How Much Does it Cost to Paint a Truck?

You can give your truck a new life by giving it fresh paint. However, if you are committing to a paint job, you must know some things beforehand. For example, you should know how much does it cost to paint a truck.

Painting your truck will cost you anywhere from $500 to $1000. And if your vehicle has a lot of imperfections, such as rust, the cost can be anywhere from $1000 to $4000. The final price will depend on how much work the truck needs.

But is there any way to get the total cost down? Yes, there is! If you like to know about it and all the other things about painting a truck, you would want to read through the things discussed below.

What Determines the Cost of Painting a Truck?

So, the final price of the paint job for a truck will depend on a few things. To give you a better idea, let’s briefly discuss all of them –

Size of the Truck

As you can tell, the overall size will dictate the cost of the paint job. A large-sized truck will require more materials and more work. And that will eventually increase the total bill.

On the other hand, a small-sized truck will take relatively less paint and work. So, if you have a compact vehicle, you can expect the total cost to be lower than usual.

Type of the Paint

All the paints are not the same. Not only are there differences in terms of quality, but also in terms of looks. And these variations dictate the overall cost of the paint.

Now, if you pick a costly paint, the total bill for the project will be higher. On the contrary, you can lower the total cost by choosing something that is middle of the line or in the lower bracket.

To give you a perspective, high-quality paint jobs can make you shell out $1000 to $3500. And showroom quality can even cost higher than $3500.

Labor Cost

The labor cost for the service will vary from one location to another. Some service stations will ask for high labor fees, while some will be relatively low.

But that is not the only thing. The labor fees will also depend on how tricky the project is. A challenging truck painting project can make you shell out over $1000, even with a non-fancy color.


You can’t paint on a truck that has exterior defects. These external issues may include rust, dents, and other physical damages. So, the repair cost will add up to the total cost.

To give you an idea, surface rust repairs can cost around $650. And complete rust removal can cost thousands.


Want to do a custom paint job on your truck? You should be looking to pay extra. Whereas basic ones are around $1000, custom ones can range from $2000 to $4000. So, in comparison, you may need to spend $1000 to $3000 more for a custom paint job.

How Much Does a DIY Truck Paint Job Cost?

So, you can lower the total bill significantly by painting the truck by yourself. But how low will the cost be if you opt for a DIY line? Let’s break things down for you –

Prep Supplies

If this is your first time, you might not have the supplies to prepare the truck for painting. And in such cases, you will need to purchase these first –

  • Paint sprayer for applying the paint
  • Sandpaper to wet sand the truck
  • Drop cloths to ensure that the floor does not get stained
  • Masking sheets or painter’s tape to keep the windows and trim protected

All of these can cost you anywhere from $100 to $150. And yes, you can even get them cheaper. For that, you might need to look for them in thrift stores or discounted shops.


You cannot paint a truck without the paint, right? Well, a truck will require at least three quarts of paint. And generally, for these paint jobs, urethane paint is ideal. This type of paint is not only fade-resistant but is also highly durable.

Furthermore, you will need a clear coat to protect the paint and keep its luster around for a prolonged time. Clear coats cost around $60, while paint costs about $60. So, the total cost for the paint is around $120.

Other Equipment for Perfect Painting Results

Only the essentials might not give you the result you look for in the paint job. To perfect the task, you might need these –

  • Proper paintbrush
  • Rust stripper brush
  • Good quality paint sprayer with a proper air compressor
  • Sealer for covering the exposed metal
  • Sandable body filler to work with the dents
  • Power sander to finely get the rust out and smoothen out the bumps
  • LED lights for working in bright lighting conditions
  • Hooded paint suit to keep yourself safe from the paint

All of this additional equipment means extra money. And it is likely that you might not require all of them. You have to consider what type of work and how much the project will actually take. Then, think of getting the ones you require.

So, without the extra equipment, the total cost of DIY truck painting will be anywhere from $220 to $270. And with the additional equipment, it can be anywhere from $400 to $1000.

How Much Time Does It Take to Paint a Truck?

Aside from the cost of the materials, you will also need to think of the time you have to put into the project. And be prepared because the project will be very time-consuming.

In general, it will take you at least 10 hours to perfect the paint job if you are already into painting. And if this is your first time, it can take 40 hours or more. Also, if this is your first project, you should get yourself a helping buddy.

Truck Painting Ideas and Examples

Don’t know what your truck painting project should eventually look like? Here are a few ideas that you can refer to for getting started –


If you want your truck to look interesting, you can add a couple of stripes on both sides or in the middle. It is a classical look that will not disappoint.


Incorporating different shades of colors will make your truck stand out from the crowd. And two-tone designs not only look great, but they can even help you get brand recognition. That can come in handy if you have a work truck.

Exotic Finish Options

There are different types of finish available for paints. And some of them are more eye-catching than others.

For example, matte and metallic finishes. Yes, they are more costly than regular paints. But they can indeed make the truck get a visual appeal.

Final Words

To summarize, a primary truck painting job can cost anywhere from $500 to $1000. And for an advanced job, it will be between $1000 and $4000.

So, now that you know how much it cost to paint a truck, do you plan on DIYing it? If so, you will be making a good decision.

As with the DIY approach, not only can you lower the cost, but you can also make sure that the project looks precisely how you want. Still, non-DIY would be a viable option if you don’t have time.

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