Football helmets have come a long way from the early days of the sport. Modern football helmets are highly engineered pieces of protective equipment, designed to minimize head injuries. But while the materials and construction have evolved, the iconic look of a football helmet has stayed largely the same.
That glossy painted exterior isn’t just for show – the durable paint helps protect the shell from scratches and damage. But even with thick paint, helmets will get worn down and scratched up over a season of practices and games. At some point it becomes necessary to get them repainted and looking fresh again.
If you’re wondering what it costs to get a football helmet repainted, read on. We’ll look at the factors that influence the cost, typical price ranges, and tips to save money on a helmet paint job.
What impacts the cost of repainting a football helmet?
Several variables affect the cost of repainting a football helmet:
- Helmet condition – A helmet in good shape with minimal scratches will be cheaper to repaint than one that’s badly worn.
- Custom paint design – A basic single color paint job will be far less expensive than a detailed, multi-color custom design.
- Additional repairs – Any needed repairs like reconditioning padding or replacing parts will add to the cost.
- Shop location – Prices will vary between different helmet shops based on labor costs and demand.
- Quick turnaround – Rushing a paint job versus standard turnaround time usually costs more.
Typical price range for repainting a helmet
Most football helmet paint jobs will cost somewhere between $50 to $200. Here’s a look at typical pricing:
|Paint Job Type||Typical Cost|
|Solid color repaint||$50 – $100|
|Two color paint scheme||$100 – $150|
|Detailed custom paint design||$150 – $200+|
As you can see, a basic single color repaint is the most affordable option, while a complex multi-color custom design will be the most expensive. The range depends heavily on the specifics of the helmet paint scheme.
Factors that increase the cost to repaint a helmet
Here are some of the factors that can drive up the cost of repainting a football helmet beyond the basic price:
- Extensive scratches and wear – Helmets in poor condition require much more prep work, sanding, and primer to get ready for paint. This extra labor increases the price.
- Custom or multi-color designs – The more complicated the paint scheme, the more work required by the artist hand-painting it. Unique designs are typically the helmet shop’s most expensive option.
- Additional repairs – If the helmet needs any repairs beyond paint like reconditioning foam or replacing parts, those services will add to the total cost.
- Rushed turnaround – Most shops charge extra if you need the helmet repainted in less than their standard turnaround time, usually a week or two.
Factors that reduce the cost to repaint a helmet
On the other hand, here are some things that may lead to a lower price for a helmet paint job:
- Minimal scratches/damage – Helmets requiring less sanding and prep work to repaint can lead to a lower cost.
- Single color paint scheme – Solid color paint jobs are cheaper than complex multi-color designs.
- Standard turnaround time – Opting for the shop’s standard turnaround of 1-2 weeks is cheaper than rush orders.
- Off-season timing – Scheduling the repaint in spring or summer rather than peak football season can sometimes mean better prices.
What impacts the quality of a helmet repaint?
The quality of a football helmet repaint depends on several important factors:
- Condition of shell – Repainting over a badly worn helmet with lots of existing scratches and gouges will lower the quality of the end result.
- Prep work – Proper sanding and cleaning to create a pristine surface for paint ensures better results.
- Primer coat – A high quality primer allows the paint to adhere tightly for a more durable finish.
- Paint coats – Multiple thin layers of quality automotive paint leads to a harder, more scratch resistant shell.
- Clear coat – A clear top coat protects the paint and creates a smooth glossy finish.
- Painter skill – An experienced helmet painter will have the techniques to prep properly and apply paint smoothly.
Prioritizing high quality materials and an experienced painter is the best way to ensure your repainted helmet looks amazing and holds up over time.
How long does it take to repaint a football helmet?
The typical turnaround time to repaint a football helmet is 1-2 weeks at most shops. Here is an overview of the repainting process and time involved:
- Initial inspection – The shop will assess the helmet condition, repairs needed, and discuss paint scheme. 30 minutes.
- Masking/prep – Taping off areas not to be painted, removing hardware, sanding and cleaning the shell. 2-3 hours.
- Primer coat – Applying a primer base coat to prep for painting. 1 hour.
- Paint coats – Hand-painting the helmet with 2-3 thin layers of automotive paint based on design. 2-3 hours per coat.
- Clear coat – Adding a clear coat for glossy finish and protection. 1 hour.
- Reassembly – Reattaching all helmet parts once paint is cured. 1 hour.
- Curing time – Waiting full cure time for paint between coats. 24 hours per coat.
With multiple paint coats and cure times, the process typically takes 5-7 days in most shops. Some may charge extra fees for “rush” orders finished in 3-4 days.
How long does a repainted helmet paint job last?
With proper care and handling, a quality paint job on a football helmet should last 1-2 seasons of play before needing to be redone. Here are some factors that influence paint job longevity:
- Quality of surface prep – Proper sanding and cleaning ensures paint adheres well.
- Type of paint used – Automotive grade paint lasts longer than basic enamel.
- Number of paint coats – Additional coats add durability and thickness.
- Clear coat – A clear coat prevents scratches and adds protection.
- Player position – Helmets of linemen or runningbacks see more contact and wear.
- Care and handling – Rough or improper storage speeds up paint wear.
With high quality application and care, a helmet repaint should look great for at least one full season before needing refreshed.
Helmet repainting tips to save money
Here are some tips to help you save money when you need to get your football helmets repainted:
- Shop around for quotes – Prices can vary significantly between shops so get multiple estimates.
- Ask about off-season discounts – Many shops offer lower rates in spring/summer when demand is lower.
- Choose simple designs – Solid colors or basic two-tone designs are cheaper than complex customs.
- Provide your own paint – Supplying automotive paint can knock off $20 or more per helmet.
- Repaint in bulk – Painting a set of helmets together is almost always cheaper per helmet.
- Use team painter if available – Check if your equipment manager or a local parent can repaint team helmets.
With some smart planning, you can significantly reduce the cost of keeping your team’s helmets looking game ready.
Where to get football helmets repainted?
Here are some options on where to get football helmets repainted:
- Local auto body shops – Many auto paint shops will also paint helmets and sports equipment as a side business.
- Sporting goods stores – Major chains like Dick’s Sporting Goods offer helmet reconditioning services.
- Online helmet shops – Websites like HelmetCity.com and HelmetRepair.com paint and repair helmets.
- Team equipment managers – Many high school and college teams have equipment staff that handle repaints in-house.
- Freelance painters – Independent artists advertise helmet painting services on Craigslist/Facebook.
Make sure to look at reviews and examples of previous helmets painted when selecting a provider. The cheapest option may not yield the highest quality results.
Repainting damaged and worn football helmets is a must to keep equipment looking sharp and safe each season. While a custom paint job can get pricey, there are ways to reduce the cost through smart shopping, bulk orders, and keeping paint schemes simple. With proper maintenance and handling, a quality repaint should last at least one to two seasons before needing refreshed.
We hope this guide has helped explain what goes into repainting a football helmet and how much it typically costs. Let us know if you have any other questions!