How Much Does it Cost to Paint an RV (RV Repainting Tips)

Looking good! They won’t be saying that about you or your spouse’s physique. They will be saying that about your RV after its new paint job is complete. Part of RV maintenance is upgrading the pant job so your recreational vehicle looks good all the time you own it.

How Much Does it Cost to Paint an RV? If you are thinking of painting your over 30 foot RV, and want to use 2 to 4 colors, then you are looking at spending between $5,000 and $15,000. Your cost will depend on the type of paint, total length of your RV, where you get it painted and who does it for you.

To find out more about painting your RV and the cost involved just keep reading our article. You will find out about the different expenses and that the average cost is between $8,000 and $10,000.

  • Repainting tip #1: if you want to save on your RV paint costs, then you may want to reconsider using graphics. Graphics can boost the overall cost of painting your RV by a lot.
  • Repainting tip #2: One way to cut the cost of repainting your RV is to not stand out from the crowd. Custom paint jobs elevate the initial price, plus be more expensive to maintain.

RV Paint Job Cost Explained

You may think that $5,000 to $15,000 is a lot to spend on repainting your RV. Especially when you compare that price to the overall cost of painting your traditional home.

But there is a lot of labor intensive work that needs to be done before the painters actually get to paint. The first step is the prep work. This is where surfaces get sanded, scraped, pressure washed, covering outlets, woodwork and other surfaces that should not be painted.

Then after all that is done, the surface needs to be primed. When the primer is dry, 3 to 5 coats of paint are applied on average. After the paint dries, a clear protective coat is applied to keep your paint job long lasting.

In addition, there may be extra costs like replacing the weatherstripping, vent covers o painting air conditioning covers, etc. If you are looking to use multiple colors, then those additional paints will add to the initial cost of the job. Custom graphic designs add up as well. These items are not included in the initial estimate you get for painting your RV.

  • Repainting tip #3: Don’t let the paint shop fix any damaged portions of your RV. Shop the repairs around till you get a decent price

Cost to Paint a Class C RV

To paint a class C RV may not be as costly as you would think. The good news is that it will be on the lower end of the cost range. Typically, without any frills, custom graphics or multi colors, you may still be looking to pay a professional about $5,000.

Again the factors and extra costs mentioned above will alter that price. If your class C RV is not that long then it is possible that you can get the job done for less than $5,000.

Then if you do some of the prep work, you can cut your paint costs by a fair amount of money. Don’t be surprised if you are given a base estimate for more than $5,000 either. Different painters charge different amounts for the same task.

  • Repainting tip #4: While you want your RV to look good and be a reflection of you, it is best not to go with a 5 color paint job. That many colors just adds thousands of dollars to your cost. You and your RV can still look good by going with a 2 color scheme and have a lot more money in the bank to spend on you.

Cost to Paint a Travel Trailer

Getting exact figures is difficult. The cost to paint your travel trailer will depend on several factors. First, its length, then how many colors you want used and where you get it done.

The prep work involved will be the same as painting a full sized RV, so you can count on spending between $1,000 and $5,000 for a basic professional paint job. Custom graphics will cost you a lot more as will multiple color schemes.

However, if you are daring, you can paint your travel trailer yourself using high quality spray paint. The paint will still look like a professional did it if you take your time. Spray cans can go for as low as $4,00 per can but you may be lucky and find some on sale.

One person did their small travel trailer and it only cost a little time and well under $100. You can read about their work at this link. There are lots of websites on the internet telling you step by step how to paint your travel trailer yourself Here is the link to one such website.

  • Repainting tip #5; Do not use cheaper paint to save money. While this helps cut your initial painting costs, cheap paint does not last and you could be looking at paying more later on to fix he worn out paint. Top quality paint lasts longer and it protects your RV better.

Cost to Paint a Fiberglass RV

On average expect to pay about $13,000 to paint your fiberglass RV. That is because painting fiberglass is a very labor intensive job that is more work that painting a regular aluminum sided RV.

If you want the job done well, your professional painter may have to grind the gel coat off till only the fiberglass was left. This can take over 50 man hours to get it done right.

Then after applying a strong coating, lots of sanding is required to get the surface nice and smooth. Both wet and dry sanding may be required to get the surface ready just for the primer.

After the primer is dry, you can paint. You can see why painting fiberglass can be very expensive if a professional does it. You may be able to save some money using a power sprayer and quality spray paint.

To learn how to paint your fiberglass RV here is one link that gives you some idea of the work involved. This second link provides you with step by step instructions on how to get it done right.

The work involved may convince you to pay a professional to do it for you.

  • Repainting tip #6: it may be worth you time and pocket book to skip repainting and replace your faded aluminum panels with fiberglass ones. This decision could save you about $5,000 alone.

Cost to Paint a Small RV

Painting a smaller RV may not add up as much as painting a larger one but there is still the same prep work that needs to be done when you go to paint your smaller RV. The good news is that there won’t be the same amount of prep work.

Once you decide on how many colors you are going to use, the type of paint you want and depending on the condition of your small RV you are still looking to pay about $5,000 or a little less if you have professionals do it.

Again, the major part of the cost will be in preparing the RV, covering items you do not want painted and so on. If you are brave and confident enough, you can cut that cost dramatically by painting your small RV yourself. You may want a good winter project to keep you busy over the long colder months and this may be it.

Your biggest expense will be your time as you can find quality spray paint, masking tape and even patterns on sale or being sold at very low prices.

  • Repainting tip #7: One color of paint does not fade faster than another. Choose the colors you want without fear that they will disappear faster than those colors you do not like.

Cost to Paint an RV in Mexico (Where?)

If you are looking for a cheap painting alternative and you live or are vacationing near the Mexican border, you may want to take a trip to Puerto Penasco or San Felipe, Mexico.

Mexican labor and suppl;y costs are not as expensive as their American counterparts. That means you can get a very highly discounted price to paint your RV. The quality of the paint look may not be the same as you see in a showroom, but the paint holds up to years of travel wear and tear.

RV paint jobs can go for as little as $500 in Mexico and still look good.

  • Repainting tip #8: The sad news is that spending $8,000 to $15,000 on a new paint job will not add much value to your RV. Only rare occasions dos=es that happen. You may want to save the money and trade your RV in for a better looking model.

RV Painting Cost vs Wrapping RV Cost

Painting your RV makes your vehicle look great. There is no doubt about how good an RV looks after it has received a top notch paint job. But the costs involve are very prohibitive and can set you back the price of a good used car.

Wrapping your RV is a good alternative as wraps are easier to put on, there is less prep work to be done and it won’t take as long as the whole paint process does. Plus, wrapping costs are low with one price set at $12 per square foot.

If you have as small RV, you could pay as little as $1,000 or less to wrap it. In comparison, repainting the same RV may cost you between $3,000 and $5,000. For a class A RV, you can spend between $50,000 and $200,000 for a class A paint job., A wrap for the same RV costs as little as $6,500 or $8,500

You can get quotes for your RV at this link

Painting an RV Yourself

Painting your RV yourself is a very good and viable option. You can cut your costs to extremely low levels and keep that money you save for other more important items. Painting your RV will be a time consuming process due to the nature of the primer, sanding and paint.

You will also need a large stretch of good weather if you are doing the painting outside. We have already posted a couple of links earlier helping you do your own paint job. But here is another one to make sure you have the process down and can get the job done with ease.

How to Find RV Paint Shops Near Me

It shouldn’t be that difficult to find an RV paint shop near you. If you are out on the road, the managers of your RV park should have a list of top paint shops that are close to them.

If they don’t they may direct you to an RV parts and accessory store who would have such a list. Another way to find a good RV paint shop is to let your fingers do the walking.

The local yellow pages should have listings for some or you can use your computer keyboard and do an internet search. Last but not least, you could contact RV dealerships. Either they provide the service or they know who does.

Anyway you go, it is not that hard to find a professional company with a good reputation to paint your RV.

Some Final Words

Getting your RV repainted sounds like you need to take a second mortgage out on your traditional home to get the job done. Repainting an RV is second to taking care of your traditional home in terms of costs and painting.

If you do it right, you may be able to find the right paint contractor who will save you a little money throughout the painting process. One alternative would be to wrap your RV instead of painting which will save you thousands of dollars in costs.

Another would be to do the job yourself and save a bundle. But since repainting does not raise the value of your RV you could consider replacing the aluminum with fiberglass and save about 5Gs.

A final solution would be to just trade it in for a better model. You now know the costs of repainting your RV and the choice is yours to make.

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