How do I find a body shop I can trust??
We meet people everyday who have never had the need to visit a body shop before and are finding the prospect of knowing which body shop they can trust to carry out the work they need very daunting. We see vehicle damage everyday but to them it is something totally new. They have no idea what is needed to repair their car....and why would they have any idea, they don't need to have any idea, they just need to know a body shop that they can trust to help them and not take advantage. Unfortunately the task of finding that body shop is also totally new to them so where should they start?? Here are my thoughts on the matter that may help you chose which body shop is right for you.
Word of mouth
Personal recommendation is always a great starting point to finding a garage or body shop you can trust and so its always a good idea to ask people you know and trust who they would take their car too. Ask them about their experience with wherever they have been to last, how many times they have been their, if they have pointed anyone else in the direction of the same body shop and if they have maybe you can ask them too as the more opinions you can gather the better. Nothing beats first hand experience recommendations and you might even be able to see the repair if they still have the same car.
Another excellent place to look is on a body shop's website or better still their Facebook page for customer reviews and star ratings. Their own website may have some good reviews to read through however their Facebook page will be better as they can't change the reviews on there whereas they will be able to edit their own website.
Meet the team
Once you have a few body shops you are trying to decide between it is always a good idea to call in and meet the people who will be carrying out the work on your car. You can then as them first hand what grade/brand of products and paint they use, ask them about paintwork warranty time, what the process is if something goes wrong and how would they put it right? Even the greatest place in the world will have problems at some point so you need to know it will be put right no questions asked. Of course it is always good to meet them simply to see if you get on with them as you will want a long lasting relationship, you don't want to need to go through this whole selection process every time you need a body shop.
Once you ave found a few body shops that you have met with the next step it to get a quote and see what they would charge for the repair. This is where things tend to get difficult as price can vary hugely from one body shop to the next and yet the work carried out could be exactly the same....but on the other hand it could be very different! This is why it is important to have looked at all the above points before looking at the price. Some places will charge less but use low grade materials, some will charge more and still use low grade materials, others may charge a lot more and use the best paint and materials but are charging far more than needed for the work. At the end of the day when looking at the lower end quotes you will definitely get what you pay for, a sub standard cheap repair that probably wont last very long and you will end up having to pay again to have it rectified. However on the other end of the scale there will be over priced quotes that give you a great repair that will last but you will have paid far more than you need. The difficult part of reviewing the quote is working out a balance between what you want to pay an the quality of work you are looking for. I will be writing a blog to help with this process next!
Our top tips!
A few top tips for you to bear in mind when booking your car in:
The cheapest quote will more than likely be a sub standard repair but that doesn't mean the most expensive is the best.
When booking your car in if they can repair is straight away there will probably be a reason they are not busy. Any repair shop that does a good job will be in demand so you will need to book your car in for a future date.
Ask how long they guarantee paintwork. If the warranty period is short such as 12 months then don't expect a long lasting repair.
If you have any questions or need any help at all we are always here to help!