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Top Signs That Your "Minor Collision" Really Did Cause Auto Damage

Posted on February 13, 2018

Not all car collisions are life-threatening, and some might not seem to do any damage to your vehicle. Just to be safe, you should bring it into the body shop to make sure everything looks okay. Fluid leaks, the check engine light, and problems with your electrical system may all indicate that you need tuning up. Ahead we look at the top signs that you suffered some auto damage in a collision.

The Vehicle Leaks

There is never a healthy reason for your car or truck to be leaking fluids. If you see liquid stains on your driveway or parking spot when you pull your vehicle out, then there’s an issue to be addressed. Leaking oil or transmission fluid is bad for your vehicle in many ways, so set up an appointment with your body shop as soon as you can. A lack of transmission fluid can even burn up your transmission and sideline your car, and timely repair is crucial.

Your Check Engine Light Is On

If you’ve been in a car accident that seemed like it was only a minor collision, you should still be extra careful when driving. There could be problems with your internal systems that you haven’t recognized, which is why you should look to your dashboard to make sure your ride is still okay. If your check engine light or another warning light is on, the collision may have caused some damage that you wouldn’t have otherwise noticed, so visit the body shop for repair.

The Electronics Malfunction

Your exterior and interior lights help you see what you’re doing when driving at night, and they make it easier for other drivers to notice you on the road. Unfortunately, these components are some of the most likely to malfunction after a minor accident, so always get them checked out if you sustain a collision.

Some vehicles can take real damage before they stop functioning the right way, but it’s always smart to visit your body shop near Chicago after a car collision. B&L Automotive is a body shop that specializes in collision repair, and you can call us at (773) 463-1622 for information.

The Precision Technology of Computerized Paint Matching

Posted on February 6, 2018

Finding the perfect match for your car’s paint job requires some expert knowledge. Paint matching is a meticulous process, but modern technology makes it a little bit easier. Watch this video for a look at the precision technology of computerized paint matching.

There’s more to color matching than finding a paint sample and layering it onto the car. Paint pigment changes based on conditions like the temperature, humidity, and how quickly it’s allowed to dry. Metallic colors look different and darker when paint is wet, and aluminum metallic and effect pearls have effects of their own. Computerized paint matching achieves the closest match possible to your existing paint job.

It’s harder than you think to match a car paint job near Chicago, but the crew at B&L Automotive knows what it’s doing. Check out our website or call (773) 463-1622 to talk to someone from our auto paint shop.

Mistakes Drivers Make That Cause Crashes in Winter Weather

Posted on January 31, 2018

A car collision can happen at any time, but the weather conditions that the winter brings about make it more likely to happen. You’ll probably end up needing collision repair if you don’t leave enough room between your car and the one in front of you. Here’s an overview of this and other dangerous mistakes that drivers tend to make during the winter.

Not Leaving Enough Space

During normal driving conditions, you should leave three seconds of space between your vehicle and the car you’re following. You can do this by timing how long it takes you to pass a landmark on the side of the road after the car or truck you’re trailing has passed it. When you drive in winter weather, the three second rule should turn into the four second rule. You never know if you’ll hit a patch of ice and need to react immediately, so err on the side of caution and leave yourself extra time and space.

Bad Braking When Skidding

Your vehicle may very well skid when you hit a patch of ice on the road. Instead of panicking and slamming on the brakes, gradually pump the brake pedal and try to steer into the skid. Stopping your wheels completely will prevent you from regaining traction and could put you in a dangerous position.

Improper Tire Inflation

A harsh change in temperature changes the pressure in your tires, which means you won’t have the same traction to the road as you normally would. Look at your owner’s manual and keep your tires properly inflated at all times, so you can maintain control over your vehicle and avoid a collision in winter weather.

Making these kinds of mistakes can lead to a car collision near Chicago, in which case you’ll need to visit the body shop for collision repair. Call B&L Automotive at (773) 463-1622 to speak with one of our mechanics, or look through our website to learn about our service options.

What Action Should You Take During an Ice Skid?

Posted on January 23, 2018

Driving during inclement weather on unpredictable roads can be scary. Hitting a patch of ice may cause you to skid out, but this doesn’t always have to end in a trip to the auto body repair shop. Watch this video on how to handle an ice skid.

As soon as you hit a patch of ice, you should take your foot off the gas. You might instinctively slam on the brakes, but this can keep your skid going rather than correct it. Instead, pump the brakes until you can control the vehicle again. Always steer into the skid rather than turn the wheel in the opposite direction.

Ice skids may lead to collisions, so visit an auto body repair shop in Chicago to get your vehicle checked out. B&L Automotive offers car dent removal and bumper repair, and you can learn about us by calling (773) 463-1622.

Spotlight on the Benefits of a New Car Paint Job

Posted on January 16, 2018

An overdue car wash can make a world of difference, so think about how much better your car will look when you drive it home from the auto paint shop. The vehicle will look newer, so you’ll be able to get more money for it if you’re looking to sell. The pros will also make sure your paint job is consistent across the whole vehicle.

Better Overall Look

Even if the only thing you care about is having a vehicle that works, it’s nice when you get to ride in style. Everything from the weather to small parking lot incidents can damage your car or truck’s paint job. Your auto paint shop professionals will give you a new coat, which means you can get back to showing off your vehicle with pride.

Higher Resale Value

When you sell an expensive piece of property, you must find a buyer who is willing to pay your asking price. You can make your vehicle more appealing to a potential buyer by giving it a new paint job. The people who are interested in your car will notice dents, dings, and scratches right away, and they’ll see these blemishes as problems that they’ll have to put money into. If you’ve already taken care of those issues and worked with your auto paint shop to correct them, that’s less work and money that the buyer will have to worry about.

Consistent Aesthetics

It’s not easy for the average person to match up colors perfectly, but the professionals at the auto paint shop know just what to do. If you replaced a door to your car with a cheap aftermarket part that doesn’t fully match the color of your vehicle, you can have your mechanic match up the colors, so your vehicle displays one consistent hue.

Car paint jobs always come out better when you go to a professional auto paint shop, so call B&L Automotive at (773) 463-1622 or stop by our body shop near Chicago so we can talk about how we can help you.

Questions to Ask About Your Collision Repair Estimate

Posted on January 9, 2018

Collision repair is a delicate process. If your car is your baby, you’ll want to ask the right questions before you hand it over to the body shop. The first step is to get an estimate, which is usually free and shouldn’t bind you to the company. Here’s the questions you should ask about your estimate to be sure you’re making an informed decision:

How much does an estimate cost?

When you bring your vehicle to your collision repair professionals, they’ll give you an estimate. This is an educated guess at how much it will cost to repair the vehicle based on the mechanic’s experience and knowledge of the industry. If you’re working with a reputable car repair company, you should get your estimate for free. Your collision repair professionals will figure out what’s been damaged and tell you about how much the repairs will cost you. The estimate itself, however, shouldn’t cost you anything.

Am I locked in after an estimate?

An estimate is just that. It’s not always a guarantee that the number you were told will be the actual cost of repairs, and you are free to research other car repair companies in the meantime. You are not obligated to undergo the repairs with a company if you don’t agree with the estimate or you simply can’t afford what the business is asking for.

How long does the whole process take?

The collision repair process takes time, and even the estimate portion of that process needs to be done carefully to make sure both sides come to a fair deal. Ask your auto body shop how long you should expect the entire process to take.

The team at B&L Automotive is easy to talk to and happy to answer any questions you have about collision repair near Chicago. Give us a call at (773) 463-1622 to talk to a professional, or learn about our collision services on our website.

How Do You Know if Your Car Is Totaled?

Posted on January 4, 2018

When a car is losing its efficiency and requires more and more repairs, eventually you’ll ask yourself if the repairs are even worthwhile. A car is declared totaled when it will cost a disproportionate amount of money to bring it back to its original condition. This sometimes happens after a car collision, and your auto body repair shop can help you determine whether you should repair your car or consider it a total loss.

A totaled car is essentially a vehicle that would require too much money to repair. Some entities consider repairs that cost 60% of the vehicle’s market value to be the cutoff, while others go as high as 80%. To make this determination, a professional must disassemble the vehicle to get a complete picture of the damage. Then your insurance company will have a better understanding of how much damage occurred, what the nature of the damage was, and how much money it will take to restore the vehicle. If the cost of repairs is high enough compared the value of the car, it’s deemed totaled.

B&L Automotive is an auto body repair shop in Chicago. Call us at (773) 463-1622 if you need help after a car collision.

What to Expect After Our Estimate Process

Posted on December 28, 2017

You should never be left in the dark, wondering how much you’ll have to shell out for car repair for an accident that might not even have been your fault. The B&L Automotive team offers free estimates to try and take some of the stress out of the equation. Keep reading and see what to expect after our estimate process.

Once our team has had a chance to check out your car and survey the damage, we’ll be able to give you a reasonable estimate for how much it’ll cost to fix up your ride. From there, it’s up to you to decide if you’d like to work with us or find another service. We aim to be as fair as possible with our pricing estimates, so if you have any questions about the number we’ve provided, feel free to ask.

Being in a car collision near Chicago is stressful enough, so the repair process shouldn’t be. At B&L Automotive, we’re happy to offer free estimates so you can find out what you’re dealing with and get your car repairs done as soon as possible. See our website or call us at (773) 463-1622.

Three Common Signs of Bent Car Frames

Posted on December 19, 2017

Improper maintenance, neglect, and even normal wear and tear can weigh down your vehicle’s performance, so it’s no wonder that a minor car accident can have such a big impact on how your car or truck operates. If you notice uneven wear in your suspension and shocks or problems with your alignment, or if you can visually tell that your car frame is bent, take a trip to the auto body repair shop.

Uneven Wear

Balance is everything when it comes to automobiles, and there are ways to tell if your balance is off. When weight is evenly distributed, the different components of the vehicle wear out the same way. When it isn’t, you’ll see signs of uneven wear. If your suspension and shocks seem to be more worn down on one side than the other, you might have a bent car frame.

Improper Alignment

Pulling occurs when your vehicle’s alignment is off, and it causes your vehicle to stray away from a straight path. If you’re having trouble getting your vehicle to move in a straight line, you probably have alignment problems. This could be due to a bent car frame, especially if you have recently had your alignment checked. Stop by the auto body shop if this problem could be affecting your alignment.

Visual Bending

If you feel like there’s a problem with your vehicle, climb underneath it. Look at the frame and see if you notice any signs of damage, which might include angles and creases that don’t look natural. You should also look for rust spots, and take note of anything else that looks off. Be especially careful when climbing underneath your vehicle if you’ve recently been in a car collision, and ask your collision repair pros for help.

A bent car frame won’t get any better over time, unless you head to the auto body repair shop in Chicago to deal with the damage. If you’re involved in a car collision and you need auto body supplies or repairs, call B&L Automotive at (773) 463-1622 or stop by the shop today.

FAQs About Dealing with Your Insurance Company After a Collision

Posted on December 12, 2017

If you’ve ever been in a car collision before, you understand just how scary of an experience it can be. It doesn’t end there, however, as you might need to deal with car repair and a claims process with your insurance company. Knowing how to react and taking down the right information at the scene can make life easier, but sometimes you end up needing a lawyer to resolve the accident damages. Read ahead for FAQs about dealing with your insurance company after a collision.

How can I make things easier on myself?

As soon as you’ve checked yourself, your passengers, and anyone else at the scene of the accident to make sure they’re okay, you should start documenting the scene. Use your phone to take pictures of any damage done to the exterior or interior of your vehicle, as well as injuries that you or your passengers have sustained. It might be a gut habit to apologize even if you didn’t do anything wrong, but you should never admit fault at the scene.

What kind of information do I need?

In addition to photographing the damages and injuries and documenting your initial reaction to the accident, you should collect information from anyone who was involved. Talk to the other drivers to get their personal information. Ask for names, best ways to contact the involved parties, and insurance information. You should also document the license plate numbers of each vehicle involved.

Do I need a lawyer?

You don’t always need a lawyer after a collision, but the service can certainly help. An attorney can be of use if severe damage has been done or if you have sustained a personal injury. It’s up to the insurance company to give you the money you need for car repair and medical bills, and a lawyer can make sure you’re treated fairly.

Even if you were in a small car collision, it’s a good idea to stop by a body shop near Chicago. B&L Automotive is just that, and we can help with car dent removal and other types of car repair. Call us at (773) 463-1622 or peruse our website for information.

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