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Can I change the colour of my car?

January 14, 2022 by

If you’re staring out of your window longingly, wondering ‘can I change the colour of my car?’, this guide is for you.

It’s perfectly legal to change the colour of your car, but you will need to notify both the DVLA and your insurer. Read on for a guide on having your colour changed, and how to correctly report it.

How do you change the colour of your car?

Changing the colour of your car can be as simple as picking up some spray paint and doing it yourself.

If you’d prefer your car not to look like a GCSE art project though, there are two ways of having your car colour changed professionally.

Full respray

To permanently change your car’s colour, and with the best possible finish, a full respray is your best bet. Trained paint shops can strip your car’s existing paint job and respray your car to any colour your heart desires.

This is often very expensive though (think thousands of pounds rather than hundreds) and will be a permanent change. This is a good option if you’re restoring an old car though, or fancy a factory-quality finish.

Vinyl wrapping

A much more popular option today than a full respray is to have your car wrapped in vinyl. A whole economy based on shops doing this has popped up, allowing for the comparatively affordable and creative customisation of cars.

Even the best wraps won’t be quite as good to look at as a high-quality respray, and wraps tend to deteriorate more quickly than paintwork (though this will depend on the quality of the materials used).

On the plus side, you can have a wrap removed easily — revealing the car’s original paintwork again.

Notify the DVLA of your car’s colour change

Regardless of how you change your car’s colour, you will need to tell the DVLA you’ve done so.

To do this, you’ll need to fill out the ‘new colour’ line of section 1 in your car’s V5C. This will be section 7 in old-style logbooks.
Simply write your car’s new colour, and post the V5C to the DVLA at:

  • DVLA
    SA99 1BA

You won’t be charged for the change to your V5C, and a new one with the new colour noted will be sent out.

Notify your insurer of your car’s colour change

You’ll need to let your insurer know you’ve changed the colour of your car, too. This should be straightforward, but will likely have some impact on your premium as it’s considered a modification from the factory specifications.

Just give your insurer a ring and ask for the policy to be amended. If it needs to change your monthly price, you’ll be informed and an administration charge may be applied as well.

It’s important to tell your insurer as failing to do so could leave your policy at risk of being voided in the event of a claim.

FAQs: changing the colour of a car

How do I find my car’s colour code?

You’ll often find your car’s colour code on a plate attached to the car. This could be inside the driver’s door, the glove box or under the bonnet.

Where can I buy paint to change the colour of my car?

Dedicated automotive parts shops often carry a variety of paint colours you can use to change the colour of your car.

If you’re looking to get it done professionally, your chosen paint shop can source it for you.