5 Things you must know before choosing a collision repair shop
1) Price is not the way to choose a shop
In most transactions we are accustomed to making decisions based off of price. In the collision industry, even though it may appear that all things are equal, there can be very big differences.
Does the shop you are choosing have manufacturer trained technicians? Many auto manufacturers offer specific training for their vehicles. It is very expensive to buy the equipment and train technicians at the manufacturers facilities. However, with new technology and materials being introduced every day, it is important that the technicians stay up on industry changes.
I-CAR Gold- This is the industries most widely acceptable training standard. This should be a minimum expectation from any facility. Most shops will display their I-CAR Gold certification. If the shop does not have this displayed, I would ask to see it. If a shop can not provide this, they do not even meet the minimum industry standards.
3) Source for repair standards
You want to use a shop that subscribes to the latest publications from the manufacturer. This is a computer database that allows the shop to research exactly the way the manufacturer wants the car repaired. Most cars today are engineered to collapse in a certain way and in a certain time sequence, to ensure that the airbags deploy at the right time and cause no harm to the person when the airbag deploys. This is not something that should be guessed at. Just ask your shop where they get the factory information to repair the cars. If they tell you their technicians have been doing it for years and know how to do the repair, you should continue your search. No one has enough knowledge to know all of the manufacturers without research. Oddly enough,only 5% of the industry actually subscribes to the complete information to repair a vehicle. Dealers do not provide this information. If your told that, it's just not accurate.
Repairing the modern vehicles back to the factory specifications takes a lot of expensive equipment. The shop you use should have a minimum of mig welders, inverter welders, a frame rack and down draft paint booth with the capability of force curing your paint.
5) Relationships with the insurance carriers
Almost every shop will tell you they take any insurance. The problem is the delays that it may take. It can take days or weeks of additional time to process your car if the shop is not a shop that is use to dealing with insurance companies. Most insurance companies develop relationships with the larger shop groups over years of working together. This relationship is based off of trust and experience.
2008 Honda Odyssey
Jason was extremely helpful. The experience was smooth. My accident was the fault of someone else, your auto body service made the experience bearable in the light of the situation. Thank you!"
~Shelton Family, Folsom, CA
"It's so nice to deal with a company that gets things right the first time. Our daughter recommends you to all her friends and so will we."
~Stephen M, Sacramento, CA
2009 Toyota Solara ES
"Everyone was very helpful, Mike was very thorough and helpful. He's a definite asset to your company."
~Mary P, Lincoln, CA
2009 Nissan Murano
"Ty was outstanding...Professional, Knowledgeable and Accommodating! In the business of 'service', this is the best I've experienced!"
~Sue M, Roseville, CA
2010 Infinity G35
"Brian was very friendly, helpful and professional. Bodycraft was recommended to me by a friend. I had a log of problems with shops before. The process and results were better than expected."
~Jim C, Granite Bay, CA