How to Clean a Tractor Before Painting

How to Clean a Tractor Before Painting

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There will come a time when certain machinery gets old, they start to rust, and are just not pleasing to the eye. This can be cars, bikes, and everything in between. However, for today’s article, let’s focus on tractors.

Farmers all over the world will use tractors for a variety of uses. From plowing their fields, getting fresh produce ready to sell by putting them in big wooden crates to simply council-type work. In all of these jobs that tractors do, their paint can become withered, can scratch off and that can make the machine look worn out, even if the tractor is not that old.

So in today’s article, we will go through all of the simple steps that you take in order to get your tractor looking sparkling clean before you begin to give it a fresh coat of paint to make it look brand new. Now we understand that some farmers are fine with the old, beaten down the look of a tractor and that is fine, but for others, they love the prospect of returning something to its former glory.

If that is you then you have come to the right place. So read on if you want to know how to thoroughly clean your tractor before giving it a fresh coat of paint.

1. Remove Debris from Tractor Exterior

The first step you should take is that you should do your best to remove any debris from your beloved tractor. This includes all mud, twigs, leaves, and everything else that could be stuck to your tractor. Ideally, a leaf blower could be used for a quick fix as they can get underneath your tractor and get every last bit of dirt and grime off it, and also if you use a leaf blower, you will not hurt your back by being under your tractor for a long period.

This is perhaps the most important step when getting your tractor ready to paint as you do not want to scratch the paint already on it but trying too hard to get all the debris off your tractor.

2. Rinse/Wash Tractor Exterior

How to Clean a Tractor Before Painting

For most people, there are two really good ways to wash your tractor. Either you use a high-quality pressure washer, or you go back in the old days and have a bucket of water with soap mixed in and have a trusty hose by your side. Both work well when cleaning a tractor but if you are pressed for time, then a pressure washer will be your number one tool, however, if time is on your side then the hose and bucket of water will be a nice way to spend an afternoon as you take your time cleaning your tractor.

The pressure washer – You should spray all of the mud off your tires first a this will help prevent some of that mud spraying back up onto the hub of the tractor. You will then want to spray the entire tractor to get it looking as clean as you can. If you do choose to use a pressure washer you will need to be careful using it as there are numerous sensors around your tractor and the last thing you want to do is damage one.

Hose and bucket – It is the same method you would use for washing your car, put some dish soap into a bucket with some warm water and use the hose to soak the entire tractor. After that, wipe it down with a soft cloth and do so in small sections, while rinsing off each section so that you avoid any buildup of soap.

3. Take your time

This maybe looks like something you already know, but believe me, there are a lot of people that often get this part wrong. Do not rush yourself as anyone can tell you, a rushed job looks shabby and amateurish.

4. Purchase the right equipment

Because you are going to be painting a large piece of machinery, buying a respirator is a great idea. You do not want to be constantly breathing in all of the fumes while you are painting your tractor.

Next, you will want to go to your local hardware store or check it out on Amazon and purchase an orbital sand block and some 80 and 350 grit wet and dry sandpaper.

Now depending on how you want to paint your tractor, getting a paint gun that performs at a high level is crucial and experts suggest using one that has an HVLP feed is ideal.

Lastly, get masking tape and a lot of it as you are not going to want paint going onto places it shouldn’t.

4.1. Get the right paint

Ideally, you will want to get a high-quality truck or trailer to implement paint enamel. As with anything, the higher the quality, the better it looks and you are going to want your paint job to look good aren’t you?

Then you will be needing to get a lacquer-based spray can primer and ideally getting one that is quick to dry and can be sanded is ideal.

5. Prep the surface

Your paint job will only look good if you have done the appropriate prep work and have a good surface. Prep your tractor’s surface by removing dings, rusty patches, and dents that are on your tractor. Some of these areas might need to be replaced by welding new bits of sheet metal.

After welding, sand every area of the tractor you are going to paint and take off any decals or emblems as they will be hard to paint around and it will be quicker to paint with them off your tractor.

Once you remove all the rust, the surface of your tractor will then need to be primed or painted within three days, so you avoid any build-up of rust or moisture.

By following these steps you will have your tractor looking like new in no time.