3 FAQs About Collision Repair Estimate

4 October 2022
 Categories: , Blog


Collision repair estimates let your auto body repair technicians assess the damage to your vehicle and give the expected collision repair cost. The process involves many steps and raises a few questions. This article answers three such questions.

1. What Does a Collision Repair Estimate Include?

Some of the variables that an auto body repair shop considers in an estimate include:

  • Part costs. You'll choose between aftermarket and OEM parts based on your preference and your insurance provider. OEM parts usually cost more and may be difficult to access in some situations.

  • Labor costs. Labor charges depend on a flat or hourly rate based on the auto body repair shop's policy. Your auto body repair shop includes the auto body and mechanical repair needed to restore your vehicle on the estimate.

  • Incidental expenses. Some other costs arise if your auto body shop needs to dispose of damaged car parts. Also, the government may impose costs that your auto body shop may have to cover, which will be part of the estimate.

  • Hidden costs. Your technician may not notice some damage to internal components immediately. After keen diagnostics, you get an estimate, but the final price may vary. This is because your auto body repair technician might discover hidden damages after undertaking the repairs.

2. Should You Get a Written Estimate?

Some states require auto body repair shops to give you a written estimate before the collision repair commences. However, even if your state doesn't mandate auto body shops to provide an estimate, you can request one, and they'll provide one. A written estimate is a contract between you and the collision repair shop and comes in handy when discrepancies arise.

A written estimate is also crucial when you claim compensation from the insurance provider. Most insurers ask for written estimates before the collision repair kicks off. Also, the written estimate provides evidence of the collision repair cost if the other driver was at fault.

3. Why Do Shops Give Different Estimates for Collision Repairs?

You may realize that auto body repair shops offer different estimates for the same problem when you shop around. The variance usually arises from the difference in a few factors that include:

  • Location. The rent prices, taxes, and overhead costs for auto body repair shops vary based on location. For example, such costs are higher in auto body shops in the middle of town than in shops away from urban places.

  • Labor and experience. Experienced auto body repair shops with an established reputation and loyal customers can charge more because the clients are many. Conversely, less experienced shops may charge lower prices to attract customers.

  • Material and parts. Auto body repair shops use different tools and materials like screws, paints, and plastics. Besides, the hardware and software in the computer systems needed for collision repair also vary.


The three answers above guide you to know what to expect during an auto body repair estimate. Once you have estimates from different auto body repair shops, you can decide better where to take your vehicle for auto body collision repair. 

For more information, contact a local auto body shop