When To File An Auto Hail Damage Claim
Everyone knows when to fail an auto accident claim. But rarely do they know when to faile an auto hail damage claim or that even filing such a damage is available. First off, there are important steps to take before filing the claim. Auto Works – Paintless Dent Repair gives 7 steps that we think need to be shared.
Step 1 – Take Pictures
Don’t forget to document the damage by taking several pictures. The great part about technology is when you use your camera on your cell phone it stores them with a timestamp and geolocation. Don’t forget that photos speak a thousand words so to help support your case that its hail damage and not another incident be sure to get close shots and overall shots of your vehicle.
Step 2 – Schedule An Appointment
We can’t tell you how many times we’ve had a customer come in to the office saying they caused more damage than the hail to their vehicle by trying a Youtube fix. In those cases where the at home tutorial worked it generally was luck and a very small dent. The positive of having a professional examine your vehicle is the guarantee that the damage will be fixed properly. Many reputable PDR shops offer a FREE auto hail damage inspection. Professional paintless dent repair technicians utilize lighting equipment that is designed specifically to locate dents and dings on vehicles. After the inspection, you’ll get a deep comprehensive damage report and quote for repair. If you are unsure about a shop don’t feel pressured to leave your vehicle. A good rule of thumb is to trust your instinct and to do your research. You can even contact your insurance company for a list of trusted paintless dent repair technicians they’d recommend.
Step 3 – Check Your Policy
If you carry comprehensive coverage, hail damage will not affect your rates. You will be expected to cover the deductible. If your quote is greater than your deductible we recommend discussing it with your shop to see if they offer any deals to help. Some shops offer rebates or a few dollars off. These shops want to do business with you and want to give great customer service to encourage return customers. Take your time and really get to know the shop and your options.
If you purchased liability only on your vehicle, you will not be covered for a hail damage claim. If you are unable to get comprehensive coverage you are putting your vehicle at risk and thus will be responsible for all physical damage to your vehicle. The coverage needs to be purchased prior to damage occurring.
Step 4 – Does The Repair Cost Less Than Your Deductible?
You now have to compare the cost to repair out-of-pocket versus your deductible responsibility. If the total cost to repair the damage to your car is less than the deductible, you are responsible for paying for all the repair costs. Regardless of your deductible amount, we have seen in most cases the cost to repair your hail damaged vehicle will exceed your deductible.
Step 5 – If You Answered ‘No’ To Question 4
In this case it is best to contact your insurance company to get more information about filing a claim. Generally they will send out an agent to assess the damage and refer you to a shop they recommend to start the repairs. Ask any questions you may have while you have them on the phone and don’t forget to ask for a contact name and number for future reference.
The damage to your vehicle can even be so excessive it can be labeled totaled, in some cases. An insurance adjuster will be able to verify whether or not repairs will be made to your vehicle or not.
Step 6 – If You Answered ‘Yes’ To Question 4
Auto hail repair is 100% covered (outside of the deductible) by comprehensive insurance policies, notify your auto insurance to verify your policy. Your rates will not be affected. Remember deductibles are in place to keep overall insurance costs at a reasonable rate.
Step 7 – Schedule An Auto Hail Repair Appointment
Many of the high end, paintless dent repair shops offer deals from FREE no-obligatoin quotes and more. If you live in an area that was recently hit by hail, get your quote immeditaly. PDR shops tend to fill up fast. After a storm you can assume many patrons are contacting similar auto insurance companies and paintless repair shops so please remain calm as it may take longer than usual to process your claims and quotes.