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How Much Does It Cost To Change The Color Of Your Car?

When buying a used car, color is usually not a major determinant factor as you do not have a luxury of choice like with new cars. The goal is to find a car with less mileage and in good condition. You may even find a vehicle with your favorite color and choose not to buy it if it is not in good condition. Furthermore, should you decide not to buy a vehicle in good condition because you do not like the color? You can always change the color of your car and thus, it would be a mistake to avoid buying a used vehicle with low mileage and in good condition, as you do not like the color.

In case you do not like the color, we recommend that you negotiate the price with the seller to enable you to change the color of the vehicle after transfer. However, you will need to know how much does it cost to change the color of your car to enable you to haggle on the price. We will help you know how much it costs to change the color of your vehicle and things that you should consider before changing the color.

How Much Does It Cost To Change The Color Of Your Car?

How much you can pay to change the color of your vehicle can range from as low as $500 to as high as $10,000, depending on several factors that include the quality of paint and work and customizations you need. Every car will likely have its cost due to unique aspects like structural imperfections and individual preferences. That said, you do not have to spend thousands on changing the color of an old model unless it is a classic, high-end car that will maintain its value over the years. It also makes sense to spend a few hundred dollars if you are looking for a short-term fix and you have a tight budget.

Nonetheless, we advise that you go for quality and perfection. If you are looking at how much does it cost to change the color of your car and look new, you can expect to pay anywhere from $1,000 to $3,500, depending on your budget and needs. A showroom-like color change will cost at least $2,500, but the price can go up to $10,000 if you need custom colors.

What Affects The Cost To Change The Color Of Your Car?

How much it costs to change the color of an automobile varies based on preferences and budget. You can get a decent one-coat paint job for as low as $300 with no rust work or much preparation. If your car has dings or rust that needs sanding during preparation, the cost increases tremendously as you must factor in the labor and time it takes to complete the work. Cars that need a lot of preparation will cost more to change the original color. Some of the factors that affect the cost of changing the color of your car include:

  • Vehicle size – A smaller car will be cheaper to repaint than a larger car if all other factors remain the same. Most bodywork shops charge the service fee based on the surface area that requires preparation and painting. It takes more hours and supplies to paint a larger car, which causes an increase in color change cost.
  • Necessary repairs – If your car is not in good structural condition, you prepare to pay more to change the color of your vehicle. Although it may help you save money, masking the problems with paint will not fix the issues and can make them worse. We recommend that you spend more and get the necessary repairs before repainting. Applying paint over rust will only make the problem worse.
  • Color choice – Your color choice will affect the overall cost of the repainting job. The standard colors, white, grey, and black are the cheapest, with all the other colors considered special. The special colors cost premium, which means you will pay more for custom colors.
  • Paint quality – How much can you afford to pay for the paint? The paint market is expansive and comes with affordable types and premium options. The premium paints usually come with additional elements that help to protect your car.

8 Things You Should Know Before Changing The Color Of Your Car

Changing the color gives your car a new, different look that makes it more appealing. A color change enables you to custom the appearance of your vehicle to meet your preference needs. You do not have to stick with a yellow car if you dream of driving a red model. You only need to visit a local bodywork shop for a total remake. Nevertheless, changing the color of your vehicle is not as straightforward as changing a tire. It needs a lot of consideration, time, and money to get the best results. Some of the essential things you should consider before you change the color of your car includes:

1. Is color change necessary?

The first thing you should do is to determine if a color change is necessary. Your answer should be influenced by how much does it cost to change the color of your car. For an old car, you should consider the resale value and repainting cost. If the cost of changing the color of your vehicle is more than 25 percent of the current resale value, you should avoid repainting as it will not offer value for your investment. You should also factor in the performance and condition of your old car. Although a color change will give your car a new lease of life, it will not improve the performance of your car. It does not make sense to invest a lot of money in an aging car.

2. Prepare a reasonable budget

A color change is more expensive than repainting a vehicle. It requires a lot of labor and time to change the color of a car from black to red. Unlike in the car repaint where you keep the original color shade, you will need to entirely remove the current shade, which takes more resources. For a color change, you will need a bigger budget than that of repainting.

3. Changing color can affect the resale value

Changing the color of your vehicle will have a direct impact on the resale value. Cars with the original manufacturer paint tend to cost more than those with custom paint. Furthermore, your color choice could positively or negatively impact the resale value. Most people have a preference for standard colors, silver, white, grey, and black. Changing the color of your vehicle from the standard to special colors will negatively affect the resale value while moving from a special to standard color will positively impact the market value.

4. Read auto laws on color change

Before you decide to change the color of your car, you should first learn about the laws and regulations that govern color change. Every state has guidelines that you should follow if you need to change the color of your cars. On most occasions, you only need to fill an online color change application form to the car registration office to change the color of your vehicle.

5. A color change will not fix all imperfections

Since you are not dealing with a new car, it is necessary to fix the structural imperfections before applying a new color coat. Structural issues like deep scratches, rust, and dents will not go away with a color coat. On the contrary, the new color may highlight the imperfection spots.

6. Color change will require the removal of your car accessories

Although most of the work will happen on the outside, you will need to remove almost everything on your car. It protects your interiors from paint leaks and damage. You will need to ensure the person painting your car is experienced in handling sensitive internal parts of your car to eliminate the risk of accidental damage.

7. A color change requires time

You should not expect to take your car to a bodywork shop and drive it the next day. The professionals will need time to prepare your car for new color paint. It will also take time to apply several coats of paint and you must wait for the new paint to dry before you drive the car. We recommend that you plan to stay without your car for up to a week for a satisfactory job.

8. Seek the assistance of professionals

Although it is possible to change the color of your vehicle by yourself, we advise that you leave the job to experienced professionals. Unless it is a minor task like fixing tiny scratches, you should leave big painting tasks to professionals with the right tools and knowledge.


Your car is a valuable investment that accompanies you to almost everywhere you go whether work, vacation, or outings. The right car should match your personality in performance and appearance. You do not have to ride with an appearance that feels off. A color change can help you give your vehicle a new, pleasant feel. However, it is necessary to remember that it costs considerable money to change the color of your automobile. How much does it cost to change the color of your car will vary depending on size, quality, and personal preferences.

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