Repairing body damage on a car always seems to cost more than you think it should. But once you factor in the cost of labor, parts and materials as well as the extent of the damage and the type of vehicle you're driving, you can see how quickly auto body shops come to these seemingly outrageous figures. If you must paint your car's bumper, shop around and get several estimates to save money, even if it does require a little extra legwork.
Understanding Labor and Parts Costs
When the first cars cranked along the road, bumpers were nothing more than a piece of metal or wood that protected the car from accidental bumps and bangs. If the driver hit something, the bumper could simply be removed by undoing the bolts, and then replaced quite easily. Now, however, a car's bumper is a more integrated part of its body and design. Bumpers often include or connect to lights and airbag sensors, and possibly backup cameras and other warning systems sensors. All of these additions can raise the labor costs associated with painting or replacing the bumper.
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Chances are, if you need to repaint a car bumper, you probably have some other damage as well. Labor costs increase with more damage to the vehicle, and also depend upon the vehicle itself. Foreign cars, such as BMWs or Porsches, can cost substantially more to repair than a domestic vehicle with more readily available parts. Performing the labor necessary for a bumper repair, such as removing it for painting, can take upward of two or three hours. The average rate of labor for this type of work is approximately $70 to $90 an hour, so depending on various factors, it can get costly rather quickly.
Painting Labor and Materials Costs
Painting the bumper is necessary to get it to match the rest of your car's color. Auto-body mechanics and paint shops can match the bumper's color to the rest of the car. However, if your bumper has extensive or deep paint damage, you may end up paying a lot more than you thought. You can get a less expensive, single-stage paint job that touches everything up, and this process starts around $300. Labor cost for painting is approximately $100 per hour, with anywhere from three to four hours needed to complete the job.
If you need a more intensive paint job done, look to pay in the $1,000 range or more, depending on your vehicle and the extent of the damage. When you add up what your bumper will cost to repair and repaint, you could be looking at shelling out between $935 and $1,580 for the work. Keep in mind, you may not need any repairs such as fixing dents or anything that requires the bumper to be removed. In this case, you might get away with paying less.