How Much Should Auto Body Repair Cost?
It’s a very bad feeling when your car is damaged. Whether it’s a frightening collision, a fender bender or a windshield ding, it can make you a little queasy to see your ride less beautiful. And then there’s the oh-my-God moment of panic when you think, “How much is this going to cost?” Body repair can be expensive. Sometimes it can be surprisingly cheap. Sometimes it makes sense to file an insurance claim, while other times you may come out ahead by paying out of pocket to keep your monthly insurance payments down. While you’re biting your nails waiting for an estimate, here’s an overview of the types of damage you may have, and what to expect for an auto body repair cost.
Windshield damage comes in two varieties: very inexpensive and moderately expensive. Small windshield cracks and chips may cost as little as $50. More widespread damage requires windshield replacement, which averages $150 – $200 for most common vehicle models, but the price can go up to several hundred dollars for rare and expensive models.
Only small, minor windshield damage can be repaired, while anything else has to be replaced. Here’s a breakdown of the types that can be repaired, as long as the damage isn’t in the driver’s direct line of sight:
- Small diameter chips, dings and pits
- Bulls eyes
- Star cracks
- Rock chips an inch in diameter or less
- Cracks up to 12″ long
Anything worse than these types of damage—or even small damage near the edge of the glass, and you may need a replacement windshield. But when windshield repair is an option, it’s the way to go.
Alloy wheel damage cost
Alloy wheels add style and distinction to your vehicle’s appearance. They look beautiful until you brush up against a curb; then they really show the damage. But are alloy wheels worth repairing? Yes. An average allow wheel cost is $50 to $150, so it’s well worth it, compared to the average price tag for a wheel replacement.
There are different ways to go about wheel repair, including do-it-yourself options. It’s usually best to steer clear of do-it-yourself wheel repair kits. They are nothing like the equipment and techniques used by professionals. If you want it to look new again, it’s worth the extra money to take it to an alloy wheel repair shop. The craft of wheel repair requires training and practice, and a good technician also understands paints, coatings and finish textures—essential skills for a like-new result. A good alloy wheel repair shop uses precision tools and quality control systems that can’t be matched with a DIY kit.
Not all shops are created equal, for that matter, in terms of both equipment and expertise. Check reviews for alloy wheel repair shops in Wichita before you commit to a shop. Visit a couple and see how their equipment compares. Ask to look at some of their current work. Can they answer all your questions? Do they seem customer-service driven? If they’re not friendly and responsive now, there is no reason to expect that they will be if you have a problem with the work later.
Bumper and panel damage
If your auto body damage is limited to a bumper or single panel, you may get off pretty light. Average cost is $250, not a drop in the bucket, but still in a cost range that may justify paying out of pocket when compared to a monthly insurance premium increase.
Minor dings and dents
The key word here is “minor,” which means your damage includes no creased metal or significant paint damage. In these cases, paintless dent repair and paint touch-ups offer excellent low-cost options.