auto hail repair

How Does a Body Shop Repair Hail Damage on a Vehicle?

With the cost of vehicle hail damage repair reaching thousands of dollars, it can sometimes make you wonder if you can do it yourself. The truth is, the process is very involved and often demands an expert in body shop repair to do the best job. So, what are the steps these specialists take to get your vehicle back to being good as new?

The following are all the ways a repair expert can remove hail dents from your vehicle while also ensuring they cause no further damage. Use it to stay informed before you take your vehicle in or if you need to make a hail damage claim on your insurance.

Vehicle Evaluation

Among the first things the repair shop will do is make a comprehensive evaluation of your vehicle. It will focus on every area of the automobile and document every bump, scrape, and damaged part that demands attention.

For many of the more egregious damage, this documentation may even include the size and depth of any dents. With modern technology, they might even make a digital scan of the vehicle to get the most amount of detail as fast as possible.

This level of care is very important for claiming repairs on insurance. It allows the technicians to record with proof which methods of repair they think would be the most effective. You can then present the paperwork to your insurance company and get their go-ahead to start repairs.

As some of the best auto hail repair companies will even pay your deductible, this means you may not need to pay a penny.

Paintless Dent Repair

This is one of the most popular methods of repairing hail damage, as it is not invasive and is very unlikely to cause further damage. Paintless dent repair (PDR) involves manipulating or massaging the dented metal to push it back into its original shape. This ensured you do not need to repair any paint in the area unless the coating received direct damage from a hail impact.

Surface Preparation and Tools

Before starting, the vehicle's surface receives a cleaning to ensure no dust or debris prevents the PDR from working. Then, the technician will position special lighting to give them the best visibility of the metal's curvature.

PDR Application

Using special suction devices and other tools, the repair worker will apply controlled pressure onto the dented area. Over an extended period, they will slowly massage and push the dent out.

Should they go too fast, this may cause separation of the paint and the vehicle's body as the metal "pops" back into shape, so this is to be avoided. Moving too fast may also result in an uneven surface, as the dent is not fully returned to the correct shape. As such, this process requires a great deal of patience.

Body Fillers

With much more extreme dents, or even in some cases where the impact has gone straight through, the repair team may try to use a body filler. This comes in the form of a combination of resin, talc, and a catalyst to start the resin's curing process.

Filling and Sanding

The process of filling in the dent starts with mixing the right quantities of ingredients to create a filler paste. The technicians will then apply it to the damaged area using specific tools that will prevent damage to the vehicle.

After the filler is in place, the repair team will ensure it is in the shape of the body of the vehicle and then wait for it to harden.

Restoring the Vehicle's Finish

Once the curing process finishes, the repair experts will sand it down to give it a smooth finish. This should end up around as smooth as the original vehicle so that any paint they may later apply will not stand out among the rest of the vehicle.

After the sanding process, the team will paint the area once more, making it appear seamless with the area next to it. This will give the whole vehicle a uniform appearance and make it very hard to tell if any damage ever occurred.

Buffing and Polishing

After repairs, it is important to make the vehicle look as close to it did before any hail impacted it. Using specialized equipment, the technicians will polish the surface over where the dents were.

No matter whether the dents received work involving PDR or filler, it is important to ensure the surface polish looks uniform. As such, this step removes many of the imperfections or scratches that might have occurred during repairs.

Quality Control

After repairs, and before handing it off to the customer, the repair shop will make another investigation of the vehicle. They will run through every dent documented at the start and ensure it no longer exists on the surface of the vehicle.

If they find any more damage, the vehicle company should inform you as soon as possible. They can then discuss the route they want to go with you.

Customer Inspection

The final step includes you looking over the vehicle yourself. Before you take it out of the shop, you should look over every angle of your automobile and see if you can find anywhere you are not satisfied.

If there is anything you do not think has been completed to your level of satisfaction, raise it with the technicians. They should have the ability to discuss other options with you.

Receiving Expert Body Shop Repair

Understanding why body shop repair is such a complex process can help you appreciate your vehicle all the more when you get it back. We want to give you that same level of appreciation for a job well done.

Our experts can discuss your situation with you and talk you through our process. You can then work with your insurer and even pay your deductible to make sure you receive coverage. So, get a custom estimate from us today so your vehicle can be back out of the garage as fast as possible.


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Team member using specialized tools to work on dent repair on a bright orange 4-door sedan