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Hail damage repair
What is hail damage repair?
Hail damage repair is one of the most common panel repairs needed here in Australia, especially during Summer storm season. Sudden and violent storms can dump hail the size of golf balls with little to no warning, and if your vehicle is uncovered during this time, it’s quite possible it will need hail damage repairs afterwards.
The most common form of hail damage repair is Paintless Dent Removal (PDR) which allows for the dents to be removed from affected panels without the need for traditional panel beating and respraying. However, depending on the level of damage, panel beating or panel replacement and paint may be the only option.
How to tell if you need a hail damage repair
The easiest way to tell if you need to have hail damage repaired is by checking your vehicle after a storm. Small dents over a panel will indicate that hail has damaged the metal, and PDR will be needed to return the vehicle back to normal.
If the dents are larger, however, a visit to a panel shop or speaking to your insurance provider will be the best option. If you are looking at a new or used vehicle with hail damage, ensure to negotiate the required repairs into the pricing of the vehicle.
How important is it to repair hail damage?
Apart from making your vehicle look neglected, not repairing hail damage can have other negative effects if left unrepaired. Depending on the severity of the damage, rust can form under small cracks in the paintwork, and the structural integrity of the vehicle can also be compromised by weakened panels or a damaged windscreen. Therefore, it is best practice to have any hail damage repaired in a timely manner.
How is hail damage repaired?
The most common form of hail damage repair is Paintless Dent Removal, where the technician uses specially designed tools to ‘press’ the dents back into shape. This requires access to the back of the panel requiring repair, so interior trims may need to be removed in the process.
If the dents are too large however, the vehicle will need to go to a panel shop to have them removed. This can also require paint rectification afterwards, either by touching up or respraying the panel after the work is completed. Any glass that has been damaged will need to be repaired or replaced as well.
How much does a hail damage repair cost?
The cost of repairs can vary depending on the work required. Most of the time, hail damage will be covered by your insurance policy, but if your vehicle is uninsured, pricing can range from $300 for a very basic paintless dent removal to thousands of dollars for complete panel replacement and paint. If the damage is substantial, the insurance company may ‘write-off’ the vehicle completely.
Where can you get hail damage repaired?
Depending on the type of repairs needed, you can have your vehicle repaired at your home or work, or at a specialty panel repair centre. Most PDR technicians are able to work mobile, so these repairs can be carried out while you are at home or at work. For larger panel repairs as well as repainting, a panel repair centre will be able to work on your vehicle. These larger repairs often take time, so you may be without your vehicle for a number of days.