Frequently Asked Questions About Hail Damage

Warm weather tornadoes, floods and hail storms are running their way across the nation, leaving totaled, drenched, dinged up and damaged cars in their wake.

The professionals at Car Craft Oakville are ready to help.  During spring storms, they see thousands of vehicles harmed by falling trees, debris, wind, water, and hail. They provide the following advice to help motorists deal with spring storms – both before and after.

Will You Be Covered?

If you are waiting until the sky is falling to take a look at your insurance policy, you’ve made a big mistake. When you take a look at your policy, you are going to want to figure out what’s covered, how much the deductibles will be, if you’ve got rental coverage, and what you need to do whenever the storm hits.

Complete coverage shields against most damage from disasters.  Two other available choices to consider are gap coverage – which pays the difference between what you owe on your loan and what the car is really worth -- and rental compensation.

One warning – if you submitted a previous damage claim and got a check from your insurance provider, but didn’t have the car fixed – the insurance company will subtract this amount from your estimate for the weather damage, and demand a second deductible, too.

Are You Protected?

When you know that a storm is on the way, get your vehicle to higher ground or under cover.  For hail storms, cover your vehicle in an old blanket and a car cover from your local automotive retailer – prior to when the storm hits.  This will give you some shelter for your hood, roof, and rear decklid. If a storm shows up quickly, try to find an awning at a gas station, the drive-through at a bank or self serve car wash to get under for fast protection. On the interstate, seek out cover under a bridge or viaduct.

Should you fall victim to a hail storm, take a look at these common questions about dealing with hail damage:

collision repair st louis missouri oakville mo auto body repair center1.   Just how much Time Should I allow for a Hail Estimate?

A typical hail estimate necessitates 30-45 minutes. At this time, the estimator follows a planned out format of distinguishing seriousness and quantity of dents on all panels. On top of that, the estimator interacts with you to answer all questions you have about the repair and obtains all accurate vehicle information.

2.    How do I schedule my vehicle for repair?

During the time of your estimate, you're going to be asked when you'd like to schedule your automobile for repairs. During an average hail storm, countless vehicles sustain damages, thus, it may be a couple weeks before your scheduled visit. Car Craft Oakville of Oakville, Missouri will work with you to determine the right repair time following your estimate.

3.   What goes on throughout the estimation process?

In the estimate process, your estimator will greet you and then will drive the car into the estimating bay. Then, they evaluate the car, taking record of the scope of the hail damage as well as the seriousness and volume of dents. The estimate is then finalized and examined with you, and you'll be given a printed copy of the quote.

4.   What does pre-loss condition imply?

During the hail estimate process, any non-hail damage will be noted. The condition of the automobile, including this damage, is regarded as the pre-loss condition of the automobile. Any damage that is not hail-related will not be covered on the repair.

During the estimate, pictures will be taken of the vehicle and all of these conditions will be recognized in the estimate.

5.   What exactly is a supplement?

Supplements are further operations or parts necessary to finish the repair of the car that go above the original estimate. In some instances, the original estimate is insufficient to carry out the repairs. When a car is dropped off for repairs, another inspection is done to determine if all the damage was documented for repair. If all the damage was found and written on the original quote, no supplement is needed. However, if some damage was overlooked on the original estimate a “supplement” is needed to document the necessary operations or parts needed to properly repair the vehicle.

If a supplement is needed, it may extend the time period needed to repair your car. The supplement will be explained to you and an altered pick up date will be provided.

6.   Why is a clean car important?

A clean automobile allows the estimator to see clearly the damage. Dust and dirt can often mask damage, causing erroneous estimates and delays in the repair process.

7.   What is Paintless Dent Repair (PDR)?

Paintless Dent Repair is a specialized and meticulous process for returning dents to their initial shape without having to paint any part of the vehicle

The main procedure for PDR necessitates the technician to push and massage every dent in a very technical and specific manner. For this, each dent is worked back to its original shape with different metal rods varying in shape and size. The dents and dings are worked from the underside of the metal using access points on every panel. It is a very specialized and precise process that requires the finished metal to appear as if it came from the original factory.

8. What is standard auto body repair?

Traditional auto body repair usually means getting all new paneling on the car and that means getting it painted to match the factory finish. Actually, in some instances the damage from the hailstorm can be so bad that conventional auto body tactics are required to fix certain panels. Some panels can’t be repaired with paintless dent repair because there are large dents or a large number of dents.

9. What’s R and I?

R and I is an acronym that is short for Remove and Install. When a car starts the repair procedure, an R and I technician loosens, and often removes, the interior panels and parts to allow access to the lower side of the metal panel. When the PDR repairs get finalized, this technician replaces the parts and re-installs the interior panels (like the headliner and hood liner). Car Craft Oakville features a quality-control process to make sure that all the parts are replaced properly so that your car is returned to you in the same condition that we got it, without the dents, of course.

While the car is in the shop, it’s the perfect time to have other dents and dings serviced.  It's going to be more cost effective and your car or truck will ultimately benefit.

For even more tips on coping with an accident or having your car fixed following a crash, visit Car Craft Oakville, which serves the people of Mehlville, Arnold, Lemay, and Oakville, MO.