Perhaps your car has been involved in a collision and it became mangled in places that you don’t like. You gave it to a car shop for the required body repair works. After a week or two, you went to the shop and your car looks as if it has never been into any kind of accident.
But how can you be sure that the car shop did the right body works on your car? Its overall appearance looks good. Everything is covered up nicely. And that is what you need to examine. It doesn’t mean that when everything is nice and pretty at the outside, that the same is true underneath the skin of the car.
You need to examine the car body if all the right body works were performed by the car repair shop. If you have chosen a reliable shop such as Express or Valvoline, you can rest assure that they will do the job well. But what about other car shops – are they able to do correct body repair works?
Here is how you can determine if the car shop did the right body job on your car.
1. Be clear what the car shop is going to do with your car.
Knowing what kind of repair job the car shop will do to your car is the first important step of determining if they really did the right job. Insist that every work that is supposed to be done must be in writing. And then ask the car shop to warranty the job.
When you come back, review all that was written in the contract and confirm that the shop has really done all the body work that it promised.
The car shop, if it is really honest, will be willing to walk you through every step that it will take to repair your car. If they hesitate in giving you all the information, perhaps they are trying to hide something from you.
2. Your car should be spic and span.
The moment you pick up your car, there’s one general thing that you must see. It must be squeaky clean. The car shop should have it thoroughly washed, cleaned and vacuumed.
You should see no dirt or dust in your car and no old and replaced parts even in your trunk. If the car shop is really great in customer service, it should have cleaned the outside of your engine as well, of soot and blackened engine oil.
It is really quite a challenge for a car shop doing body repairs to turn over a clean car to its owner. The car could have sustained incessant flow of dust from repeated sanding. It is a fact that body shops are the dirtiest car shops ever because of the dusts flying around.
Car shops reduce the encroachment of dust in tight places and corners by covering them with paper and masking tape. Even then, dust is still a major problem for most car shops specializing in body repair. So, you should appreciate the car shop if it returns your car cleaner than when you drove it in.
3. Closely examine your car.
If the car is absolutely clean, then it’s time for you to take a closer look at the focus of the body repair. An expert in body repair suggests for you to start looking for gaps between the car’s body panels.
- It the gaps are noticeably uneven, it is a sign that the car shop did not align them correctly. Your car doors should open and close easily if there is good alignment in the body panels. If not, insist that it be made so.
- An extensive front-end damage is very difficult for a car body shop to repair and restore it perfectly. If you had this problem, and the car shop is finished with the job, the first thing you need to examine is the distance between the tire and the front fender.
If the distance is narrow on one side and wide on the other, the car shop didn’t fix your car correctly. Another way to test if they did a good job is by turning on the car’s headlights. If it is aligned, they did a good job, if not it should be a back job.
- The paint color of the repaired section of your car must perfectly match the color and texture of the rest of the car. If not, the car shop did not get it right.
Car body repair experts suggest that you pick up your car during the day. If possible look at your car in the sunlight. This will help you determine if the new paint coat perfectly matches your car’s original color shade and texture.
If the shop repainted several panels, look at the side of the car if the color shade is consistent throughout. Lastly, closely examine the paint for traces of imperfections such as specks of dirt, or hair brushes left on the paint coat.