When there’s an issue with your car, it’s tempting to go with the first auto body shop you find and hope for the best.
Not all body shops are created equal, and choosing the wrong shop could result in a bad job, damage to your vehicle, and a lot of frustration.
To make sure you’re choosing the right body shop, you need to ask the right questions – whether you’re looking for a simple repair or a full makeover.
Keep reading to find out exactly what you should know before you make your choice of shop.
Ensure Staff Are Properly Certified
All auto body shops will claim that their technicians are highly-skilled, but that means nothing without solid proof.
Ask about the certifications held by the technicians at each shop you’re looking at, and compare the answers.
General certifications like I-CAR and ASE show that the holders are committed to professional development. Vehicle-specific certifications show that the technicians are experts in dealing with vehicles like yours.
Ask If They Use OEM or Aftermarket Parts
Original equipment manufacturer parts are fully approved by your vehicle’s manufacturer and will provide the best results.
Aftermarket parts might look similar, but they’re often lower in quality and won’t last as long or work as well. Some less reputable shops will use these parts to save money while putting you at a disadvantage.
Ensure the auto body shop you choose only uses OEM parts.
Is Your Car Insured While at the Shop?
All good body shops will offer insurance against fire, accidental damage, and theft to ensure you aren’t left out of pocket if your car sustains damage or is stolen while on their premises.
You should run a mile from any shop that doesn’t offer this. You don’t want to send your car in for a repair and be left with no vehicle.
Make Sure They Offer a Warranty
Don’t just ask about a warranty – ask for full details on how long it will last and exactly what it will cover.
It’s too easy to be reassured by the word ‘warranty’, then discover that it lasts a week and covers very little.
Read Online Reviews and Ask Locals
Doing a quick online search for the shop you’re considering is a smart move.
For instance, if you search JH Body Shops and find hundreds of good reviews, you can be confident that it’s worth checking out.
If you search for a shop and find nothing but poor reviews and complaints, you’ll know to avoid.
Finding no reviews at all can also be a warning sign. If you want to give a shop the benefit of the doubt, chat to a few locals before you decide to go there.
How to Find a Good Auto Body Shop
To find a decent body shop, you should check online and word-of-mouth reviews, ask about staff certifications, ensure they use OEM parts, check that your car will be insured while on-site, and get full warranty details.
Don’t risk further damage to your car by choosing any old shop.
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