Starting Automotive School? 4 Tips for Effectively Performing Damage Analysis on Cars

When a vehicle is in an accident, it requires a careful analysis in order to determine if the damage sustained is repairable or if the car should be scrapped. An analysis also helps determine which repairs might be necessary if the car can be fixed. 

Read on to know how to perform a damage analysis effectively!

1. Talk to the Customer 

When conducting a damage analysis, the best place to start is by talking to the customer. When you talk to the customer, you’ll be able to learn about, understand, and reconstruct the events of the accident in your head. The customer can lay out the details of the accident, like their speed upon collision and the number of impacts they felt. After your automotive school training, you’ll come to know what damages to look for by also understanding what angle the vehicle was in upon impact. You can then begin inspecting the entire vehicle. Your inspection should look for differences in the fenders, doors, panels and any other parts of the vehicle.

After automotive school, you’ll have to reconstruct the accident in your head by talking to your customers


2. Record Primary Damages After Your Automotive Training

After you are able to reconstruct the big picture of the accident, you’ll get to the fun part of taking down the vehicle’s information and recording the primary damages. During auto careers, professionals take the time to record the vehicle’s VIN, since it’ll help with sourcing parts if need be. During your career, you’ll also want to document the vehicle’s mileage and build date, and check the engine light’s condition and SRS. You’ll also need to check and document the paint code. When you’re done documenting vehicle information, begin documenting the primary damages the vehicle sustained, beginning with the exterior. You’ll look at all the adhesives, clips, bulbs, fenders, and headlamps. Also, make sure you assess broken paint for different types of gaps, and check how operable the doors and hood are. 

You’ll have to document all the primary damages a vehicle sustained

3. Look for Secondary Damage

After the primary damage analysis, you can begin analyzing the damages sustained to the inner parts of the vehicle or to parts that are adjacent to the initial source of impact. You’ll have to analyze the inner parts as well as everything else they’re attached to in terms of floors, rails, and core supports. Secondary damages can be visible in the form of seam sealers or spot welds being broken or cracked. You’ll have to make a list of all parts that need to be removed and installed when repairs start, as well as any electrical components that need to be disconnected and reconnected. It will then be necessary to analyze and document mechanical damages. You’ll need to check fluids, wiring, bolts, brackets, fans, cooling components, and the suspension. 

4. Document all Paint Materials and Finalize Your Damage Analysis

Your final damage analysis will end up with you analyzing and documenting the paint job requirements that will need to be done. You’ll have to identify what needs to be painted, depending on the nature of the damage sustained. After your paint assessment is complete, you can start finalizing the damage analysis by performing a damage evaluation. You’ll be able to generate a damage evaluation repair estimate using computerized estimating software, as you input all the initial notes from your damage analysis. You can then provide the evaluation to the customer. 

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