cost to pain a jeep

The Cost to Paint A Jeep Wrangler

One of the best ways to make your Jeep Wrangler stand out from the crowd is with a fresh new paint job. Painting a vehicle, however, can be costly. So, how much does it cost to paint a Jeep Wrangler? That depends on a few things. Let’s get into it the details.

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What are the Options for Painting the Jeep?

There are two main choices available: You can do it yourself, which will take some time and patience, or take it to the paint shop. A professional will leave you with a great job (most of the time), but is it worth it? Let’s find out.

Painting a Jeep Wrangler Yourself

Painting a Jeep by yourself will take time. You’ll need some basic knowledge, several tools, and of course, the paint itself.

Spray-painting a jeep can take 15-30 hours if you know what you are doing. If it’s your first time, expect it to take longer. So make sure you block out enough time to get the job done.

Next, you’ll have to choose the paint that you want and figure out how much to buy. Obviously, for something as public-facing as the exterior of your Jeep, you shouldn’t skimp on quality (We’re not painting a closet here).

How Much Paint Do You Need For A Jeep Wrangler?

The typical Jeep Wrangler has about 100 square feet of surface area. If you’re painting the entire Jeep it’ll take approximately 1 quart for each coat. To make your paint job look pristine, it’ll take several coats of paint, primer, and a topcoat.

At a minimum, expect to use 2 quarts of paint, primer, and a clear coat. However, it’s always safer to have too much paint than too little, so we recommend buying a gallon (4 quarts) of each.

Based on our recommendation, here’s our shopping list and approximate costs for paints.

  • 1 Gallon of Primer (Approximately $50)
  • 1 Gallon of Paint (Approximately $80)
  • 1 Gallon of Clear Coat (Approximately $70)

In total, plan on buying 1-gallon of primer, paint, and clear coat finish in order to give your Jeep Wrangler a new paint job. On average, you can expect to pay about $200 total for the three.

What Tools Will You Need?

In addition to paint, you’ll also need several tools, which you’ll have to buy if you don’t already have them — this will increase the cost of painting your Jeep further.

The first (and most important) tool that you’ll need is the spray gun. There are many spray guns on the market, but one of the most popular for spray painting a Jeep is the Wagner Spraytech Max HVLP Paint Sprayer. It’ll run you about $130.

You’ll also need the following equipment to finish the job:

  • Masking tape
  • Newspapers
  • Tarp
  • Denatured alcohol or degreaser
  • A power sander
  • Sanding pads

How Much Does it Cost to Paint a Jeep By Yourself?

The total cost to paint a Jeep Wrangler by yourself is approximately $400. This includes $200 for primer, paint, and clear coat, and another $200 for tools and supplies.

Step-by-Step Process

Spray painting your Jeep by yourself can be as exciting as nerve-wracking. You want to be detailed about it and take your time.

Check out this clip from JeepSolid or follow along with the steps below.

Before starting the step-by-step process, there is a crucial aspect: the location!

Since this process could take up to 30 hours, you need a place that protects the car from the weather and has enough space for you to move around. Usually, a private garage is good enough.

When you’re ready to start, set the newspaper or tarp on the floors and the walls in order to protect them. When you spray paint, there are a lot of paint particles that could end up on your garage walls.

Step 1: Wash & Fix

Before you start painting, you need to make sure to wash your vehicle properly. Remove any dust and fix any dents.

Step 2: Sanding & Preparing

Sand the Jeep in circular motions until it shows the original primer, but ideally until it’s bare metal. Then with some denatured alcohol and a rag, clean the entire surface.

Now, using newspapers and masking tape, cover all the areas you don’t want to paint. For example, windows, soft tops, door handles, etc.

Step 3: Priming & Thinner

Follow the instructions of your primer and allow it to cure once applied. Then, sand again (this time just a thin layer, without getting to the metal), and prime again. Once cured, wipe it with a rag dampened in thinner.

Step 4: Painting & Top Coat

Follow the paint instructions by the manufacturer. Try to apply it in side-to-side motions and apply the paint evenly throughout the surface. Allow the first coat to dry before applying the next one.

Once the second coat of paint has dried, you can now apply your clear topcoat.

Tip:  Before using your spray gun on your Jeep, practice spraying a scrap piece of cardboard in order to get used to the spraying intensity and motion.  Once it's smooth and even, you can move to your actual vehicle.

Step 5: Remove Tape & Buff

Now you can remove the newspapers and masking tape. Finally, finish off the paint job by buffing your Jeep in circular motions.

Letting your car’s paint dry

Once you are done painting, it’s time to sit back and let the paint dry. It typically takes 24-48 hours for your car’s paint to fully dry, but there are a few methods you can use to help speed up the drying process.

Painting a Jeep at a Paint Shop

If you’re not up for the task of painting your Jeep yourself (or you don’t have time), your other option is to get it done professionally.

A professional paint job will cost around $2,000 on average but can vary depending on where you live and which shop you take it to.

A paint job from a high-end body shop can run you more than $5,000.

You’ll likely be able to find a cheaper body shop if you look around, however, we’d be skeptical of any shop that offered a quote under $1,000. As we mentioned earlier, it’s not a great idea to skimp on your Jeep’s exterior.

Alternative to Painting Your Jeep

An alternative to painting your jeep is getting it wrapped. Wrapping a Jeep Wrangler is typically cheaper than painting it. Wrapping your Jeep is also less messy and takes less prep work and, unlike a paint job, a vinyl wrap easily be removed.

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