Car Color By VIN – How Do You Find The Paint Code?

by Conner Mckay

Are you planning to repaint your car (or are figuring out how to paint a car) and you cannot find the exact paint scheme, so you are looking on to find car color by VIN? Well, if that is the case, then you are in the right place because this article will be all about this topic. Since we are going to elaborate on everything in great detail.

Finding your color code can be a tricky thing to do because this is not like finding a hex code color on the web. Finding the right color code when it comes to cars can be rather different because carmakers often use custom colors for their cars that do not resemble standard colors.

So, you might come across names like jet black or snow white, or a different name that can be really hard to differentiate. The real answer to what kind of color we are talking about lies in the VIN number of that specific vehicle. So, you will learn how to decode the number in order to find the number. But you shouldn’t worry because we are going to help you out.

First, we are going to learn what is a VIN number and the places where you can locate the VIN number on your car. Then we will cover what is a paint color code and how to find the paint color code in the VIN of different carmakers. So, if you want to learn more about this topic and learn how to find car color by VIN, follow along because there will be a lot to cover.

What Is A VIN Number

Now before we dive into more complex topics like how to find car color by VIN. Let’s first take a look at what is a VIN number in general. Why do we think that this is necessary? Well, there are a lot of people that are confused by this term and need a proper introduction. So, let’s cover this briefly and learn more about it.

So, what is a VIN number? Well, a VIN number is a vehicle identification number. But why do I need a VIN when I have registration? Well, that’s a good question.

The difference here is that when it comes to cars, there has to be some kind of standardization. License plates are changeable and a vehicle can change a lot of them during its lifespan. But the VIN number is one and only and lasts forever.

This VIN number was standardized by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The NHTSA required that all vehicles sold in the US come with a 17-character VIN number that is a combination of letters and numbers. And not include letters like O, I, and Q. In order to avoid confusion with the numbers like 0,1, and 9.

But what type of information does this VIN number include? The VIN number includes the country, the manufacturer, the type of vehicle, the model year, the plant where it was made, and the last six numbers indicating the serial number of the car (for more insight, check out our write-up on do catalytic converters have serial numbers). And as we can see, no information about the car color in the VIN. So, what now? What can we do?

Well, the paint code is not always in the VIN. The color code is often included in the tags that the VIN is stamped on. But more on that in a bit.

Places Where You Can Find The VIN Number

So, we learned more about the car color by VIN and what is a VIN number. Now let’s move on and cover something more on the places where you can find a car color by VIN. Where is this VIN number located on the vehicle?

Let’s discuss more on that because a lot of car owners are rather confused by this and they cannot find this VIN number on their car. So, where you can find the VIN (if you need to enter the code for radio Honda Accord 2008)? Let’s elaborate.

There are a few places where you can locate the VIN on your car. The first and most obvious place where most carmakers include the VIN number is on the dashboard. More precisely at the driver’s side corner.

When you lean on the car, you will be able to notice the VIN number. Usually, this number is stamped on a metal plate that is attached to the dash of the car. But this isn’t always the case with most cars and sometimes these numbers are more hidden. And another downside is that the dash is only stamped with the VIN number and not the paint code. So, we need to dive deeper.

The next logical spot where to look for the VIN number when it comes to locating car color by VIN is to look inside the engine bay. More precisely at the strut towers. On the strut towers usually, the VIN number is stamper or there is a sticker with this number.

Also, another good place to look for the VIN is the A-pillar or B-pillar of the car. Usually, carmakers add these stickers where the VIN is stamped on the door jambs. And most likely these paint color codes are placed on these door jambs along with the VIN.

What To Do If The VIN Is Not On The Car

And here we come to another problem when it comes to looking to find out the car color by VIN and that is the situation when the VIN number is not on the car or you can only find the VIN but not the paint code. What you can do in these situations?

In these situations, finding the color can be rather difficult. In these situations, you need to look for your documents and learn more if you can find the paint color code in the registration papers, car title, or any other document concerning this vehicle.

Even though in car titles, there is information about the paint and the color name. There is not enough data to find the code. So, in these situations, you need to rely on some other alternatives.

And these alternatives include going to the dealership and asking them for help to give you the right information to find the exact color code.

Car Color By VIN

I bet that there are a lot of helpful people in some dealerships that will give you this favor and help you out with your problem.

Also, you can try to check some online forums and ask people some questions concerning this topic. Especially some forums that are dedicated to your car. Over there, you will be able to communicate with people that have the exact car that you have with the exact paint.

And some of them will tell you the paint code or take a picture of the sticker where the paint code is usually printed on.

But what is a paint color code? Well, more about that, we are going to elaborate in the following chapter, where we are going to learn everything in detail concerning this topic and how paint codes can be read.

What Is A Paint Color Code

So, we learned that you just can’t find color by VIN. Mainly because there is no information in the 17-character VIN number concerning the paint code.

This is why you shouldn’t be confused and look for the paint code in the VIN and try to decode stuff because this does not have a purpose.

The thing you would need is the paint color code. This is a specific paint color code that each carmaker gives to their products.

So, these color codes will not overlap with different manufacturers. They are not hex color codes but rather custom codes by a specific carmaker.

And these color codes are often stamped on the same sticker that the VIN code is stamped on. Usually on top of the sticker is the 17-character VIN number. And right below the VIN number, there is also other information.

Like the axle code, transmission code, trim, and also the color code which are the most important to us.

Usually, the color code can be found in the bottom left corner and is consisted of three characters.

And these are the important piece of information for you. In some cases, these characters are preceded by a word like PAINT, PNT, or COLOR. Or C/TR which the first letter C indicates the color and TR indicates the trim.

As you can see, it largely depends on the car manufacturer on how they represent this information.

This is why often needed some tag decoder that the carmakers have in order to tell about the information that is inside the tag. So, if you are still confused. Go online and look for an example “Ford tag decoder”. Or ask this question on a forum on how to identify car color by VIN.

How To Find Car Color By VIN On Different Carmakers

Now let’s take a look at how to find color by VIN in a lot of carmakers out there. We will try to list the most common brands that are out there and the common places where the VIN and the paint code are located.

We will try to cover the most common brands that are out there. So, you definitely don’t want to miss that. Now let’s begin discussing.

1. Nissan

Now let’s start with Nissan. How can you find car color by VIN on a Nissan vehicle? On Nissan vehicles, this type of information is often found on a few different places.

Namely, in the engine compartment, there should be a sticker on the firewall or somewhere close to the strut towers. There should be the VIN number, as well as the paint code. And before the paint code, there should be the word COLOR in capital letters.

If you cannot find the sticker over there, you might want to check the driver’s door edge or the door jamb. Usually here are located these color codes on Nissan. Now let’s move on to the other brands where you can find car color by VIN.

2. Toyota

Now let’s take a look at Toyota and how to find car color by VIN on Toyota models. And when it comes to Toyota, you can find the VIN in a few places.

The most common place for the VIN number on Toyota models is the firewall. Also, you can find the VIN number on the driver’s door from the inside as well. Either on the door jamb or on the pillar. It rather depends on the model.

You can notice the paint code on the sticker. It is often preceded by the phrase C/TR. C referring the color and TR referring the trim that the car is equipped with.

3. Chevrolet

Now let’s take a look at how to find car color by VIN when it comes to Chevy. Where are the VIN numbers located on Chevy?

Well, you can find the VIN number sticker often on the B pillar, sometimes on the door jams, sometimes on the glove box, and on the cowl.

Car Color By VIN

Their color codes can be rather difficult to find because they are not very indicative. And the paint code format is rather confusing. But in most cases, it is preceded by the BC/CC abbreviation.

One refers to the base coat and the other to the clear coat as we can assume. So, the BC should be the color code that you need for this purpose. Now let’s move to Dodge.

4. Dodge

Now let’s take a look at how to find car color by VIN when it comes to Dodge. When it comes to Dodge the paint code is often found in two places.

The first place is the safety certification label. This label is found on the door jamb on the driver’s side. And the other is in the engine compartment. And look at the firewall, strut towers, and core support.

On the Dodge stickers. The paint code is often preceded by the letter P or PNT. Which makes finding the paint code rather indicative. Unlike Chevy that we covered previously. Now let’s move on to the next carmaker.

5. Ford

When it comes to Ford, you can use both the find car color by VIN or locate the sticker with the VIN on the car where the paint code is listed.

On a Ford vehicle, this sticker with the color code can be found on the door jambs. Once you got the sticker. You can find the paint code.

What is bad when it comes to Ford, is that on some models this code is nicely described as EXT/PNT or EXTERIOR PAINT. But on some models, it can be rather tricky to learn the code.

You will need to find a special VIN decoder for Ford (or any of the best free VIN decoder) to learn where to look on the sticker for your paint code. Since it is not quite indicative.

Also, you can visit a website like Chipex and type your VIN number and hopefully, they will provide you the paint code based on the VIN that you supplied them.

And eventually, if you are not lucky in finding a car color by VIN, you can try going to the dealership and asking them for more information to provide you with the code.

6. Hyundai

When it comes to finding the car color by VIN on Hyundai cars, we can say that this code is often located on the door jambs. But sometimes can be found on the firewall, depending on the model that we are talking about.

The paint code on Hyundai often consists of two characters. Sometimes they can be letters and sometimes numbers or mixed letters and numbers.

If you can’t find the exact color code, you can always try to call a Hyundai dealership and ask them for more information about the location of the color code or possibly to tell you which color exactly is. Now let’s move on to the next carmaker.

7. Honda

Now let’s discuss Honda when it comes to finding car color by VIN. Honda is also another tricky manufacturer that can hide its paint codes really well. And make them a true headache to find.

Finding the sticker is rather easy since the sticker is located on the door jamb. But the paint code is difficult to find.

There is often a big sticker with a ton of letters and numbers on it that can completely confuse you. But you should only focus on the big bar code on the sticker.

And below the bar code, the paint code is located. The paint code can come in the following order. Let’s take an example NH743M. All, paint codes on Honda models start with NH and finish with M. So, once you figure it out, it is rather easy to understand. Now let’s move on to the next carmaker and learn how to find car color by VIN.

8. RAM

Looking for the car color by VIN when it comes to RAM vehicles is pretty much the same. If you didn’t know, Dodge, RAM, and Chrysler are pretty much the same company and the badges and exterior looks are the things that make them different from one another.

Everything is similarly standardized on all these brands. As well as the VIN number location and the paint code location. And you can find the sticker in a lot of places when it comes to these vehicles. Namely, under the hood, on the firewall, on the strut tower, as well as on the door jambs.

Usually, the stickers are also very intuitive. And you will notice names like PAINT or PNT. And then the letter P and two other characters indicate the paint code. For example PAINT: PS2 or PNT: PS2. You get the idea. It is rather easy to find car color by VIN on RAM or any Chrysler/FCA product.

9. Volkswagen

And the last on our list of carmakers when it comes to finding car color by VIN is Volkswagen. And when it comes to VW, their paint code is often found on the trunk or the trunk lid at the rear.

Their sticker is really self-intuitive and indicates which is the exact paint code. For example, PAINT: LH5K. You just cannot miss it. And frankly, they are probably one of the rarest carmakers who make these things so easy.

Alternative Way To Find Car Color

When it comes to the alternative ways and avoiding looking at car color by VIN, there are other methods that are worth mentioning.

Namely, you can just go to any dealership for your vehicle and purchase the exact paint that you need for your car. It is rather easy and convenient.

Or just go to a paint shop where paint is sold. Over there, there are rather experienced guys that know how to mix paint and get the right color on the first try. So, we definitely recommend this way. Also, it is rather cheap to do because if you purchase it from the dealership, it will be rather expensive. Now let’s conclude this article.

Conclusion To Car Color By VIN

In this article, we have covered quite a bit when it comes to finding car color by VIN. First, we learned what is VIN number and where you can find this number on your car.

Also, we covered the most popular carmakers and learned where they put their paint code stickers on their products. Lastly, we learned some alternative ways of you sorting this problem out.

FAQs On Car Color By VIN

Now let’s answer some frequently asked questions.

What Is The Color Of My Car

Finding the paint code of your car is rather simple. You just need to find the sticker on which the VIN number is printed and there you will notice some lettering like P, PNT, PAINT, or COLOR. And after this would be the color code.

Where To Find Car Paint Code

You will have to find the sticker. This sticker usually has the VIN as well as other information including the paint code. These stickers are located on the door jams, under the hood, on the trunk lid, on the strut tower, or on the firewall.

What Does The VIN Number Tell You

The VIN number tells quite a lot. Namely, in which country the car was made, the manufacturer, the brand, the model, and the type. Also, the model year, the plant, and the last 6 digits are usually the serial number of the car.

How To Tell What Year A Car Is

You can check the VIN number. Usually, the 10th character of the VIN indicates the model year. And to further understand this, you will need to learn how to decode the VIN.

Where Can I Get My Car Painted

Maaco is one of the places where you can paint your car on the cheap. You can get a $400 paint job. Or even cheaper one. But you need to do your own prep work before you take your car to them.

What Trim Is My Car By VIN

Usually, the trim level is listed on the sticker where the paint and the VIN number are listed on. The trim is right next to the paint code on most of the cars.

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