Denting your car is always disappointing. Whether you accidentally backed into something that damaged your bumper, or had a more serious accident, dents on your vehicle are not only unsightly, but they lower the value of your car and some can even cause structural damage over time if they aren’t fixed.
If your car has a dent, your best course of action is to take it to a repair shop to fix it. Though there are some at-home techniques you can try, repairing dents yourself is unlikely to be successful without the help of a mechanic. Here’s why you’ll want to leave it to the experts:
Why You Should Repair Car Dents
Car dents are obvious blemishes on your car. But not only are they insightly, dents can also decrease the value of the car and can result in additional damage. Repairing car dents in a timely manner is key to preventing yourself from running into trouble in the future, including problems like:
- Long-term paint damage
- Reduced resale value
- Weakened structural integrity leading to more dents
The truth is that most dents don’t cost that much to repair, and fixing the dent before it leads to further damage will save you an enormous headache (and expense!) later on.
Fixing a Car Dent
Professional mechanics are experts in dent repair and are familiar with what tools to use to effectively fix a dent, whatever the location or size. Some tools they use include:
- Dent pullers: A dent puller is a tool that is used to pull dents out from the inside. The dent puller has a small hook on the end that is inserted into the dent. The handle of the dent puller is then pulled, which acts as a giant plunger and pulls the dent out. This method is often used for smaller dents.
- Pliers: A mechanic will use pliers to fix a dent by first removing any loose paint or debris from the area around the dent. The pliers are then placed on either side of the Dent and squeezed together. This will cause the Dent to pop out. The area around the Dent is then sanded down and painted over. Pliers can be used to fix small, round dents or dents that are starting to pop out on their own.
- Stud welders: A stud welder is used to fix dents when the plunger and vacuum cleaner method doesn’t work. The stud welder welds a small metal stud onto the dent. The stud is then pulled out, taking the dent with it. A stud welder can fix all types of dents, but it is most commonly used for large dents or dents that are in difficult-to-reach areas. In these cases, the stud welder is often the only way to fix the problem.
- Hammer and dolly: The hammer and dolly method is a two-person job. One person holds the dolly on the underside of the dent while the other person uses a hammer to gently tap around the perimeter of the dent. This will cause the dent to pop out. The area around the dent is then sanded down and painted over. This method is used to fix dents that are not too deep and is less likely to damage the surrounding area than other methods.
Mechanics may also elect to use the Paintless Dent Removal (PDR) method. During PDR, specialist tools are used to press and massage the damaged panel from behind. As a result, the dented metal is pushed out to restore its original shape. This repairs the bodywork while maintaining the manufacturer’s paintwork finish. PDR is a newer, low-cost alternative to traditional dent repair methods. Because it does not require any sanding, painting, or drying, the process is both cheaper and quicker than other methods.
In methods where the paint is damaged, once the dent is pulled out, a mechanic may use a filler to restore and even out the surface of the car’s body. After applying a filler and hardener to the vehicle, the mechanic will sand the area until it is smooth and paint it to blend in with the rest of the car’s body.
At this point, the dent should no longer be noticeable! Your car is restored back to its former glory!
If you need collision repair in Northern Nevada, let the Liberty Collision team help! Call today and our friendly staff will answer all of your dent repair questions and schedule a quote.