Choosing a vehicle repair company is no easy task, and it can be difficult sifting through all the available options to select the shop that will get your car or truck roadworthy in a reasonable time and at an affordable price. Here are two questions you can ask to help make your decision a little easier and ensure you're getting the best service possible.
Why Type of Parts Do You Use?
There are two kinds of parts a repair shop can use to fix the damaged areas on your vehicle: OEM and aftermarket. OEM—original equipment manufacturer— are parts manufactured by the company that made your vehicle. These are sometimes preferable because they are crafted to exactly match the specifications of your car, so they're almost guaranteed to work.
Aftermarket parts are items made by third parties based on the original manufacturer's designs. You can think of them as the store brand version of OEM parts. They are less expensive than OEM parts because they are typically made to fit multiple makes and models; thus, making money on the volume sold.
Both types of parts will usually work fine, though, so the best option will typically come down to personal preference and budget. OEM parts are more expensive, but it using them may ensure your vehicle retains as much resale value as possible. As noted previously, aftermarket parts are less expensive, but they aren't always a perfect fit and may need some adjusting to work with your vehicle.
Your insurance company may also have a preference, since the company is likely the one footing the bill for the repairs, so it's best to consult with your insurance adjuster about what to choose when presented an option.
What Happens When Additional Damage Is Found?
Auto repair shops will typically provide you with an estimate of how much it will cost to repair the damage. Sometimes, though, they will find additional damage once they take the vehicle apart to fix it. It's important to ask how the shop will handle this situation once it arises; specifically, whether they will contact the insurance company with an updated estimate or leave that task up to you.
Again, this may come down to personal preference. Having the shop deal with the insurance company means one less headache for you. On the other hand, having the ultimate decision may provide you with more options. For instance, you could request a second opinion from a different shop before going ahead with the repairs.
Take your time when choosing a repair company to fix your car. You will be driving your vehicle for a long time. Thus, you want to make sure you're working with a reputable company that will treat you right. For help with your vehicle, contact a local auto collision repair shop.
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