How to Find the Paint Number on a Vehicle

Updated April 17, 2017

If you need to purchase touch-up paint for your vehicle, the only way to find a precise colour match is to locate the paint code for your vehicle.The paint code is on a metal plate or decal located somewhere on the vehicle. The paint code on your vehicle provides information about the particular colour and shade of paint used by the auto manufacturer. Once you find the paint code, use this information to match the paint on your vehicle.

Learn how to identify a vehicle paint code. The paint code is a metal plate or decal with digits consisting of numbers and letters. It has an identifying phrase under the letters such as colour, paint or exterior paint colour. Typical examples of a paint code are B-87M and G-95D.

Search for an interior decal inside the vehicle. Search the glove compartment, the driver's side interior door jamb. The paint code decal is sometimes on the dashboard near on the driver's side near the VIN plate.

Search under the hood of your vehicle. Many auto manufacturers place the paint code decal under the hood of the vehicle.

Search for a decal in the boot of the vehicle. The paint code is sometimes placed near the spare tire.

Do an online search. Many online sites will direct you to the typical locations for paint codes on particular vehicles.

Locate the VIN number for your vehicle. The VIN is your vehicle's fingerprint. It contains information about the paint but the information has to be decoded. The VIN number consists of 17 digits and it usually on a metal plate on the driver's side of the dashboard. It is also on the car's registration and insurance cards. Write the number down.

Call the dealership where you purchased your vehicle. Tell them you need to find the paint code for your vehicle using the VIN number. Give them the number when they ask for it, and wait for them to decode the paint code information.

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About the Author

Robert Russell began writing online professionally in 2010. He holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and is currently working on a book project exploring the relationship between art, entertainment and culture. He is the guitar player for the nationally touring cajun/zydeco band Creole Stomp. Russell travels with his laptop and writes many of his articles on the road between gigs.