The winter season is well-known for its significant increase in car accidents, ranging from fender benders to serious car crashes. Keeping your vehicle protected during the winter season is vital to maintain its original paint, bodywork, and essential components.
While many people read up on winter writing tips and weather reports, many people ignore previous damage, especially when it’s cosmetic damage, like hail dents.
Although winter is not typical hail season in most western states, such as Colorado, unrepaired hail damage can lead to further damage to the vehicle and make you vulnerable to insurance claims related to other accidents. For example, when you report a car accident claim, your insurance company can discover preexisting hail damage and claim that they don’t know what damage is from the accident and what damage existed already. As a result, you may lose thousands of dollars’ worth of repair.
Considering this, you should consider fixing your hail damaged car before we get further into the winter season. However, with all the different garages out there, how do you know which one will be right for your repairs? Read on to learn more about what factors to consider when choosing an auto hail repair shop.
1. Reviews on Google
When you are searching online for an auto hail repair shop, remember to check out reviews on Google beforehand – these will give you a clearer idea from consumers about the quality of the repairs and customer service offered at the shop. However, bear in mind that the combination of the number of reviews and the overall ratings matter – one overwhelmingly negative, and perhaps unreasonable, review can drive the ratings down. It’s also wise to check the timestamps on the most recent reviews to get an idea of the current quality of repairs and customer satisfaction.
2. How do they repair?
Traditional hail repair relies on techniques such as sanding, repainting, and grinding. While this approach does yield satisfactory results, it is nevertheless an intrusive technique. As an alternative, look for a hail damage repair shop that offers paintless dent repair (PDR). This is an advanced technique for dent and hail damage repair that uses specialized tools to remove dents without the need for the sanding, filing, and painting that destroys the original bodywork of the car. In addition to being less intrusive, this advanced technique is faster, cheaper, and greener than traditional repair methods.
3. Repair experience
You want the reassurance of knowing that your vehicle will be worked on by skilled professionals who are experienced in the repairs they are offering. You might want to check up on how many years they have been doing what they do, as PDR is an advanced technique that does take some time to perfect. During the off season, it’s common for dent repair shops to hire new, less experienced technicians to carry out PDR as they need the additional profit to cope with low demands. Considering this, it’s wise to choose a dent repair shop that tasks experienced and certified technicians with PDR.
4. Quality of work
Your dent repair may look as good as new, but how can you be certain that the integrity will last? Choose a repair shop that offers a lifetime warranty for their repairs, as this will enable you to return for additional work at no extra charge should the repair prove to be faulty, while also promoting a sense of trust in their repair work. You could additionally ask them to explain their quality check inspection for the work that they do, if they do not explain it to you.
5. Quality of service
Put simply, quality of service means how well customers are treated by the establishment. You will get a sense of the quality of service offered by the repair shop by reading reviews – past customers might even name a specific technician they found particularly helpful, or detail unsatisfactory experiences. If visiting the shop in person, assess how enthusiastic staff are towards you and whether you sense a real enthusiasm for their job. Ask yourself questions to assess their quality of service. For instance, is it easy to book an appointment? Do they offer a free valet service if you live too far away from their shop? Do they contribute anything to cover the deductible?
6. Handle your insurance
Filing for an auto insurance claim is complicated, especially during COVID this year. Many insurance companies are asking customers to send pictures to adjustors for a repair estimate. While our phone cameras are getting better and better, it is extremely difficult to show hail dents clearly in a photo. An experienced repair shop may be able to help you and will work with the insurance companies to explain the extent of the damage and proper restoration for your car. Ask the repair shop what they can do to help with your insurance claims.