When you get into an automobile accident, the damage doesn’t stop once your car is towed off to the shop. There’s a lot of headache considering the costs involved in getting your car repaired. The safest way in dealing with a collision on the road is to have your car inspected and repaired, so there’s usually no way around this next step.
Cost repair is relative to the extent of damage on your car, depending on whether it was a fender bender, or if your car was nearly totalled. All in all, a lot of components go into estimating the cost of a car repair. Here are the most important factors:
If your car is in a state in which it cannot be safely driven to a nearby collision repair shop, you will need to have it towed to a repair shop for an estimate. The average cost of a tow in the US is about $2–$4 a mile, however, this rate will vary depending on where you are and where the mechanic’s shop is.
If you are a member of a towing service such as AAA, they provide the option of a free tow up to a certain number of miles before they begin the charge, so check with your company’s policy.
Your car dealer determines the accessibility and ease of finding the right car parts for your vehicle. Parts for your high-end car makes are going to take longer for a replacement than your common, economical brands.
If your make and model falls into the former category, the mechanical costs can be much more than you were expecting, however, you are likely to get a better deal going through a mechanic than by sourcing the parts on your own. But whether the mechanic has to source the parts from their own workshop, from used parts, buy them brand new, or order them from an international manufacturer is going to influence the timeline of your car and the cost of repair.
Interior and exterior replacements may be made during the mechanical process with a properly trained staff member on hand to carry them out. All systems will need to be inspected to see if repairs are needed, and if the car is safe for you to drive again.
Another important element of determining the price of your car repair depends on how close to pre-accident you want your vehicle to look. Functional parts can be replaced for one flat cost, and some dents or body repairs can be amended to near new condition, but to restore it to a brand new look may require purchasing new parts as well as an entire new paint coat for the car to avoid any color inconsistencies.
It’s quite common for a car to be repainted after an accident, and anything to do with the outer look of the car aside from the mechanical parts falls under “body work”. Any scraping, or denting would fall under this category, so for body work you will need to take into account both the paint cost, potential replacement costs, and the further labor costs involved with renovating the aesthetics of your vehicle.
Since 2017, collision repair shops have been charging between $50–$100 per hour for their labor, and these prices are dependent on a variety of factors: location of the shop, the type of repair shop, the cost of their overhead, as well as labor skill levels are elements in determining the price of a repair labor cost.
In looking for the right local collision repair shop, get more than one estimate from a few mechanics to find the kind of price range, but also take into consideration the cost of towing your car to the right shop. The labor cost is going to vary from shop to shop, depending on where you are or where your local mechanic shops operate.