So my passenger fender is rusted through and I bought a replacement for $150. The body shop wants $450 -500 to paint and install. $330 just to paint. Does this seem reasonable? I want a professional finish. Thanks.
You could possibly cut some cost if you prep it yourself (sand, etc) and then take it to a shop to spray, and then install it yourself.
Paint for a fender wont be too much; but its the prep that costs a fortune. My uncle is a bodyman, and painted my old 300zx for me. It was about $500 for the primer and paint (it was an EXPENSIVE paint, btw; with metal flake in it; and I have a ton left). I did do the prep work (with his guidance) and it took a week or two to get the sanding done; and my dad was helping by bondoing rust spots and masking.
All the 'shop supplies' (masking paper, tape, sandpaper, misc costs) was around another $200; and there was a TON left over.
Realistically, we couldve done it for around $350 total.
If you find someone willing to JUST spray it, it would be really cheap to do so.
Only problem with most shops, they will not guarantee the paint if you do the prep work, because they don't know how it was done. Price given is in line for labor and materials. Ask for some references for work they have done, look around the shop to see what they are doing and what is outside done and ready to go. See if you get a lifetime (as long as you own it) warranty on their work, if so you should be gold.
Been doing this for 35 years and still doing it today.