Whether you’re freshening up your car with a new coat of paint or adding a personalized design or color to the hood so that it stands out, painting the hood of a car is going to entail a cost of money. However, the exact amount of that cost can vary dramatically depending on how you go about it!
There are two main ways in which you can go about painting the hood of your car. You can hire a professional, and the prices will have a wide range depending on which professional you hire, or you can go down the good old DIY route, and do it yourself!
Overall, painting the hood of your car can cost between $100 and $1000 on average, with the cheaper end being the DIY method, and the more expensive end being the high-end professionals that you hire. But which should you go for?
Well, let’s weigh the pros and cons of each!
- Doing It Yourself:
If you do the job yourself, it’s going to be a lot cheaper, because you’re not paying for anyone else’s labor. As long as you have the time to do it, and you’re willing to put in the effort, then you’re sorted! (Although, of course, you also then need the paint and the right materials, which might cost money if you don’t have them already).
The problem with doing it yourself is that you might not have the necessary skills, so the end result might not look as good. You might even end up ruining the hood of the car, and then it will be even more expensive to get it fixed!
So basically, if you’re thinking of doing it yourself, you first have to consider whether you’re truly capable of handling the job, and you have to adapt your expectations to that lower end.
- Hiring a Professional:
Hiring a professional is going to be a lot more expensive than doing it yourself because you’re paying someone else for the service.
Prices can range a lot, depending on who you hire, and that will also provide you with different end results. Cost-wise, hiring a professional is pretty much a disadvantage.
On the other hand, hiring a professional is the best way to ensure you get a good and high-quality end-result so that the hood of your car looks as best as possible. They will have the right materials and the right skills, as well as experience, and they will pay a lot more attention to details and the finish.
At the end of the day, choosing between hiring a professional and doing it yourself is down to you. It depends on your means and your resources, your budget, and the time you have.
But basically, this is a choice you need to make pretty early on, in order to begin estimating the overall cost of painting the hood of your car.
The Average Cost to Paint a Car Hood – If You Do It Yourself:
Let’s say that you’ve deemed yourself skilled enough to paint the hood of your car yourself, so you choose the good old DIY method. (If your car is old or you don’t mind getting a slightly less professional finish, then this is the way forward for sure).
How much is the average cost?
On average, painting the hood of your car yourself will cost between $50 and $150, and it might take between 4 and 10 hours to complete the whole job (depends on how fast you work).
It also depends on how many layers of paint you choose to apply on the hood. More layers of paint will mean a better end result, but it will also mean more cost and more time.
The Average Cost to Paint a Car Hood – If You Hire a Professional:
If you have a fancy car and you don’t want to risk ruining it, or you simply have the means to afford a proper professional, then hiring someone is definitely the best possible option to achieve the best possible result.
But how much is the average cost?
Well, on average, hiring a professional will cost anywhere between $200 and $1000 or above, it really depends on the full extent of the paint job itself, and who you’re hiring.
There are some accessible companies that will do it for quite cheap, and then there are high-end professionals that will charge you way more.
Some professionals will want to remove the hood off the car completely in order to paint it, so that might also add to the cost!
How to Estimate the Cost of Painting a Car Hood:
Knowing the average cost of painting the hood of your car is all well and good, but it isn’t exactly helpful to your unique circumstance, is it?
There are too many variables involved for you to just assume an average cost, and instead, you should calculate a more accurate estimate based on your car hood, and the paint job you want, and the way you’re going to go about it.
To break it down to the basics, the cost of painting your car hood is:
the cost of the labor + the cost of the paint + the cost of the materials used.
If you do it yourself, you can forget about the cost of the labor, and focus on the other two. And if you hire a professional, you can forget about the cost of the materials used, and maybe even the cost of the paint, and focus more on the cost of the labor. But at the core of the cost, it’s those three elements that determine the overall price.
So, let’s look at all three elements in more detail so that you can start adding up all the individual costs to get an overall estimate!
Cost of the Labor:
The cost of the labor is essentially the cost of the time and effort put in by the person doing the job. As we’ve mentioned before, you can go down two different routes:
- Doing it yourself:
If you’re planning on painting the hood of the car yourself, then the cost of the labor will be $0. All it will take is a few hours of your time and your effort.
You might want to get some help from friends or family, in which case the cost of the labor might be a bribe or two, maybe snacks and a drink? But yeah, essentially, there is no labor cost when going down the DIY route, so you can ignore this element.
- Hiring a professional:
If you’re hiring a professional, the cost of the labor is going to be the biggest determining factor for the overall price.
You’re paying for someone to provide you with the service of painting the hood of your car, so you’re paying for their time, their effort, and many more things that come with getting someone else to do it for you.
Make sure you hire a professional that is reliable and high-quality. Of course, you will have to find someone that is within your budget, but keep in mind that the quality of the service will likely go hand in hand with the price.
What we definitely recommend, is that you make sure you get an estimated quote or a set price, before you agree to hire them. You wouldn’t want to hire them and then get a price not within your budget at the end of it!
Cost of the Paint:
If you’re painting the hood of your car, you’re going to need some paint. And unless you somehow have some paint already, or you magically stumble across some free paint, or you have someone to give you some, then you’re going to have to go and buy it.
AKA, the paint entails a cost.
Okay, so how much does the paint cost exactly?
Well, once again, it depends! The price of the paint varies depending on the type of paint, the color, the brand, the store where you’re buying it from, whether you’re lucky and find a good deal… But, on average, automotive paint will cost between $20 and $50 per quart.
So to calculate the amount of money you need to spend on paint, you first have to calculate the amount of paint you’re going to need to complete the job.
For an average-sized car hood, you will need at least 1 quart of base coat, and 1 quart of clear coat. But it is recommended to use at least two layers of paint, so that would mean 3 quarts of paint as an average estimation. (You might use a lot more than that).
That puts the average cost of paint at around $60 to $150. (Again, it depends on the type of paint!)
If you hire a professional, they might have special deals for the cost of the paint, or they might even provide their own. Make sure to ask beforehand!
Cost of the Materials:
If you hire a professional, you won’t have to worry about the materials and tools needed. But if you’re doing it yourself, this is very much an element to take into consideration. After all, you can’t just throw the paint onto the hood and hope for the best. You need the right equipment to complete the job.
The average cost for this is too variable, as it depends on whether you already have tools and materials of your own, or whether you are able to borrow some from someone, or whether you truly have to go and buy them all. You also might not need all of the typical tools and materials, as it depends on how you’re going about painting the hood.
Nevertheless, here are some of the most commonly used tools when painting the hood of the car, that you might want to consider:
- Body Filler:
This is more for older cars, or for a hood that begins to show its wear and tear. Whether it’s dents or spots of rust, using a body filler can give your hood that smooth finish, so that it ends up looking brand new!
You should obviously paint your car away from other cars and away from anything you don’t want to accidentally spray-paint, but you should also make sure to protect the floor around the car so you don’t leave any permanent stains. You could buy specialized items for this, but it’s a lot cheaper to just collect as many old cloths as possible and to cover the surrounding areas with them.
- Dent Puller Kit:
If the hood has any dents, you should fix them before you start painting. A dent puller kit is quite cheap, and it will get the fix done fast and easily.
When you hire a professional, you will notice that they sand down the hood beforehand, and maybe even in between layers of paint, to ensure there’s a smooth finish at the end. You can do the same if you buy some sandpaper, as it’s not very expensive at all!
- HVLP Spray Gun:
Other than the paint, which is a whole other element of the cost in itself, the most expensive thing will be the HVLP spray gun. You absolutely need one to paint the hood of your car, and you should aim to get one as high-quality as possible, as it really will affect the final result.
These spray guns can range in price, but nowadays it’s easier to find accessible and budget-friendly options. Plus, these spray guns can come in handy for plenty of other DIY jobs, so it’s not a one-use expense.
To sum it all up, how much does it cost to paint a car hood? The average for when you’re doing it yourself is between $50 and $150 while hiring a professional will be between $200 and $1000 or more, depending on the service you hire.
However, if you want to estimate the cost of the job more accurately, you need to take three main factors into consideration: the cost of the labor, the cost of the paint, and the cost of the necessary tools and equipment used to complete the job.