Making sense of collision repair costs

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The last thing anyone wants to deal with after a car wreck is the cost of repair. Understanding how...

The last thing anyone wants to deal with after a car wreck is the cost of repair. Understanding how your insurance company and/or auto repair shop will breakdown collision repair costs helps to alleviate some of the stress Atlanta car owners will face in this situation.

Deductibles

This is the cost that the insured (you) pay either up front before repairs or after repairs are completed. Sometimes it's a specific dollar amount but often it's a variable percentage. Be aware that the deductible on comprehensive insurance coverage is not the same as the deductible on collision repair insurance. Comprehensive deductibles usually cover everything except collision repair.

Of course, the higher your deductible is, the lower your monthly premiums will be, regardless of coverage type. It's important to configure this expense as much as you can to your personal situation. If you're slightly more accident or damage prone, you may want to go with a lower deductible and higher monthly premiums as you'll be in the mechanic's queue more often.

Parts

Depending on the amount of damage your vehicle has sustained in the collision, this is usually your second highest expense. Keep in mind that it's not simply a matter of removing a front bumper or quarter panel, replacing it and then fitting it back on. Any new external pieces will probably need paint, which is also included under the cost of parts. Internal components, such as brackets or sensors may need to be replaced.

Certain parts may also need to be refinished or newly machined (fabricated) in order to meet specifications.

Labor

Generally this is the most expensive aspect in the repair. The skill level and experience of the repair techs and mechanics that work on your car are only part of the equation. The biggest expense in this regard will come from the extent of the damage, i.e., the worse the accident the more you're gonna pay in labor.

With all that said, it'd be best to contact an Atlanta-based parts dealer or collision repair shop, have them take a look at your vehicle and give you a reasonable estimate for the above mentioned costs.

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