The complex world of frame damage and repairs on modern cars requires you understand signs and symptoms to ensure you and your family stay safe. Our auto body shop expert team will teach you and serve you in St. Louis with unrivaled expertise so you confidently know what steps to take. So, step in to our virtual collision repair center and lets talk about the essential aspects of identifying a damaged car and if it can be fixed. Securing your driving future without a tow truck in sight!
Types of Automobile Frames and Why It Matters
Two prominent designs dictate how a car or truck is built: the unibody frame and the body-on-frame. Here’s a breakdown, comparing them during collisions and subsequent repairs.
A unibody frame is one unit, making the vehicle lighter with better handling. These tend to crumple more during a collision, absorbing the impact forces, potentially offering protection for occupants. However, repair processes might be more complicated and costly, as damage is more widespread involving critical parts of the frame and core support such as strut towers.
Body-on-frame vehicles, commonly in trucks and SUVs, have separate bodies and frames. This is more rugged and can withstand severe impacts without extensive damage to the body. During collision, the force might not be absorbed as effectively, passing more shock to occupants. Repairing might be easier, as sections of the frame can be replaced independently.
Recognizing Signs of Car Frame Damage
Would you let your child ride their bike with structural problems like a wobbly wheel? Driving with frame damage puts you at risk as it affects vehicle control and compromises safety during accidents. Safety first!
Keeping your vehicle running smoothly starts with recognizing the signs of car frame damage early. Imagine your car as a jigsaw puzzle. Sometimes pieces might not fit perfectly, indicating something isn’t right. Let’s spot these signs in your car early on:
- Tire Wear: Picture shoes. If one shoe wears out quicker, it means you’re not balanced properly. Similarly, if one tire wears out, there is a problem with the car body or frame. Sometimes you find this sign on a spare tire due to a bent car frame.
- Misaligned Panels: Imagine a drawer that won’t close. If doors, bumpers, or the gas cap on your car or truck doesn’t align, check for frame damages to see why the metal sheet or carbon fiber panels aren’t fitting right.
- Drifting: Picture sailing a boat drifting sideways without you steering it that way. If your car or truck moves slightly to the side when driving straight, inspect your frame shape after that car drive.
Helping Us To Help You
Knowing the kinds of car frame damage our clients have identified in their passenger cars helps us to fix them better. Think of this as a doctor knowing what medicine to give once they know what sickness you have. Here are the types of car frame damage and what they mean:
1. Sway: When the car frame is pushed to one side, making the damaged car look like a parallelogram instead of a rectangle.
2. Diamond: Makes the car difficult to drive in a straight line, like a cart with wobbly wheels.
3. Twist: Imagine if your car was a towel, and someone twisted it from the top and the bottom. That’s twist damage and these cars require frame straighteners to fix the frame damage.
4. Sagging: When the middle of the car frame dips down, like a hammock hanging between trees.
Fixing a bent car frame often requires special tools such as frame straighteners or a strut tower and replacement parts or a rocker panel to protect you during a collision to make it as good as new.
Does Insurance Cover Frame Repair?
Insurance policies differ greatly depending on multiple factors – location being one of them (those good old Missouri laws!). Typically though, if you have comprehensive or collision coverage, they should cover repairs after an accident.
Here are the steps we take at our auto shop to fix the structural integrity of car frames:
Step 1. Checking and Understanding Frame Damage
Just like a detective, auto body shops first look for clues like it’s integrity and damage to crumple zones. We check for pulling or sway to understand what the problem is and even use special tools to find out what kind of frame damage has happened.
Step 2. Using Modern Ways to Fix Frame Damage
Next, we use really cool tools and techniques, like using a computer to make sure everything lines up perfectly, to fix the car just right.
Step 3. Making Sure Everything is Perfect
After Frame Damage Is Repaired
After we fix the car at our body shop, we check it from the front to the rear quarter panel and t the electric wiring to make sure everything is just perfect, and your car is happy and healthy again.
You know how your garden tomatoes can’t be rushed, and only taste the best when given time to grow? The same goes for frame repair. It’s not an overnight job and could take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks depending on the severity of the structural damage.
Once your car or truck is fixed … keep it safe! Here are some tips:
– Regular Checks: We go to the doctor for check-ups. Cars and trucks need regular check-ups too to catch small problems before they become severe damage.
– Getting Expert: Unsure about something? Always ask an expert (like us!) for support.
– Quality Parts: Always choose good quality replacement parts. Fixing things with the right pieces makes them lasts longer.
Taking care of your car or truck let’s it take care of you. We’ll help you repair car frame damage if needed. We can even make dealing with your insurance company a walk in the park!