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Estimates: Waste of Time or Path to Profit?

Estimates are as much a part of the collision repair industry as golf balls are to a golf tournament – there’s simply no way to do without them. There’s at least one estimate for every job that comes through the shop, and it provides technic...

My Car Is Back!

Guess what? My car’s back, good as new! Well, some people might dispute that, stating that body shops can never actually return a vehicle to pre-accident condition because they can’t duplicate certain factory procedures. But…my Honda Civic look...

It Only Takes a Moment to Destroy Your Reputation

You’ve worked hard to earn your business’ good name and the reputation you’ve built in your community. Word of mouth is one of your greatest referral sources. Whether you’ve been in business for months, years or decades, y...

Selling Customer Pay

Direct “customer pay” collision repair is the only segment of the collision repair market that has shown growth for the past several years. Depending on the source of the data, customer pay now represents 20 to 25 percent of the total...

Collision Repair Data Mining: Is It a Threat to Your Business?

Data mining is a hot topic these days. More and more collision repairers are worrying that their data is being sold to outside entities without their consent, and is being used against them to determine market-controlling statistics that they feel ar...

Do Shops Have a Legal Obligation to Check Related Systems for Damage?

In a front-end accident where there is front bumper and frame damage visible, are body shops required to check the radiator for leaks with a pressure test? If they didn't, what problems can occur afterward? Are body shops required to have certified m...

How Do I Handle a Customer Who Wants Prior Damage Written into an Insurance Claim Estimate?

What is the best way to handle a customer who wants you to write prior damage on an estimate for an insurance claim? Asked by Denise Stone, Whitefish, Mt. A body shop operator can write an estimate for any repairs requested by a consumer, be th...

Clearing Computer Codes: Should Insurers Have to Pay for It?

I'm the body shop manager for a Mercedes-Benz and Porsche dealership. I've been getting a lot of resistance from a couple of insurance companies over the issue of resetting electrical components, i.e. clearing computer codes set either by the acciden...

BSB Undercover: The Estimate Roundup

Shop No. 1 We had driven by this shop several times on the way to Subway for lunch and always wondered what it was like. Only a few miles from the office, it seemed the perfect first stop to take our front-end damaged 2007 Nissan Sentra. The fi...

How to Take Expert Photos of Collision Damage

"/>Technological advancements change the way we work on cars constantly. Today, almost all insurance companies require some sort of photography from the shop’s estimator or their own adjuster to document the damage that will be covered by the d...

Diary of a Bad Collision Repair Part II

It has been almost a year since I wrote “Diary of a Bad Repair” in the November 2010 issue of BodyShop Business, and it’s still business as usual as for some of the body shops in my area as far as cranking out unsafe hack jobs....

The Sad Truth About Collision Repair Labor Rates

When it comes to labor rates, there shouldn’t be a debate. Every collision repair facility, or any other type of business for that matter, has its own individual cost structure. Like other businesses, we all have varying overhead costs, number...

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