Top 8 Best Auto Primers (Reviews and Buying Guide)

Dents, dings, and scratches; the most irritating words for any car owner. However, these types of issues could be solved with modern solutions, and you don’t need to get the services of an expert. If you plan to paint your car and want to do it yourself, look at the best auto primers. They can be used on old paints and also used to prep the surface of the vehicle.

A good quality primer bond the new paint over old paint and prevent rusting and increases the drying speed. On the other hand, a low-quality primer will not stick to the car, and you will get a dull look as a result. In this article, we have reviewed the top auto primers that are best in quality and make your painting session more fruitful. The Dupli-Color FP101 Primer has the best customer reviews, and we rated it as a top auto primer.

Our Top 3 picks

EDITOR’S CHOICE
9.7
Dupli-Color FP101 Primer
Dupli-Color-FP101-Primer
  • High-quality ingredients
  • Easy sanding and dries quickly
  • Rust-resistant coating
  • Perfect for hiding scratches and lines
PREMIUM PICK
9.3
Dupli-Color BSP100 Paint Primer
Eva-Dry-E-333-Dehumidifier
  • A pre-reduced primer that is ready to use
  • Easy to apply with any tool
  • No, wait for recoating
  • The surface requires cleaning
BUDGET PICK
8.5
Rust-Oleum 249418 Primer
TOSOT-20-Pint-Dehumidifier-4
  • Suitable to multiple surfaces
  • Rust-resistant formula
  • One bottle covers 15 square feet
  • Offer you superior topcoat adhesion

Comparison Table Best Auto Primers

IMAGE PRODUCT RATING PRICE
EDITORS CHOICE
Pro-Breeze-Electric-Mini-Dehumidifier
Dupli-Color BSP100 Paint Primer
9.5
Check on AmazonCheck Customer Reviews
BUDGET PICK
Dupli-Color-BSP100-Paint-Primer
Dupli-Color BSP100 Paint Primer
8.7
Check on AmazonCheck Customer Reviews
TOP CHOICE
Rust-Oleum-249418-Prime
Rust-Oleum 249418 Primer
9.5
Check AmazonCheck Customer Reviews
BUDGET PICK
U-Pol-High-Build-Urethane-Primer
U-Pol High Build Urethane Primer
8.7
Check on AmazonCheck Customer Reviews
BUDGET PICK
SpeedoKote-SMR-210
SpeedoKote SMR-210/211 Primer
8.7
Check on AmazonCustomer Reviews
BUDGET PICK
Evercoat-713-Primer
Evercoat 713 Primer
8.7
Check on AmazonCustomer Reviews
BUDGET PICK
Custom-Shop-Black-Epoxy-Primer
Custom Shop Black Epoxy Primer
8.7
Check on AmazonCustomer Reviews
BUDGET PICK
Rust-Oleum-2081830-Primer
Rust-Oleum 2081830 Primer
8.7
Check on AmazonCustomer Reviews

Best Auto Primers List (Updated)

1.Dupli-Color FP101 Primer


“Scratch Filler Primer”

TOP PICK
Dupli-Color-FP101-Primer
9.4/10 Our Score

The Dupli-Color FP101 Primer covers the surface evenly, and you don’t need to worry about blotched spots. The primer is made of high-quality ingredients that can cover up any deep scratches to make the car look new. Additionally, it dries so quickly and saves your time a lot.

Notable features in it:
  • High-quality ingredients used in this automotive formulation
  • The spray can primer dries quickly, and sanding is easy.
  • Rust-resistant coating and provides smooth and even coating
  • The perfect primer to cover deep scratches and lines that formed accidentally on a car’s surface
  • Premium quality primer at an affordable price
Pros
  • Even surface coverage
  • Hides spots and scratches
  • rust-resistant
  • Fast drying
  • Easy to apply
Cons
  • Need to shake well before application

When you apply the paint on the surface, its color becomes lighter than the shade displayed on its cap. Furthermore, before applying the primer, shake the can well for maximum effect and coverage. Last but not least, the primer covers any unnecessary line left on the printed product. Overall, this scratch filler primer is one of the best auto primers.

2.Dupli-Color BSP100 Paint Primer


“Paint Finish System Primer”

TOP PICK
Dupli-Color-BSP100-Paint-Primer
9.4/10 Our Score

The Dupli-Color BSP100 Paint Primer is made by a well-known brand that is in the field for 60 years. This primer is a lacquer finish that offers a thick coating and fills all the imperfections on the surface. When it is applied on the surface, you are assured that it will be stone chip resistant. It means if any stone hits the car, it can absorb its effects.

Features that attract this primer:
  • Ready to spray liquid solution that is pre-reduced
  • No mixing or reducing required; direct apply with some application tool
  • Easy to apply with any compatible tool and dries quickly within no time
  • Can be reapplied anytime, no recoat window
  • The surface needs to be clean before application, and wet sands easily
  • Excellent primer for automotive exterior body projects
Pros
  • Rust resistant
  • Better bonding with a color coat
  • Pre-reduced solution
  • No window needed for recoating
  • Easy to apply
  • It covers a large area with one can
Cons
  • Preparing the surface is necessary before application

Moreover, the primer will provide you a coating that can be buffed and sanded properly. It saves a lot of time because you don’t need to mix or reduce the solution as it is pre-reduced and ready to be sprayed on. Moreover, it will save not only your time but also effort. There is no window for recoating; it means you can apply the next coat without waiting to dry the first one.

3.Rust-Oleum 249418 Primer


“Small portable Dehumidifier”

TOP PICK
Rust-Oleum-249418-Primer
9.4/10 Our Score

The Rust-Oleum 249418 Primer can be sanded over a primer to achieve a smooth finish. As a result, you will get uniformity of the color coat, and it will allow you to sand, dry or wet according to your preference. The product is not only auto-primer or for metal surfaces; you can use it on different types of surfaces.

Features that we love in it:
  • Suitable to use on metal, wood, and fiberglass surfaces and it’s a wet and dry sandable primer
  • The oil-based formula is rust-resistant and forms a base coat for cars, trucks, and other vehicles
  • One bottle covers up to 15 square feet and dries to touch within 10 minutes
  • High-quality paint primer that is durable and long-lasting
  • It offers you a superior topcoat adhesion and a high-quality, smooth surface when sanded
Pros
  • Versatile primer
  • Oil-based solution
  • Offer smooth and uniform color coat
  • Rust-resistant color coat
  • Comfortable spraying
Cons
  • Low coverage rate

It is a versatile primer that can be used of wood, fiberglass, and metal. The primer has the rust-resistance property that is obvious in any advanced primer. If you apply this primer, you are sure that your car, truck, or motorcycle will not rust due to its technology that is known as Stops Rust. Overall, it is easy to apply with a sprayer and saves you from finger fatigue.

4.U-Pol High Build Urethane Primer


“Standard Temperature Hardener”

TOP PICK
U-Pol-High-Build-Urethane-Primer
9.4/10 Our Score

The U-Pol High Build Urethane Primer is a European-style primer that is a multi-function direct to metal primer. This product has excellent hiding properties due to its high opacity, and it’s highly durable. Furthermore, it levels out the surfaces very well and can be dried out with air.

Features that we like in it:
  • Excellent automotive primer paint used for large panels and spot repairing
  • U-POL high-quality primer that is a perfect build and has surface leveling properties
  • A versatile primer that can be applied directly on metal, most plastics, and over unsanded E-coat.
  • The coating of this primer acts like a spray filler and is used for panel or spot repairs.
  • Made of high-quality ingredients and the auto paint is easy to sand wet or dry
Pros
  • High opacity
  • Excellent film build
  • European style primer
  • Easy to sand
  • Surface leveling properties
Cons
  • Nor VOC compliant

In addition, the primer is a versatile primer that can be applied on many surfaces. The standard 4-to-1 ratio is the best to adhere to on the surface. However, you can thin it to use it as a sealer. To spray the primer, you are required to have a 1.8 spray tip. Overall, this standard temperature hardener primer is perfect for the best exhaust coatings.

5.SpeedoKote SMR-210/211 Primer


“Easy Sanding Primer”

TOP PICK
SpeedoKote-SMR-210
9.4/10 Our Score

The SpeedoKote SMR-210/211 Primer is a European-style primer that is a multi-function direct to metal primer. This product has excellent hiding properties due to its high opacity, and it’s highly durable. Furthermore, it levels out the surfaces very well and can be dried out with air.

Features that attract the primer:
  • The primer has excellent adhesion properties at an excellent price
  • A versatile primer that is thick, thinable when necessary, and sandable
  • Super fast to dry on the surface and easy to sand
  • Lay down the spray with even texture and consistency; Powerful and clean primer
  • Perfect to use multiple times and easy to apply to have good coverage
Pros
Ultra-quiet unit
  • Easy sanding
  • Quick dry
  • Great adhesion
  • Good coverage
  • Offer even texture
Cons
  • Plain nasty smell

In addition, the primer is a versatile primer that can be applied on many surfaces. The standard 4-to-1 ratio is the best to adhere to on the surface. However, you can thin it to use it as a sealer. To spray the primer, you are required to have a 1.8 spray tip. Overall, this easy sanding primer is perfect for the best exhaust coatings.

6. Evercoat 713 Primer


“Feather Fill Primer”

TOP PICK
Evercoat-713-Prime
9.4/10 Our Score

The Evercoat 713 Primer is one of the best primers for car owners. The high-quality formulation of this primer includes polyester, and it fills up the small scratches efficiently. Due to such features, it seems totally different from other primers. Such primers are perfect for filling up the small scratches efficiently.

Top features in it:
  • High-solids premium polyester premium primer that is compliant with all rules of California
  • The primer offers exceptional flow and leveling and specifically designed to work with 1k and 2k etch primers
  • The primer dries quickly and has a shrink-resistant formula; Easy sanding for quick application
  • The primer comes in four shades with gray and black shades.
Pros
  • The best primer for cars
  • Fills the scratches efficiently
  • Dries quickly
  • Compliant with VOC regulations
  • Application is easy
Cons
  • Short window of usage after mixing solution

The primer is made of advanced technology that protects the applied coat from shrinking. It is very easy to apply, and it offers a smooth application, levels the layers, and sands the primer within a short period. Furthermore, it is also in compliance with VOC regulations.

7.Custom Shop Black Epoxy Primer


“Industrial Use Primer”

TOP PICK
Custom-Shop-Black-Epoxy-Primer
9.4/10 Our Score

The Custom Shop Black Epoxy Primer works on multiple surfaces, including metal. You can not only use it for automobile coating but also for many other projects. Since it is a duo of primer and hardener, You can get the finest finish blend of both things. The solution is developed to be a high-performing automotive epoxy primer for metal surfaces.

Features that attract this brush:
  • The high-performance primer designed explicitly for metals that contain an advanced technology system
  • The primer is Lead and Chromate free, and its formulation is a blend of anti-corrosive additives
  • This primer can also be used as a sealer for all single-stage urethane and basecoat clearcoat.
  • Comes in grey, black, and white color and compatible with most of the top brands
  • Offers you a super smooth finish with an easy mixing ratio for more accurate mixing.
Pros
  • Comes in three colors
  • Available in four colors
  • Includes a pint of hardener
  • Compatible with most brands of paint
  • Perfect for metal surfaces
Cons
  • Application is a bit tough

The solution contains a great amount of anti-corrosive additives that makes resistance to fight against rust formation diligently. Besides metal surfaces, you can apply it on other surfaces like aluminum, steel, fiberglass, plastics, and more. Furthermore, it can be sanded after a short drying time.

8.Rust-Oleum 2081830 Primer


“Ligt Grey Primer”

TOP PICK
Rust-Oleum-2081830-Primer
9.4/10 Our Score

The Rust-Oleum 2081830 Primer is a great option to paint the car. The primer makes sure the color coat will be of great quality. The primer is perfect for any heavy-duty work, and it will give you corrosion and rust-resistant coat. In addition, once you apply a coat of this primer, you are assured of its top-quality weatherproofing.

Features that attract this primer:
  • The primer is suitable to use on metal and wood surfaces as well as fiberglass
  • Oil-based paint that offers you a rust-resistant base coat for all types of vehicles.
  • One can cover up to 12 square feet and dries to touch within just 15 minutes
  • Durable coating and longevity is ensured due to high-quality spray paint
  • Offer you superior adhesion and works with any topcoat.
Pros
  • Rust and corrosion-resistant
  • Ideal for heavy-duty work
  • Offer wet sanding
  • Comfort tip for any angle spraying
  • Easy to use
  • Superior adhesion
Cons
  • May arise issues with spray valve after time

The primer works really great with all types of automotive brands, no matter what the brand of lacquer or enamel is. Furthermore, it will give you a premium level thick coating to bond beautifully with it. In addition, the bottle includes a nozzle through which you can spray at any angle.

Conclusion:

Making the decision to finalize an automotive primer could be a bit overwhelming task. To make it simple, decide what your vehicle needs, and is rust-prevention your top priority? In addition, does the vehicle surface has excellent adhesive properties to get the paint well for a smooth surface? Finally, it’sFinally, it’s a bit difficult step to apply the primer. Once you applied the best automotive primer. It will offer you professional-looking and smooth surfaces for years. But the condition is that the primer should be high quality. All the auto primers reviewed in this article have such properties to work nicely with the vehicle’s surface. Furthermore, they won’t fall short in terms of quality. You can pick any of them, but the choice is yours.

FAQs:

How long the primer take to dry?

The drying time of the primer varies and depends on the manufacturer. However, the average drying time of most paints is from 20 minutes to one hour. On the other hand, low temperature or high humidity can increase the drying time.

How long the paint primer last?

Basically, the longevity of the primer depends on how you care for it. Moreover, it depends on the condition in which the vehicle is driven, and also environmental factors depend a lot. Therefore, more care and maintenance means long-lasting paint primer.

Do you need to clean the car before priming?

Cleaning the car before priming is significant, and it should be cleaned and sanded properly. Having such a surface will lead you to a great finish. In addition, apply a grease and wax remover to clean the surface.

How many coats of paints are required to paint a primer?

Typically, it requires two to three coats for an even and smooth surface. However, if there are some thin spots on the vehicle’s surface, you need to apply more paint. Give sufficient time after each coat and then apply a new coat.

Can I use primer over old paint?

If there are any signs that the paint is falling, then you should definitely apply the primer—otherwise no need to apply it. However, sanding is the most important thing to consider before priming.

How to choose the Best Auto Primer – BUYING GUIDE

Since there are many brands available in the market, it’s an overwhelming task to select the best primer. Although the professionals can pick up top choices without wasting time, it’s difficult for DIYers. Therefore, in this buying guide, we have listed down some top fac:

tors that you must take into consideration before purchasing a primer.

Easy to use:

If you are going to repaint the car, keep in mind that it’s a critical and time-consuming task. Before purchasing the primer, make sure that it doesn’t require too many steps to apply the primer and cleaning the surface.

In simple words, it should be easy to use. Additionally, prefer that primer, which is pre-reduced and pre-mixed, so you will not spend time for accurate measurements and mixing different solutions. However, there are also some primers available in spray cans and purchasing that will work for you.

Type:

There are different types of primers available in the market according to the application surfaces. For example, for metal surfaces, there are a variety of primers available. Some types of primer are lacquer, epoxy, and urethane primers. All of them have their own benefits and drawbacks.

Having all of them on the board, try to select what is the most appropriate for you. Then, before purchasing the primer, do some research on which type is best for your desired surface.

Corrosion-Resistant:

Buying a primer for a car, make sure the primer is corrosion-resistant. It is essential to stop rust formation on the surface. Therefore, the primer that you are buying should have great corrosion-resistant capabilities. Having such primer on the vehicle will stop rust formation even your car is around wet surfaces.

Application:

The primers can be used on a wide range of surfaces, and aside from metal, you can apply them on aluminum, fiberglass, and more surfaces as well. However, some primers are specially used for certain surfaces. If you apply the primer on an incompatible surface, the primer will not adhere properly, and you will be at a loss instead of getting the benefits of a primer.

Spray or Paint:

The primers come in spray bottles as well as paint buckets. It is up to you which one you want. If you have more area to cover than a paint bucket, primers are the best option. However, if the area is small and you want to save time, then go for a spray bottle.

Typically, the primers in spray bottles are pre-mixed, and you don’t need to mix any solution to prepare it for priming. Moreover, a primer in a spray bottle is easier to apply than a paint bucket primer.

Cost:

The price of everything matters a lot. Instead of that, the product should worth the price, no matter how expensive it is. If we talk about primers, generally, they are inexpensive. Before purchasing the primer, it is important to check all the boxes. Moreover, make sure they adhere perfectly to the vehicle’s surface. Try to pick up such primer that has all these qualities within an affordable price range.

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