What do these Collision Repair Terms Mean?

Question-Marks If you have a collision repair estimate in hand or have been talking with an insurance adjuster you may have heard or seen some unfamiliar terms. What does it all mean? The definitions below will help you to understand your collision repair estimate and some of the common lingo in the auto body or auto insurance business.

Aftermarket Parts (Non-OEM Parts) – Aftermarket parts are new replacement parts that were not produced or supplied by the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM). Aftermarket parts may not provide the same fit as OEM. The auto insurance policy signed determines whether the insurance company will approve aftermarket parts or OEM. If the part doesn’t fit or work properly, a collision repair facility with quality standards will work with the insurance company to gain approval on an OEM part.

Base Coat/Clear Coat System – A base coat is a highly pigmented coat of paint. The clear coat provides gloss and durability to protect the base coat.

Bumper AbsorberBumper repairs might include a bumper absorber which is an energy-absorbing foam that is placed between the outside bumper fascia and the inner bumper reinforcement. This can be found on both front and rear bumpers of a late model vehicle.

Bumper Reinforcement – This part of the vehicle attaches the outer bumper and bumper absorber to the vehicle’s body rails on both the front and rear of the vehicle.

Competitive Estimate or Competitive Bid – The act of requiring more than one bid for collision repair work. No law requires a consumer to obtain more than one estimate, especially if you obtain an estimate from an auto body shop that does not participate in that insurance company’s direct repair program. If you are paying out of pocket you may want to secure more than one collision repair estimate, just be sure you are comparing the same type of parts used and labor operations.

Direct Repair Shop – An agreement between an insurance company and collision repair facility in regards to repair parameters, parts used, and billing. Collision repair facilities with high-quality standards may not be on many DRP programs and will still offer a lifetime labor warranty.

Prep – This process will take place prior to painting and will include washing, degreasing and lightly sanding a panel.

Remove and Install (RI) – A part is removed, saved and then reinstalled. Many times an outside part has to be removed to make a proper repair.

Remove and Replace (RR) – A part is removed that cannot be acceptably repaired and is replaced.

Salvage Parts – Salvage parts are often from a total loss vehicle and very well may be OEM. A collision repair shop with a high-quality standard will inspect the salvage part and reject it if the condition is poor.

Supplement – Additional repairs needed to complete the collision repair that was not listed on the original estimate. It is often impossible to identify all damage until disassembly. Collision repair facilities must gain supplement approval from the insurance company before proceeding.

Three-Coat Color or Three-Stage Paint – A topcoat that consists of three parts-a base coat, a mid-coat and a clear coat. The vehicle identification number or VIN will identify whether a vehicle has a two or three stage paint finish. A three-stage finish is more expensive because of the additional material and labor.

Unibody – A type of vehicle body construction where the outer skin, roof, and floor are formed and assembled to produce one unit that creates structural strength.

Water-borne Paint – There are two types of paint in the auto body industry, solvent based or water-borne. Water-borne is environmentally friendly and excellent for color matching. Water-borne paint is more expensive and therefore used by mostly high end or quality minded collision repair facilities.
What do these Collision Repair Terms Mean 2
Airpark Collision Center has earned a reputation for quality since 2006. Our Scottsdale auto body repair facility has earned numerous manufacturer certifications since opening over a decade ago. Ensuring quality means we inspect each part, spray PPG’s Water-borne paint and produce a baked-on finish in our state of the art downdraft paint booth. Stop in or click for an online estimate!

Tina Small has been part of the Airpark Collision Center team since 2006. Working directly with customers, her goal is to share frequent customer questions, and proper methods of collision repair.