If your vehicle has been involved in an accident and you need to get it fixed up, before you start blindly calling up shops, spend a little time learning about the different types of auto body shops and the work that each type of shop does. With this information, you will save yourself lots of time by only calling up the right type of auto body shop.
Option #1: Dealership Repair Shop
If you need to have either a minor or major maintenance performed on your vehicle, you can always take it back to the dealership where you purchased the vehicle or to a dealership that specializes in your particular brand of vehicle.
One of the advantages of taking your vehicle to the dealership for repairs is that they are more likely to have the specific car parts in stock for your car's brand. This means you will have to spend less time waiting for them to find the right parts.
Another advantage is that the mechanics at the dealership work exclusively on vehicles constructed by a particular auto manufacturer. They will be able to easily identify and spot common problems and issues that come up with that auto manufacturer's vehicles. They will be able to fix your vehicle and get it working again.
If your vehicle is still under warranty, you will also not have to pay for the repairs yourself. However, if your vehicle is not under warranty, you may find that dealership repair shops tend to charge more than independent body shops for the same work.
Option #2: Specialty Collision Repair Shop
Your next option is to take your vehicle to an independent auto body shop that specializes in collision repair. This type of shop only works on vehicles that have been in accidents. That means the mechanics there are most likely are very skilled at fixing the obvious collision problems with your vehicle as well as spotting problems that are not as obvious.
Some of these specialty collision repair shops may specialize in only a certain type of vehicle, such as exotic vehicles, luxury vehicles, etc.
If your vehicle falls into one of these categories, the specialty collision repair shop will most likely have all the parts they need to fix your vehicle on hand. This option falls right in the middle price-wise, you may pay more than if you took your vehicle to a general independent body shop, and less than if you took your vehicle to the dealership repair shop.
Option #3: Independent Body Shops
Independent body shops generally charge less than dealership repair shops. If you are looking to save a little bit of money, you may want to call up local independent body shops to repair your car.
The quality of work and the quality of the mechanics that work at independent body shops can vary greatly, which is why you should look for body shops that are certified. The two most recognized certifications for independent body shops are issued by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) and by the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR).
If your vehicle was recently involved in an auto accident, you need to find a shop to fix it up. Your local dealership is most likely to have the parts on hand that you need; however, you will pay more for this convenience. A specialty collision repair shop may have the parts on hand to fix your car and may charge a little less than your local dealership. Finally, an independent body shop may need a little time to find the parts to fix your vehicle; however, this is generally the cheapest option. Keep this information in mind as you begin contacting local shops, like Superior Paint & Body Service Ltd.