WHAT IS WET SANDING?
Wet sanding, also called color sanding, is the process of sanding away a certain measure of the clear coat in order to improve or fix severely defected paint, and/or random isolated deep scratches. After the sanding has been done, a heavy cutting polish is applied along with a synthetic wax to bring back the gloss and shine. Wet sanding paint is done with very high grade, fine sand paper like 1000, 2000, and 3000 grit. Here is a picture of a panel that has been wet sanded, but not polished:
The white residue is the sanded clear coat, underneath that is a matte finish because the polish has not yet been applied to bring back that glossy finish. Here is an example of some deep scratches that have been corrected through wet sanding and polishing:
Wet sanding is the most forceful type of paint remedy. In wet sanding car paint, it is extremely important to understand that you are sanding away a considerable amount of the clear coat. That does not mean that you have to sand a lot away, but when compared to polishing, wet sanding is much, much more aggressive. In short wet sanding is the leveling of the paint, and polishing is the restoration of the gloss finish. A car that has been wet sanded and polished will absolutely look incredible.