How An Auto Body Repair Shop "Straightens" Your Car Frame After A Collision

Isaiah Chambers

If you have recently been in a car accident, but you thought your crunched car was beyond all repair, you might be surprised at how an auto body repair shop can make your car look new again. It may take some time and a lot of special tools, but almost all cars can be repaired after a collision. The only ones that cannot are cars that have been crunched into a cube or smashed completely flat. If you have the money and the time to spare, you can get the frame of your vehicle straightened out and repaired, then painted. Here is how a mechanic (like those at Select Collision Centers Inc) will proceed.

The Outer Shell Is Removed First

The mechanics working on your car will remove the outer shell first. Depending on the severity of the damages, this may mean removing bits and pieces of the shell or extracting bits out of the metal as the mechanics work on the frame. The shell can be replaced, using parts from a salvage yard or a dealership, so it just makes sense to peel it away to gain access to the bent frame.

The Frame Is "Straightened"

Using a grinder, a hammer and sometimes even a welding tool, the bent parts of your car's frame are gently and gradually altered back to their original shape. Some parts may need to be removed if they cannot be straightened out. Newer or used parts replace the pieces that the mechanics cannot reshape. Sharp edges that resulted from the collision or are a result from the straightening process are ground down and pushed back into position before the mechanic welds them into their old solid form.

Metal Sections of the Car Receive Fresh Auto Paint

Areas of your car that are not part of the shell, such as the hood, are sanded and ground down to the bare metal. Then the mechanics apply a fresh coat of auto paint, which may be followed by a second coat and then the sealant over the top. These areas are then buffed and polished to a shine.

A New Shell Is Installed Over the Top of the Finished Frame and Paint Work

Finally, the new shell is installed over the areas that were reconstructed. The mechanic may not secure the shell until he or she has made sure that everything functions properly with the shell on. Any adjustments that need to be made to the frame are made, and then the parts of the shell that were replaced are secured to the body of the car. As an added touch, the mechanic will probably polish and wax the entire vehicle so it looks nice when you pick it up.