How much is a Maaco paint job(2022 Cost Estimates)

Last Updated on May 7, 2022 by Bright Calister

Wondering if Maaco is the right place to do your paint job for your car, this is the place as you will learn the breakdown of Maaco charges on paint jobs.

In this guide, we will show you

  • Why Maaco is so popular
  • Maaco background
  • Whether Maaco is reputable
  • Services offered by Maaco
  • Cost of Maaco paint job
  • Why Maaco prices are so low
  • How to paint a car by yourself

And many more!

How much is a Maaco paint job? Maaco and their low-priced paint jobs are trendy among many car owners. However, many people don’t understand why they are so popular. If your car needs a painting job, and you’re thinking if Maaco can help?

You are in the right place. This article will discuss this car painting Enigma, their business practice, and their services.

Why is Maaco so popular?

Information on the Maaco website says they are the biggest auto paint company in the United States. It claims the company has painted over 22 million cars. But, how true is this statement?
What makes the company popular can be categorized into three:

Multiple locations

One of the significant appeals of the Maaco brand is its availability. The company is located in more than 500 franchise places in the United States and Canada. Also, it offers online estimates and online appointment booking.
Adding an online process to your work is crucial in the digital age. Hence, more people are aware of the availability of Maaco because of this step.

Price match guarantee

Maaco has a reputation for a price match with a lot of fine print. However, you should read carefully before going ahead. The company will match a competitor’s price for a similar job.

But, for the price match guarantee, the competitor can’t be beyond 50 miles of the Maaco franchise. Also, it has to be within ten days of Maaco’s estimate. Therefore, it is best to check with the closest Maaco franchise to learn about their price match policy before taking a competitor’s quote to them.

Warranty information

Maaco boasts a restricted national warranty. This means that if you change locations, any of the franchises should honor the warranty on the work carried out by a different Maaco franchise. However, you need to provide the original invoice and repair order.

Panel replacement or repairs has a year’s warranty against cracking, shrinking, or rust. Surface or rust repairs only have a three-month warranty. Paint jobs have between one to five years of warranty against delamination, cracking, and peeling. The warranty length depends on buying the basic, preferred, or premium paint job.

The warranty on any job carried out by Maaco is voided if there is extra work done by anyone else on the vehicle.

Maaco Background

Maaco began in 1972 by Tony Martino in Delaware under the company name “Driven Brands .”Amazingly, the single store grew to 200 paint and auto centers in North America. The 1980s saw the emergence of large advertising campaigns, including their famous slogan, “Uh-oh! Better get Maaco!”

The mix of Martino’s business plan and the advertising worked. In 1987, Maaco had 400 stores. Many celebrities have appeared in the company’s television commercials, including Craig T.Nelson. In the mid-2000s, the company increased its website and its online presence.

Conversely, they added a hashtag, #MAACover (get it). In 2008, Maaco merged with Meineke Car Care Center under the Driven Brands parent company. By 2012, Jonathan Fitzpatrick became president and CEO of Driven Brands, Inc.

Furthermore, Maaco and Meineke, Driven Brands acquired 1-800 Radiator and A/C, CARSTAR, Take 5 Oil Change, ABRA, ATI, PH Vitres d’ Autos, and Uniban. Their continued success is a lesson in corporate America. In 2014, owner Tony Martino was inducted into the International Franchise Association Hall of Fame.

Cost of Maaco Paint Job

According to current estimates, the actual price of Maaco Paint Job can be as little as $300 and as high as $1200. The reason for the wide price range has a variety of factors. The price is determined by the bodywork needed before painting.
Also, the size of your car and the tier of service you select contribute to a gap in the price range. Therefore, we shall look at the estimated cost of painting a sedan, truck, and SUV.

Maaco cost to paint a sedan.

The bare minimum Maaco paint job on a sedan that doesn’t require anybody’s work will be around $300. For the premium paint service, you will need approximately $500 to $700 to get a sedan wholly painted. Consequently, if you have an older vehicle and only want to improve the car’s aesthetics, a Maaco paint job may be what you need.

Maaco cost to paint SUV

Since an SUV has a larger surface area than a sedan, paint is higher. Also, depending on the size of your SUV and any repair necessary, the painting cost will cost between $600 to $900.

Price of truck paint at Maaco franchise

Many trucks have an identical amount of paint surface area to an SUV. Conversely, many factors will affect your estimate, including prep work, repairs, and truck size. The average cost of a truck paint job at Maaco is between $700 and $1000.

Commercial vehicle paint cost

If you want to advertise your business on a commercial vehicle, you will probably need a custom paint job. The job can be pricey, ranging from $1000 – $5000. Vinyl vehicle wraps are a cheaper alternative to a custom paint job.

Is Maaco Reputable?

Some people don’t like the Maaco paint job. You can find an online forum created to criticize Maaco’s job. However, the information from reliable sources: the Better Business Bureau and Consumer Affairs, are favorable.

Better Business Bureau

When you check Maaco on this website, there are 626 listings – 312 of those rated ‘A’ or better. A ‘B’ rating was given to 47 stores, while a ‘c’ was given to 22. The remainder of the stores is not rated. Also, only 41 stores were rated by Better Business Bureau.

A Better Business Bureau accreditation implies that the company makes an effort to resolve complaints. The company pays an annual fee for accreditation review.

Consumer affairs

On the consumer affairs website, Maaco currently has 3.8 stars out of 5, based on 57 ratings in the last year. The common complaints include color errors or rough finishes. Many customers were delighted with the paint job and customer service at their local franchise.

Services Maaco offer

Maaco has made a name for itself by providing painting services. However, they render other services too. We shall look at the following services:

Paint services

According to the information on the Maaco website, all the vehicle paint processes follow five steps:

Repair is one of the points of service that can affect your final cost. Maaco repairs car dents and blemishes in their shop before they paint.

Surface smoothing
The step eliminates any surface scratches or dings.

Maaco has three levels of sealer. The step is developed to create a new foundation for the fresh paint.

There are three different levels of paint services offered. We shall discuss the paint services later.

A clear coat is included to protect the paint and help the car look glossy.

When you take your vehicle, you will get an opportunity to inspect it before signing off on the paint job. Maaco commits to fixing any difficulties you may have if you are not satisfied with the job.

Types of paint services

The following paint services are available at any Maaco franchise.

Basic paint service

The basic paint service job is the cheapest at all Maaco franchises. The company uses single-stage paints with a base coat and gloss coat combined. The basic service has a single-year warranty.

Enamel paint is affordable, sticks well to the car, and covers effectively. It is, however, prone to fading and chipping over time.

Preferred paint service

The preferred painting service uses a single-stage coating of urethane paint. Urethane paint is more durable than enamel paint and resists chipping and fading. This paint service comes with a three-year warranty.

Premium paint service

The premium paint service claims to be the most durable and has the best appearance. However, it is the most expensive. The premium service comes with a two-stage application and a five-year warranty.

The two-stage paint application has a dull base coat and a separate finishing coat. The result is has a higher shine and better durability.

Other Services by Maaco

Other services rendered by Maaco include:

Surface repair and spot painting

Spot painting is a small, confined paint job used to repair damage caused by a bit of bump or accident. The areas that need repairs are sanded before being painted to mix with the other parts of the car. After the paint is touched up, the car is sealed and buffed.

Parts replacement

When available, Maaco provides the option of recycled parts to reduce costs. The warranty is affected by the use of recycled parts. There are also new parts and authorized aftermarket components available. Maaco will offer the service to replace the needle auto parts.

Advantages of Using Maaco Franchise

Generally, Maaco’s low cost is a significant incentive to use any franchise. In addition, if you see a lower price competitor, the company will match it. The company’s work is covered by warranty.

It is also not difficult to find a close Maaco shop almost anywhere in the United States. Maaco is also a one-stop-shop. Your vehicle will be repaired, prepped, and painted by them.

Maaco is usually capable of custom paint jobs in various colors and finishes.

Disadvantages of Using Maaco Services

Although there are many advantages of using the Maaco franchise, there are disadvantages. Some of them include:
Franchise business stricture

Maaco operates its stores as franchises. The franchise owner decides the way the franchise operates, and not Maaco. Hence, each franchise will have different standards and procedures. Therefore, you have to research locations in your area before taking your car for painting.

Single-stage paint application
Many automotive paint companies disassemble vehicles before painting, then paint each panel separately before reassembling the car. Maaco’s process is a bit more streamlined. The company taped off the trim then sprayed the entire car with paint.

The result can be less uniform, like a traditional panel-by-panel paint job.

Rushed prep work
Again, this depends on the location and the technician you are dealing with, but a regular complaint about Maaco is they rush the prep work. Preparing a car for paint might take a long time.
It requires surface preparation, masking, and taping. A busy Maaco franchise may not have enough time or manpower to prepare every car that comes to their shop.

Limited color matching
Maaco has paint colors that are not used in their stores. For those on the market to change the color of their vehicle, there are many options to choose from! If you need a spot repair or wish to match the old color of your car, it may be a little difficult.

Why are Maaco Prices so low?

Some automotive businesses charge lots of money for a paint job. So the question is – how can Maaco make money on $300 paint jobs? The following reasons are why the prices are so low:

Fast turnaround

Maaco, for starters, specializes in one-coat paint projects. Rather than removing and painting each of a vehicle’s body panels individually. Maaco preps, masks, and paints the car.
With this step, Maaco saves time per vehicle, and time is money.

High volume

There are a plethora of Maaco locations! The company may make money without charging too much by servicing many autos.

Reasonable charge for repairing a vehicle

The price of the Maaco paint job is clear, but what about the competition. We shall provide a rough estimate of any other business in America that can charge for a paint job. We shall divide the costs into three:

Cheap paint costs

According to CostHelperCars’ recent data, customers who have a budget car painting job, like the ones carried out at Maaco, spend between $400 and $800. Therefore, the report suggests that about one-third of people surveyed were not happy with the low-cost paint jobs.

Mid-Range paint cost

According to CostHelper, a mid-range paint job is a service that costs between $1,000 to $1800 with an average cost of $1,316. Unlike consumers who want low-cost paint jobs, most customers who pay for a mid-quality paint job are satisfied with the outcomes. The mid-range price range often comes with more extensive prep work on the vehicle, such as rust removal and panel repair.

If you chat with any car person, they will explain that prep work is an essential aspect of the amazing paint job. Dissimilar to Maaco’s basic and professional paintwork, the mid-range automotive paint jobs usually comprise 3-5 coats of clear car paint to give the cars a glossy, durable finish.

Showroom-quality costs

If you want a showroom quality or a highly customized paint job, be prepared to spend big. According to the CostHelper website, readers who choose high-end paint for their cars spend between $2,400 – $7500. The average cost was $4,900.

A showroom-quality job comprises:

Extensive prep work such as removing body panels. Compete, sanding away any former paint.

Proper dent repair. 20 – 24 layers of paint, encompassing 6-8 layers of clear coat. Custom details like an airbrush artist or metallic paint.

How to paint a car yourself

Having looked at the cost and process of the Maaco paint job, it is not complicated. Hence, if you decide to do the work yourself? You should go for it. Interestingly, many car owners paint their vehicles on their own.
New paint will surely give your car an improved look. If you consider selling the car, a shiny new paint can make a significant difference in its marketability.

How to replicate a Maaco paint job

The cost of painting your car on your own with Maaco type of paints and supplies is not as expensive as people think. You can find similar products to the one the company uses on most online and hardware stores.

  • First, you need polyurethane auto body paint, similar to the paint Maaco uses. The paint is a single-stage acrylic paint that offers excellent results. You will need approximately three quarts for the average paint job.
  • Second, you will need a glossy clear coat. The coat will bring the shiny look you want to the car. Also, you will need three quarts of the glossy clear coat.
  • Alternatively, you can buy a complete urethane paint kit. The kit encompasses one gallon of urethane paint, stir sticks, and a spray-on urethane paint hardener. All the products have similarities to what Maaco uses for their jobs.

Things necessary for a paint job

Get an estimate

If you want the paint job to have a professional look? Then you should make some estimates because car paint and supplies are costly. An estimate will help you evaluate the cost of supplies before starting the task.


The next thing you need is sandpaper. Any rough surface of the car will require thorough sanding. Wet sanding is necessary for automotive work. You should probably start with 80-grit sandpaper.

When you sand down the surface bumps, switch to finer grit sandpaper. An example of fine-grit sandpaper is 150-grit, and they are better for smoothing things out.

Paint and rust stripper

If you want to remove all the previous paint or have rust to eliminate, you should buy a paint and rust stripper. The highly abrasive pad fits onto most standard drills.


Sealer often seems unnecessary since you just paint on it at the end. But, many professionals use sealers. It is important when you have exposed metal on the car or make a significant color alternation.

Paint sprayer

You should use an automotive paint sprayer to make painting the car easier. Most paint sprayers will be suitable for the job run using an air compressor.

Drop cloth

Many disposable drip clothes make it clear to a breeze and protect your concrete paint damage.

Body filer

Sandable body filer is an excellent way to fill in dents and drugs. You should be body filer spreaders to apply filer to see better results.

Paint marker, tape, and masking film

A paint marker is an excellent tool to stop paint from touching any part of the car you don’t want to paint. Use masking film to cover all windows and trim.


You need paint to do a painting job. You can visit your local stores. I ask for any car paint. Alternatively, you can buy urethane or acrylic urethane paint. This type of paint will have a glossy, durable finish.

Tips for a paint job

If you decide to paint your car yourself, these tips are essential to accomplish the task professionally:

Watch out for unevenness

It is hard to see any wavy contours on a dull car. After sanding down the primer, use a light coat of wax or grass remover down the side of the car. This step will duplicate the shine of the final paint job. Then, sight down the shiny surface of the vehicle to search for any unevenness.

Work with a guide coat.

The guide coat is a light coat of paint over the primer. It will allow you to see what you have sanded and missed. If you have a light-colored primer, work with a dark guide coat.

Also, if the primer is dark, it is best to use a white guide coat. This small, additional step can make a big difference in the final outlook of the painting.

Conclusion – How much is a Maaco paint job

Maaco paint job has made significant contributions to how car paint is made. If you are thinking about shining up an older car for sale, the company is what you need. But, if you are serious about the car’s finish, it won’t be a bad idea to explore other alternatives.

However, Maaco has other services they can provide to you. It is best to take some time and consider your options before taking your car to Maaco.

Important Reads:

Top 4 Best Polyurethane Remover (Review & Buyers’ Guide 2022)

How to Spray Paint a Car Scratch

How to Clean Oil Off Concrete Garage Floor

Does vinegar remove oil stains from concrete

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