Vehicle Repair-How to Choose a Body Shop

Accidents are a fact of life, and even careful drivers are not immune. It’s not you but the other driver or terrible weather and road conditions. Life happens! Finding the best body shop is important when you are having work done on your vehicle. The right shop means the work will be done so well there will be no clue three was ever a problem. Below are a few tips on how to find the best body shop in your area.

When your vehicle is still in driving condition:

Your first step is to get an estimate on cost. Drive to some of the more reputable body shops in your area and ask for an estimate on both cost and repair time. Make sure to get estimates from at least three shops so that you can compare the overall price, repair time and service of each body shop. Your insurance company will require this in the case of an accident, but you should still do so if you are paying for the repairs or upgrades yourself. The estimates are free.

This is the real start of your search for the best body shop. You can begin by comparing the quality and type of quoted materials in each estimate. In some cases a lower estimate may actually list materials that are obviously inferior in comparison with those listed by your other estimates. Choosing this estimate or shop would be a poor idea. Make sure you know where the replacement parts are coming from as some shops will use junk-yard parts instead of new factory-made parts.

When your vehicle is not in driving condition:

When this is the case you most likely have an insurance quote and a repairs list. You can simply take your list to local body shops for a quote, or even fax the list to a number of body shops.

Always check with the body shop as to whether they will source their parts from the junk-yard or straight from the manufacturer. When repainting is part of the repair it is important to be sure how much of the vehicle will be repainted for the quoted price. In some cases you may be given an estimate based on repainting only the spot repaired whereas in others it may be for the entire panel. In some cases matching paint colors may be challenging.

Also make sure to consider:

Body shop repairs can be pretty expensive depending on the extent of the damage which makes the body shop you choose a major investment. As with all large decisions, make sure you have gathered as much information as possible. To this end, a call to the Better Business Bureau and or the local Chamber of Commerce is recommended. You would probably need to reconsider your choice if you found that there were complaints listed against the shop you chose.

Price is not the sole factor in choosing the best body shop to repair your vehicle. It is about their reputation for quality work, delivery time and quality of parts used. Overall, you want to choose a body shop that can provide proven quality work at a reasonable price and in a reasonable time.

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