Car paint has been steadily developed and improved over the years to meet the demands of the customer and to increase car sales in the showroom. Latterly, car paint has been redeveloped largely to meet government demands driven by environmental issues, so we now have Waterbased Car Paint.
The main types of car paint are Cellulose, Acrylic and Polyester which all need thinners adding to the car paint to ensure perfect atomisation of the paint during spraying. With the exception of Acrylic car paints all car paints dry by evaporation of the thinner.
Acrylic car paints need to have a hardener, or activator, added to the paint because it dries by a chemical reaction called polymerisation. These car paints are known as Two Component car paints and is usually abbreviated to "Two-Pack car paint" or most commonly to “2K car paint”. 2K car paint has a tougher, more resilient finish than the other paints and will keep its shine and colour for longer. 2K car paint is only available in straight colours as is the 1K Cellulose car paint. The metallic car paint colours and pearl car paint colours, as well as straight colours, are made with Polyester 1K car paint which is also known as Basecoat Car Paint which dries to a matt finish and requires the application of a lacquer, or clearcoat, to give it a durable gloss finish (this can be a 2K Clearcoat finish with UV protection for an even longer lasting finish).