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Damage to paintwork - holograms

A hologram is damage to the paintwork caused by the use of unsuitable paint cleaners, incorrect polish sponges and/or by setting the rotation speed of the polishing machine incorrectly.

The result is a totally unacceptable appearance:

In many cases we can make good the paintwork and remove these holograms. This kind of treatment is very time-consuming and requires a great deal of tender loving care.

In order for us to assess whether we can remove holograms from your paintwork, please contact us or e-mail your hologram pictures to

What are holograms?

A hologram on paintwork is made up of very small scratches that refract light differently and that produce different reflections. Another cause of this type of hologram is residue of silicates, previously used as cutting polishes, in the pores of the paintwork.

What else are holograms known as?

Other terms used are cloud effect, 3D effect and streaks.

How are holograms created?

  • by using polishing pastes that are too coarse
  • incorrect selection of polishing sponges
  • by using abrasive polishing cloths that are either too coarse, too dry or too dirty
  • by washing with dirty water or with sponges or brushes
  • by drying off with dirty cloths, leathers, microfibres

How do holograms become visible?

Whether the edges of polished areas become visible depends on the incidence of light. Sunlight, halogen lighting and neon lighting are the best conditions to determine holograms. Holograms can also be made visible in bad lighting conditions using specialist cleaners. These remove the wax components from the surface and show up the extent of the holograms.

Why are holograms not immediately detectable on taking delivery of a vehicle?

Certain polishes cover up holograms; since these scratches are filled with silicones, etc. they fool customers and users into thinking they have a glassy, smooth surface. These holograms become more pronounced after using a carwash, or washing by hand, a few times. Soapsuds wash out the wax from the surface of the paintwork, exposing the actual damage. On the other hand, scratches from carwashes damage the glossy paintwork in lines and not in cloud patterns.

Holograms in the Paintwork of a Mazda MX 5

Holograms in the Paintwork of a BMW 850 i