Call us: 1-866-692-7247
Pacific Truck Colors, Inc • Employee-Owned • Phone: 503-692-7247

How Much is a Paint Job on a Truck?

How Much is a Paint Job on a Truck?
May 10, 2024 TheHoth
how much is a paint job on a truck

As a truck driver, you probably spend most of your time on the road. Why not make the most of that time and promote your business while you drive or sit in traffic?

A new paint job can completely transform your truck and bring your business’ brand to life. Not only that, it can help you stand out on the road, reach new audiences, and make you appear more professional. 

Our truck and auto paint shop in Portland has experience painting trucks of all shapes and sizes, from pickup trucks to Freightliner semi-trucks and everything in between. In this article, we’ll explore the cost of a paint job on a truck and other important considerations.

How Much is a Paint Job on a Truck? An Overview

custom truck paint jobs

Without a detailed quote, it’s difficult to answer how much a paint job on a truck costs because the cost can vary greatly depending on a wide range of factors. 

According to Car and Driver, consumers paid an average of $556 for basic paint jobs for cars or smaller trucks, though a third of these people reported being unhappy with the results. For more thorough and high-quality paint jobs, you can expect to pay between $1,000 and $4,000, on average. However, for a custom paint job or something that’s more showroom-quality, you could pay up to $20,000 or more. 

Of course, larger semi-trucks or service body trucks will cost more to paint than cars and pickup trucks. In the section below, we’ll dive deeper into the different factors that affect the cost of a truck paint job, so that you can put together a more complete and accurate cost estimate.

Truck Paint Job Cost Factors 

Below are some of the key factors that affect the price of a truck paint job: 

Professional vs DIY Truck Paint Job

As you can probably guess, a professional paint job on a truck will likely cost more than doing the job yourself. Going the DIY route comes with significant costs though too, especially if you have to buy a bunch of new equipment. Painting a truck yourself is also a time-consuming task that requires a lot of experience and careful attention to detail. In most cases, especially when painting a large or unusually shaped truck, the paint job is probably best handled by an experienced truck paint shop with the proper equipment. The results will be more professional and much longer-lasting. 

Size & Type of Your Truck

Of course, painting a semi-truck is going to cost more than painting a pickup truck. To get a better idea of the price, you can calculate the square footage that needs to be painted. Also, keep in mind that trucks with more unusual shapes or special equipment like cranes may cost more to paint.

Truck Paint Shop Service Level

Some paint shops offer different service levels for their truck paint jobs, such as basic, standard, or showroom quality. If you’re trying to cut down on costs, you can ask about your options when you request a quote. 

Truck Condition

If your truck is in great condition, it will cost less to paint, because less bodywork and prep work will be needed. Any rust or surface damage will need to be sanded down or removed before painting can begin. 

Layers of Paint Used

Most quality auto paint shops spray two coats of primer and at least two coats of paint, sometimes three. This is a good thing to ask about when you request quotes from different paint shops. 


In some situations, insurance coverage can lower or completely cover the cost of repainting your truck. Comprehensive insurance coverage may cover paint replacement in the event of damage due to theft, fire, or a natural disaster, while collision coverage may cover paint replacement in the event of a collision. If you think either type of coverage might apply to you, it’s definitely worth looking into! 

Paint Colors & Type

Incorporating several paint colors will likely cost you more than sticking to just one solid color. Also, the type of paint used will also affect the price. Common paint types for trucks include acrylic enamel paint, acrylic lacquer paint,  and urethane paint. Urethane paints tend to be preferred nowadays for their durability and finish.

Custom Truck Paint Jobs & Advanced Techniques

More advanced painting techniques involving multiple colors, fancy finishes, text, or graphics will also cost you more than a simple solid color paint job. 

For a more specific and accurate idea of the cost, you can request a quote from one or more professional truck paint shops. Many professional paint shops will charge by the hour, so keep that in mind.

How Much Does it Cost to Paint a Truck? Breaking in Down Further 

Now that we’ve covered the various factors that can influence the cost of a truck paint job, let’s provide a snapshot of what you might expect to pay. 

Depending on the type of truck and the quality of the paint job, costs can vary broadly:

Basic Jobs: For smaller trucks or basic repaints, prices might start as low as $1,000, suitable for those looking for a cost-effective refresh.

Mid-Range Jobs: Standard paint jobs on commercial trucks typically range from $2,500 to $5,000. This includes thorough work with good-quality paint, ensuring durability and a professional appearance.

High-End Customization: For large trucks or those requiring specialized designs and high-end materials, costs can escalate well beyond $10,000, especially if custom artwork or advanced techniques are involved.

Whether you need a straightforward paint job for a small pickup or detailed custom work for a fleet of semi-trucks, understanding these cost dynamics is crucial. Next, we’ll delve deeper into what specific costs you might encounter based on the type of truck and the nature of the paint job, starting with the average cost to paint a pickup truck.

semi truck paint job cost

Average Cost to Paint a Pickup Truck 

Painting a pickup truck can be considerably less expensive than larger vehicles, in part because less specialized equipment is required. Yet the quality of the job and the chosen finishes can still make a significant difference in cost. For a basic paint job, owners might expect to pay between $1,000 and $3,000. This price range typically includes a simple one-color paint job with minimal surface preparation. For more elaborate customizations, such as special finishes or multiple colors, the cost can escalate to $5,000 or more.

Semi Truck Paint Job Cost 

When it comes to semi-trucks, the cost of a paint job can be significantly higher due to their larger size, specialized painting equipment, and the detailed work required. On average, painting a semi-truck can range from $4,000 to $10,000 depending on the quality of the paint used and the complexity of the job. Factors such as custom graphics and the use of multiple colors can also drive up the price. Considering the visibility and operational use of semi-trucks, investing in a high-quality paint job can greatly enhance the truck’s appearance and longevity.

How Much Does it Cost to Repaint a Truck? New Paint vs Repaint 

Repainting a truck might be necessary due to damage, fading, or simply a desire to change colors. Typically, repainting costs less than the original paint job as it often involves fewer preparatory steps. However, costs can increase based on the condition of the truck, especially if extensive surface work is needed. 

Fleet Painting Cost

For businesses that operate multiple vehicles, fleet painting can be a cost-effective solution. Fleet painting offers uniformity, which is crucial for professionalism as well as brand consistency and recognition. Further, the cost per truck may be reduced when painting multiple vehicles as part of a fleet deal. Benefits of fleet painting include volume discounts, and the convenience of having all vehicles serviced at once, which can reduce downtime for businesses reliant on their vehicles for operations.

Truck Paint Job Cost

Truck Bed Liner Paint Job

Many people think about painting their truck’s exterior but forget about the truck bed. Truck bed liner paint can help protect your truck bed from damage, sudden impacts, and shifting loads. It can also help keep moisture out of the truck bed. 

There are many different types of truck bed liner paint to choose from, and you can either go the DIY route or hire a professional for more durable and long-lasting results. To learn more, check out our guide to truck bed liner paint

Truck Paint Job Ideas & Examples

If you’re thinking about a truck paint job, here are some ideas, tips, and examples to get you inspired: 

Two-Tone: Incorporating two different colors into your truck paint job will help create contrast and visual interest. Not only does it look great, it’s a good way to reflect your business’ brand and generate more brand recognition. 

Stripes: If you want something a little more interesting, adding a few stripes is a popular and classic choice. 

Finish Options: There are different types of finishes to choose from too, such as metallic finishes, matte finishes, and pearlescent finishes.  

Custom Graphics Paint: With custom graphics paint, you can add text, a logo, or other graphic elements to attract more attention and reach potential customers. 

Vinyl Wraps or Decals: Vinyl wraps and decals are a popular alternative to custom paint jobs. We’ll talk more about this option in the section below.

truck paint job ideas


Vinyl Wrap Vs. Custom Paint Job on Truck 

Before deciding to paint your truck, you may want to consider whether a vinyl wrap might be a better option. Vinyl wraps come with many great benefits, including the following: 

  • They are faster to apply than a high-quality paint job. 
  • They can be easily removed without damaging your truck. 
  • They can last for up to ten years with proper maintenance and care, and require less regular maintenance than a painted truck. 
  • They can help protect the paint and vehicle underneath from scratches, dings, and other damage. 
  • They can easily be customized with text, images, and other complex graphics that would be difficult and time-consuming to paint. 
  • They are an incredibly effective form of advertising. To learn more, read our guide to vehicle advertising with wraps

We offer both paint jobs and vehicle wrapping services here at PTC, so we can help you explore the pros and cons of each and decide which is best for you and your business. 

How Much is a Paint Job on a Truck? Request a Quote Today! 

Whether you’re looking for a quick touch-up or a full-blown, custom paint job, our Paint Department will get your truck or fleet of trucks looking their very best. 

We use top-of-the-line painting materials and techniques and have two DEQ-approved flash dry paint booths, with over 2.5 million BTU, cross draft with filter in and out air. These specifications ensure that your truck’s paint job will cure more rapidly and be free of imperfections. And with both a 40-foot and 60-foot truck paint booth, we can easily accommodate any size truck, including F-150’s to concrete trucks, 53 ft flatbed trailers, motorhomes, racing trucks, and any other type of truck you can imagine. Request a truck paint quote today to get started!