If you've never had body work done on your car before, it can be difficult to know what to expect, especially in regards to time. Generally, the cost and time to repair will depend on the extent of the damage. Body shops have a specific set of procedures to inspect and repair a vehicle, though this process varies depending on how much and where the vehicle is damaged. Here are some of the things you should expect, in terms of time, when you take your car in for collision repairs in order of their severity.

Light Damage

The term "light damage" refers to the door dings and scratches that all cars eventually get. In many cases, repairing light damage is quick and often requires no paint. Most of these jobs either involve pushing up the ding and touching up and polishing the scratched area. A few door dings should not take much time to repair and you may be in and out in less than a day depending on how busy the shop is. Paint touch ups may take longer or require future visits.

Moderate Damage

Moderate damage includes things like large dents or holes and tears in the bumpers, but not extensive damage to other auto parts. In some cases, these parts may need replacement and complete repainting. This process takes time depending on how easy it is to get parts and paint for your car. For newer cars, with easily available parts, the car could be in the shop for at least a few days to a week.

Severe Damage

Severe damage is when multiple components of the vehicle are damaged and need repainting and replacing. This type of repair may include straightening out the frame as well as repairing electrical and interior parts. How long this takes depends on the availability of the parts as well how many parts need replacement or repair. For this type of damage, it is possible for the body shop to find more hidden problems during the repair process. Expect your car to be in the shop at least a few weeks or even months in these cases.

Body shops do a visual check when you first arrive at the shop and their initial time and cost estimate is often based on this assessment. However, before work is begun, the technicians will tear down the damaged area to check for other damage, so your estimate may be extended during the repair process. Before you take your car in for collision repair, talk to the body shop about time estimates as well as the best time to bring your car in for repairs.

For more help, contact a company like Collisions Plus Performance today.