The Battle over Repair Procedures

The Battle for Your Safety – Part 4

This post is the 4th of a 5-part series. Please click here if you have not yet read Part 3.

Vehicles today could be considered computers on wheels, and these computers must be a part of the repair process. We must be able to connect our computers to your car’s computers and let them talk to each other for us to get a true understanding of the condition upon arrival. What conditions might exist that are not accident related? Which conditions do we see and know must be addressed in the repair process? This is like a health check-up to see the condition of the patient before you can tell if there is anything to be treated. Then at the end of the repair, we must be assured that all of these safety features have been properly restored and confirmed to be in working order again.

Sometimes insurance companies don’t want to pay for these operations. We think it is important for you to know that you and your family are safe and that your vehicle has received the best care and treatment, even if your insurance company does not want to pay for it. And there are many other examples of insurance companies denying coverage for a procedure required by the factory repair manual. Insurers often say a procedure does not apply in your case because of how they choose to interpret the wording. At Artistic Auto Body, we try to interpret the intent of the manuals using common sense, and we will always err on the side of safety.

Here is an example of how complicated repair procedures have become. Years ago, most quarter panels were welded on the same way, and the only repair procedures were the ones found in our industry training classes. Today, not only does every manufacturer weld or rivet or bond a quarter panel differently, the same brand can use a different process from model to model!

We must look up repair procedures for every repair to know how to write the estimate, and then we must follow those factory repair manuals step by step. We do our absolute best to follow every step in the specific repair manual for your vehicle, and we don’t put anything on our estimates that we can’t support in those repair manuals.

Insurance companies frequently don’t pay us for the hours it takes to do this research or for the thousands of dollars we spend every year making sure we have access to each of these specific repair manuals. And we never get paid for the hundreds of thousands of dollars we have spent getting factory certified. That combined cost is in the millions, which is why there are so few certified shops to choose from.

Again, we ask for your help in advocating for yourself with the insurance company. It’s quite possible the insurance company will tell you that other body shops don’t charge for the procedures that have been denied. Most likely that is because other shops don’t take every step required by the manufacturer. Each step of our repair process is intentional and important for thorough, proper repairs. We refuse to compromise on quality or safety, even when the insurance company denies our procedures. If the insurance company cannot be persuaded to pay for every procedure required for your repair, we thank you in advance for choosing to trust Artistic Auto Body to restore your vehicle despite a higher cost to yourself.

Please click here to read the final post of this 5-part series.

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