We’ve finished our series on hailstorms and paintless dent repair being the preferred method of repair.  If you would like to go back over them, the links to each article are at the bottom of this article.  We are going to answer some customer questions, and if YOU have a question or if there’s something we missed, we want to hear from you!!  You can call us at 724-554-1756 or email us at info@dentrepairnow.com.

Let’s get our Q&A started!

What is paintless dent repair?

     Paintless dent repair is a process for removing dents, dings, and medium sized damage from cars and trucks without using traditional body shop repair methods. We gain access to the backside of the panel, and with one small push at a time,
the metal is reshaped back to its pre-dented shape. We can also use a process called glue pulling if there’s no access. That involves special tabs and glue adhered to the outside panel and pulled rather than pushed from behind.


What should good paintless dent repair for hail damage look like?

    A correctly executed paintless dent repair should be nearly invisible if not completely undetectable. On the most severe damage, it is going to be at least to the level of body shop repair. What I mean by that is to a trained eye any repair will be visible at some point. Proper paintless dent repair should be nearly undetectable to anyone.



How does hail happen?    

Hail is little ice balls that fall from the sky that are larger than sleet. Hail can be large enough to damage vehicles and property (and injure animals and humans even causing death in extreme cases!). The process in which hail is formed is when the air at the surface level is hotter than the air above it. An updraft is formed, with small pieces of dirt and dust getting trapped in the current. The dirt and dust start to fly upwards into rain clouds, a layer of water begins to formulate, and that water begins to freeze. Once the water is frozen, it gets too heavy for the updrafts. It begins to fall down until it hits the updraft again. That cycle continues up and down, depending on the strength of the storm. Larger hail damage happens with more vast thunderstorms. If you were to cut a hailstone in half, it would look like an onion. 

When did paintless dent repair originate? 

The method of paintless dent repair got its start back in the 1940s on the Mercedes-Benz assembly line. When cars were being assembled, small dings and dents would occur. The only way to fix them was to pull them off of the assembly line and put them in the body shop. Some of the technicians started looking and said, “There’s got to be a better way.” They started bending tools
and carefully working the dents out from the backside of the panels. In doing this, the dents were being removed and returned to a flat surface.   The metal was restored!!  Back in the day, those technicians were called dingers. In the mid to late ’80s it started to make its way toward more commercial viability, coming over to dealerships. By 1990 the art of paintless dent repair was becoming its own industry, reaching commercial, wholesale, and later, retail customers. 

How long does it take to become a skilled paintless dent repair technician? 

     It takes somewhere between six months and a full year of heavy practice just to gain an understanding of the fundamentals of paintless dent repair. Once you have a working understanding of the basics, it can take another year or two to begin to become proficient.  You would need to spend the next four to eight years perfecting and mastering your craft.  As technology and the car industry continue to evolve, so must the technician’s abilities. The owner of Dent Repair Now is Gene Fetty You can learn more about him here. He has worked tirelessly to master his craft and is now one of the leading instructors in all things PDR.


What type of guarantee is there with paintless dent repair? 

Guarantees are important in so many aspects of the repair process and the repair company. Does the company you’ve chosen have a guarantee?  Does it make sense?  Each company may have a different guarantee.  Our company Dent Repair Now has a very clear guarantee policy. We stand behind our repair 100%. If you’re not happy you don’t pay! We are fully insured, to protect you and your vehicle.

When you choose your place of repair, you need to know exactly what the company guarantees. If they don’t have a guarantee, I would strongly recommend searching out a company that does have some sort of guarantee on their work. All good companies should offer some sort of guarantee that they stand behind their work, and the work of their employees. The promise of guarantee is only as solid as the company backing it. So please, do your research, and know what kind of company you are doing business with. 

What are storm chasers as it pertains to paintless dent repair?

     Storm chasers is a bit of a slang term that you may hear while in the repair shop or talking with your insurance agent. They are technicians and contractors that chase hailstorm damage around the country. Now they are definitely a needed asset. Overnight when there are hundreds if not thousands of damage claims, be it vehicle or property, the local labor market simply cannot keep up with the influx of damage. There are contractors and technicians that will chase storms around the country, and they come in to fill that need. As in so many things in life all chasers are not created equal.  Your best bet is to work with a local company that is able to execute and deliver on repairs. Somebody who is going to be there after the storm. Local businesses can employ and partner up with the chasing contractors. Being tied to a local business is a very important thing, and working with a proper agreement with a local company is like a safety net. Contractors should have verifications of their insurance, (be well vetted by the company they are working with) that they are experienced technicians and can provide proper and safe repairs. WARNING!  WARNING!  Some of the outside contractors and technicians that come in and choose not to work directly with local companies, can be a bit more unscrupulous. They may be here for the quick buck. There is the potential for them to come in and fix what they can fix, as quickly and efficiently as they can, and take the money and run. My big caution to working with repair outfits like this is they may pretend to have good warranties or guarantees, but at the end of the storm, what recourse will you have after they’ve moved on to the next storm area.  Caveat emptor (Let The Buyer Beware) applies to car repairs as well. 

If you have read all six articles on Hailstorms and Paintless Dent Repair, Congratulations!  You can now navigate this process with a great understanding of how things work with repair shops, and insurance companies.  As always, if you have any questions, please reach out to us either by phone 724-607-8980 or email info@dentrepairnow.com.  If, you have damage on your car or truck whether it is from a door ding, hail, deer, (here in Pennsylvania we’ve all seen what they can do!) or small collisions, reach out to us!  You can go to our website and fill out a form and we will put together an estimate and get in touch with you. You can also stop for an in-person damage assessment at our shop located at 2603 Washington Rd, Unit 3, Canonsburg, PA 15317.  Our hours of operation are Monday through Friday 9 AM – 5 PM.  You don’t need an appointment to stop in, however, we do recommend calling first to be sure there is a technician there and available to give you the attention you deserve!

If you want to read the other articles that lead up to this one, you can find the links here:

Part 1:  https://dentrepairnow.com/?p=3681&preview=true

Part 2:  https://dentrepairnow.com/?p=3683&preview=true

Part 3:  https://dentrepairnow.com/?p=3693&preview=true

Part 4:  https://dentrepairnow.com/?p=3712&preview=true

Part 5:  https://dentrepairnow.com/?p=3740&preview=true

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