Hail damage can be devastating for your vehicle. But the good news is, it’s usually repairable. A qualified auto body shop will use Paintless Dent Removal (PDR) to remove minor hail damage. PDR is a fast and affordable option that doesn’t require repainting your car. This type of repair is typically completed in a few days.
If You Have Insurance
Many car owners need to pay more attention to hail damage. They assume it’s only cosmetic and won’t impact their vehicle’s value when they trade or sell it. They don’t realize that even light hail damage can significantly decrease a car’s value. The good news is that if you have comprehensive insurance, your policy will cover repairs to any hail-damaged vehicle. However, you should talk to your insurance agent about filing a claim soon after a hailstorm hits your area. Once you file a claim, your insurance company will send an adjuster to evaluate the damage and decide whether to repair it or total the vehicle. Depending on the damage, it may take several weeks to get the repairs done.
If You’re Buying a New Car
Hail damage isn’t a pleasant prospect for car owners, and getting it repaired can be a major headache. There are several things you can do to assist the process go a little bit more smoothly, though. Generally, experts in hail damage repair Lakewood CO, mentioned that it’s best to move your vehicle into a garage or under a carport before a hailstorm hits. That way, you can avoid the worst of the damage. But if that’s impossible, carefully check your vehicle for hail damage after the storm. And that means looking not just for dents but also scratches and other cosmetic issues.
If You’re Buying a Used Car
You should remember several things when buying a used car damaged by hail. The first is that some of the damage may be hidden. Many small dents created by a light hail storm are hard to see except in direct sunlight, which can significantly lower your car’s value. Another problem is that if the owner tried to save money by not making an insurance claim and had the damage fixed, they might be using aftermarket parts rather than the original OEM ones. These parts don’t always have the same crash testing and fittings as the original OEM body panels and could be dangerous in a collision.
Some owners will even try to remove the hail damage with long-handled, thin metal pushing tools that you can buy in hardware stores and auto body shops. This is a risky and time-consuming process that requires a lot of patience. It’s also not guaranteed to be effective and can even leave the vehicle with permanent paint and body damage.
If You’re Buying a Pre-Owned Car
If you want to save money and get a good deal, buying a car with hail damage may seem like the way to go. But in most cases, it’s not worth it. Hail damage is not only unsightly, but it can also reduce a vehicle’s value significantly. Even small dents can crack the paint and cause corrosion underneath. Minor dents are usually fixed with paintless dent repair or PDR. But extensive damage or dents near a body line or crease will likely need a full repaint and body shop repair. Ultimately, buying a pre-owned car repaired after a hail storm is always best. Many companies specialize in this and travel nationwide to buy, inspect and fix these cars. They can provide you with a thorough report on the repairs’ costs and assist you in deciding whether or not to proceed with the purchase.