People in the business of selling body parts and interior parts always recommend to their customers that they match the paint or trim codes off of their vehicle to the codes on donor vehicles. You might be surprised just how many color variations were used by Ford. (What I will be telling you also applies to many Lincoln, Mercury and possibly a few other vehicles built by the Ford motor company as well)

Of course you can paint body parts to match your car, but we know it saves you time and money if you can find a replacement part already painted the right color.

This is a general guide of where to locate the paint and trim codes for your Ford. We do not have a list of the coinciding names for the colors - but if you are at least able to match the numbers when purchasing a part you will take the guess work out of trying to match colors.

Below is a list of a few examples of Ford cars and trucks. The location of the paint/trim sticker is almost always in the exact same area. It can be found in the driver's door jamb either on the "B" pillar or on the edge of the door itself with only a few exceptions, both old and new (unless of course we're talking about antiques, I'm not really sure when they started putting them here but it has been this way for a long time... I can honestly say I've never looked for the tag on a vehicle more than 30 years old or so). With the door open the sticker will be in plain sight, you should not need to remove any trim pieces.

If you do not see a sticker here, there is a slight chance it will be found under the hood, but more often than not it means your sticker has either been removed or your vehicle has been re-painted. You can always call up a Ford dealer and give them your VIN, they should be able to tell you your factory paint color code.

Let's look at a few examples.

First we'll start off with this 1999 Mustang...

This is a '99 mustang we have here in our yard. If you open the driver's door and look just below the striker pin (that's the part attached to the body that the door latches to when closed) you will see a sticker with a bar code.

Here's what the sticker looks like up close, and right side up (sometimes if there's not a lot of room the sticker will be turned on it's side to fit better, you may have to turn your head to read it, or my camera in this case!) There is a lot of useful information on this sticker. Here you can find your vin, vehicle weight ratings, production date, and what we're after- the paint and trim codes. (Some garages or dealerships can scan the barcode which is an easy way for a computer to read the VIN, therefore getting all of the useful information about your specific vehicle.)

If you look in the bottom left corner of the sticker you will fint both the exterior paint code and the interior trim code. The code(s) will almost always be right here, although sometimes the sticker will look slightly different (but it's down here somewhere).
I'll show some examples of different stickers a further on in this post. I have outlined the paint code in green, and the trim code in red to make it easier to see. (They are not circled like this on the sticker in real life.) In this case the paint code would be YN and the trim code is 9W.

Next we'll check out this 2003 F-350:

The sticker in this '03 F-350 is in virtually the same exact spot as on the Mustang we saw earlier.

This sticker is almost identical to the sticker from the Mustang as well. It is slightly different because this is a truck so the sticker includes info about the wheelbase and the axles etc.

Once again I have outlined the paint code in green, and the trim code in red. The paint code here is F1 and the trim is CE. The trim code is slightly further to the right than the Mustang, but not enough to make it hard to find. Basically it's the same.

Now check out this 2001 Explorer:

On this '01 Explorer, the sticker is found in the same area of the truck, but in a slightly different spot. It's on the edge of the driver's door itsself. (ust think though, when the door is closed, the sticker is right where the others we found are) Either way, the door still needs to be open for the sticker to be visible.

Slightly different location on the truck, but still the same sticker.

Pretty simple, right? It's not all that hard to find the stickers once you know where to look.
Here are some different types of stickers you can come across when looking for a paint code. Don't be fooled, even though they look slightly different they'll be right where you need to find them, and the info is where you'd expect to find it.

This '99 F-250 was built in Canada. The Ford Motor Compant of Canada uses a sticker just a little different than ours here in the US, but you will still find the code in the same place. The placement of the sticker is the same no matter where the truck was built as well.

Another Canadian Ford with another slightly different looking sticker. Just because you don't live in Canada doesn't mean your Ford wasn't built there.
You'd be surprised how many of these are in the US.

Here is an old red tag from an '89, also Canadian. I guess it looks like this is before they got the bright idea to rotate the sticker to fit it in a tight space...

Think this rusty old beast is too old to have the same type of sticker?

1986 F-250 (or what's left of one...)

Nope! Still has one way back then. It's even in the same spot too!

Now you may notice the lack of an interior code on the older tags. Some of them do not have that information as there weren't so many different shades of the same color back then, especially on these old pickups. Grey was grey, tan was tan, etc...
The only main difference that could potentially be a bit confusing on these older tags is that the code is stamped above the word exterior paint rather than next to it like on the newer ones. This truck has a paint code of 51.

Hope that this guide is been helpful in aiding you find the paint and or trim code on your Ford vehicle!!

Source via East Coast Salvage Inc: