General Question

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

Why does red paint on cars fade faster than other colours?

Asked by FireMadeFlesh (14583 points ) March 31st, 2010

Red cars seems to fade more easily from sunlight than other coloured cars. Why is this? Has this been solved for newer cars?

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12 Answers

john65pennington's avatar

Clear coat finishes, from the factory, have just about eliminated the red paint color from fading on new vehicles. the color fading has something to do with the pigment color in red paint.

partyparty's avatar

I would love to know the answer to this. We had a red car, which was in the sun for most of the time, and the sheen on it disappeared within a year. Then it looked as though it had been dusted with flour. Not nice.

DarkScribe's avatar

It doesn’t. I currently own a red car, and over the years have owned several red, black, grey, green, blue white and yellow. None fade any faster than the others. Maybe some people just don’t wash and wax their car when required. Any paint will fade if not cared for.

Cruiser's avatar

I agree with @DarkScribe Red is just a bright vibrant color and simply appears to fade faster in contrast to it’s original brightness. In reality it has everything to do with the “quality” of the pigment in the paint as pigments do vary and also how well you take care of the car. Washing the car too much and or with harsh detergents will wreak havoc on the finish and not waxing will also allow the damaging UV rays to have their way with the paint finish.

partyparty's avatar

@DarkScribe I have just looked at your answer. I wouldn’t purchase a red car if it was the only colour available. Why then do you think my car faded? (It was cleaned regularly, I would like to add).

DarkScribe's avatar

@partyparty (It was cleaned regularly, I would like to add).

Cleaning is of little use when it comes to paint protection. That is why wax is used to protect the finish, it is not just to increase the shine. I have owned red cars since my teen years. MGs which had cellulose paint, cars with enamel paint, Acrylic etc. None have ever faded, none have ever looked different (aside from stone chips etc,.) from their new condition. (Black is the one to be careful about – if not looked after they can go to a deep grey.)

JeffVader's avatar

I don’t think this is really an issue with metallic or pearlescent paints… but I could be wrong.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@DarkScribe and @Cruiser Very interesting. I know other colours fade too, but I was expecting a chemical answer. Thanks!

TheOnlyException's avatar

Cos red makes it go faster so it gets worn down more easily what with all the speed

clearly :)

drClaw's avatar

Actually oxidation happens in older red cars because that color was historically lacquer based. Today it isn’t as much of an issue, but red cars do show oxidation more than other colors.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxidation_state

partyparty's avatar

@drClaw Oh thanks for that. I KNOW my red car faded, despite what other people have said about the colour.
@DarkScribe Yes I did wax my car when I cleaned it, nevertheless it faded. Incidentally I have a black car now, and this hasn’t faded.

Fred931's avatar

So THIS is why my minivan’s paint job is shit!

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