How To Know if a Car Has Original Paint

When looking into either investing in a different vehicle or selling a vehicle you currently own, it is good to know everything about a car to properly assess its selling overall value. This includes whether the paint on the vehicle is either original, or newer. It may seem as though it is impossible to tell the difference in some professionally done cases, but we can teach you a few things about identifying the difference.

  • First the most obvious manor of identifying whether a vehicle has original or new paint would be to check the actual paint code placed onto the car during the manufacturing process. A paint code is an identification piece identifying the default paint type the car has been originally set up with. You can find this code located in the driver’s side door jam. This will be a sticker. But if the vehicle is an older model, it is possible that the sticker has either been removed, or the vehicle never had one to begin with.
  • Also you must understand that a sticker can also at times be misleading, a car with original paint can still have been at some point in time re-painted with a similar to the same shade of paint to improve the look of the vehicle. One way to identify this would be to look at the condition of the vehicle, is the vehicle old and beat up yet the paint is glistening as if the car could have been brand new? If so you most likely have new paint.
  • The next way to clarify whether your car has original paint or new paint would be through fully checking the car for signs of error and over spray from having the paint redone. The best ways to check would be through looking for all difficult places to avoid either getting extra paint on, or not enough paint.
  • A common sign of a re-painted car would be the window trims could have a bit of over-spray on the rubber or windows.
  • Inside the engine compartment of the vehicle there could be multicolored, different shades, or messy paint jobs.
  • The last way to identify if a car has had new paint or not is to see if anything has been recorded in the vehicles past history. For example, there are many car dealers who record everything that has been done with a vehicle; your vehicle could be one of those vehicles.
  • Lastly when someone sells a car, typically if they have provided you with the vehicle's information and just forgot to let you know, check either the car visor or the glove compartment. The data could be sitting right there.

If any of the above signs are true for your vehicle in identifying a new paint job and not the original paint, then more than likely your car has unoriginal paint. If none of the above was identified and your paint color matches the condition of your car and the door jamb paint code, you most likely have original paint.


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