How Much Does It Cost To Paint A Car? [+ Labour]

New cars are often covered in expensive paint, but what about the old ones? How much does it cost to paint a car?

The cost of painting a car depends on several factors. The size of the vehicle, whether you want to repair any dings or scratches, and if you want it painted a solid color or with a custom design.


The average cost of painting a car is between $500 and $3,000, depending on the type of paint job and whether you do it yourself or hire an auto body shop to do it for you.

Painting a car yourself can save money because you won’t have to pay someone else to do it for you.

However, hiring a professional will probably be more cost-effective in the long run if you don’t know what you’re doing or don’t have the time to do it yourself.

Here are some factors that affect how much it costs to paint a car:


Larger cars take longer to paint than smaller ones, costing more money. You should also consider whether or not you want two-tone paint jobs done on your car when calculating costs because this adds another layer of complexity to the project and therefore drives up prices.

The Cost of Paint

Paint is the most expensive component in a paint job and can account for half the total cost. Different types of paint are available at different prices; however, you can get similar results with less expensive paints by following directions carefully, using high-quality products, and taking your time with the job.

The price of paint varies widely depending on where you buy it and what brand you choose. A gallon of standard automotive enamel costs around $50, while specialty paints such as chrome or pearl may cost over $100 per gallon.

Paints that offer more resistance to fading or scratching are more expensive than standard paints, but they are worth the extra money if you plan to keep your vehicle longer than five years.

Labor Rates

Labor is typically the largest expense when painting a car because it takes time for an experienced painter to prepare surfaces properly and apply multiple coats of high-quality paint evenly over large areas like fenders or hoods. Labor rates vary widely from shop to shop depending on experience level and equipment used.

Number of Coats Required

If you are having a single-stage paint job done on your vehicle, this means that only one coat is needed. Two-stage jobs require two coats and three-stage jobs require three coats of paint. The more coats involved in your project, the more expensive it will be because each coat needs to be applied separately and dried before moving on to the next one.


A vehicle with rust or dents will cost more than one in good condition because it requires additional time to repair. And if you have any previous bodywork that isn’t up to par, it’ll also affect the price (because it’ll take longer to correct).


Choosing top-of-the-line materials and equipment can increase your costs substantially. But there’s no need to break the bank regarding painting quality — most DIYers find that using high-quality materials is enough for great results.


The location where you live will also affect your budget as far as painting is concerned because if you live close to any big city, it will be easy for you to find everything that you need at an affordable price. In contrast, those living in remote areas have to spend extra money due to shipping charges, taxes, etc.

Average Cost To Paint A Car If You Do It Yourself?

Painting a car can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. Depending on how much time you have and how much money you want to spend, you can paint a car yourself for less than $100. The average car painting cost is around $500 to $800. However, you can save thousands of dollars if you do it yourself.


If you’re looking at painting your own car, there are some things that you should know first:

  • Painting a car is dangerous work. You need proper safety equipment and clothing to protect yourself from harm.
  • It takes time and patience — about six hours for small jobs and 20 hours for larger ones.
  • You will need basic tools such as sandpaper, rags, and spray paint cans.
  • You must prepare the surface thoroughly before painting by cleaning it properly with soap or degreaser, followed by a thorough rinse with water only — no detergent!

There are many reasons why people choose to paint their cars at home. For some, it’s a way to save money on expensive auto body work. Others love the satisfaction of doing the job themselves.

However, these prices are just estimates because so many factors determine how much you’ll pay for your paint job.

Estimated Cost of Paint For A Car?

The price of a professional paint job could be too high for older vehicles. In these circumstances, you might want to consider painting the car yourself. The required supplies can be purchased for as low as $200 from hardware and auto supply stores. Time and effort are the only additional expenditures.

The supplies and equipment needed are as follows:

  • Gloss paint.
  • Primer.
  • Foam brushes.
  • Paint trays.
  • Masking tape.
  • Sandpaper.
  • Mineral spirits for cleaning.

Finding a place to paint the car is one of the most difficult DIY projects. Climate-controlled booths are used in professional painting and body shops because they reduce the quantity of dust and grime that could potentially contact the paint and damage the finish. The greatest option for a do-it-yourself project is to paint the car in a spotless, well-ventilated garage.

How Much Does It Cost To Paint A Car A Different Color?

How much does it cost to get your car painted a different color?


For a professional job – which would be highly recommended – you’ll new a spare few thousand dollars in your bank account.

Averagely, a professional paint job is likely to cost anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000.

You might find cheaper options from national chains. However, these most likely only include one layer. This will be very vulnerable to chips and therefore provide little to no rust protection.

If a company is offering a respray for a low price, ask yourself how they’re able to do that. Remember, the paint alone could cost up to $1,000, and even though trades will get it for less, they’ll still be charging labor rates. Does it seem reasonable and legitimate?

One might easily conclude that a cheap respray is even less valuable than an expensive job.

Why You Should Get A Pro

You have decided that you want to have your car painted. You have decided on the color, and you have decided on the type of paint that you want to use. Now you need to find someone who can do it for you.

It may seem like an easy task, but many different things can go wrong if you don’t know what you’re doing. A professional will make sure that everything is done properly, which means that your car will look great when it’s done, and it won’t fall apart on you later on down the road.

Here are some reasons why you should get a professional to paint your car:

  • They Know What They’re Doing

Painting cars is a skill that takes years of practice to perfect. A professional has had years of experience doing this job, which means they know exactly what they’re doing when painting cars. If they mess up while working on your car, they’ll know how to fix it without causing any damage or delays in the process.

  • They Have The Right Tools

If a person wants to paint their own car using one of those spray guns from Walmart or AutoZone, they probably shouldn’t even bother starting because it won’t turn out well!

  • It will save time

If you want to get your car repainted quickly and efficiently, hiring someone with experience with this kind of work will make sense. A professional painter can do this job much faster than most people because they know exactly what they’re doing and how long it will take them to complete it properly.

  • It’s not easy.

Even if you have painted your house or another large object, painting a car is much more difficult. You must get in the right position and spray evenly all over the vehicle. It takes practice to get the hang of it; even then, most people will not be able to do it well enough for their taste.

  • You could make mistakes that are costly to fix later on

It only takes one mistake when painting a car, and you can end up with an ugly paint job that will cost you thousands of dollars to fix later on down the line! You might think it’s not too big of an issue right now, but what happens when you want to sell the vehicle later? You’ll have to repaint it again anyway at that point.


Luckily, estimating a car’s paint cost is a relatively simple process. It’s certainly not a task that you should undertake alone, so contact a professional auto body shop to give you an estimate and help guide you through the process. Overall, it’s not that difficult at all to estimate how much paint will cost.

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