While paintless dent repair has always been popular with dealers and auctions, many consumers still go to the body shop when they get a large dent. But paintless dent repair is much more budget friendly and often times a lot faster than traditional body work, because we use a completely different process. Instead of the sanding, spraying and welding used in traditional body work, we use tools of various shapes and sizes to reshape the dent from the inside out.
This is why experience is the most important factor in choosing the shop and technician to perform your paintless dent repair. This type of dent repair is much more of an art than a science. Different makes, models and years of cars are made of different body materials in a range of thickness and strength. All those things and the location of the dent on the car factor into which tools you would use as well as angle, force and placement of the tools.
Even if the dent appears to be repaired properly, an unqualified or inexperienced technician can damage the inside of the body. If some of the undercoating or body deadener that is sprayed on the inside is scraped off, it will cause the cause the car to eventually rust from the inside out. An experienced technician knows where these materials are and whether or not they are removing them. If the undercoating is removed or scraped, it needs to be replaced to prevent further damage.
But don’t spend too much time shopping around for the right technician, paintless dent repair should be done as soon as possible after the damage occurs. Metal and plastic both have “memory” which makes them want to go back to the original shape. Anyone who has squeezed an empty soda can has tested this theory. The longer the dent remains in the materials, the more difficult it is for the technician to manipulate the material into its original shape.
Paintless dent repair does have some limitations. If the paint is chipped, cracked, scraped, or broken in any way, paintless dent repair isn’t really an option since our process only reshapes the panel. Dents in the hood or trunk lid will be much trickier because of the flatness of those surfaces and the high visibility. And really any dent that is longer than a foot is probably just to big to be eligible for paintless dent repair.
Surprisingly enough, the color of the car makes a big difference – white and light colored cars are much harder to fix than black or dark colored cars. The art of paintless dent repair requires the technician to be able to see the damage very clearly, especially on the outside of the car. While it is much harder for the technician to see the damage on a light car, that also means that any imperfection left behind will be much less visible than it would be on a dark car.
All around, the budget and time saving benefits of paintless dent repair usually outweigh any perceived drawbacks – as long as you have it done by an experienced trained professional.