Your car’s bumper will likely need replacing at some point, which is normal. Some people even replace it several times as the chances of damage are high due to its location. It is usually the part that gets the most damage after an accident. Driving your car off-road further puts more pressure on the bumper and increases the chances of damage as a result of dings, dents, and scratches. Repainting the bumper can give your vehicle a fresh look by getting rid of scratches and dings. Furthermore, you may need to know how much does it cost to paint a bumper if you are planning to replace the part as new bumpers come without paint.
If you are only dealing with a few scratches, you can save money by repainting the bumper yourself. However, we recommend that you leave bumper replacement and repairs to professionals to avoid compromising on your car’s sensors. Before painting the bumper, it might require disconnecting radar sensors, fog lights, airbag sensors, and other electrical components. We look at how much does it cost to paint a bumper and things you will need for a do-it-yourself painting.
How Much Does It Cost To Paint A Bumper?
How much you will pay to paint a bumper will vary depending on the preparation needed before painting. Painting a bumper is not different from painting other sections of your car. It requires adequate preparation for the best results. That said, you can expect to pay anywhere between $100 to $500 to get the desired outcome, depending on the quality of paint and needed preparation work. The cost can be lower if you decide to paint the bumper yourself as you will only need to buy the supplies and tools, which will help you to save on the labor costs.
If you decide to paint the bumper yourself, you should avoid removing it unless you are an experienced mechanic to avoid messing with your car sensors. Instead, we advise that you mask the hood/trunk to paint the bumper without the hassle of removing the sensors. Although it is necessary to use the best tools for the finest results, you can use a spray can if you are short on budget. However, the challenge of using a spray paint can is that color might fail to match your car’s original paint code. The steps that you should take to paint your car’s bumper by yourself include:
- Remove bumper and stickers
- Clean the bumper with degreaser and soap
- Wet sand rough areas and wipe with a microfiber cloth
- Apply the base coat and wet sand imperfections
- Paint the necessary coats
- Top up with a clear coat
- Let it dry before reattaching the bumper to your car
What Tools Do You Need For A Do It Yourself Car Painting Task?
Whether it is a bumper, hood, door, or an entire car, a DIY car painting job can save you considerable money as you will only need to buy the necessary supplies. However, you will need the right knowledge and tools to help you complete the painting process successfully. If you make a mistake, you may have to repeat the full process. Some of the essential tools that you will need to paint your car’s bumper at home include:
1. Paint sprayer or spray gun
Top on the list of DIY car painting equipment is the spray gun, which ensures precision as you paint. Spray guns come in two styles, including the can-style paint sprayer and gravity feed spray gun. The can-style paint sprayer keeps the paint in a paint can under the paint spray gun. The gravity feed spray gun has a paint cup on top of the gun. A gravity-fed spray gun is ideal for most DIY car painting jobs as it has minimal overspray due to low pressure.
2. Electric Random Orbit Sander
A random orbit sander simplifies the difficult task. It helps you save time and makes body filler shaping tasks and sanding jobs more comfortable. It has a unique design that features circular pads moving in an orbital direction, which offers better results than machines that spin in circles at high speeds. Random orbit sanders come in different power ranges and sizes, which enables you to find the best unit for your task and budget.
3. Air compressor
You do not have to buy an air compressor if painting your car is an occasional job. You can rent or borrow from your friends. Nevertheless, it is worth investing in a quality air compressor if you would like to change the color of your car quite often. It powers all air tools, including a paint spray gun. We recommend that you buy a portable air compressor as it is powerful enough for most air tools you use at home and it does not cost a leg and an arm.
4. Sandpaper and sanding block
Sanding is necessary before you paint your car. It smoothens the rough surface and glossy areas, which enables the paint to stick better. Using a 1200 or 2000-grit wet-and-dry sandpaper offers the best finishing touch for an excellent painting job. Sanding block makes it easier to use sandpaper by offering a firm grip. A firm grip enables you to apply the right pressure to get the job done efficiently.
5. Masking tape
A masking tape is necessary when you painting a section of the car like a bumper. Most people use newspapers and other cheap papers to cover areas that they do not need to paint. However, using low-quality material can make the paint reach the surface underneath. We recommend that you use plastic materials as they offer better protection.
6. Rust Remover Spray
Always check the area you need to repaint for rust spots. Painting over the rust spots is not ideal as it only makes the problem worse. We recommend that you invest in a quality rust remover spray that will help you remove rust effectively. It is a water-based solution that works within minutes.
7. Body Filler
Body filler helps to even the surface before painting. You should use it after sanding to cover dents and nicks to give your paint a flawless finish. It comes with a putty knife that you should use to spread the putty. Body filler comes in two types that include metallic and plastic.
8. Car Paint
Before you start the process, you should have in mind the paint and color that you would like to paint. Paints come as waterborne or solvent-borne types. The waterborne paints are easy to use and friendly to the environment. The solvent paints use another solution as a base, including urethane, enamel, or lacquer. You should avoid solvent-based paints as they come with organic volatile compounds that require careful handling.
9. Primer Thinner
Buying a primmer thinner is necessary but not mandatory. Primer thinner ensures that you get a perfect paint job if you overspray primmer. It helps you remove the excess primer for an even appearance. You can avoid buying primmer thinner if you are experienced in applying primer, but we recommend you have it before starting the process as you do not know what might happen as you apply primer.
Primer determines the beauty of your painting results. How you use the primer will determine the longevity and smoothness of your paint. You should apply primer on the metal body before paint for the best results. We recommend the use of epoxy-based primer as it sticks more efficiently and offers protection against corrosion. You may need to apply two or three layers to ensure smooth, long-lasting results.
11. Paint Thinner
Paint thinner is valuable if you would like professional-like results. As a novice, you are likely to overspray some areas with paint, which will result in uneven results. Paint thinner helps to remove the extra paint for consistent results.
12. Cleaning solvent
You will need to clean the vehicle after sanding and drying the putty. A cleaning solvent helps to flatten the surface and remove the clot and pigmentation of the paint.
13. Respirator Mask
Your health and safety are more important than an attractive, eye-catching car. You should not start a painting job without protective tools. A quality respirator mask can protect you against vapors, gasses, and different chemicals. A top-quality mask like the N-95 or something of better quality will prevent you from inhaling the paint as you spray.
14. Safety Glasses
You should not start sanding your car without safety glasses. The safety glasses protect your eyes from dirt and debris. They also keep paint from your eyes as you spray. Wearing goggles will also be effective if you are handling a simple job.
15. Painting Coveralls
It is necessary you wear a liquid-proof painting coverall that offers adequate coverage to your torso and appendages. It protects your skin from harmful chemicals that can trigger skin reactions. For a simple car painting job, you can use an apron, full-sleeve clothes, long pants, and protective hoods as an alternative to painting coverall.
16. Nitrile Gloves
Nitrile gloves protect your fingers and skin from harmful toxic chemicals. It also keeps your skin oil from the surface you are painting.
How much it costs to paint a bumper depends on the damage you need to fix. Deep scratches or bumper replacement may cost much more to paint than color discoloration. You can save money by doing the paint job yourself, but you will need to have the right tools for the best results. However, we recommend that you leave the bigger panting tasks to professionals.