When your vehicle is damaged in a car accident, you need to get back on the road as soon as possible. But you also need the collision repair shop to do the job right to ensure your family’s safety. So how do you find a collision repair shop after an accident? Understanding your options can help you make an informed decision.
Locating the right collision repair shop after your accident is critical. Understandably, you want the process to be cost-effective, efficient, and safe. Luckily, there are several things to keep in mind when choosing a repair shop for your damaged vehicle.
Direct Repair Programs
Depending on your insurance company, you may have the option to use a direct repair program. A direct repair program means that you are referred to a collision repair shop within your insurance company’s approved network.
However, your insurance company might not offer a direct repair program, or you might not want to use any of the network shops. For many people, it’s important to weigh their options and make the choice on their own.
Choosing a Collision Repair Shop After an Accident
Confirm Industry Certifications
Checking for industry certifications is important to determine safety and professionalism. The Federal Trade Commision recommends checking for specific “seals of approval” like certifications from:
- The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE)
- Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR)
- The Automotive Service Association (ASA)
The above certifications show that the shop’s technicians meet essential collision repair work qualifications. Most reputable shops put their technicians through ongoing training to keep them updated on all the latest technology.
One of the best ways to find a reliable and trusted collision repair shop is to check around with friends and family whose opinions you value. First-hand experience with body shops gives people priceless insight into a shop’s professionalism, cost-effectiveness, and efficiency.
A good auto body shop will have an excellent reputation to match. If you know anyone whose vehicle was damaged, check to see what their experience was and if they can recommend a quality shop.
Check the Shop Quality Yourself
There are a couple of things you can look for in a quality shop:
- Volume: If a shop is busy, that’s a good sign. Auto repair shops have a lot of repeat business and many referrals. If a shop is operating well, they should have the customers to show for it.
- Organization: Auto repair can get messy, but a good collision repair shop should run like a well-oiled machine. There should be systems of organization and cleanliness in place that prove the shop has the skills to run efficiently.
After You Choose a Body Shop
Once you choose a collision repair shop, keep a few things in mind:
Review the estimate: Request a precise, itemized estimate. The document should be straightforward, with a breakdown of parts and labor costs. Do not hesitate to ask for clarification if you don’t understand any aspect of the estimate.
Parts options: There might be several parts options. Talk to the experts at your chosen collision repair shop about the original equipment manufacturer’s (OEM) parts VS. “aftermarket” parts, as well as the price difference between the two.
Warranties: It is a good idea to get all repair warranties in writing. You must have peace of mind regarding your repair. If your car isn’t fixed the first time, your warranty can help resolve the issue fairly.
North Texas Collision Center Can Help
If you were in a car accident, North Texas Collision Center can help. We know how frustrating collisions can be. That’s why we try to make things as easy and painless as possible. We offer free pickup and delivery and free online estimates.
Throughout the repair process, we make it simple to track your vehicle’s repair progress online. We handle any type of damage, from minor to major. Keeping customers satisfied is our number one priority, which means getting you back on the road quickly and safely.
North Texas Collision Repair Shop FAQ
How do I find the best auto body shop?
When choosing an auto body repair shop, ask friends and family if they can personally recommend a trustworthy shop. You can also look for professional certifications, a clean and organized shop atmosphere, and a high volume of customers.
How do I get a quote from the auto body shop?
North Texas Collision Center makes it easier than ever to get a quote for your damaged vehicle. Just upload photos of the damage and submit your information online to get a quick, secure online estimate.
Is a collision center the same as an auto body shop?
The terms “collision center” and “auto body shop” are sometimes used interchangeably. Both shops specialize in repairing vehicles after an accident.
Can I choose where my car is repaired after an accident?
After an accident, you can choose the collision repair shop you feel is best. But your insurance company may ask that you select a shop whose estimate does not exceed their shop or adjuster’s bid.