Car dents are more common than most of us might expect, so no matter how many precautions we take, chances are it only comes to when our car gets dented, not if. The good news is getting a dented car repaired is not always that expensive, and more often than not, there is not so much to be worried about.
As a baseline, dent repairs range from 100 to 500 USD per 1-inch dent, and the price may continue to go up by at least 30 USD per additional inch of the dent, depending on the type of repairs needed.
This article will discuss the most common causes of car dents, how they usually affect the extent of necessary repair, and understandably, the price.
The extent, type, and location of the car dent mainly affect the price of dent repairs. These three factors impact how much time the repair would take, what kind of dent removal mechanism will be used for the repair, and overall, how complicated the repair will be.
The most obvious implication would be that larger dents would be more expensive. An inch of repair is understandably cheaper than a dent sitting at 5 inches.
The type of dent also dictates how difficult it would be to reverse it. Major dents with cracked paint will take a repair shop much more time and resources to make them disappear, while minor dents without the need for paint removal could be done much more quickly and be hundreds of dollars cheaper.
Listed below are the most common types of car dents that you might encounter. Knowing the dent type comes in handy when estimating how much a repair will likely cost you.
A round dent is a type of car damage that results in a hollow recess on the car’s surface. This is usually caused by the direct impact of small objects tossed in the air, such as baseballs, fruits, and hail.
As will be explained in the succeeding section, round dents are easier to repair especially when there is no paint damage. The repair is going to be cheaper and faster as well.
Dings refer to small indentations less than half an inch in diameter. They usually result from weak bumps with blunt surfaces such as shopping carts in grocery store parking lots.
Most cases of car dings do not necessarily need expert help to fix since the paint remains intact, which means that no exposed metal surface can rust. There are numerous do-it-yourself fixes for car dings.
Here is a video showing how to repair a car ding using hot glue and a soda bottle.
Crease dents are a result of impact with an object that gets dragged as the car moves.
Compared to car dings and round dents, crease dents are more complex to repair than round dents and car dings since the sideways impact stretches the metal underneath and changes its original surface area. Left unattended, crease dents result in more difficulty in repair due to the new default shape of the metal frame.
Apart from fixing the metal framework, repairing crease dents usually entails meticulous paint jobs, thus needing expert help.
Traditional and paintless dent removal is the go-to repair option for car dents. Unfortunately, customers don’t have that much leeway to choose between which type of dent repair they will have to submit their cars to, as the two repair types vary in terms of applicability.
Traditional repair is typically necessary to reverse major car dents. This takes longer than paintless dent removal as it requires sanding and smoothing of the surface before putting back the now hollow metal surface in place.
Once the metal is successfully pushed outward, minor dents or holes may still be visible in the repaired surface, requiring car body fillers to make your car look like new again.
The additional steps in the process and the fact that they are almost always coupled with major repairs make this type of dent removal more expensive. This may also take at least a few hours longer before your car becomes available for pickup.
When dents are nothing severe, paintless dent removal can be a cheap and easy fix. Repair shops usually suggest paintless dent removal when for minor dents. When dents are much larger, paint cracks will most likely be evident or might occur during the complicated repair process.
Since this requires fewer steps, paintless dent removal is cheaper than traditional dent repairs, with cost differences going as wide as a few hundred bucks. When possible, this strategy must be prioritized both due to time and monetary considerations, as well as to other tiny but nasty ones, such as mismatched paint colors.
You surely would not want a dent to be reversed but leave traces of the disaster nevertheless.
You’ll be surprised how likely it is to dent your car, no matter how cautious you may be. Still, it helps to know the most common causes of car dents to get a shot at avoiding them when you can.
Dents happen more often in areas with crowded cars. What area could be more crowded by cars than a tight parking space?
Parking your car in a tight space or trying to beat heavy traffic by squeezing yourself in exposes your vehicle to a much higher probability of bumping into something and incurring dents.
Even after you have safely parked, make sure that before boarding off your car, you and the rest of the passengers check your respective exits, making sure that you don’t swing the door wider open than it should be. Otherwise, you might have to brace yourself for dent repair costs for your car and the car that was surprisingly closer to you than it should have been.
Carefree shoppers and kids playing around may accidentally dent your car with their pushcarts. Since what people do in the parking lot is difficult to control and monitor, limiting metal surface exposure would be the best way to prevent your vehicle from being dented in these locations.
Opting to park your car at the backmost portion only exposes the front and sides of your vehicle to shoppers. That way, at least the trunk part is safe. You can also opt for parking slots with way fewer cars parked.
You could do most things right and still end up seeing your car dented due to natural causes. Golf-ball-sized hail can come flying straight to your vehicle and leave round dents needing a repair during hail storms. Airborne road debris can also hit and damage your car, depending on the strength of the impact.
These are both usually out of your control when you are driving your car out in the open. Cars are meant to be used, after all. Fortunately, these dents are only minor and may even only cost you 30 USD via paintless dent removal.
The extent, type, and location of car dents influence the amount of work and other resources that repair shops will have to put into bringing your car back in shape. While most minor repairs may only cause you less than 100 USD, more serious ones can climb way higher. Hence, it is crucial to be extra careful, especially when in areas where car dents are common.
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