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Hi,

I have a relatively new 2017 Mazda 3 Jet black pearl that I bought 6 months ago. I've babied the car and have only taken it thorough an automatic car wash 4-5 times. It has been parked outside under a shady tree for its life.

Today I came back from the car wash and noticed a subtle "dark spot" on the hood that is about 6 x 8 inches. It has a very subtle texture change when I run my finger over it. I took some quick detailer to it and a soft rag to no avail.

I'm hoping it's just a patch of factory wax that has worn off. I'm worried about a factory stain or damage to the clear coat given history of suspect quality paint in these M3's

What do you guys think? I've ordered a buffer and some polish and wax to see if that helps. Let me know. Thanks!
Picture of paint:
 

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Don't do anything to it yourself. Take it to the dealer and let them figure it out. Its a warranty issue and if you try to fix it they might deny any warranty claim.
 

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That almost looks like an oily stain of some sort. Hopefully it's not patched paint. I would take that back to the dealer for warranty assessment and work. DEFINITELY DO NOT try to fix it yourself, especially if you have no paint correct experience, and especially if you're still under warranty.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you both very much for the advice. I agree it could be "oily" given its texture. I have an appointment at the dealer on Monday for an unrelated issue (broken fuel door lever). I will bring this up. Thanks again.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Just a quick update.

I took my M3 to the dealer this morning to get the fuel door lever fixed. They took a look at the stain but unfortunately it is raining cats and dogs out here and they could not see it very well. I showed him the pictures that I posted in this thread. He wants me to bring the car back when it's sunny so he can further evaluate the stain and take pictures. He also wanted me to confirm I didn't get dealer paint protection (I didn't).

He says the paint is covered under warranty and thinks that the hood may have to get repainted but warned me that it will likely not perfectly match the rest of the car due to the metallic flake that they use. What do you guys think? Thank you again for your advice.
 

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When I first started detailing my own car, I remember ending up with similar paint issues when I didn't apply/ remove chemicals (compound or finishing polish) completely. Used isopropyl alcohol with microfiber cloth on problem area and started over.
 

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I wouldn't hesitate to give that spot a go on your own. I would try a all in one polish /sealant like Mckee 360. It would not hurt anything and might give you a better idea as to what your dealing with.
 

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The saga continues ...

I ended up taking my car to back the nearby dealership to have it checked out with nicer weather. It was freshly washed and sunny. The service advisor was able to see the dark patch and could feel the texture difference. He had me bring my car to the body shop associated with the dealership to have the paint guys look at it. They saw the spot right away as well. They both thought the dark spot was beneath the clearcoat but decided to buff it and wet sand it to see if it would help. I ended up running an errand and coming back about 1/2 hour later. The service advisor pulled me aside and said they came to the consensus that the dealer I bought it from "definitely" ended up doing some repair work and paint correction and the dark spot was not from the factory. He said my only option was to bring it back to the dealer I bought it from and submit a claim/ask them to repair it. I plan on going back tomorrow or next week. I'm really afraid they won't do anything. Super bummed out right now. :crying2: This is my first new car.

Thanks again for everybody's advice -- let me know if you guys have any thoughts.
 

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The saga continues ...

I ended up taking my car to back the nearby dealership to have it checked out with nicer weather. It was freshly washed and sunny. The service advisor was able to see the dark patch and could feel the texture difference. He had me bring my car to the body shop associated with the dealership to have the paint guys look at it. They saw the spot right away as well. They both thought the dark spot was beneath the clearcoat but decided to buff it and wet sand it to see if it would help. I ended up running an errand and coming back about 1/2 hour later. The service advisor pulled me aside and said they came to the consensus that the dealer I bought it from "definitely" ended up doing some repair work and paint correction and the dark spot was not from the factory. He said my only option was to bring it back to the dealer I bought it from and submit a claim/ask them to repair it. I plan on going back tomorrow or next week. I'm really afraid they won't do anything. Super bummed out right now. :crying2: This is my first new car.

Thanks again for everybody's advice -- let me know if you guys have any thoughts.
My rear bumper was repainted and under certain angles you can tell clearly. On top of that its misaligned. I didn't notice it before buying the car, only about 2-3 weeks later. You just end up living with it eventually. I am having the dealer try to realign it, but my hopes are low.

The first few issues hurt like hell on a new car... just wait till you take a longer highway trip and see all those new rock chips on your front bumper and hood.
 

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The saga continues ...

He said my only option was to bring it back to the dealer I bought it from and submit a claim/ask them to repair it. I plan on going back tomorrow or next week. I'm really afraid they won't do anything. Super bummed out right now. :crying2: This is my first new car.
Thanks again for everybody's advice -- let me know if you guys have any thoughts.
I would not give up...

The biggest thing you have going for you is that a MAZDA Dealership has already concluded that it was not factory paint. Dealerships really want your future business and although many more people post negative interaction with them it is not the actual higher percentage (based on surveys sent to customers from MAZDA)of those that have had good experiences with a dealership. For some reason in life we as humans will tend to talk more about negative experiences over positive one? That is why it is hard at time to know what is good none biased information on forums? Just my thoughts not necessarily empirical!

Good luck and please let us all know what the final outcome will be!
 

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The dealer does not have any real say when it comes to warranty work. They can look at it and give you the runaround, but when it comes down to it you need to get Mazda North America involved. That is who has to make the final decision. If the dealer doesn't forward the claim to MNAO and have a factory tech come look, contact Mazda customer service directly and go from there. Chances are the dealer is hiding something that they don't want corporate to see, so don't count on them for help.
 

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MAZDA dealerships like most dealership will make repairs as needed on new vehicles arrivals that are delivered by an independent shipping service. Small damages do not need to be reported directly to MAZDA but go to the insurance carrier held by the shipping company that delivers the vehicles. We can get into flooring and who actually owns the vehicles on a dealership lot and seldom are they by any great percentage the auto manufacture but unless a member(s) has worked at a dealership specifically in NEW CAR Sales management or fleet management or higher position they would not know but only speculate happens is generally inaccurate at best. The body work on the hood in question is not unlike a dealership to have repaired with only a simple work order to submit to the insurance company for possible labor material renouncement. Most dealership worth there reputation in the town they do business I am sure the OP will have a positive outcome with them repainting the complete hood at no charge to the OP/ We will just have to wait and hear what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thank you very much to everyone for the excellent advice. So far it has proved to be invaluable.

I finally got time to take my M3 to the original dealership where I bought it from which is about 30 miles away. I met with the service advisor and then a customer service rep who deals with warranty claims. She was able to visualize the stain and take pictures. In addition, I sent her a bunch of pictures I took in various lighting situations. She said she would forward these to her manager who would make a decision on how to proceed.

I talked to the manager yesterday and he has informed me that he would like me to bring the car back this Tuesday and he will bring a representative from Mazda to inspect the dark spot and we will proceed from there. So far that is the plan. I will update you guys on Tuesday. Fingers crossed!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Update:

The weather was finally good enough to take it to the dealership and have the advisor from Mazda USA (not the dealership) check it out. I brought it over to the dealership on Wednesday which was nice and sunny. Met the advisor who was incredibly nice. He told me he wanted to take the care and check out the dark spot himself. I warned him that he probably couldn’t see it in direct sunlight and he may need to find an area with indirect sun.

He came back about 1/2 an hour later and said that it is definitely real and he would like to have the hood repainted. The dealership has set up a time for repainting at their associated body shop this coming Tuesday and they have offered me a loaner for 1-2 days depending on how long it ends up taking.

Overall I’m very satisfied with the experience. However, I have some worries about the hood paint not matching due to the metallic flake. Any thoughts on this? Thank you again everyone for your help with this issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
So...

I ended up getting the hood repainted which was painless. I simply dropped my car off and picked it up 2 days later. They gave me a brand new Mazda 6 as a loaner.

I picked up my car last Friday and unfortunately it was raining so I could not fully inspect it. The weather has been terrible until today. I ended up running my car through a car wash just now so I could inspect the paint on a clean car in direct sun.

I knew the color match wouldn't be 100% perfect but there is a definite difference between the hood and the rest of the car. However, it's really only apparent in direct sunlight and only I would really be able to tell the difference ... probably. I wanted you all to take a look and tell me what you think. I can probably live with it but am slightly bummed (again, first new car ever).

Also, after ONE single car wash it looks like my hood has been wiped down with a brillo pad. There is the worst swirl/hologram I have ever seen on the hood and much more apparent than the rest of the car. I am actually more concerned about this. Do you think they used too soft of a clear-coat?

Please let me know if I am overreacting! Thank you so much.

https://imgur.com/a/qc4mX

 

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Hate to say it, but I think you should have waited a longer time before running the vehicle through an automatic car wash... When my rear bumper was repaired/ repainted, the paint shop said hand washing was recommended, and I should wait AT LEAST 30 days before running car through an auto wash. Did the paint shop say anything about car washes when you picked up vehicle?

If not deep, swirls and scuffs can be buffed out. I never use automatic car washes, almost guaranteed to leave light scratches and swirls; either go touchless or do it yourself.
 
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Two things-
Yes, going a car wash that has brushes so soon after painting can damage the fresh paint. I had a door ding repaired on my Miata a while back and was advised not to wax and no car washes for at least a few weeks to let the paint fully cure.
The paint shop should have blended in the hood with the surrounding panels. Looks like they removed it and painted it separately. Not a real good repair I think.
 

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IMO The picture posted is NOT real clear to determine panel blending because of the color, angle of the photo relating to the sunlight as well the angle of the body parts . The paint they used does not need to be blended because your Mazda is to new to have any color matching needed. Assuming they used the proper paint code. IMO they did! The swirl marks IMHO look more caused from the car wash hand drying towels. This can happen to the best of paint and more apparently seen on darker colored vehicles. You can ( I mean have a detail shop) polish these out. Not many OEM type paints need to "CURE" over a set time. Most paint when mixed taking under consideration temperature and humidly will dry and cure in less then a few hours. Unless you planned on getting decals there would really be no reason not to treat it as if it were factory painted? My guess is that the reason you were not told anything about the paint work is there was nothing to caution about? But to be sure you should call the person that helped you to get the correct information.
 
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