Mike Anderson’s “Who Pays for What?” survey finds that many body shops aren’t charging to pressure-test and purge cooling systems, even though insurers are willing to pay for it.
About 51 percent of shops say they’re paid “always” or “most of the time” to pressure-test and purge a vehicle cooling system when necessary as part of a repair. Yet more than 40 percent of shops acknowledge never having billed for the not-included procedure.
That’s among the findings of this summer’s “Who Pays for What?” survey. The latest survey, which covers aluminum repair rates and shop supplies, is open and runs through Oct. 31.
Mike Anderson of Collision Advice, creator of the surveys, said it’s become increasingly important to check the OEM repair procedures in relation to testing and purging cooling systems.
“Many automakers now are using electronic check-valves on their cooling systems,” Anderson said. “You can’t just manually bleed those cooling systems any more. You need to use a scan tool to initialize an electronic check-valve. So the labor time for this may vary based on whether this procedure can be done manually versus requiring a scan tool.”
In addition to the cooling-system operation, the July survey asked shops about their billing practices – and insurers’ payment practices – regarding about two dozen frame- and mechanical-related operations.
The current survey focuses on aluminum repair and shop supplies. Shops can take the survey before the end of October by clicking here.
Survey participants receive a report with complete survey findings at no charge, broken down by region, insurer and DRP vs. non-DRP. The report also includes analysis and resources to help shops better understand and use the information presented.
“More than 89 percent of those taking the survey this summer said participating in ‘Who Pays for What?’ is helping them improve their business, which is great to hear,” Anderson said. “We’re working to add even more information and resources in the report to try to get that even closer to 100 percent.”
Anderson said the survey, which will take about 15 to 30 minutes, should be completed by the shop owner, manager or estimator who is most familiar with the shop’s billing practices and the payment practices of the largest national insurers. Each shop’s individual responses are held in the strictest confidence; only aggregated data is released.
CRASH Network and Collision Advice conduct the surveys. The results of previous surveys are available here.