Each year we promise to take better care of ourselves, health, finances and family. We should also make a serious commitment to taking better care of our vehicles. If you’ve been impacted by an auto collision, whether a dent, ding, scratch or a major accident, knowing what to look for in choosing an Ithaca body shop can make an incredible difference in the quality of the repairs, your experience and your wallet.
You want your vehicle to be fixed correctly the first time and to allow you to get your life back in order quicker.
Choosing the best collision repair in Ithaca for your vehicle can feel like an overwhelming process. With the stress and anxiety caused by the accident itself, you need a repair shop that will ease that stress for you.
Top 5 Things to Look for When Choosing an Ithaca Body Shop
Pay Attention to Word-of-Mouth
Businesses advertise all the time and it doesn’t really tell you how good they are. Advertising is simply a way to bring attention to their shop in order to get customers. You’ll do better with an Ithaca body shop that friends, family or acquaintances recommend. That shows it is a business that has proven it can satisfy customers.
Consider the Operation’s Location and Overhead
Here in the Ithaca area, you should expect to see labor rate charges fairly consistent, though look closely at those which charge significantly higher or lower than the competition. Lower rates may not be the best deal.
Shop prices for labor rates often depend on their location (how convenient) and their shop overhead, which includes size of their facility and how large their front end staff numbers are.
Get Several Estimates
As with anything you do, compare prices and obtain several estimates on the collision repairs. Go over the estimates in detail to determine why the differences. A lower estimate may not be your best choice.
The lower estimates may look good on paper, but they could certainly be doing something not quite up to par, or leaving things out. Collision repair in Ithaca needs to be done right the first time in order that you don’t end up regretting it down the road.
Ask the Right Questions
Choosing the Ithaca body shop that will do the best work requires that you go in with questions and expect firm answers. One of the major questions you should be asking is: Does the shop provide a written warranty? And if so, for how long? What does the warranty cover? A reputable shop will guarantee their work.
Another key question is whether the shop carries fire and theft insurance. You want to be sure you’re covered if your car is destroyed, stolen or burglarized. Don’t forget to ask how long the shop has been in business. Make sure it has a business license.
You will also want to know about the materials the shop intends to use. Are new, used or aftermarket body parts going to be used? New parts are obviously the best and used parts are fine, though they don’t offer the savings people imagine. Depending on the damage to your vehicle, aftermarket parts can save a lot of money and can be just as good as the ones that come from the original manufacturer. If paint work is involved, ask how many coats of paint and clear coat the shop intends to use.
Follow Your Gut Instinct
Life requires us to make decisions and going with your internal feeling is often the best policy. You need to pay attention to what you feel about a repair shop and the staff there. If a shop isn’t busy, maybe that’s because customers are avoiding it because of shoddy repairs. If the place is really dirty, cluttered or disorganized, this might reflect the kind of work you could expect the shop to do with your car. Is the shop owner or manager a short or evasive in answering questions? Stay away… You’ll be happier with a shop where the owner communicates well and is straightforward with customers.
An Ithaca body shop needs to be bringing its best foot forward and providing a solid reputation in the community and among its customers. Check out their reputation by asking around, remember to obtain several estimates and follow your gut when choosing collision repair in Ithaca.
Wink’s Body Shop brings you quality repairs, experienced and iCar certified technicians, and repairs done right the first time. Call or stop by for your free estimate.