It’s nerve-wracking enough having an auto accident, dealing with your car insurer and worrying about what to do. The last thing you want is an auto body shop that will give you the runaround. Similar to any other business, auto body shops run the whole spectrum in terms of quality, so save yourself the trouble by doing some research before choosing one.
Repairs from a vehicular accident often cost thousands of dollars, and using an auto body shop with good reviews is smart. If your insurance policy covers most of repair costs, you could go with the authorized repair shop located nearest you, but take it slow.
Although an insurance company will take out a facility if it receives complaints, its list is not tantamount to a recommendation. Instead, ask for the info for various car body shops from your car insurer and then ask your friends or coworkers for feedback about the shops they might have 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. Their license should be hung on the wall, but if you don’t see it, just as them. Inquire as well how long they have been in operation and whether they have always been located in that specific area. The answer you get will tell you much about the shop’s stability.
You’d like to know how long the manager has been working with the company and if he also has auto body repair skills. 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 thing you should consider is the size of the staff working in the office. More people means a bigger overhead for the shop. Overhead costs can also vary significantly even within the same town or city, depending on location. 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 is not true in all cases, and that is why you have to do some research before choosing 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. Three years is ideal for the paint and two years for the body work. Beware of a “lifetime warranty,” however, as this is both unrealistic and highly restrictive.