It’s hard enough to experience a car accident, dealing with your insurer and thinking how to get around. The last thing you need is to an auto body shop that gives you the runaround. Just like any business, auto body shops provide varying degrees of quality, so save yourself the hassle by doing some homework before selecting one.
Car accident repairs are likely to cost big money, and it’s wise to go with an auto body shop that is highly recommended. If your insurance covers most of the repair costs, you may tend to choose the authorized repair facility nearest you, but not so fast.
Though vehicle insurer will strike off a facility when there are complaints against it, their list hardly makes for a recommendation. Instead, obtain the details for different shops from your insurer and then ask people around you for opinions on any of those shops that they’ve used before. Spend a few minutes doing an Internet search on every shop, focusing on customer reviews.
Upon arriving at the shop to get your estimate, take a look around the place and try to learn more about the business. You should see a license should on the wall, and if you don’t, ask them to show it to you. Ask them how long the shop has been operating and whether they have always been located in that particular spot. The answer will give you signs about the shop’s stability.
Know how long the manager has been an employee of the company and whether he possesses skills in auto body repair as well. They may not need a background in repair to manage a business well, but this knowledge will surely be helpful in guaranteeing quality work.
Another consideration you should make is the size of the staff. More people means a greater overhead. Overhead expenses can considerably vary even if they’re located in the same town or city. Sometimes, a shop with a bigger overhead will take shortcuts for the purpose of increasing their profit margin. Or they may charge for a lot of services without actually completing them. Of course, this isn’t true for all, and that’s the reason you need to do your homework before selecting an auto body shop.
Finally, once you have received your estimate, inquire about the warranty they provide. This should be written and good for one year on the parts and for the workmanship. If possible, you should get two years for the body work and three years for the paint. Beware of a “lifetime warranty,” however, as this is both unrealistic and highly restrictive.