How Much Does It Cost To Paint A Car? (2022 Estimates)

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Content of the material

  1. FAQ for the DIY Car Painting Equipment List:
  2. Video
  3. Here’s How To Paint A Car
  4. Should I wrap my Jeep?
  5. Is a Maaco paint job worth it?
  6. Apply the Base Coat of Paint
  7. Masking the Vehicle
  8. Things You’ll Need
  9. Priming and Sanding Your Car
  10. Painting with Rollers and Brushes
  11. Estimated Cost of Labor For A Car?
  12. Estimated DIY Cost Of Labor:
  13. Estimated Pro Cost Of Labor
  14. Why Hire a Pro?
  15. How To Estimate The Cost To Paint A Car?
  16. DIY Cost Per Square Foot Cost
  17. FAQs on Painting a Vehicle
  18. Q. Does Repainting a Car Affect its Resale Value?
  19. Q. How Long Does the Whole Process Take?
  20. Keep Your Budget Realistic
  21. 1. Using paint to fix deep scratches on car
  22. Step 1: Washing and drying the car carefully
  23. Step 2. Sanding the scratched area
  24. Step 3: Rinsing and drying the area
  25. Step 4: Spraying a few primer coats onto the sanded areas
  26. Step 5: Applying a few paint coats matching with your car color
  27. Step 6: Waxing the repaired area to seal the paint
  28. 2. Removing small scratches by using a scratch removal product
  29. Step 1. Washing your car
  30. Step 2: Purchasing a scratch removal product
  31. Step 3: Applying a quarter – sized dollop of scratch removal product to the pad
  32. Step 4: Working the removal product into and around the scratched area
  33. Step 5: Rinsing off any product residue
  34. Step 6: Repeating the process from 2 to 3 time if necessary
  35. 3. Doing surface car paint scratch repair by a tube of toothpaste
  36. Step 1: Inspecting the damage level of the scratches
  37. Step 2: Cleaning the scratched area
  38. Step 3: Applying a quarter-sized amount of toothpaste to a dampened microfiber towel
  39. Step 4: Rubbing the toothpaste into the damaged area by a circular motion
  40. Step 5: Rinsing off any excess toothpaste
  41. Step 6: Repeat the whole process up to 2 times
  42. Paying More Gets You a Better Paint Job

FAQ for the DIY Car Painting Equipment List:

You’ve seen the complete process of DIY car spray painting. Now it’s time to check out the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions related to what do you need to paint a car (DIY car painting equipment list) and how to paint a car at home outside. If the same types of queries are popping in your mind, get those answered below.

What Size Air Compressor Do I Need to Paint a Car?

Well, the requirement of an air compressor size solely depends on the size of your vehicle. Still, if you ask me about an average value, I’ll go with the 50-gallon air receiver tanks, because these types are ideal for painting small to medium-sized cars at a single pass.If you need an air compressor to power your spray gun for little works like retouching, then 30-gallon air compressors can do the job pretty conveniently.For more precision, I would ask you to go with the air compressors with 14 to 18 unit CFM to paint a large-sized car. If you are going to paint a small or medium-sized car, the air compressors with 5 CFM ratings will work.

What Automotive Primer Should I Use Over Old Paint?

First of all, you shouldn’t use primer over your old paint. For the best result, you must sand the old paint first and then apply the primer. Talking about which primer, then I’ll always advise you to go with an epoxy-based, corrosion-resistant primer because this type of primer makes the paint stick to the surface properly.

What Kind of Paint is Used on Cars?

Automotive paint is the one that you should use to color or decorate your car. The water-based acrylic polyurethane enamel paint is the new favorite of the DIYers because of it’s ‘less environmental impact.’ However, there are three types of automotive paints available in the market.Urethane Car Paint: This is super easy to use and gives your car a fantastic look, plus, lasts longer. But you may face issues after some time as urethane paint sometimes has a plastic-like appearance.Metallic Car Paint: This one is of supreme quality paint. It can really change the entire appearance of your sports or muscle cars. But it’s not recommended for DIYers as the application is a bit tricky.Acrylic Car Paint: This paint gives your car a glossy finish. Along with that, acrylic paint is easy to apply and renders adequate protection to your car’s body.

How Hard Is It to Paint a Car?

Well, by far, the pre-work before you apply the paint is intense. If you’re a DIYer, nothing to worry about; there is no rocket science in spray paint a car yourself if you follow the DIY car painting equipment list and all the spray painting steps accurately.You just have to get the pre-work and after-work right, because these two things decide how your paint will look and whether it will be long-lasting or not. Though the work is not challenging to pull off, it still consumes a tremendous amount of time, like 3 to 4 days.

Is It Cheaper to Paint Your Car the Same Color?

Yes, of course, it’s cheaper to repaint the same color on your car. Because you don’t have to prepare or mix the color and spray it in different areas like door jambs, trunk opening, engine bay, etc. Also, the already colored areas won’t require further coloring.On the other hand, color-changing involves a lot of work and car painting equipment. So, it will cost you more than applying the same color again.

How Much Does It Cost to Paint a Car a Different Color? If you opt for a professional car painting, it will cost you a huge amount ranging from $300 to $20,000 (if you need showroom quality painting). The standard professional painting costs around $1,000 and more. If you want to DIY paint your car, then you only need the required car painting materials. These are available in stores or online and come at a low price, as low as $200. Apart from the materials, the only investment will be your time and labor.

Video

Here’s How To Paint A Car

Before you get started, you’ll need two things above all else: time and space. Give yourself enough time to sand, repair, paint, and dry your vehicle. This is a crucial step that can save you big headaches with smeared or damaged paint. Space is vital, because unless you’re a machine (you’re probably not), painting a car will take time. You’ll need a safe space to store the car where the paint job can be done without damaging the paint or annoying your neighbors.

Now that the disclaimer is out of the way, let’s do this!

  1. Clean your workspace to get rid of unwanted dirt and dust.
  2. Sand your vehicle until you get an even layer of metal, in the case of rock chips, or below the clear coat. This will take time, so work methodically and during when you won’t need to use your car too much. Each time your car leaves the garage, it will need to be cleaned again or else it could oxidize and rust.
  3. Wipe down the vehicle with a clean lint-free rag and paint thinner to make sure all paint residue is gone.
  4. Tape off and mask the areas that you don’t plan to paint, such as windows, trim pieces, and wheels.
  5. Mix your paint with thinners according to the directions or The Drive’s guide for How To Mix Automotive Paint.
  6. Spray on the paint using gentle, smooth motions, keeping the sprayer perpendicular to the surface for the most even application. This process will take 3-4 coats. You’ll want to take half an hour up to a day after each coat is finished to allow drying. 
  7. Take the fine-grit sandpaper (2000-grit or higher) and smooth out any imperfections in the paint before applying the clear coat.
  8. Apply the clear coat (same way as the paint). Expect to do this in several coats and then leave the car alone to cure. This may take a day. 

You’re done!

Should I wrap my Jeep?

A major draw for those who use their vehicles off-road as much as I do is that the wrap can actually protect the paint from scratches and light debris. While wrapping a Jeep it’s not intended as paint protection by most, I’ve found it works against common tree limb pinstriping.

Is a Maaco paint job worth it?

Relative to the price, yes Maaco is worth it but that isn’t saying much. A proper paint job costs around $4000 bucks for a compact car. This includes all the proper prep work. I’m sure Maaco could do a great job if you paid them enough.

Apply the Base Coat of Paint

Apply the base coat, which should go on lightly. Use a spray gun and aim it perpendicular to the area you are spraying, holding the gun about a foot away from the surface. Allow it sufficient time to dry before adding the secondary coat. Let the paint settle for 48 hours, before any final sanding and buffing.

Masking the Vehicle

How to Paint a Car

How to Paint a Car

In the event you want to mask any areas on the body of the car, consider using a type of soft-edged foam tape that won’t damage the vehicle. Areas of concern to focus on include those where you’re painting a special design such as racing stripes.

Masking the entire car is the next step. I can’t emphasize enough; this is an extremely important step. Masking can take up to eight hours, but it must be done properly. Place plastic over the windows of the car and secure this plastic with your masking tape.

Be sure to purchase specialized auto masking tape and paper. To avoid getting paint on the underside of the car, set up a curtain or series of sheets or towels all around the car on the underside.

Things You’ll Need

Priming and Sanding Your Car

  • Painter’s tape
  • Newspaper
  • Rust-Oleum primer (optional)
  • Orbital sander
  • 320-grit sandpaper
  • Acetone or mineral spirits
  • Tack cloth

Painting with Rollers and Brushes

  • Rust-Oleum Protective Enamel Brush-On Paint
  • Paint measuring cup
  • Stirring stick
  • Mineral spirits
  • 4 in (10 cm) foam roller
  • Foam paintbrush

Estimated Cost of Labor For A Car?

Estimated DIY Cost Of Labor:

It typically takes car owners anywhere from 10-40 hours to paint the entire car themselves. 

Car paint jobs and car painting isn’t cheap when doing it yourself, but it is a time-consuming task without any doubt. 

Estimated Pro Cost Of Labor

Quality paint jobs on repaints are going to cost you significantly more than doing it yourself, but hiring a professional might save you time in the long run. 

For example, professionals remove all the doors to paint the door jambs/jams, and they also have to remove or mask trim pieces which can sometimes be a lot of work. 

Some pros might even take off the hood of the car for it to be painted on both the outside and the inside. 

Like we stated earlier, the average cost is anywhere from $2-4k for hiring a pro for the job.

Why Hire a Pro?

  • More attention to detail

Professional autobody painters know sanding and body filling techniques that take years of experience. Your car will look like a show car once a good body shop gets ahold of it for some paintwork.

  • Saved time

Chances are a pro painter will really only take a few hours to paint your vehicle despite the number of labor hours charged for the job–the good part about this is that you saved a lot of time by not having to paint yourself.

  • Licensed and insured

Nobody wants to talk about legal situations, but it’s something that you should always take into consideration.

  • High-quality paint job/showroom quality

If you hire a high-rated pro painter for a basic paint job, you can be sure to expect showroom quality on your respray.

How To Estimate The Cost To Paint A Car?

When estimating the cost of painting or repainting your own car, there are a few factors that play into how much it’s going to cost. Here are a few:

  • Type of car paint used/purchased
  • Bodywork necessary
  • Prep work necessary
  • Size of the vehicle(in square feet)

Now that you have some data to dig up about your paint project, scroll down for some more info on how to make the most out of painting your car.

DIY Cost Per Square Foot Cost

Your typical vehicle has anywhere from 50-150 square feet of the painting surface, but you’ll have to whip out your tape measure to be sure.

On the most basic of levels, a single-stage polyurethane coat of paint will cost around $150 for a decent kit. 

Here’s the price per square foot when painting a 100 square foot Jeep Wrangler with a cheaper polyurethane option:

$150 total cost / 100 square feet = $1.50 per square feet

Body Shop Cost Per Square Foot

Let’s say your car comes back from the body shop, and it cost $2000. 

A Jeep Wrangler, for example, has typically around 100 square feet of surface area to cover.

$2000 total cost / 100 square feet = $20 per square feet

Read More >> How Much Does It Cost To Paint A Car’s Rims?

FAQs on Painting a Vehicle

You’ve got questions. The Drive has answers.

Q. Does Repainting a Car Affect its Resale Value?

A. It can, but more often than not, when you’re correcting the paint or fixing some damage, it’ll increase your car’s value. 

Q. How Long Does the Whole Process Take?

A. You’re looking at between a few hours fixing a spot to 40 to 80 hours painting the whole car. 

Keep Your Budget Realistic

Let’s say you have an older vehicle with high miles, valued at a couple thousand dollars. It’s looking a little tired, but you love the car, and it’s still running great. Opting for a cheaper repaint in the same color is fine if all you want is a quick exterior freshening for minimal cash outlay. This might hold true if you’re looking to sell this same car. Spending several hundred bucks, maybe a thousand or two, could bump the asking price, though probably not by more than you’ll spend on the paint job. On the other hand, if you have a vehicle that’s either a classic or something with a higher value, skimping on paint can be a recipe for disaster. You could adversely affect the car’s value and potentially be stuck with a finish that’s not even close to what the car looked like when new.

1. Using paint to fix deep scratches on car

Deep scratches will get worse and worse if you repair them by using the wrong fixing method. To help you know how to fix a scratch on a car at home, here are 6 easy steps of DIY car paint scratch repair to do:

Step 1: Washing and drying the car carefully

In this step, all you need is washing your car thoroughly in order to remove all the debris and dirt. You have to pay more special attention to the scratched area that you are going to repair. Washing this area very carefully to make sure that it is extremely clean. Then use microfibers to dry your car.

Step 2. Sanding the scratched area

The second step of car paint scratch repair is sanding the scratched area. The purpose of this step is stripping away the top paint layers. Use 2000- grit sandpaper to sand the scratched area in about 10 to 15 seconds then check the area to know whether you need to sand deeper or not.

Notice:

  • You should always sand the scratched area in the direction.
  • You can rinse the scratched area with water if necessary to check your process
  • Use 150-grit sandpaper if the scratch on your car is slightly deeper than the car clear coat
  • You should make sure that there is not dirt or debris between the vehicle and the sandpaper as this will result in scratching.

Step 3: Rinsing and drying the area

Next step of car paint scratch repair is rinsing away the dirt and debris left after sanding the scratched area. Then a clean microfiber is needed to wipe the car surface.

Notice: Using dirty or old rags in this step is avoided as these could result in more scratches on your car surface.

Step 4: Spraying a few primer coats onto the sanded areas

After sanding the scratched area, spraying some primer coats is the next thing in how to repair car paint scratches to fix deep scratches on the car. Spraying the primer coats on the paint in a back and forth motion is what you must do. Then, you should wait from 5 – 10 minutes for the primer coat to dry and then spray another layer.

Notice: If possible, you should choose a primer which is close to your car paint color.

Step 5: Applying a few paint coats matching with your car color

Next step of deeper car paint scratch repair is painting the same color paint to where you applied the primer. It is recommended to wait from 5 – 10 minutes between each time, therefore the paint will dry completely.

Step 6: Waxing the repaired area to seal the paint

The last step of car paint scratch repair is waxing the repaired area to seal the paint. After painting your car with a few paint coats, it’s time for you to wax the painted area for sealing the paint. Use a microfiber cloth or a buffer pad to apply carnauba wax onto the car surface then start buffing the area. A waxing kit can be easily bought at any automotive shop and often includes everything you need for car waxing purposes like the wax, microfiber cloth or a buffing pad.

Notice:

  • To do this job in the best way, you should press down on the microfiber towel or buffing pad with medium pressure then move them in circular motions.
  • Keep waxing until you observe the car surface looks shiny.

How to remove deep scratches from car paint? Let’s find out in this video

2. Removing small scratches by using a scratch removal product

According to auto experts, using removal products is the best way to help you remove annoying small scratches on your beloved car. So let’s check out this method right now.

Step 1. Washing your car

Before doing the car paint scratch repair process, first of all you should wash your car to make sure that there is no debris or dirt staying in the scratch. Cleaning the scratched area carefully before applying any removal product is very important as any debris or dirt left on the car paint when buffing will result in more scratches. Use automotive soap and microfiber towels or sponge to clean the car. Then dry it with microfiber towels to get ready for the next step.

Step 2: Purchasing a scratch removal product

You can get a scratch removal product or kit at auto supply stores. These removal kits often include the solution for scratch removing and a buffing pad for applying the product.

Step 3: Applying a quarter – sized dollop of scratch removal product to the pad

The amount of scratch removal product applying to the pad will depend on the size of the scratched area. Squirt the scratch – removal product onto the microfiber cloth or buffing pad, then you fold it in half to work the scratch-removal product around the surface of the cloth or pad.

Step 4: Working the removal product into and around the scratched area

In this step, you can work the product in a back and forth motion or a circular motion. You should choose which type of motion is the most comfortable for you and also covers the scratched area best. But notice that you should not switch directions. Don’t change from going back and forth motion into circular motion when working the removal product. Make sure that the removal product is well-distributed on the car paint surface.

Step 5: Rinsing off any product residue

When buffing scratched area procedure is done, next is rinsing off any product residue. A clean microfiber cloth is needed to wipe away any excess product.

Notice: You should not let the removal product residue dry on your car surface.

Step 6: Repeating the process from 2 to 3 time if necessary

If you observe that the scratches are still visible, you can repeat the above process from 2 to 3 times.

Notice: Don’t do this process too many times as you can ruin the clear coat on your beloved car.

Watch the video below to see how to fix small scratches with car removal products:

3. Doing surface car paint scratch repair by a tube of toothpaste

Surface scratches are the easiest scratches to repair. With only a tube of toothpaste, fixing these ugly scratches is under your hand.

>> Finding cheap used cars from reliable Japanese sellers? Click here <<

Step 1: Inspecting the damage level of the scratches

First of all, you should check whether the scratches are surface or not by using your fingernail. To do the check, you run your fingernail over the chips, scratches or dents. If you find out that your fingernail doesn’t catch any scratch, which means that the scratches on your car paint is not so terrible, therefore using toothpaste to fix them may be a good method.

Step 2: Cleaning the scratched area

Before applying toothpaste to the scratches, you must wash the damaged area and then dry it.

Why do we have to wash and dry the scratched area? Well, the answer is that rubbing debris and dirt into the scratched area will make the scratches become worse.

To clean your car, you can take it to a car wash or simply wash it yourself. If you wash your car at home, you should use a hose spraying all over the car to remove the majority of the debris and dirt. Next, applying automotive soap to your car by using a car-washing brush or a large sponge. Use them to wipe all surface of your car, you should make sure that all the car surface is covered by soap. After that, it is time to spray it off by using the hose. Then use a dry, clean towel to dry your car.

Step 3: Applying a quarter-sized amount of toothpaste to a dampened microfiber towel

In this step, using whitening toothpaste is better than other types of toothpaste to remove the scratches. But if you don’t have this type, you can use any toothpaste you have on hand.

Note: You need to apply enough toothpaste to a clean, soft, microfiber to ensure that when you rub the scratches this way, the process does not cause more damage.

Step 4: Rubbing the toothpaste into the damaged area by a circular motion

You move the microfiber towel in small circles on your car paint to buff out the scratches. Keep doing this until the toothpaste is well-distributed on the car paint. Applying the toothpaste will require you to use some pressure, but not too much.

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Step 5: Rinsing off any excess toothpaste

When buffing out the scratches is done, next to do is spraying thoroughly with a hose to remove the excess toothpaste. Then using a microfiber towel to dry the area.

Step 6: Repeat the whole process up to 2 times

Using toothpaste to get rid of surface scratches may not be effective at the first time. You may need to repeat the whole process 1 or 2 more times if necessary. Then check the damaged area to see whether the scratches are still visible or not.

Notice: You should not do the process more than 3 times as if you do the process too many times, you may ruin the clear coat of your car paint.

Want to know how to do surface car paint scratch repair with a toothpaste? Let’s find out in the below video !

Paying More Gets You a Better Paint Job

Getty Images

The more you pay, the better the paint shop’s preparation. Some shops simply won’t do slapdash, budget work. Some will offer several levels of paint jobs. As you move up the price ladder, shops will remove more trim pieces and items like the head- and taillamps. This ensures the pain will cover sharp bends in the sheetmetal and get into the crevices in the body where the older paint might have shown through. In more expensive paint jobs, the prep will likely also involve sanding off the older paint, fixing exterior damage, and even removing glass. This adds time and money to the process, which is why something along these lines could cost $5000 or more.

Restorations

Extending Historic Preservation to Automobiles How to Restore Your Taillights to Look Like New Restored by Touch

Overhaulin’ Restoration Garage,

For most of us, though, those are far better paint jobs than we’ll ever need for our personal rides. Keep the above five points in mind as you consider a new paint job, and you’ll find it easier to match your needs to your budget.

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