Getting into an accident and knowing that you have to get repairs on your vehicle can be daunting. This might be your first time, and you don’t know how to start the process or what it entails. You’ve probably also run into the slew of misconceptions about collision repair. Don’t worry. Collision repair is a straightforward process, and today, we’re going to demystify it further.
Here are seven things you may not know about collision repair:
1. Shop Estimates Can Vary Because of the Appraiser
There will come a time when you receive an estimate for repairs from the appraiser that is less than accurate. A skilled appraiser will be able to look at a damaged vehicle and tell you exactly what needs repairing. The estimate will be very close to the final cost, and you won’t have any surprises. Should the appraiser not understand, they could come up with a lower estimate that doesn’t cover everything that needs to be done.
But even the most expert appraiser cannot determine the whole extent of the damage. They have to understand that some collision damage is invisible until you go searching for it; so, the appraiser also has to be able to convince the insurance company that such damages can be missed and that repair will return the car to a satisfactory condition.
2. There is No Memory in Metal Body Parts
You may have seen those gadgets that claim you can pop out a dent in a metal body panel easily, because of the “memory” in the body. Be skeptical of those claims. Once metal has been dented or damaged from a collision, it is going to stay that way. It won’t return to how the panel emerged from the factory easily.
To even remotely return the metal to its original shape, collision repair technicians have to utilize specialized tools to reshape the metal. Restoring the body panel to its original appearance is an arduous process.
3. Collision Damage Goes Beyond the Surface
As mentioned above, collision damage can be extensive. Sometimes, your car will be totaled even if the exterior damage looks minor. Plus, repairs are more expensive than in the past.
Whenever you collide with something, whether it is an object or another vehicle, the force of the impact will travel through the entire body of the car. That force is capable of bending and breaking panels, components, interior pieces, the drive train, and so much more.
That is why your auto technician might recommend that you get a wheel alignment after a fender bender. You never know how a collision could affect other regions of the vehicle until you bring it in for inspection.
4. Lacking Body Fillers Doesn’t Mean Poor Repair
Back in the day, you could use a magnet to locate the parts of a car that were metal and which had fillers to see if it had been in an accident. These days, it’s not simple. Brand new vehicles on the lot could have fillers to hide any irregularities in the metal.
Additionally, the advancement of auto repair technology has made it much easier to repair bent metal without even needing a filler, such as paintless dent repair (PDR). Old paint could crumble on impact, but modern paint is more flexible and able to move with the body panels to a degree. Some damages may be repairable without ever altering the paint, making it nearly impossible to tell a car has been in a minor collision.
5. You Can Go to Any Body Shop You Want
Your insurance provider might suggest taking your vehicle to their recommended body shop, but they cannot coerce you to go. They cannot revoke your compensation, either. When you need to have collision repair done, it’s best to go to a reputable auto repair shop that has knowledge, experience, certifications, and high customer satisfaction. They will do the repairs correctly and use OEM parts rather than appeasing the insurance company.
6. The Kind of Parts You Receive Make a Difference
When you go to the body shop recommended by the insurer, the mechanic will often use aftermarket parts instead of OEM parts, which saves the insurance company money in the end. Although most aftermarket parts are designed to meet quality standards, it is always best to go the OEM route. Such parts are made specifically for your make and model, so you know you are getting the best fit and highest quality.
7. You Won’t Need a Whole Repaint
Technology has made it so much easier to repair vehicles. A quality repair can restore your car to as good as it was before the accident. Similarly, you don’t have to worry about mismatched paints or needing to repaint the entire vehicle. Once the damaged panel is repaired, you won’t be able to tell the difference between the new paint and the original coat.
Make Your Collision Repair Appointment Today
When you need collision repair, the most important thing is finding an auto repair shop that you can trust. The technicians will be able to provide an accurate estimate of the repairs and do a quality job. Such excellent services are what you’ll find at Elmer’s Auto Body. Each of our technicians has OEM certifications and extensive training. We’ll help you get back on track after an accident and make sure you’re back on the road as soon as possible.