How to Match a Discontinued Paint Color

Whether patching a hole in a wall or fixing a scratch on a piece of furniture, you must have an exact paint match or you risk having to redo the entire paint job, which may encompass several rooms or pieces of furniture. Usually, finding the right paint is as simple as taking leftover paint cans to a local hardware store and finding the correct sheen and colour, but what do you do if your paint has been discontinued? You can still match your paint colour if you are willing to do a little legwork.

Visit the store you bought the original paint from. It may have leftover stocks of the discontinued paint or it may be able to mix different colours from the same brand of paint to get a good match. Both Lowe's and The Home Depot have comprehensive colour-matching services. If that doesn't work, try other local hardware stores and home centres that have sold your desired paint colour in the past.

Try a free colour-matching service. can match any colour and sheen (including discontinued lines). Simply choose the brand you need from a drop-down menu and choose the correct colour using the colour name or number. The company then re-creates it using Benjamin Moore paint. If you are unsure of the colour, you can buy a mini-can for £4.50 to try it out. is another matching service.

If you don't have an old bucket of the original paint or sample colour card and don't know the paint name or number, you can still find a match using paint chips. First scrub an area of the wall or piece of furniture painted in the colour you want with soap and water. Then visit your local hardware store or home centre and choose several paint chips that look similar. Use trial and error until you get a match that you feel is close enough.

Things You'll Need

  • Leftover paint can or sample colour card from original paint purchased
  • A list of hardware stores near you
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About the Author

Jennifer Brite has written about home improvement, design, and architecture since 2000. Her work has appeared in "Architect," "Kitchen and Bath Business," CMYK, "This Old House," and "AIArchitect." Brite received her Bachelor of Arts in journalism from New York University.