There are several factors that can lead to car damage, and most drivers will need a repair at one point or another. Depending on the damage a vehicle sustains, the repair process varies greatly. There are several different forms of common auto body damage, and it’s important that drivers are fully informed on the causes of damage as well as their respective repairs.
What Causes Common Auto Body Damage?
As previously mentioned, there are several causes of auto body damage. Many of us immediately think of car accidents as the main culprit of auto body shop visits, but there are a plethora of reasons a car might need repaired.
Weather Damage—During every season, a car’s exterior is vulnerable to the elements. During hot and sunny months, your paint can become faded and worn, and your tires can be dried out and cracked. In the winter, road salt can corrode your vehicle’s exterior and frequent temperature changes can cause a crack in the windshield. During the rainy fall and spring, heavy winds and hail can leave extensive dents and chipped paint. In order to avoid damage due to weather, try to park under cover as frequently as possible and use a cover during harsh storms.
Lack of Maintenance—Routine maintenance may feel like a burden, but it’s an important part of owning a vehicle. A car’s steering and brakes can fail, tires can blowout, and the engine can become severely defective without proper care. Not only does negligence lead to damage to your car, but it can pose a huge threat to yourself, your passengers, and other drivers. Make sure you address all warning lights and have your car serviced about once a year.
Major Collisions-Of course, major collisions cause severe damage. These accidents can cause the windshield to shatter, the engine to fail, entire panels to be destroyed, and leave the steering inoperable. Always contact a reputable towing service after a major collision in order to safely relocate your vehicle to an auto body repair shop.
Minor Fender Benders—After a major car accident, the damage is often apparent. But fender benders can cause many problems as well, often ones that are invisible to an untrained eye. Make sure you visit an auto body shop even after a small bump in order to check for damage to the frame, engine, steering, windshield, or any other hidden parts.
Miscellaneous Factors—Of course there are numerous random happenings that can cause damage to your car like a runaway golf ball, a deer caught in the headlights, a pothole, or a faulty parking brake. Though there are steps you can take to avoid common car damages, some things will often be out of your control, however, it is crucial that you understand the necessary steps to take after incurring damage.
How Is Common Auto Body Damage Repaired?
Now that we’ve covered the causes of damage, let’s discuss the solutions.
Dents—Dents can range from tiny bumps to massive craters. Panels that have deep and irreparable dents need to be replaced instead of repaired. After assessing the severity of the dent, a technician will use either paintless or conventional dent repair; paintless does not disturb the current coat of paint, while conventional requires the paint to be touched up or redone. Three different techniques include hammer and dolly, using a stud welder, and using a dent puller. Each process involves a different tool that either hammers, pushes, or pulls the dent in order to smooth the panel back into shape.
Scratches—Small scratches can easily be buffed out by a professional. However larger scratches require filler and paint to seal the depression in the surface. A professional auto body shop can electronically match your car’s paint to the new coat, providing a seamless finish.
Suspension Damage—Pennsylvania drivers know all too well how badly a pothole can mess with a car’s suspension. If a vehicle is damaged enough, the shock absorber or ball joint may need to be completely removed and replaced, but in less severe cases, a car might just need the wheels realigned.
Cracked Windshield—Windshields may incur small chips or be completely shattered. In severe cases, the windshield needs to be taken out of the pinch weld and replaced. A smaller crack or chip can be injected with resin to prevent spreading and restore strength.
Bumper Damage—Being rear-ended or rear-ending someone else is a common occurrence, especially in heavy traffic or if a driver is especially distracted. Replacing a bumper is only necessary if the damage is beyond the point of repair. Otherwise, the damage can be reversed, similarly to any other dent. A cracked bumper will require a body filler and a new paint job in order to reseal it.
How to Choose a Repair Shop for Common Auto Body Damage
Taking your damaged vehicle to a professional auto body shop is the best choice after encountering any form of car damage. Follow these steps to ensure you choose the best shop possible.
Research—Do some browsing online to find shops in your area, and thoroughly vet them by reading reviews, checking for certifications, and asking trusted friends and family. You are bound to find a shop near you that will provide top-notch service and a guarantee backing their work.
Ask Questions—Ask each shop you speak with about their experience, their payment policy, their warranty, and their certifications. These questions will give you peace of mind and ensure you’re leaving your car in reliable hands.
Get Estimates-Reputable shops will provide a free estimate for your repairs. After getting a few quotes, go with the shop that has the best combination of experience, reliability, and fair pricing.
A Trusted Repair Shop for Common Auto Body Damage
Zingani Collision is an experienced auto body repair shop that has served Delaware County for over 20 years. Their expert technicians can address all forms of common auto body damage and provide a free estimate, as well as a 5-year warranty on all repairs. Zingani will even work directly with your insurance company to take negotiations off your shoulders. If your car needs a repair, don’t hesitate to contact Zingani Collision.