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Survey: Favourite repairs and most common types of vehicle damage

This chart details what percentage of vehicles in respondents' facilities have sustained damage in more than one location.

Hamilton, Ontario — July 18, 2017 — “Bumpers. Fast and easy with high profitability.” Many repairers may agree with this anonymous comment left on our most recent survey. The survey focused on common types of repairs and vehicle damage, as well asking survey participants to name their favourite type of repair. 

A repairer who appreciates bumper hits is likely a happy person, as the front bumper is the part of the vehicle most commonly damaged in collisions, according to both common wisdom and the results of our latest reader survey. The roof, naturally, seems to be least likely to sustain damage according to the same survey.

Collision Repair magazine runs news surveys every week. Our next survey focuses on family relationships in collision repair and the larger automotive industry. You can participate in the new survey at this link.

Damage to rear bumpers is almost as common as damage to the front of the vehicle. Next most common, according to our survey, is damage to the fenders and doors or other side impacts. Broken headlights/taillights follow closely.

In addition to asking which types of damage were most commonly seen in their facilities, we also asked readers to let us know roughly what percentage of vehicles featured damage to more than one area.

This question revealed some surprising answers. Very often our survey questions result in one or two answers that are in the clear majority. That wasn’t the case here. There was something of a cluster to the answers, with 18 percent answering that between 30 and 40 percent of the vehicles that came into the shop had sustained damage in more than one area, and 16 percent answering that this fell between the 20 and 30 percent mark. Those answers were the clearest majority, but the numbers simply aren’t that high. The rest of the categories were very close to each other in terms of responses, as seen in the graph at the top right of the page.

Finally, we asked readers to let us know what their favourite type of repair was. This question was wide open, not multiple choice. Respondents could choose either a repair they liked to do personally, or designate a favourite for whatever reason they wished (high profitability, for example).

A few of these responses are presented below. As always, these responses are presented anonymously, with only minimal editing from us.

“Exactly! Repair! Not replacing parts! Yes, I know that is getting harder to do on most makes and models, but such small margins on mark-up, repair seems to benefit the bottom line.”

“Anything that is a challenge to me at this point in my career.”

“Structural repairs, making a mangled mess fit correctly again.”

“Jobs that require strictly repair without replacing parts.”

“Deer hits. Mostly cosmetic with light structural. High hour fast moving work.”

“Replacing rad supports, both weld in or bolt in. I always found them enjoyable to do hands-on for all the different parts of the job involved, measuring, welding, A/C, coolant change, R&I, proper alignment for fenders/hood/bumper and lights. These jobs can go quick, make good money and showcase your shop’s quality if done right by a skilled technician.”

Collision Repair magazine’s next survey focuses on family relationships, both inside and outside the collision repair business. You can participate in that survey at this link and make sure to watch for the results next Wednesday on collisionrepairmag.com!

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