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Tag: auto insurance

When an accident happens, you’ll likely need a nearby auto body shop. Insurance companies often recommend a shop from their direct repair shop program. They choose the shops they trust to meet their own standards, within the customer’s local area.

Some collision centers offer more conveniences to be on the DRP list. As a result, this makes auto body repair easier for the customer.

what is a direct repair shop?

Recommended auto body shop

A direct repair shop meets specific criteria established by your insurance company. Your insurance agent will likely recommend a body shop nearby that is both convenient and trusted to do quality repairs.

Insurance companies routinely monitor direct repair shops to check for quality practices, so these shops are typically likely to have higher standards. This often means efficient, less expensive, and better customer service.

These shops will be a streamlined process for the customer who goes with their insurers recommendation, because those locations do not have to wait for communication back-and-forth with the agent.

Choosing a DRP

You can choose your insurer’s DRP recommendation or use a different one. The decision on where you want your car repaired is yours. However, the insurance agency might be more willing to pay for repairs through their preferred shop than one they don’t work with. It’s important to ask questions to both your insurance agent and prospective shops.

Important things to ask include whether the repairs have a lifetime warranty, whether your insurance will fully cover the repairs for one shop or another, and if the shop technicians are certified in auto body repair.

A direct repair shop in San Antonio

Woman in a blue polo shirt with a clipboard smiles at the camera. She is standing in a repair shop.
ProCare Collision is a preferred shop by most insurance companies, allowing us to serve you efficiently.

At ProCare Automotive & Collision, a San Antonio collision center, we are proud to be a direct repair shop that is preferred by many popular insurance companies. Our goal is to provide exceptional customer service and exceed expectations for auto body repair. We have the latest equipment to provide our team the tools necessary for quality repairs on any car. And we have technicians who are certified by a variety of auto makers.

We have multiple locations across the state. Our team will guide you through the process to make sure your experience is hassle-free!

For more information on choosing a repair shop, visit ProCare on Facebook.

A low angle shot of a car driving on a wet road covered with hail.
Hailstorms can easily damage your vehicle.

When a hailstorm hits, it can leave its mark on your vehicle. The damage left behind can be significant. In San Antonio, the April 12, 2016 hailstorm cost $1.4 billion in damage to homes and cars. If you’re looking to repair hail damage, there are a couple of options body shops can provide.

Types of hail damage repair

There are two options when it comes to fixing those dents. The first is regular body work. This is for more extensive damage that often requires filling the dent, fixing the paint, and may take days in the shop. This can also affect your resale value if you make a claim to get the repair done.

The other option is paintless dent removal (PDR). PDR requires getting to the back of the dent and massage the body back to its original position. This option is fairly quick and easy, and also is less likely to affect your car value. It is also cheaper, but isn’t always an option with some dents and damage.

Get an estimate

Before getting an estimate, know what your insurance policy covers for auto body repair and if it covers PDR. Find a collision center that offers free estimates.

A technician can tell you what it will take to remove your damage, and what type of repair they recommend.

What to choose

If the damage to your vehicle has not chipped or cracked the paint, then it may be possible to have PDR to remove the damage. Typically, PDR is the go-to fix for hail damage. This is beneficial because it maintains the original factory paint, saves time, and saves money. Additionally, this is a good way to avoid any negative CARFAX reports if you plan on selling the car soon.

With more serious damage, you may need to go with regular body repair. Any paint damage will require collision repair to not only remove the dents but perform paint work on the vehicle.

For more information on dent repair, follow ProCare on Facebook.

towing to local auto body shop
Figure out your options and coverage when it comes to towing.

When you get in an accident, it feels like everything is happening at once. Law enforcement is asking what happened, you have questions from the other driver, and your insurance company needs details. Additionally, you have to determine if you need towing services.

You have towing options

A tow truck may arrive to the accident scene as a request from law enforcement. Or, a truck could show up unsolicited after hearing about the accident on scanner traffic. Just like choosing body shop locations that you want to use, you have the right to select the towing company. Whether or not there is a tow truck on site, you can choose whichever service best fits your needs.

Know Your Insurance Policy

Know what your insurance policy covers when you sign up. Go back and review your policy from time to time to remember what is covered, including roadside assistance coverage. If you have that, your insurance company will cover the cost of the tow, but the coverage may likely have a maximum number of miles it can be towed. If you do not have coverage for towing, this will be an expense you need to pay out of pocket.

Also, keep in mind if your insurance company does not cover towing, you may have benefits from other places, including AAA, that may keep you from paying for that tow. Some credit card companies also offer roadside assistance.

Understand the Costs

Be specific when asking questions from the tow truck driver about all fees involved with the towing process, including where it will be towed and if there are storage fees associated. Do not allow the company to tow your vehicle without a clear understanding of the cost and if possible, request a printed invoice with the detailed pricing with the towing fee, storage fees, and any other charges. The printed invoice will be necessary to provide to your insurance company for reimbursement, if you have roadside assistance.

If you need assistance getting your car towed and you want to rest assured it will be towed to a secure location, give ProCare Automotive & Collision a call. We will schedule the tow and help you through the repair process so you can get back on the road.

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Mechanic repairs a red bonnet.

Your car has auto body damage, but you can drive it away from the scene of the accident. If you are not concerned about the looks of your car, you may ask, “If my car still runs, why should I fix the damage?”

There are several reasons why auto body repair is necessary, no matter if the vehicle has minor or more significant damage. If repairs are not made, there are some circumstances where it could cost you to keep the damage on the vehicle.

Damage Causing Other Damage

The cosmetic damage to a vehicle may appear minor, but it takes a highly skilled auto technician to know if there could be more damage than meets the eye. A damaged fender could cause strain to a wheel, tire, or parts under the hood. At minimum, it is best to get dents repaired to avoid further and costly damage to your car.

Necessary Functions No Longer Work

If certain features do not work on your car, such as lights or opening your hood, it might lead to a ticket. All lights, such as headlights, taillights, and turn signals must be functioning for safety if you plan to drive at night.

State Inspection

In Texas, there is a checklist used when inspecting a vehicle. If any items are damaged, such as lights or a mirror, the car will not pass inspection until the damage is fixed. Waiting to get repairs to pass an inspection could delay getting a renewed registration, in which case, you could get a ticket for an expired registration. That’s money that could be spent on the auto body repair.

Insurance

If you file an insurance claim, receive money, and then don’t repair the car, it could cost you if you have another accident. An insurance company can deduct pre-existing damage from a future settlement. It is recommended that if you receive money for a claim, to use that money on auto body repairs. To keep the money could amount to insurance fraud.

Resale Value

Depending on the extent of the damage, it could affect your vehicle’s resale value. In some cases, the cost to fix the vehicle can be less than the amount your car might depreciate if it has noticeable damage.

When it comes time to repair auto body damage on your car, contact the experts at ProCare Collision, an auto body repair shop in San Antonio. Our highly skilled technicians are trained to work on any make and model of vehicle and repair it to the maker’s specifications. We can get your car fixed so you avoid further damage and costs.

Two dash cameras are suspended from the windshield, recording the scene in front of the car.
Dash cams are becoming increasingly popular.

Examining the Dash Cam Trend

Dashboard cameras – a type of technology that, in the past, were mainly associated with officers of the law – are rising in popularity among drivers in the US. Both the reasons drivers use dash cams and the legal issues surrounding them are complex.

An Objective Eyewitness

Perhaps the most obvious motivation behind the on-board cameras – or “dash cams” – is the hope that the captured footage may help in case of an accident or ticket. Many people opting for dash cams are professional drivers whose livelihoods depend on maintaining a good driving record. Many use it as a witness in case of an accident, where the video provides time-stamped proof of the driver’s actions.

In one example, a driver who was pulled over for using his cell phone while driving was found to be innocent when the footage from his two-way dash cam revealed that he was merely scratching his ear, not violating the law. Dash cam footage might also help assign fault in insurance claims, helping victims avoid both undeserved rate increases and deductible expenses when they take their car to their body shop.

The cameras can provide a more objective account of an incident than humans might be able to provide. Regardless of good intentions, high-stress events like car accidents can result in less-than-perfect recall from the people involved.

Could Cameras Create Better Drivers?

Some dash cam proponents suggest that on-board cameras could be used to create better drivers. For example, parents of new teen drivers could use dash cam footage to monitor their young drivers and provide feedback. It might be helpful for a teen driver to watch how they are displaying reckless habits before they lead to an accident or ticket.

What’s more, some dash cam users feel that having the devices in their car has made them into more responsible and mindful drivers. The very awareness that you are being recorded might curb reckless driving habits. And in reviewing footage, drivers have the opportunity to spot bad driving habits they weren’t aware they were guilty of. The practice of reviewing the video from on-board cameras might be beneficial for both new drivers and veterans behind the wheel, though studies to confirm this idea are still needed.

What Does the Law Say?

Generally speaking, dash cam use is considered legal and the footage the units provide can usually be used as evidence in a court of law. But, different states have different rules about the devices’ footage and their physical placement in the vehicle. Texas allows dashboard cams with some restrictions.

Regulations about where and how the cameras can be mounted might vary, as can a state’s restrictions on recording people (like passengers in the vehicle) without consent. If dash cams continue to grow in popularity, the rules regulating their use will likely become more established.

The next time you are dealing with car damage, regardless if you captured the incident with an on-board cam, call the expert team at ProCare Collision, a San Antonio paint and body shop.

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