Male hands using the PPS Colour check Light II checking the colour of a sample with the colour of the car paint

3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II and Colour Match process

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Introducing a smarter way to provide near daylight conditions for colour matching

Metamerism can make colour matching a difficult and frustrating task. Metamerism refers to the value of the colour difference between two samples under two different light sources.

The 3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II matches 99.35% of the spectrum of daylight.

  • A white coffee cup shown four times under naturla light, light of incandescent lamp and fluorescent licht

    Shedding light on the colour matching process

    • The 3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II matches the spectrum of daylight.

      This portable light is designed to make car paint colour matching and the refinish process faster and easier, providing near daylight conditions for colour matching, checking coverage and identifying post painting defects.

      • Bodyshops can replicate daylight conditions all the year round
      • Reduces the chance of costly rework caused by colour mismatch, poor coverage or metallic layout
      • Helps identify post-paint defects such as swirl marks, holograms and burn through

      Download 3M™ Paint Application Process Chart (PDF, 0.5MB )


Learn more about 3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II

Discover our PPS™ Colour Check Light II Kit to replicate natural daylight. Our kit gives more accurate colour matching and choice of colour variants for paint work.


Step-by-step process guide for identifying the correct colour and shade

Safety first! Please always consult national regulations for suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for use against hazards, including isocyanates. PPE shown may not be adequate or suitable for your specific application or substances used.

  • man finger indicating a colour code on a ticket

    Step 1 - Identify colour code

    Get the manufacturers colour code from the body chassis.

  • polishing a car area near a repair spot

    Step 2 - Polish the area next to the repair spot

    • Use the 3M™ Perfect It™ Fast Cut Plus Extreme to remove surface scratches and weathering marks to ensure accurate colour matching.

      If you're using the latest spectrometer technology, it's recommended to do an additional polishing step after 3M™ Perfect It™ Fast Cut Plus Extreme with 3M™ Perfect-It™ Ultrafina SE (blue cap).

      Recommended products:

      3M™ Perfect It™ Fast Cut Plus Extreme

      3M™ Perfect-It™ Ultrafina SE Polish

  •  comparing a colour sample card with the car paint colour using the PPS Colour Check Light II

    Step 3 - Select colour formulation and correct shade

    Apply your selected base coat onto a sample card, generating an opaque coating, followed by a clear coat application to achieve the final appearance to compare with.

    The creation of a personal colour library will make life easier for you in the future as you can reuse your own spray out cards.

  • comparing a colour sample card with the target colour on the veichle using the PPS Colour Check Light II

    Step 4 - Compare the colour with your target colour on the vehicle

    • Compare the colour with your target colour on the vehicle, using the 3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II to bring outside daylight conditions to your repaired vehicle. Once the correct colour and shade is found, store the spray out card, to build your personal paint-style library of colours and shades.

      The 3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II operates in 2 modes:
      a) Low level - for lighter colours.
      b) High level - for dark colours (and swirl mark detection).

      Recommended products:

      3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II


Technical tips for paint colour checking and matching

Here are some valuable insights into specific colour matching challenges, including quick tips on controlling and finding the right colour code and shade despite poor lighting conditions in the bodyshops. For more in-depth information, click the link below to see each tip.

  • Customer Challenge:
    Metamerism can make colour matching a difficult and frustrating task due to poor lighting conditions in the workshop (lamps in the wrong place and not mobile). The selected colour shade fits in the workshop, but then does not fit outside in daylight conditions afterwards.


    Technical Tip:
    By the fact that the 3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II maps 99.35% C.R.I. of the daylight spectrum and is a mobile device, you will have the ability to do a safe colour match inside, no matter the weather condition.

    Trust in the product, especially on colour match and coverage, this saves time and money on come-backs.

  • Customer Challenge:
    Due to poor lighting conditions in the workshop (lamps in the wrong place and not mobile) the result of the polishing process often looks good in a first view. When the vehicle is then parked outside in daylight conditions, defects like holograms, micro scratches or "Coming back" of finished defects become visible.


    Technical Tip:
    The use of the 3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II for the final inspection of the finish work helps to control the work in the work shop. Because the daylight comes to the object and the object does not need to be brought to the daylight for your final inspection, it can save you time and money.

  • Customer Challenge:
    When applying the first layer of basecoat, defects in the preparation work are visible, such as sanding scratches, pin holes or stone chips. When this happens, often the only thing left to do is to take the vehicle out of the work process and put it back into preparation. This will generate timing problems and additional work effort.


    Technical Tip:
    Use the 3M™ PPS™ Colour Check Light II for the final inspection of preparation work. This prevents expensive and time-consuming reworking and saves the additional use of paint material.


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  • Remember to always use appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), including safety eyewear, gloves, hearing and respiratory protection for your job and workplace!

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