When you’ve been in a car crash, the last thing you want to do is worry about your insurance coverage. Wouldn’t it be nice if we all had fairy godmothers to take care of such annoying chores? Unfortunately for most of us, if we don’t take command of the situation ourselves, it will never get done. We have to make the right calls and contact the right people and sometimes, in our exhaustion and frustration, we make mistakes. Well, today we would like to share some of our best collision insurance tips with you. While they won’t be as simple and fantastic as the swish of a fairy godmother’s wand, these collision insurance tips will help you avoid unnecessary charges and dissatisfaction.
Collision Insurance Tips
- Find a reputable body shop. This is the most important of our collision insurance tips. The fact is, many body shops do unethical and mediocre work. You don’t want a repairman who flies by the seat of his pants or charges you extraordinary amounts. Look for a repair shop that has been in business a long time and has great reviews. Customer satisfaction is the perfect way to gauge a repair shop’s reliability.
- Ask questions and choose a body shop that will give you answers. If you don’t understand the steps listed in an estimate or if you find the price unreasonable, talk to the repair shop’s staff. If they don’t have the time or patience to listen to your concerns and give you careful, considered answers, then you should find another body shop.
- Beware of body shops that offer extremely low estimates. Sometimes shops write very low estimates so that you’ll choose them over another shop. Then, once they’ve begun working on your car, they raise the price, claiming they have found new damage and need to list additional charges. This is an irresponsible way to run a body shop, and although it’s hard to know how to avoid it, you’re best bet is choosing a body shop that is well-respected in your community. It’s also a good idea to do a little research on your own, so that you have a fair idea beforehand of how much it will cost to repair your car’s damage.
- Don’t trust body shops that offer to help you “save the deductible” from your insurance claim. Typically, this means that the repair shop is planning to either not perform all the required work or overcharge for something to compensate for the deductible. Either way, it’s a sign that the shop is not trustworthy.
- Question the mechanics about the parts they use. Unethical repair shops may choose to charge customers for new parts when they’ve really installed used parts, repaired the old part, or have installed aftermarket parts instead of original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts. Although it’s difficult to discern that this is happening, your best bet is to review the original quote and ask for documentation of the parts used. If the body shop is charging you for OEM parts, be sure that’s what you received.
- Choose your own body shop. Although your insurance company may try to push you toward certain body shops, you are allowed to choose whichever one you want. And in most cases, that “preferred” body shop is not your best bet. It may be cutting corners because it has the promise of steady work from the insurance company.
All of these collision insurance tips come down to one important fact: you need to your homework. Although it’s tempting to simply go with the flow after you’ve been in a car wreck, if you want to save money and receive quality repair work, you need to research body shops, ask questions, and remain alert so that you’re not taken advantage of.
If you need help after a car collision and you’re in Springfield, MO, give Dings ‘n Things a call at 417-886-0151. With our A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, you can trust that you’ve found a reputable company dedicated to leaving customers happy and cars in tip-top shape.