One of the biggest questions we get asked here at Autotech Collision Service is, “how long will the repair take?” We completely understand that this something you want to know, especially when you’re going to be without your car for some time. As much as we wish we can give you an answer right then and there, it really depends on what has to be repaired on your vehicle.
Overall, the collision industry does a good job of tracking everything having to do with car repairs. The insurance companies measure everything from the time involved to average costs for repairs. They also track what is called “Length Of Rental,” or LOR for short, to see how long the average collision repair customer is in a rental car. Lately, LOR has been increasing.
12 days. That’s the new average for length of the rental while a car is being repaired. There are several reasons why this is, but the main reason is that cars are taking a little longer to repair because all the computers and sensors need to be recalibrated. Car repair is extremely complex nowadays and is not a matter of using a few tools to work out some kinks.
Average Car Repair Duration
Below is a typical cycle time for the different repairs you’d see an auto body shop. In case you didn’t know, “cycle time” refers to how long it takes to repair your car. Note that these are not 100% accurate, but are very close to what you can expect for when your vehicle is in the shop:
Windshield Replacement: 1 day
Bumper repair/replacement: 1 day
Minor Auto Body Work: 1-2 days
Paint Repair: 1-2 days
Replacement of internal parts: 1-2 weeks
Extensive damage to multiple parts (if not deemed a total loss): over 30 days
Length Of Rental Explained
There are quite a few reasons why the length of rental is nearly 2 weeks long. However, LOR is not solely based on repair time. Length of rental also includes the time required for insurance adjusters to view the vehicle and approve any repairs that need to be done to your car. This is known as “claims frequency.” We explain that a little further.
There are quite a few auto body shops who feel the pressure from insurance companies to perform faster repairs so there’s a smaller rental time. But in the process of saving time, corners can actually be cut in the repair process which can cause serious problems.
Why Some Auto Body Shops Cut Corners
You’re probably wondering what we mean when we say a repair shop will cut corners in order to “save time.” The best way to explain this to imagine your insurance company wears two different faces: one they show you and the other they show the body shop. Insurance companies are advocating on your behalf to the auto body shops. They know how much of an inconvenience it is for you to be without your car and they want to make sure you get it back ASAP. On the other hand, or the second face, they want to spend as little money as possible in the repair process. This means technicians could potentially use parts on your car that can cause more harm than good because they are unaware of the complexity of today’s advanced vehicles.
However, that’s not to say every auto repair shop is like this. In fact, it is possible for technicians to work quickly and properly repair your car. Though, most body shops that feel pressured by insurance companies to perform fast repairs will cut corners.
Other Factors To Increased Length Of Rental
Two other factors that can increase the length of rental have to do with repair complexity and claims frequency. Because of the complexity of car repair nowadays, technicians need extensive training on properly repairing vehicles following OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) guidelines. These are the repair guidelines your car’s manufacturer releases instructing technician on how to repair your specific vehicle. In addition, most modern-day vehicles are equipped with advanced driving features, commonly known as ADAS. The ADAS features in your car include blind-spot detection, lane departure assist, forward collision warning, and more. Repairing these is very complex and can require recalibration at the dealer, which also means a tow to and from the auto body shop.
Claims frequency is based on how often insurance adjusters have to calculate the repair estimate. Very rarely will the initial estimate be total repair bill, which why adjusters will frequently return to the shop to approve any repairs. Your insurance company may be hesitant to pay for certain repairs, which can add delays to the actual repair process. As a result, LOR continues to increase.
Who In New Jersey Can Repair My Car?
We at Autotech Collision Service know how frustrating it is for you to be without your car. You go into the body shop thinking it only be a few days and before you know it, it’s over a week. That’s why we want to take the stress away from you. We will work with your insurance company to ensure you not only get the high-quality repair that you deserve but so you can get your car back as soon as possible.
Here at Autotech Collision Center, we’ve been serving Southern New Jersey for nearly 30 years. All of our technicians have received extensive training and are up-to-date on the latest OEM Repair procedures. We will work with you and your insurance company to ensure a stress-free repair.