New 'Who Pays for What' Survey Results
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New ‘Who Pays for What’ Survey Results Show Wide Range in Certified Aluminum Labor Rates

Nearly 800 shops participated in the latest quarterly “Who Pays for What?” survey this past October, and 130 of those shops that are certified by one or more of the automakers to repair aluminum vehicles reported their hourly rates for aluminum repair.

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It would be easy to say that the national average labor rate for aluminum repair being charged by OEM-certified shops is about $92 per hour, but that wouldn’t quite tell the whole story, according to newly-released findings from the quarterly “Who Pays for What?” survey series conducted by CRASH Network and Collision Advice.

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Nearly 800 shops participated in the latest quarterly “Who Pays for What?” survey this past October, and 130 of those shops that are certified by one or more of the automakers to repair aluminum vehicles reported their hourly rates for aluminum repair. Surprisingly, those labor rates spread over more than a $100 range.

At the low-end of rates for structural aluminum repair, a small percentage of shops reported charging only a few dollars more per hour than their regular repair rates. Near the top, there are shops charging in excess of $145 an hour for certified structural aluminum repairs.

The complete survey findings, now available, show hourly labor rates for structural and non-structural repairs (broken down by percentiles) for shops certified by nine different OEM aluminum certification programs.

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The 75-page survey report also includes information on:

  • What shops estimated they spent on equipment, training and facility changes to meet OEM aluminum repair certification requirements.
  • Mark-up rates reported by shops for sublet work such as glass, towing, etc.
  • Payment frequencies among the eight largest insurers for 29 different shop supply estimate line items, such as seam-sealer, panel bonding adhesive and weld-through primer.

Also available at the website are survey findings and analysis of earlier “Who Pays for What?” quarterly surveys, which focused on “not-included” frame/mechanical operations and “not-included” refinish operations.

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Each of the reports also includes analysis and resources to help shops better understand and use the information presented.

“I’m hearing from shops every week who say participating in the surveys is helping them improve their estimating and repair planning,” said Mike Anderson of Collision Advice. “This aluminum repair labor rate information is particularly interesting to me. We will continue this series of surveys in 2016 with four more surveys to help shops understand what’s happening in the industry.”

Shops can visit the website to sign up to take the next survey, which will take place in February. Shops that participate in a survey receive that survey’s results at no charge.

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