How Much Does It Cost to Powder Coat Rims? (2022 Prices)

Updated: | Author: Tyler Hilgeman | Affiliate links may be present.

Are your car rims in bad shape? Is the paint chipping off? Maintaining the health of your car rims is critical to the safety and longevity of a car.

If your rims are in bad shape or the paint is chipping off, then your rims are susceptible to rust which will weaken their integrity and jeopardize your safety.

Powder coating your rims protects them against rust. Plus, who doesn’t like their rims to shine? The powder coating process requires extensive cleaning before the powder can be applied. However, while professionals have perfected this process, it doesn’t mean that you can’t do it yourself for half the cost.

Depending on the size of your rims and the type of powder coating, a professional powder coating job typically costs between $250 to $550. If you already have the necessary equipment (like a powder gun and an air compressor), then a DIY powder coating job will cost you only around $120-160. If not, it’ll cost you around $400-600 including the necessary equipment.

What’s Involved in Powder Coating Rims?

Believe it or not, in order to powder coat your rims, it’s the prep work that will take up most of your time. By the time you make it to the actual powder coating, you’ll basically be done.

Powder coating is like putting frosting on a cake, it’s what makes the cake shine, but there’s a lot more to baking a cake than just putting the frosting on.

Paint Removal

The first step is to remove any paint or coating off of your rims. Most professionals typically give the rims an acid bath that will break down the paint. Then, they’ll power wash the rims — followed by a good sandblasting to remove any rust or undesirables from the rim.

If you’re like me and do not have access to an acid bath, then you can use a wire brush, some soap, and a good amount of water to remove all the paint, coating, rust, etc.

It’s critical to remove everything that is on the surface of the rim so that the powder can stick to the wheel.

Sanding

The next step is to sand any grooves, crevices, and rough points down. If the surface of the rim is not smooth, then you will have an uneven build-up of powder in some areas — which will result in a bad-looking powder job.

Typically, you will use a lower grit sander to start with and then finish with a higher grit sander to ensure a smooth surface.

When you are sanding, make sure to wear eye protection, or else a flake of aluminum may ruin your day!

Lastly, some professionals will give the rims another sandblast before applying the powder because the powder will stick better to rims that are, at the micro-level, a bit rougher.

Powder Coating

The powder coating process is an interesting one. First, you have to ground the rim to make it negatively charged. Then, you spray the powder on with a powder gun.

The powder gun uses compressed air to shoot the powder out of the gun. As the powder is about to leave the gun, electrical coils in the gun positively charge the powder.

You’ve probably heard the saying that opposites attract and that’s exactly the case when coating your rims. The positive charge powder sticks or clings to the negatively charged rim.

When you are finished coating your rims, you’ll want to take a flashlight and inspect your rim for any spots that you might have missed.

Lastly, for safety reasons, if you are coating the back of your rims, then you’ll need to remove the powder that’s on and near the center bore. This is done so that the wheel fits flush to the car at all times.

Cooking

The last step is to “bake” your rims. You’ll need to put the freshly coated rims in an oven that’s set to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the rims reach 400 degrees Fahrenheit (you can check it with an infrared thermometer), you will need to wait for ten more minutes before taking them out.

The heat from the oven will melt the powder into durable, plastic paint. In doing so, your rims will come out with a particular shine on them that they did not previously have.

Professionals will use a large industrial oven that’s meant for the powder coating process. However, if you are feeling particularly adventurous, and your wife is not home, your kitchen oven is capable of getting the job done.

How Much Does a Professional Powder Job Cost for Rims?

Powder coating rims is a smart way to protect your rims from rust and give them a stunning look. The cost to have your rims professionally powder coated depends on your rim size and the type of coating that is applied.

The Average Powder Coating Job

The average cost for a professional powder coating job will range from $250-$550 for all four rims. So, as long as you are not driving a monster truck or want to powder coat your rims in gold, then you can expect to pay a reasonable price.

The Atypical Powder Coating Job

If you have a truck or a luxury vehicle, then you can expect to pay more to have your rims powder coated. Your average cost to have a professional powder coat your rims will be anywhere from $550-$700 for all four rims.

How Much Does a DIY Powder Job Cost for Rims?

If you enjoy maintaining your car and want to powder coat your own rims, then you’re in luck! DIY jobs are typically inexpensive as long as you have the needed tools to get the job done. Powder coating your own rims can cost as little as $10-$100 if all you need is the powder.

However, if you lack the needed equipment, then it may cost you around the same as it would cost to have a professional do it.

What You Will Need

Ideally, you will have most of the materials beforehand. Here is what you will need:

  1. You will need a wire brush to clean the paint, rust, etc. off of the rim. A wire brush can cost as little as $2.
  2. You will need a powder gun. A powder gun can cost anywhere from $150-$400.
  3. You will need an air compressor for the powder gun. The average cost of an air compressor is $150.
  4. Lastly, you will need the powder. Depending on the type of powder, it could cost you anywhere from $10-$100.

The good news is that even if you do not have a wire brush or an air compressor, it is likely that your neighbor or a friend of yours will have one that you can borrow. So, you are probably looking at $160-$500 to powder coat your rims yourself!

Final Thoughts

Powder coating has shown itself to be a reliable way to protect your rims and give them some flare. So, if you are looking to spice up your car, or just want to protect it against rust, then powder coating is a great option and simple enough to DIY.

Avatar photo

About Tyler Hilgeman

Tyler is an automotive and DIY research writer. He revels in saved money from DIY jobs and screeches at “cheap” estimates from auto body and mechanic shops. Part of his life’s work is to create a better world where automobiles are more understood and appreciated for who they are (R.I.P. My Beloved Toyota Camry — “Betsy” 1998-2021).

Leave a Comment