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A calculator and an uncapped pen sit on a sheet full of numbers and calculations.
Your insurance company may recommend a body shop they work with and that meets their criteria. Know the perks and drawbacks of using a recommended shop.

When you are involved in a car wreck, you may not have the time to research where you want your car fixed. Your insurance company may make a recommendation for their preferred auto body shop. It may save some hassle to choose this shop, but you have the right to choose where you want your vehicle repaired.

Considerations

Firstly, look to see if your recommended shop is certified. This means that the technicians at that location have completed rigorous training by the manufacturer to repair that vehicle model. An insurance company may or may not recommend a body shop that offers certified repair.

You might also have your own preferences based on recommendations, your past experience, or a shop that specializes in a specific type of repair (some people prefer a shop that’s more eco-friendly or a shop that has techs certified on their make of vehicle).

Using your insurance recommendation

The majority of insurance companies have a list of auto body shops with which they have established relationships. These shops meet their criteria, which may include cheaper prices and fast repairs. Or, they might choose a shop for their quality repairs and certifications. This is why it’s best to look into shops before choosing.

For whatever shop you choose, be sure to ask questions. Do they use manufacturer parts or aftermarket parts? Does the shop have good reviews on Yelp and Google? Do they offer a lifetime warranty on their work?

Perks of a recommended body shop

Using a body shop recommended by your insurance company can have benefits. Ask if your insurance provider will guarantee the repairs for as long as you own it. If the repairs do not hold up at any time while you own the car, your insurance company will take care of this and you will not have to pay.

Using a recommended body shop can also save time. It may save you money as well, if your insurance will not fully cover another shop you prefer.

Fogle Collision Centers works with all insurance companies. We are considered a preferred collision center with most providers. Because we believe in providing you the highest quality repairs, we always use OEM, or original equipment manufacturer, parts to ensure they fit, will function properly, and your car maintains its value.

Small round dents stand out on the roof of a dark blue car.
Hail damage is among one of the common causes of small dents.

As a car owner, you have a decision to make about repairs if you have a dent in your vehicle that isn’t major damage. The smaller dents may be the result of hail, a minor accident, or anything else that struck your vehicle. More significant damage requires a visit to an auto body shop.

With smaller dents, you could choose not to make the repairs, especially if the repairs could cost more than the value of your vehicle. However, the fix may be easier than you think.

What is paintless dent repair?

Paintless dent repair, or PDR, is a process of removing dents from a vehicle without altering the finish on the vehicle.

Often, these dents are fixed by gently working out the dent from the back side of the panel. Some can be fixed pulling or suctioning the outside of the dent to pop it back out. This method is often for small dents, like hail damage.

This doesn’t work as well for fixing dents that have a crease or have damaged paint. The dent may be able to be popped out, but you’ll still need paint work to make it look like new. These, or bigger damage, are better fixed by traditional body repair.

Finding the right repair

As with any auto body work, the best process to finding the right place for repairs is shopping around. With damage from a major collision, the repairs must be made at an auto body shop. If the damage consists of smaller dents, you may have more options. Some repair shops that don’t specialize in body work will offer PDR.

If you have a regular body shop, ask if they provide PDR and what the price difference would be for that service versus collision repair.

Listen to the recommendations from auto technicians. If more than one suggests collision repair over PDR, it may be because the damage is greater than it appears. For example, a dent in a door may not look significant but could have unseen damage to mechanisms inside. This would require collision repair to fix the internal problem.

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