Collision Repair Info and Tips For The Inexperienced
When Can I Drop Off my Car for Collision Repair and other FAQ’s
If you don’t know the answers to the following questions, congratulations! You must have avoided the insurance claim and collision repair process for quite a while. This blog is meant to help you navigate auto body repair and define some common terms you may hear while working with the auto insurance company or your Scottsdale collision repair facility.
When can I drop off my vehicle for auto body repair?
If you are paying out of pocket, it’s a much quicker process. Our office will check our schedule and parts availability for your vehicle’s repair. If you are making an insurance claim, there are a few things to know. First off, if your vehicle is non-drivable or there is a safety issue such as a door that won’t close or a non-working headlight you may drop it off immediately. If your vehicle is drivable, the insurance company may want to confirm with the Scottsdale collision repair center, that they are ready to start repairs on the day you drop it off. In addition, many insurance companies prefer if vehicles are not dropped off on a Friday, because most facilities are closed over the weekend. These “rules” are in efforts to control rental car costs. If you must drop off on a Friday, relay that information to your adjuster.
What do I do if the insurance check is less than the cost of collision repair?
This situation is extremely common and is related to the topic of supplements. Often, the adjuster will write an estimate based on what he can see, labor times and part prices are truly just an estimate. When Airpark Collision Center’s estimator and technician review the insurance estimate and disassemble the vehicle, they may ask for additional parts and labor time. Keep in mind, a trustworthy Scottsdale collision repair facility is accepting liability for the auto body repair, therefore they are committed to following the manufacturer’s or industry repair procedures.
Should I cash the insurance check?
Customers may cash the insurance check if it is not a two-party check. Some customers opt to skip this step and simply sign the check over to Airpark Collision Center. Collision repairs are almost never less than the insurance check, be financially prepared to pay the full amount upon vehicle pick up.
Will the insurance company pay for my rental?
If you are a claimant (not at fault) the rental car cost will most likely be covered. Some insurance companies are billed directly and some require you to pay and then file for reimbursement. If you are at fault (insured) it will depend if you elected to purchase rental reimbursement on your current policy. If the insurance is covering the cost of the rental, there are often daily or maximum limits. Be aware that upgrading or adding optional coverages will be at your own cost.
How do I pick up and drop off the rental car?
With a quick phone call from Airpark Collision Center, a representative from Enterprise or Hertz Rental Car will pick you up at our office and drive you to their store. When your vehicle is ready, skip the line at the rental car store and head to our Scottsdale collision repair facility. A representative from Enterprise or Hertz will pick up your rental car from our parking lot. Our goal is to streamline the process and create an easy stress-free experience.
Can you repair damage that is not related to the collision?
Unrelated damage is paid for by the customer and not the insurance company. All damages must be approved by the insurance company adjuster. They typically view damaged vehicles in person or by photos. The adjusters are well experienced and similar to CSI’s. They will know if a dent, scratch, etc is not related to the accident. Airpark Collision Center does not have the authority to approve or deny repairs billed to the insurance company.
What is a supplement?
One of the first steps of the collision repair process is disassembly. At this stage, the auto body technician may discover parts behind exterior panels that are cracked or crushed. Many times, mechanical issues, damaged wiring, sensors, etc. will be identified. Hidden damage is very common because an estimator or adjuster is only allowed to write what he can see (even though he may suspect components underneath are damaged).
Once this damage is visible, the Scottsdale auto body repair facility will contact the insurance company. Supplements are frequently submitted through email or a virtual app if the insurance company has one available. The supplement is a request, it will include photos, a list of parts, and labor times for damage not listed on the original estimate. If the supplement request is not virtual, the insurance company may send an adjuster to the Scottsdale collision repair facility. Once the adjuster arrives, he will examine the vehicle and confirm the supplemental repairs are necessary and related to the claim. Supplements may be small or large. For example, it may range from simple items like clips, to more labor time and/or additional parts.
How long does it take to get a supplement approved?
Getting a supplement approved is a process. The collision repair facility must do their part and submit the necessary information. The insurance company may send an adjuster to inspect the vehicle (this could take 3-5 days). Once approved, the Scottsdale collision repair center is allowed to order the additional parts. Once the additional parts arrive our technician can get back to work!
What is betterment?
The insurance company may not pay the entire cost to replace certain parts. Some of these parts are wear and tear items like tires, brakes, etc. For example, one of the vehicle’s tires requires replacement due to the collision, but the tire is already 40% worn. Therefore the insurance company may only pay 60% of the tire’s cost. The vehicle owner would be required to pay the betterment in addition to their deductible since the insurance company will not reimburse the auto body repair facility for the entire cost of the tire. Not every insurance company has this policy.
Collision repair, is not a stressful process if you choose a reputable Scottsdale auto body repair facility. Since opening in 2006, Airpark Collision Center has earned a reputation for safe and quality repairs, in addition to excellent customer service. Please stop in for a free estimate or click here!