If you get involved in an accident and your vehicle is damaged, you need an auto body repair. It is a comprehensive process of restoring your vehicle to its original shape when damaged in an accident such as collision and most fender benders
If you need an auto body repair for your vehicle restoration, here are some coverage:
- Matching the original paint of the damaged part
- Matching the shape and contour of the part like panels and trims
- Bending the frames to its original alignment when necessary
- Restoring all original electrical, electronics and mechanical functions of the vehicle
- Restoring all the safety features of the vehicle to its original standard
When an auto body estimate is approved by an insurance company for you, all of the above will be normally done using the latest combination of repair process like welding,
sheet metal fabrication, electrical and computer wirings installation, auto body painting and finishing including the application of the latest vehicle updates recommended by the vehicle manufacturer.
It is no wonder that to work in an auto body shop requires a great deal of experience to be able to perform all these complicated repairs. That is why an auto body shop also needs a combination of welders, painters, electricians and mechanics who are the experts in their field.
Note: During collision, a lot of vehicles will undergo intermittent wiring problems which sometimes are difficult to find during an auto body repair. This requires sending the vehicle to the dealer who can then performed a thorough inspection of the wirings using the latest engine repair software and diagnostic equipments.
Selecting an auto body repair shop
To find an auto body repair collision shop is not hard if you know what to look for. Before committing your vehicle to a particular auto body collision shop, make sure you check the following:
Is the shop clean and organized?
Do you see certification and training certificates in the shop?
What kind of facilities do they have?
Auto body repair collision TIP #1
A quick call to your local BBB can give you the latest info about the auto body shop reputation and if the shop is busy, that is an indication that it is a good shop. However, to protect yourself, always get a written warranty of any job before authorizing it.
Some auto body repair shop provides free car rental or coupons to get cheap car rental during the repairs especially if the repair will take some time. You should check
this also in your insurance coverage so you can compare which can save you more money. In cases where the vehicle accident is caused by you, having the vehicle loaner from the auto body can help you tremendously.
Before seeing an auto body repair facilities, make sure your vehicle has the proper police accident sticker label pasted in your windshield. This is a requirement in
cases the damage has exceeded a certain amount as required in your location like your city by-laws. Finding a good auto body repair shop should not be a hassle for you if you use the above guide.
ATS auto body repair tip #2 on how to fix minor car dents yourself for under $30:
Have you been angry at your minor dents but afraid to see and auto body shop because of their hefty charges? Imagine your vehicle being scratched or dented in the parking lot and you are really frustrated because you kept your vehicle shiny and spotless all the time! After this you tried to polish the spot but whatever you do, the dent or scratch was a little deep and you can not take your eyes away from it? Do you bring it to an auto body garage that for sure will charge you over $500 just to fix a minor dent?
Another auto body repair tip #3 for minor scratches and dents:
Do you know you can buy a dent repair kit for under $20 so you can basically lift the dent to its original position? Yes you can search it online in the internet and get the right dent repair kit for your vehicle. It will even give detailed instructions on how to use it properly so after the repair, nobody will know that is was dented or scratched before! All you do is go to the search engines like Google and search the word: minor dent repair kit and you should get a list of products that can help you do the job. (make sure to polish and wax the lifted dent surface to restore and match the original paint color to the vehicle body)
ATS simple auto body repair tips #4 that you can do yourself
Fixing Minor Scratches
This is a common problem that a lot of drivers have but if you know this simple technique, you should be able to fix it. Start by sanding the scratched are using a very fine grit sand paper which is regularly used for wet sanding. The trick here is to mix the scratch to the original paint which you can check by running your fingers to the sanded surface. When you run your fingers, you should feel the smooth taper between the sanded areas to the unmarked surface. You know you got it right when your fingers cannot feel the edge or stops when you hit a not a smooth surface.
When you encounter a deep scratch, fill it up body filler and use the same sanding technique as describe above. Make sure you cover the surrounding area with a masking tape and paper so you can avoid paint over spray. Then apply a good primer and wet sand it again to get a good bonding when the final color is applied. You can actually buy a paint spray that matches the original color from your local parts store. After the paint spray, do a final wet sanding using a very fine grit sand paper (try using 900-1000 grit grade) and paint it again after drying it. Finally, use a good rubbing compound on the newly painted surface until it matches the original color.
Repairing Uneven Dents
To fix this kind of dent is a little bit scary especially if the dent is located in a tight hard to access location. Again you can use the technique used above for fixing minor dents but this time, we need to use a small drill bit. What you need to do is to drill on the middle of the dent so you can screw in a small sheet metal screw (anything small like 1/8 on an inch) and using a vice grip, pull the dented surface. Once flat to the original position the dented hole surface can be sanded and flattened to match the original surface. Use you fingers to double check the flatness after painting.
Fixing Rusted Areas
This is a job that can be repaired easily if you know the basic technique: Make sure you remove all the rusted area and if you have to grind it to the bare metal or CUT it completely then it has to be done! Why? Because if you paint over the rust, it will grow later and you will see paint bubbles later. To fix this kind of problem, remove all trace of rust and cover the affected area with auto body repair screen kit that you can buy at almost any automotive parts store. Secure the screen kit by drilling small holes on the rusted area so you can fasten the
screen to it. If the area was cut, you can either weld a supporting bracket or thin plate over it which again can hold the screen kit. Once secure, the same process above for fixing minor scratches can be done but again do not forget to run your fingers to make sure there is a smooth touch between the repaired and the original surface.
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