The RFD Guide to Inexpensive Paint Jobs

Silver cars aren’t all that interesting.  Our long-term Focus ST is silver and I can say that when I look back over my shoulder at it, there’s just something “blah” about the color.  It’s one of the most popular colors in the U.S., and has been for years.  Then again, the Toyota Corolla is one of the best selling cars in the U.S., so volume isn’t necessarily an indicator is it?  Sorry, I’m getting sidetracked.  Anyone can pay several grand for a paint job, but that’s expensive and what if you hate it?  Today we are exploring the less expensive options that you can do to your car’s exterior if you think it needs a little sprucing up.


One of the cheapest and easiest options.  Buy some cans (or a big bucket) of this stuff and spray whatever part you want to have changed.  You can do crazy colors and it just peels off when you are tired of it.  Of course, it can just peel off on its own too, so you have to look after it.

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Vinyl Wrap

Similar in cost and accessibility (if you have the patience to try to do it yourself) wrapping your car can be an interesting way to change the look.  Having a custom job done can cost a couple grand.  However, if you buy a big roll of vinyl and are handy with an exacto knife and a heat gun, it can be really cheap.  Do you own a 911?  Are you a big Miami Heat fan but tire of not getting noticed on South Beach?  Want to tell everyone about how big a fan you are but worried that one of your favorite players will get traded?  Wrap it!  It doesn’t get much classier.


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Rattle Can

Up next, an old favorite.  Rustoleum, Krylon, it comes from various brands but always in the same format, a spray paint can with a ping pong ball in it.  Shake it up, spray it on, done.  Well, there is spray on primer, prep, etc. and it can look awful.  But it can also look pretty cool.


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And now for something completely different.  If you own a bland, light colored car and want to radically change the look, give your Wife a sharpie.  Wives love sharpies.  One Skyline GT-R owner stationed in Japan let his Wife go to town on his baby with a sharpie and it’s a pretty dramatic change.




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This may win the “cheapest, most unique, but most time consuming” option on our list.  It’s quite striking, click here to see more pics and words about this endeavor.  What is your favorite option on the list?  Actually taken the time to use any of these techniques?  Drop us a comment below and show off your work.

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