yourself

In this article, we go over the procedure we followed to fix a cracked bumper. 

We won't use epoxy glue but instead, use the plastic weld method. The plastic weld method described here is very durable and inexpensive. 

What you will need

How to weld a platic bumper? 

  1. Remove your cracked bumper - This is a picture of our cracked bumper. This is a small crack. With this method, you can repair much larger bumper cracks. We strongly recommend that you remove the bumper to repair the crack. Or at least partially remove it. Bumpers may seem hard to remove, but they are not. Car bumpers are held in place with several 10 mm bolts and a few push-in pins. Once you remove the screws, you can easily remove the bumper.  

    cracked bumper how to fix it yourself
  2. Align the bumper crack -  Join the bumper at the crack. You may need to use C-clamp to hold the bumper together as you try to weld it. It is important to line the bumper crack as closely as possible. Clean the area around the crack before you start work. A perfectly clean bumper is not as important with this method as when you use epoxy, which requires the bumper to be perfectly clean.  

    how to fix cracked bumper
  3. Start welding the cracked bumper -  Use the soldering iron to start welding the cracked bumper. The soldering iron may take five minutes to warm up and be able to melt the plastic. Once the soldering iron is hot, we start to weld the bumper on the outside first. This way, we can line the bumper up perfectly.  

    weld cracked bumper diy bumper repair
  4. Weld the inside of the cracked bumper -  It is important to weld the bumper on the inside. If you don't, your bumper may be weak and tear easily, especially if you hit a high curb.  how to fix a damaged bumper
  5. Use an extra piece of plastic on the inside to add to the bumper as you weld the crack. It is best to weld the crack on the inside with a soldering iron first, then go over with some extra plastic and weld it over to add some support. This will add reinforcement to the crack and ensure that your bumper never cracks again. At least not at this same spot.  use plastic to fix cracked bumper
  6. If you are still worried about your weld's quality, you can add your favorite epoxy on the backside of the bumper at this point. Honestly, you don't need to. 
  7. Sand the bumper crack - Use sandpaper to flatten the bumper weld. The plastic at this point looks ugly. Start with 120 grid paper, then move to 220, 300 and finish it off with some 500 grid paper.  

    sand bumper weld
  8. Paint the bumper - Use an automotive primer to spray paint the bumper. You don't need to spray the whole bumper if you don't want, especially if you only have a cracked lower bumper lip.

  9. If you plan to paint the whole bumper, you will need at minimum one primer spray can. Make sure to use the 500 grid paper to remove the bumper's clear coat before spraying over the old paint.
  10. Let the primer dry. 
  11. Next, we need to paint the bumper. You can order custom paint that matches your car's exact color. If you do a quick search, you will find body shops that match car paint. Or the easiest thing is to order the custom mixed paint online and get it shipped to your home.

Where to order a custom mixed spray paint can? 

We found several listings on eBay that will ship you mixed custom car paint

You need to have is your VIN or the paint code of your car. You can get the paint code by looking at it on the VIN sticker or call your dealer, and they will provide the paint code of your car. 

Can a cracked car bumper be repaired?

Yes, a cracked car bumper can be repaired. You can use a plastic weld method or epoxy glue. Our favorite method is to use the plastic welding method.

What's the best epoxy glue for a cracked bumper?

If you insist, you can use a 3M Bondo 280 Epoxy Bumper Repair Syringe on the inside in combination with a mesh. On the outside, you will have to use Bondo. We still think plastic weld is easier and cheaper. But hey, it's your bumper.

How much does it cost to repair a cracked bumper?

If an auto body shop repairs your cracked bumper, expect to pay between $350 and $600. The cost to fix a cracked bumper will depend on two things. How severe the crack is. What kind of paint your car has. Car paint is so expensive nowadays. Certain metallic car paint colors are even more expensive. If the bumper needs replacement, it will cost between $1000-$1500 depending on the make and model.

I cracked my bumper. Should I repair or replace it?

Small bumper cracks can be easily repaired. You don't need to replace the bumper if you got a crack on the lower lip. Take your car to a body shop, and they can fix your bumper without replacing it. If your bumper is cracked in multiple places, you may want to replace the bumper.

Would a car with a cracked bumper fail MOT / State safety inspection?

If you have a cracked bumper and your car is due for an inspection, you are probably wondering if a cracked bumper will fail inspection. In most states, a car that has a small bumper crack won't fail inspection. If you have a large crack over four inches or have any parts of the bumper loose, you will most likely fail state inspection.

Before you take your car to the inspection station, try to secure the broken bumper at a minimum use epoxy glue. Glue the bumper on the inside. You should keep in mind that regulations vary from state to state regarding how much bumper damage is allowed on cars to pass inspection.

On top of that, it also depends on how strict the mechanic at the inspection station is. Try to repair a cracked bumper yourself before taking it in for an inspection. The inspection station will not care if you or a body shop fixed the bumper crack or if it doesn't look perfect.

Cracked bumper from a hit and run. What should I do?

Well, first, see if there are any cameras where your car was parked that may have recorded the event. If you can find the car's license plate that hit your car, you can file a claim with their insurance policy and a police report, and your bumper will be fixed for free by the other person's insurance.

If you can't find the person who hit your car, you have three options—option 1. Have your insurance pay to fix your cracked bumper. You will have to pay your $500 or $1000 deductible, which brings us option two. Option 2. Get a couple of quotes from auto repair shops. You may find out that it costs $450 to fix the cracked bumper on your car. If your insurance deductible is $500, don't even bother filing a claim with your insurance. You will be paying the full bill yourself since your deductible is $500.

Therefore hire the body shop directly without having a claim recorded on your insurance policy. A claim in your policy may raise your insurance premium—option 3. Fix the crack yourself following this guide. For under $50, you can weld the crack and paint the bumper with custom mixed paint. It won't look perfect, but it will look a lot better and will be durable.

How much does it cost to replace the bumper?

A new car bumper for popular cars such as Toyota Corolla, Camry or Honda Accord, a Civic cost on average $700. To paint the bumper and fade the paint by a body shop, you will spend another $500. On average, replacing a car front or rear bumper will cost you between $1000-$1500. In most cases, it is cheaper to repair a damaged bumper than to replace it.



By  YOUCANIC Automotive Experts

Published on: Saturday, December 7, 2019.
Updated on: Monday, November 23, 2020