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Auto Body Repair Process

carmatProperly repairing collision damage is critical to the safety and performance of your vehicle after an accident. Every vehicle will be repaired to factory specifications in our high tech collision repair facility. For over 20 years Carmat Collision Center has been proudly serving Santa Cruz County as one of the largest, most modernly equipped Santa Cruz auto body & collision repair facilities in the area.

Our I-CAR certified technicians use only the highest quality equipment, parts, materials, and repair procedures. These skilled technicians restore the integrity of the frame and outer body panels to manufacturer's specifications based on a comprehensive repair plan prepared using Collision Estimating and Management software.

From start to finish, the repair of your vehicle can be a lengthy process. Even small repair jobs can take longer than you may expect. The length of time a repair make take can be further complicated by the volume of other cars in the shop, part delays, obtaining necessary authorizations and timely reporting and/or inspection by your insurance company. The following repair sequence may help you better understand the entire repair process:


Step 1: In the Estimate Process area the vehicle is inspected and relevant data is entered into estimate computer systems. This data is compiled into an estimate that determines the cost of repairs. However, often there is hidden damage that cannot be seen until after the vehicle is disassembled.


Step 2: Once the estimate is completed, the insurance company will review the estimate. There may be some negotiations on the price and procedures required to repair the vehicle. The insurance company will determine if the vehicle is even repairable. Once this process is completed, the vehicle begins the actual repair process.


Step 3: In Disassembly hidden damage is often found, and inner structure repairs are determined. Many times this will require scheduling insurance re-inspection and ordering additional parts.


Step 4: The required parts for your vehicle are ordered, and availability is checked. If a part needs to be special ordered, the order will be placed as soon as possible. Although many parts may arrive very quickly, the repair process can not begin until the shop receives all of the structural parts.


Step 5: In the Structure Repair area, the unitized body is returned back to the factory specification. A sophisticated measuring system is used to monitor all phases in this area. A computer based measurement system is used to analyze the frame of your vehicle. This system assures an accurate repair.


Step 6: The Body Repair Department replaces exterior panels, and all metal finishing that may be required. The vehicle begins to come back to life as sheet metal is installed and aligned. From here the vehicle will go to the paint preparation department.


Step 7: Paint Preparation is a critical step in the refinishing process of every vehicle. All panels are prepared for paint, then primed and sealed to assure good adhesion when the final top color and clear coats of paint are applied.


Step 8: Final moldings and detail pieces are put back on the vehicle in the reassembly area. All the vehicle's systems are checked during this process. The vehicle is almost complete and ready for delivery when it is in this stage.


Step 9: During the repair process the vehicle accumulates dust from the repairs. It will be cleaned. It will also be road tested to ensure that everything is working properly. A final inspection will assure the vehicle is restored to pre-accident condition.


step10Step 10: Delivery is the last step in the repair process. When the customer arrives to pick up the vehicle, the repair is re-explained and the final paper work is completed. The customer drives away in the vehicle that has been restored to pre-accident condition.