Common Types of Auto Body Repairs
At some point, every car owner will face auto body repairs – even the best of us drivers! Those repairs could be as simple as fixing a small dent or something more extensive like replacing a front end. Even great drivers sometimes have damage to their cars! Somebody could hit your car, falling tree branches, or just simple aging of the vehicle. Let’s see what some of the most common auto body repairs are.
What is an Auto Body Repair
Auto body repair is simple to understand. Auto body repair is when you have the body of the vehicle fixed. This is different from mechanical repair. Things like dents or scratches are repaired, repainted or removed. Doors, fenders or bumpers being replaced are also considered repairs.
Some auto body repairs are more extensive than others. Believe it or not there are common or everyday repairs that body shops make. So, what are some of those common repairs? Paintless dent removal, scratched paint, and body panel replacement are all common repairs.
Paintless Dent Removal
This process is primarily used for minor dents or dents where the paint hasn’t been damaged. This procedure is done for surface dents. Tools that won’t damage the paint are used to pop the dent out. When the repair is finished the area looks good as new without being repainted.
The most common tools used in this process are things that look like a toilet plunger, soft mallet, and heat gun. The methods used for paintless dent removal depend on where the dent is, and the extent of the dent. All of these tools and the methods behind them are used with caution to avoid damaging the paint.
Scratched or Damaged Paint
This is a little more of an extensive auto body repair, however, it is probably one of the most common repairs made. Scratches in the paint of your vehicle occur for many reasons and they will occur regardless of how careful you are. Just being exposed to the elements of everyday life can cause scratches to the paint of your vehicle.
To repair scratches is straightforward but time-consuming. You should use a reliable body shop for repainting as it does entail spraying paint onto your vehicle and blending it with the existing paint. The area needing repair is sanded down, primed and then repainted. The body shop will match the color of your vehicle by the paint code on the manufacturer sticker. Once it’s primed, repainted and dried they will then seal it with a clear coat to help it last. Depending on the paint color and size of the area needing to be repainted will determine how much the repair can cost.
Body Panel Replacement
This is a more extensive and labor-intensive auto body repair. Body panels are the individual panels of the vehicle. In most cases, they are replaced because it is cheaper and easier to replace them rather than repairing them. That means the damage to the panel is heavy and the metal or composite material that makes the part is torn or creased or the support panels or attachment points are damaged.
This is often easier than using body filler or fiberglass to repair the damage or rebuild a section of the panel. It can take time to replace the panel because the replacement panel has to be ordered or removed from a salvage vehicle and then the damaged part needs to be removed. The supports behind the piece need to be inspected before the new part can be installed and then the part may need to be painted to match the color of the vehicle.
Causes of Auto Body Repair
There are many causes of damage, things like vandalism, weather damage or collision damage. Here are the top two causes of damage.
Weather-related damage is all to often the cause for auto body repair, especially during storm season wherever you may live. Heavy winds can cause the branches of trees to fall and dent or scratch your vehicle. Hail can cause dents and scratches and sandstorms can definitely cause scratches to your paint.
The damage caused by weather and other natural disasters can vary in degree. Sometimes these damages are quick repairs and others can be lengthy. Weather-related damages make a small portion of the auto body repairs that are made.
Collision Related Damage
Auto body repairs can be related to collisions. Whether the collision is with another vehicle, animal or object damage is still done. The most extensive repairs and body panel replacements come from collision damage.
Collision damage probably accounts for more than half of the auto body repairs made. Generally, collision damage will require more than one repair and it generally consists of replacing body panels. Impact with anything can cause damage behind the panel or bumper that can affect the supports.
Auto body repairs can be quick and simple, or lengthy and extensive. It is always important to find a reliable body shop for repairs and remember that the causes of auto body damage are few. The type of damage and extent of repair will vary but auto body repairs are common in everyday life.
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