How to build a cheap paint booth

Written by fred samsa
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How to build a cheap paint booth
You can get a dust-free paint job with your own paint booth. (Auto Exhaust image by Digital Photique from

If you would like to paint your car yourself, you don't have to spend a lot of money constructing a paint booth. You can build a paint booth that will protect the surrounding environment from over-spray, keep your paint job dust- and debris-free and provide adequate ventilation using inexpensive materials available at any hardware store or paint shop. With the right preparation and materials, you can complete construction of your paint booth in an afternoon.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 8 pieces of 1-inch-diameter PVC pipe, 12-foot lengths
  • 12 pieces of 1-inch-diameter PVC pipe, 8-foot lengths
  • 8 three-way side outlet elbow 1-inch-diameter PVC furniture fittings
  • 4 four-way side outlet tee 1-inch-diameter PVC furniture fitting
  • Stepladder
  • Eye screws
  • Twine
  • Clear construction plastic, 6-ml
  • Scissors
  • Duct tape
  • 3 box fans
  • Intake dust filter (available at speciality paint shops)

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  1. 1

    Join two 12-foot lengths of PVC pipe with a four-way PVC fitting. Join two more lengths of PVC pipe the same way. These two 24-foot lengths will become the floor outline for your paint booth.

  2. 2

    Connect the ends and midpoints of the two 24-foot PVC assemblies with three 8-foot lengths of PVC pipe. Use three-way PVC fittings to join the ends of the 24-foot PVC assemblies. The floor outline for the paint booth is now complete.

  3. 3

    Insert a length of 8-foot PVC pipe upright into each available PVC fitting on the floor outline (six lengths total).

  4. 4

    Insert screw eyes into the ceiling overhead, directly above each segment of the floor outline. Use a stepladder to reach the ceiling. Tie a length of twine to each screw eye, so that the twine extends to the top of the upright 8-foot lengths of PVC pipe. The twine will be used to stabilise the top pieces of the paint booth.

  5. 5

    Connect the upright 8-foot lengths of PVC pipe on the ends of the paint booth with two more sections of 8-foot pipe and three-way PVC fittings. Tie the top sections of the paint booth with twine to stabilise the structure. Connect the middle upright 8-foot lengths of PVC pipe with another 8-foot segment of pipe and four-way pipe fittings. Tie a piece of hanging twine to this top section. Insert the remaining 12-foot lengths into the PVC fittings at the top of the paint booth to complete the structure.

  1. 1

    Cut 6-ml construction plastic to cover the roof of the paint booth and attach the plastic to the top section of PVC pipe with duct tape. Cut overlapping sections of plastic for the four sides of the paint booth, and seal the edges of the plastic in place with duct tape along all seams. Leave a 3-foot section at one corner untaped, to be used as a door.

  2. 2

    Set up three box fans inside one end of the paint booth so that the fans blow exhaust out of the booth. Cut a rectangle from the plastic to fit the fans, and tape the plastic edges to the fans to seal them in place.

  3. 3

    Cut a rectangle from the opposite end of the paint booth to fit a dust intake filter, and tape the filter to the cut plastic edges with duct tape.

Tips and warnings

  • Do not operate your paint booth without the exhaust fans running. Always wear a respirator when spray-applying paint.

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