For the majority of drivers, going to an auto body shop in Summit NJ is a mysterious experience, a scary encounter with the unknown.
Once you hand over your key, you instantly feel uneasy; will your car be returned as good as new, or will the repair specialists do a shoddy job?
How will you know? How will you be able to figure out if you hard-earned money is just being tossed down the drain?
The best way to know if you are receiving excellent service and professional care is to find a reputable Summit NJ Auto Body shop and then build a relationship with that shop.
However, most people who take their vehicles in to the Auto Body Shop are doing so for the first time. So, how do you know whether or not you can trust an auto body shop?
First of all, it is important to know that most auto body shops are reputable businesses. The majority of Summit Auto Body owners are just struggling to make a living like most small business owners – they want to do a great job on your car so you will return or refer others to their shop.
However, there are a few bad apples that spoil the whole bunch, and you need to be diligent when selecting a shop.
The first thing to do is get a referral or locate a shop online using reviews and testimonials.
What makes auto body shops so difficult to heat during the cold season? To shop owners, the answer is obvious. Auto body shops are characteristically dusty, breezy, high heat-loss environments. To make the indoor air more breathable and safe for workers, fresh air must be introduced through use of exhaust fans and/or raising overhead doors to help dissipate and eliminate contaminants. The problem is, as contaminants are pulled out, so is the heated air. Seemingly a "no win" scenario right?
So what's the most effective and efficient way to heat body shops?
Answer: Infrared radiant tube heaters.
To help answer that question, let's review what "infrared" is and how it works.
Infrared (IR) is electromagnetic wave energy that travels at the speed of light until it strikes an object. Upon striking an object, the IR energy converts to heat and is either reflected or absorbed. Dark and opaque objects (i.e. asphalt, concrete, etc.) readily absorb radiant IR heat energy, whereas highly reflective objects such as chrome and polished aluminum are poor absorbers and tend to reflect that energy away.
The most familiar IR emitter (heater) is our own sun. The sun radiates its IR energy through our atmosphere to the earth's surface, uninhibited by wind. As the earth's surface absorbs that energy, our air becomes warm.
During our North American winters the sun's rays are less dense due to the angle of the sun in the sky and our air temperatures are much cooler. But by summer solstice the sun's rays are at their peak angle and absorption is at its highest, resulting in warmer air temperatures.
Why use infrared tube heaters for your body shop?
1) Ceiling suspended infrared tube heaters mimic the warmth of the sun by warming up tools, machinery, floors and people directly, thereby warming the air indirectly.
2) Unlike forced air heaters, infrared tube heaters do not blow air throughout the space. That's a big plus in body shops where dust in painting areas is a problem.
3) Quicker heat recovery. As infrared energy absorbs into floors, tools, vehicles, etc., heat is recovered much more quickly when overhead doors are opened and closed again or when exhaust fans are cycled on and off periodically. That's because surfaces in the direct path of the infrared rays become a "heat sink". In other words, stored heat in objects re-radiates to warm the surrounding air.
4) Energy efficiency - an infrared tube heating system can save as much as 50% or more in fuel savings compared to conventional forced air. This is especially true in body shops where air exchanges are very high.
5) Infrared heaters can increase production. A carefully designed infrared tube heating system can be used to decrease drying times and enhance paint job quality. Placing vehicles in the path of infrared radiation warms cold metal surfaces. Paint applied to warm metal surfaces is less likely to run or drip than when applied to cold surfaces. And because infrared heaters don't move air around, there is less opportunity for dust particles to mix with newly applied paint.
We should note that gas infrared tube heaters are NOT to be used inside paint booths or paint mixing rooms. Tube heater emitters can reach 900 to 1100 Degrees F, well above the flash point of solvent-based primers and sprays. Spraying should be contained in a designated paint room with a filter bank and exhaust system to carry away potentially explosive fumes. Once spraying is done and the booth is ventilated with fresh air, vehicles and components can then be moved out of the spray booth to an isolated drying area where the infrared heaters are located.
Are some infrared tube heaters better than others for heating body shops?
That's where you need to do a bit of homework. A thorough review of the various infrared tube heater manufacturers can turn up some surprising differences between brands and product offerings. In your search, ask about burner design (are controls isolated from the air stream? They should be.), emitter tubing (heat-treated aluminized or cheaper hot-rolled steel?), reflector efficiency (50% efficient or 100%), and warranty (10 years is better than 5 years).
Create a list and call each shop to see how well you are treated on the phone.
Select three or four shops that sound good and are in close proximity to your location, and you are ready to take your vehicle in for an estimate.
You should get at least three estimates from three different shops.
The estimate may vary because Auto Body Shops may use different estimating software, but they should all be in the same ballpark. If an estimate differs by a great deal, you should ask why.
The body shop expert should be able to explain all prices on the estimate, including all price quotes and labor charges.
When you get the estimate, you should also be evaluating the Auto Body customer service:
How quickly were you acknowledged?
How efficiently were you helped?
Were all members of the staff polite and friendly?
Did the staff seem knowledgeable?
Be observant during the estimate and you will have a good idea of how you will be treated during the entire repair process.
If the customer service seems lacking, move on to the next place even if the estimate seems reasonable.
If you decide to leave your car, and the shop contacts you later to tell you about additional charges, this may be a sign that it is not a reputable and honest repair facility.
Though additional charges can happen occasionally, it is not a common practice for a reputable shop.
If you do your homework, have some patience, and get a few estimate, the odds are good that you will find a reputable auto body shop.
Once you have found one, it helps to direct all your business to them, and refer them to others.
If you do this, you will have established a good relationship, and you will no longer need to worry about finding an honest auto body shop.
The Results Are In – Who Do You Think is the Best Summit NJ Auto Body in the Area?
A car is a very complex piece of machinery. Each individual part is vigorously tested before it ever goes into production models and, like a chain, relies upon every other part in order for the vehicle to function. One poorly built aspect can cause serious malfunctions leading to costly repairs, or worse, an accident.
Even something as simple as the glues used to hold a tire tread to the rest of the tire is an integral part of a car or truck. Just ask Firestone. That exact issue resulted in a costly recall of thousands of tires, legal recourse, as well as over 500 injuries and 148 deaths. All of which could have been prevented with only a little bit of testing. Be wary of new designs rushed into mass production.
Often a seemingly superficial part to a vehicle actually provides a significant amount of safety. Everyone knows a windshield protects the driver and passenger from wind and debris. Most also know that they are also designed with a thin film that prevents them shattering upon impact. What most people don't know is that the windshield provides over half of the structural support for the car during an impact. The windshield combined with the frame of the car makes it structurally safer than a car without one. Cracks in a windshield can greatly reduce their protective power, as well as obstruct the driver's view which is even more dangerous.
Replacing or repairing cracks and chips in a windshield should be done by trained professional at a certified and insured auto glass or body shop. Avoid independent installers and people who operate only out of their truck. The adhesive used dries in about an hour, so if any body shops quote you a turn around time less than that, they are either lying or don't know what they are doing.
Also, it is a good idea to know a little bit about the glass windshields they will be installing. There are three aftermarket windshields that exceed OEM and DOT specs, they are P.P.G., L.O.F. and Plinkington.
Other suitable windshields are made by the car factory. Ford's factory glass is called Carlite, and Chrysler's is Safeguard. Expect to pay more money for factory glass. A good auto glass installer will sand all the rust around the windshield after it is removed, and then prime and paint it before installing the new windshield. It is best to go with body shops that have been around for at least five years as they are more likely to be around to guarantee warranties and make repairs in the future. Many shops will also work with your insurance carrier to get you the best price on a windshield, sometimes completely paid for by the insurance company.
Body repair is another story and can become very expensive. Newer cars with plastic and fiberglass bodies are almost impossible to repair, the body panels are often much easier to just replace, and that can be accomplished by almost anyone with a wrench and screw driver. Repairing dents and rust on metal bodies can be time consuming as well as expensive. It also requires a matching paint job which is similarly expensive. If the dented or rusted panels can be removed it makes it much easier. Dents can be pounded back into shape. In addition to this, it is often just easier to work on and paint a detached piece. Some work can be done by the average Joe, but extensive body work should be done at an established body shop.
Auto Body Shops - Few Tips For Dealing With Them
rev up your engines, today I'm gonna showyou how to spot a scam body shop before you get towed into one and it's too late,okay it happens to everyone eventually you get in an accident, then you have tohave your car towed to a body shop, the last thing you want is to be in anaccident be knocked around and then the tow truck guy comes and you let himdecide where to tow it, you want to know a good body shop beforehand, then writeit down and put it in your glove box so you'll have it at hand or put it on yourphone, because by law at least here in the United States you get in a wreck, youhave the right to pick wehatever body shop you want to fix your car, nobody canforce you to go to one place, but you have to understand, when the tow truckguys come, they generally get big kickbacks if they got a nice big wreckand they tow it to the body shop that they're affiliated with, they will getfive hundred a thousand maybe even more money for bringing that vehicle to thatbody shop, so you want to have one ready that you trust to say, no tow it here andif you don't know one, you still have the right to have it towed to your house, allthe insurance companies will tow it to your house then later they can tow it toa body shop, don't worry about that you just want to send it to a good job andnot just somebody who's being paid to ship your car off because they getkickbacks, so how do you find out if a body shop is a scam body shop or areally good one well you got to do a little researchhere, unless you live in Houston Texas then you can just ask me, who I use, I don'ttake any kickbacks I've sent many many customers to body shops and never took adime back from their repairs, I just want my customers to get their cars fixedcorrectly, I don't do bodywork so it's no skin off of my nose,and speaking of equipment you got to make sure that the body shop you pickhas a good paint booth, paint boots are giant areas that are completely sealed,so there's no dust they control the humidity for painting, it's veryimportant for getting body work done right, you don't want to have somebodypaint in your car that doesn't have a very good paint booth, try spray-paintingsomething outside, you're gonna see gets on it, hair everything, you got to have aplace that has a good paint booth and you have to have professional guysworking there who know how to blend paint and match it to the color of yourcar, because take a look at this, you can easily tell this bumper has been repaintedit's a completely different shade than the top of the car that wasn't painted, Imean look at that, you can see here's the one that's been repainted, it'scompletely a lighter color here it was not blended correctly, the paint doesn'teven match, so your visitor bodyshop say hey show me a car where youpainted part as a car, see if it matches and if it doesn't they're not any goodat blending paint, go someplace else and speaking of painting bumpers, check thisout this bumper was painted by a guy whodidn't even know what kind of paint to put on the car, realize that theseplastic bumpers are exactly that, they are plastic it requires a special kindof paint with a special bonding agent in order for it to stick, if you use regularcar paint that you put on the hood and put it on the bumper,guess what, it flakes off like this car did, whoever painted this bumper theyhad no notion about how to paint plastic bumpers, they shouldn't be in the bodybusiness and another big thing to check is the body shop area itself, if likethese cars all sitting all over the place they got tons of them looks likethey're busy, go back in a few weeks the same cars are sitting there, that's justa scam that guys use, I used to work for a guy like that years ago, he had all these junkcars and it would sucker people to come in and he wasn't fixing any of thosecars, you see all their stickers are out of date, some of them don't have licenseplates on them, don't go to a place like that cuz odds are, they're gonna takeforever to fix your car and may not even do a good job, because realize one thingbody shop work, it comes and it goes it's not a continuous thing, cars they breakdown all the time it's pretty continuous cars you're always breaking you got tofix them, but car wrecks they occur kind of randomly, so a lot of times these guysdon't have much business at all so if they're one of those guys thataren't that honest, they'll take your car in and say, oh it'll be ready in three days,another car comes in they're gonna make more money, they drop yours and then theyjust work on the car they're making more money, I've seen guys have cars and bodyshops for months for this reason, ask around, other people who theyuse and anybody who says that guy took forever to fix my car,don't go there, you find a guy like me I don't do bodywork, I do mechanical workbut my whole thing was, if people got here by 8:00 in the morning by 5:00 inthe afternoon most of the work I did on most of the cars were finished, I wantedto do stuff that we're in and out fast my customers were happy, they told peopleabout me, I never spent a nickel advertising because all my customerstold everyone about me, and of course you want a place that's been in business alot, but here's the kicker, you gotta do a little bit of research because I had aguy he was a great body man, but as he got older, he made a son take over theshop and his son had no interest in doing bodywork on cars really, so it'stime went on, I used the guy for a decade and a half, but then when a son took overI sent customers there they could bring the car over to me and I'd look at themand you could see scratches from the sandpaper that they didn't make smoothand paint it over so it had permanent scratches in it, you got to make surethat the person who's running to place cares about what his shop puts out andhere's where the Internet can really help you out a lot, because of peoplehave crappy bodywork done and it doesn't look right, they're gonna complain on theInternet, so if you do a research on the guy and you see, there's complaintsall over the place about this guy then you'd think, I'm not gonna go thereI'm gonna go somewhere else and although I'm always trying to save people moneyhere, don't go too cheap with bodywork you see those ads when I was a kid itused to be we'll paint any car for you know 59.
95 now it's like 200 or 300dollars, you're not gonna get a very good paint job of your car for that kind ofmoney these days, I had my old Celica done like five years ago at one ofthose places and you can see the paint's flat, it just doesn't hold up, to do agood paint job costs a lot of money to paint the entire car and speaking of agood shop a good shop handles all insuranceclaims, you don't do anything, if they say we want some money up front, you gosomeplace else, the good ones they all use insurance companies where they callit up, they handle all the paperwork if there's a problem they call up theinsurance company and say, look we just pulled off the bumper and found out thatthere's more damage underneath, then they can send a guy to look to make surethat's the truth, you don't have to get involved in the actual repair, and like anything you pretty much have to feel out the shop, as peoplein Texas have always said, you don't want a guy who's all hat and no cattle, or when Iwas younger in New York, hey you don't want the guy who's got the motorcyclejacket, but he doesn't have the motorcycle, there's plenty of good body shopsout there, you just have to find them, but since people are always getting in wrecks, heythat's your friends, see cars that were wrecks that they had fixed, look at it closelyand look at it in the Sun when the sun's shining, because the human eye we can seemillions of different varieties of colors, you can see hey wow that wasfixed really well or hey that doesn't match at all or there's paintthat's bubbled up or you look at the fender the guy replaced and parts ofthe gaps or half an inch and other parts are an inch and a half gap, you knowthat place does lousy work and don't go there and when you do find a good bodyshop hey, pass the word of mouth around go on the internet tell people, tell yourfriends about it, because if you find a good body shop, you tell other peopleabout it, they're going to continue to do good work, especially when they say, heyJoe sent me, they don't want Joe to get mad because if he's telling a bunch ofpeople how good they are and he does lousy work, they know they're gonnalose business and if they don't have to spend me advertising money like I neverspent, that's more money in their pocket and less money out of yours that's payingfor the body shop and the advertising, so take a tip for me and find a good bodyshop before you get in a wreck, because it's often too late then and you'll bestuck towed to some place where everybody's getting kickbacks fromeverybody else and the work is relatively shoddy,so if you never want to miss another one of my new car repair videos, remember toring that Bell!.