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Does my windshield need to be replaced or repaired?

Ouch! A rock just hit your windshield, leaving a chip right in front of your face. Let’s hope it doesn’t spread. You’re probably wondering, does my windshield need to be replaced or repaired? Windshield repair or replacement depends on the size, location and severity of the damage. Most windshield repair shops can repair quarter-sized rock chips and cracks up to three inches long. There can be exceptions, so don’t assume the worst just yet if your rock chip is slightly bigger.

A windshield repair involves injecting a premier resin right into the chip or crack to fill the crack, so it does not progress. This injection also makes the chip or crack less noticeable as well. Make sure your vehicle is checked out by a certified repair and/or replacement facility. We find nowadays those that are not certified, often do not have the trained eye to steer you in the right direction. For example: you’ve seen those glass repair pop ups in parking lots from time to time, right? They only do windshield repair, not replacement. They’ll likely “repair” your windshield because they do not want to lose your business by recommending what you actually need. Which is a replacement. Make sure any repair or replacement facility is certified. We recommend doing your windshield repair or replacement as soon as possible. The longer you let your windshield sit (even if you’re not actually driving the car around town), the more likely you are to need a replacement.

Windshield repairs are much less expensive than replacements. There are unfortunate circumstances where you do everything right yet still need replacement. However, your auto insurance company may pay for either entirely. Many policies cover windshield damage 100% without even meeting the deductible. Broken or damaged windshields are the most common reason for pursuing an automotive insurance claim in the U.S. Many auto claims start with a baseball hitting the windshield, or destructive hail. Just remember, the most important thing to do after your vehicle’s windshield has been struck by a rock is to take it in to your local auto glass expert. Or, give them a call and ask if you can email them photos, so you’re not out driving around and making the damage worse.

Cline Collision Center is an auto body repair facility located in Santa Rosa, CA. We are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Give us a call at 707-591-9909 to learn more about what we have to offer you and your vehicle, today. Or, stop by for a free estimate!   

Is it better to repair or total a car?

This question all depends on your specific situation. For this post let’s assume your vehicle is borderline total loss. We’ll run through some scenarios to help you decide, below.

1.     I am upside down on my car loan

In this case it makes more sense to repair your vehicle. Nobody wants to pay for something they no longer own. The downfall here is when you try to sell the vehicle after it is paid off you will not be able to sell it with a clean title. However, you might make up for it with how great the vehicle looks after it has been transformed by a professional body shop.

2.     I just spent thousands at the automotive repair shop

Since you just put a lot of money into it mechanically, depending on the wreck it may still be a mechanically sound car. If you were rear ended this car would need some mechanical help, but not nearly as severe as if the whole front was smashed in. This is one you want to keep driving to get your money’s worth since you likely won’t make up for it selling it with a salvaged title. Plus, if you were to sell this one, you might end up with a used vehicle with thousands of dollars of problems. You should keep the one you know is running well in this scenario.

3.     I love my car

This is a reason you should keep your vehicle. Repairing your vehicle is cheaper than taking out a loan or paying monthly payments on a brand-new vehicle. It is often in the best interest of the insurance company to total a car, so you will need to look out for your own best interests.

4.     I do not love my car

This goes back to would you rather pay to fix it, or have monthly payments for a new car? Another option is to take the buyout of your old vehicle and put it towards another used vehicle. You might be thinking, well my buyout will be minimal. Always keep your receipts from repair shops. You can give this information to the adjuster and they will take it into consideration when determining the settlement you get for your total loss. If you do purchase a used vehicle, make sure you take it in to a trusted repair shop for a pre-purchase buyers’ inspection. The last thing you want after getting in an accident is to purchase a vehicle with thousands of dollars in problems. Cline Collision Center is a 5-star auto body repair facility located in Santa Rosa, CA. We are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Give us a call at 707-591-9909 to learn more about what we have to offer you and your vehicle, today. Or, stop by for a free estimate!    

How long does it take for an insurance company to fix your car?

What you should know about the repair process and dealing with insurance companies:

After a vehicle accident, you’re probably thinking something along the lines of: I have insurance, so how long will it take for them to fix my car? Here’s the thing, your insurance company has nothing to do with the actual repair of your vehicle. They do, however, have an employee known as an insurance adjuster come out to your chosen body shop to evaluate your vehicle, and approve repairs. This process typically takes 4-5 days.

Your insurance company will suggest you use a specific auto body shop. They might even come across with the attitude of you must have your vehicle repaired by the body shop of their choice. Here’s the thing, by law, it is YOUR choice who you pick to fix your vehicle. Insurance companies recommend certain body shops because it is beneficial to the insurance company. They have contracts in place that have negotiated lower parts and labor rates. Claims representatives have monthly goals in place that they should meet. Generally, these companies would like to see at least 40 percent of their auto claims go to their direct body shops. This is why if your decision is not one of their recommendations, they might try to sway you differently. Statements you might hear include “that shop isn’t in our preferred network” or “we can’t warranty the work performed at that shop” or “the charges at that shop are higher” or even “claims take longer to settle at that shop”. When you call your insurance company, know your right as a consumer is to choose the shop that works for you.

What to look for in an auto body shop:

1.     Choose a shop that is certified to repair your vehicle

Cline Collision Center is OEM certified by Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Jeep, Ram, MOPAR, SRT, Ford, Hyundai, Infiniti, Nissan, Honda, and Acura. Choosing a shop that is certified by your vehicle’s manufacturer means they certify that this shop are experts at what they do.

2.     Check out their Google and Yelp reviews

Most people only review when they have an extremely positive or extremely negative experience. However, it’ll still give you a general idea of what customers think about the body shop that is of interest to you.

3.     Professional and courteous staff

You being taken care of is just as important as your vehicle being taken care of. Choose a friendly shop, like Cline Collision Center.

4.     Will write a free written estimate

A written auto repair estimate is a contract between you and the repair shop that describes what will be done and how much it will cost. Getting this information in writing can help prevent problems down the road.

5.     Will detail your vehicle

It’s not the most important but every auto body shop should detail the vehicles they repair in order to deliver that new car look and feel. You’re spending big money, and the last thing you want to receive is a dirty vehicle. Cline Collision Center is an auto body repair facility located in Santa Rosa, CA. We are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Give us a call at 707-591-9909 to learn more about what we have to offer you and your vehicle, today. Or, stop by for a free estimate!    

Do Auto Body Shops Wash Your Car?

Yes, we do! Washing your vehicle before we paint it is a critical step in ensuring your new paint job comes out fantastic. We cannot effectively apply paint over a dirty vehicle. Even if paint is not involved, we still wash your vehicle to bring back that new car look when you get your vehicle back. In fact, many auto body shops detail your vehicle before you pick it up. Cline Collision Center takes it a step further and details the complete interior and exterior of your vehicle, for free!

Here’s some advice when it comes to washing your vehicle after it has had paint work completed:

1)     Don’t go for a wash immediately

If you’re like me, you can’t stand a dirty vehicle. Going through the car wash is such a convenience, but do not make this mistake for at least 3 months after your vehicle has been painted. In the first 30 days after your vehicle has been painted, take your car home and simply wash it down with cold water and a microfiber mitt in the shade. Be as careful as possible to avoid potential scratches. After 30 days you may apply soap. After 3 months you may go through the automatic car wash. If possible, opt for only touchless washes, and of course if possible, always hand wash yourself or take it to your favorite detailer that hand washes.

2)     Say no to joy rides (for now)

Say no to the drag race track, or joy rides blasting your favorite tunes. Only drive this vehicle when necessary for the first two months. If you have a second vehicle, let this vehicle be your garage queen for the next two months. This allows your paint to fully cure before being subjected to harsh weather conditions. Trust us, your patience will be so worth it!

3)     Did we mention, garage queen?

If you have garage space at home, leave your vehicle in the garage when you’re not using it. Tree sap, bird droppings, and acid rain are dangerous to your new clear coat. Even drastic changes in the temperature can affect the paint.

4)     We love waxing! Just not yet.

60 days after painting is the ideal time to wax your car again. Though no rush. We recommend you have a professional wax your vehicle once or twice per year with real carnauba wax to keep that shine year-round, and more importantly to protect the paint.

Cline Collision Center is a 5-star auto body repair facility located in Santa Rosa, CA. We are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Give us a call at 707-591-9909 to learn more about what we have to offer you and your vehicle, today. Or, stop by for a free estimate!

General Motors Will Stop Production at Five Plants in North America, Eliminate Some Car Models

General Motors has announced that it is “un-allocating” production at three vehicle assembly plants and two propulsion plants in North America.

Assembly plants that will be unallocated vehicles in 2019 include:

·       Oshawa Assembly in Oshawa, Ontario, Canada.

·       Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly in Detroit.

·       Lordstown Assembly in Warren, Ohio.

Propulsion plants that will be unallocated in 2019 include:

·       Baltimore Operations in White Marsh, Maryland.

·       Warren Transmission Operations in Warren, Michigan.

They will be laying off up to 14,000 workers, however some could be moved to truck and SUV plants. This move is due to declining car sales as consumers are more interested in crossovers, electric vehicles, and autonomous cars. GM is interested in hiring those that are experts in software and electric and autonomous vehicles, letting go those who are now working on conventional cars that are equipped with internal combustion engines.

Wondering which models are on their way out the door? We’ve compiled a list of what we know so far.

1.     Chevrolet Volt

This surprises us the most. Weren’t plug in cars supposed to be the future?

2.     Cadillac CT6

Sad to see it go. Did you know that its semi-autonomous super cruise system still hasn’t been surpassed by any other company’s technology, not even the Tesla’s autopilot? Exciting news though is that the last of these Cadillac’s to be sold will be twin-turbo V8 V-Series models. They’ve got to at least go out with a bang!

3.     Chevrolet Impala

This one is headed out the door due to consumers preferring a traverse or equinox these days.

4.     Chevrolet Cruze

If you were looking for a small and affordable American vehicle, it was either this or the focus. We wish they would have at least tried out a Cruze SS before pulling the plug on its production.

5.     Buick LaCrosse

This was a luxury car for a Buick but was pulled simply because there was nothing there that stood out to excite people to purchase it.

6.     Cadillac XTS

It was announced 3 years ago that Cadillac would not continue the XTS past 2019, so we’re not too shocked to hear this. There’re just too many similarly sized Cadillac sedans around for this one to stand out in a crowd (think ATS, CTS, XTS, and CT6).

Cline Collision Center is an OEM certified repair shop located in Santa Rosa, CA. We offer auto body collision repair, auto body refinishing, frame straightening, bumper repair, car painting, dent removal, dent repair, and are excited to offer a free detail with every repair. Choose Cline Collision Center to get back that new car look and feel!

OEM Collision Repair Parts and Procedures Bill Becomes Law in Rhode Island

Rhode Island Senate Bill 2679 (SB 2679), that expands the state’s existing requirement that consumers be given the right to choose and insurers pay for OEM parts on claims for 30 months after a vehicle is manufactured to all claims for a period of 48 months, is now law in Rhode Island. The bill that was approved by the Rhode Island legislature in June along with its companion House Bill 8013 took effect without Governor Raimondo’s signature on July 4. This means that insurance companies in Rhode Island no longer require use of aftermarket auto body parts, and more importantly do not install these after market parts onto a vehicle without the owner’s consent. So long as their vehicle is less than 48 months beyond the vehicle’s manufacture date. There are some ups and downs to this law going into place for consumers. The upside is that you have more control of what parts go onto your new car. Some of you might be thinking “this is amazing who would want after market parts on their vehicle”? While OEM parts will restore your vehicle back to factory specifications (which, most people would prefer because their vehicle is still very new), some people like replacing parts with aftermarket ones when they either mechanically fail or get damaged by accident. Think of Jeeps. Many Jeep owners swap out the entire look of the vehicle, for after market parts. However, insurers are not to thrilled about this because it costs more to put OEM parts on vehicle’s most of the time. For example, The Property Casualty Insurers Association of America initially wanted this bill to be thrown out as it could create pressure to raise auto insurance premiums and raise auto repair costs.

“We’re disappointed that the governor decided to let this bill become law,” said Frank O’Brien, vice president of state government relations for PCI, in a statement to Insurance Journal. “It is yet another in a series of auto body-related bills that the Rhode Island legislature has passed and have gone into effect which do nothing but increase rates for Rhode Island consumers so that the auto body industry in Rhode Island can continue to make the kind of money that it makes.”

O’Brien had previously spoken out in a PCI press release against the bill when it passed the General Assembly, adding that, “Rhode Island drivers, as a result, could end up paying the highest auto insurance premiums in the U.S.”

As a consumer, what do you think about this new law? Should California consider implementing this too? Cline Collision Center is an OEM certified collision repair facility. Give us a call today to schedule your free estimate.

Adhesive Bonding: The Game Changer 

Adhesive bonding for vehicles has been around since the 1960s. When done properly it is a very efficient way of bonding the vehicle. Some people are worried about the end result when choosing adhesive bonding, however, as long as the certified technician follows the exact vehicle manufacturer guidelines, there won’t be an issue. If a technician opted to guess the manufacturer guidelines, as you might have guessed this can turn into a disaster. Adhesive-only repairs should be done only when there is a written procedure from the vehicle manufacturer for that year, make and model.

The advantages to using adhesives during manufacturing include:

· Adding strength to a vehicle

· Reducing weight

· Reducing noise, vibration and harshness

· Adding to corrosion protection, extending the vehicle’s end of life

Adhesive bonding can be applied to many types of repairs. You can bond dissimilar metals or any other materials. There’s no worry of metals being sensitive to heat, as they can function in extreme temperatures. All of these advantages make adhesives a great addition to our shop. Training is crucial to the success of any body work but especially with adhesive bonding. This is why we send our technicians to ongoing education courses so that they can continue to perfect their craft. Adhesive-only bonding is used by all manufacturers on almost every vehicle. The windshield, for example, is adhesively bonded to the vehicle.

Rivet Bonding is another form of bonding that was brought to life by the new F-150’s. Body shops did not really use rivet bonding before the new F-150’s came out because they were not sure of its reliability, or really, how to do it. Once Ford brought out these aluminum trucks, body shops were forced to learn in order to fix these trucks. We all learned that the process is straightforward!

Rivets alone are susceptible to failing as the bonding of the two materials may allow for movement over time from repeated stress. Rivets and welds also break loose. The combination of rivets and adhesive corrects the weakness of either system being used alone, which gives manufacturers a no-heat bond that would damage many steels or other metals. This combination also makes it easy for us to restore vehicles to factory specifications, keeping up with the vehicle’s required engineering specs.

As with rivets, adhesives can be used with welding panels together also. Squeeze-type resistance spot welding can weld through many adhesives to form a strong, long-lasting bond. We use machines capable of weld bonding and have pulse energy in order to make a correct spot weld.

At Cline Collision Center, we are trained and licensed to perform whichever type of bonding is best suited for your vehicle make and model. Give us a call today to schedule your vehicle at 707.591.9909 for a free estimate!

How to Avoid Corrosion

People often worry that their vehicle will rust out after the auto body repair. Anytime one of our technicians needs to cut into the body of the vehicle, it is now different than when it left the factory. However, a quality trained and licensed technician, like ours at Cline Collision Center can put it back exactly the way it left the factory. Without proper schooling and training, we do not recommend taking on your own body repair. When repairing body damage to your vehicle it is crucial to not miss a step, in order to ensure a clean metal surface. Corrosion is not always visible, unless it causes the paint to blister or raise. Here are some helpful tips we use to avoid corrosion:

1.     Don’t forget to put on gloves and follow instructions for metal treatments and primers during the paint refinishing stages. Did you know that the oil from your bare hands touching the metal can interfere with the primer quality?

2.     Drill all necessary holes before you begin the refinishing process. Remember to clean each hole of flakes to make sure there is no metal residue hanging around during the refinishing process. That would cause galvanic corrosion to occur.

3.     Clean welds thoroughly and apply corrosion protection or primers according to the paint makers recommendations.

4.     It is critical that there is no water in the air supply when spraying, so be sure to check your filters often for moisture.

5.     Make sure there is no moisture surrounding the vehicle before refinishing. We know it sounds basic but read the instructions for every step in the process to ensure a corrosion free outcome!

Each vehicle manufacturer sends out what is called a TSB, which stands for “technical service bulletin”. This booklet explains to the technician how to make each repair, in great detail. TSB’s explain to a technician every single step required in order to replicate the factory construction process. Cline Collision Center follows each of the booklets to a “T” to ensure you’re getting factory specified repair completed.

Cline Collision Center is a 5-star auto body facility located in Santa Rosa, CA. We offer auto body collision repair, auto body refinishing, frame straightening, bumper repair, car painting, dent removal, dent repair, and are excited to offer a free detail with every repair. When you choose Cline Collison Center it will be like bringing home a brand-new car again. See you soon!

References: 

https://rts.i-car.com/collision-rpair-news/back-to-basics-corrosion.html

Why Spies Hecker Paint is the Best Choice

Why Spies Hecker Paint is the Best ChoiceSpies Hecker may or may not be a name you’re familiar with, but we certainly are. In the collision repair industry, we work with Spies Hecker paints and refinishing products regularly as part of our repair and restoration process. It’s an old brand, with a history dating back more than 130 years, back to the days when they were painting coaches rather than cars. We trust them to put out high-quality and innovative products that do right by our customers.

What brought us to that position? It’s pretty simple, really – they’re a great company that makes a great product. More than that, though, the product works. They put extensive focus on technology, incorporating it into how they invent, produce, and ship their products. They do much more than simple paint. They also create primer, base coat, UV-curing, clear coat, and much more. It’s everything we need to make your car look its best again.

They also produce a range of tools to help us do our job better, from the Quantum EFX Spectrophotometer for measuring color to their extensive color formula online search, we’re able to quickly and easily match your exact paint color for a flawless finish. It makes our job easier, certainly, but more importantly, it helps us provide the best possible service for our customers so that their vehicle looks as good as new when they get it back after a collision.

Paint-matching is as much a science as it is an art, so any help we can get to ensure we do it well is well worth it in our opinion. With the help of their primers and surfacers, we’re not only able to exactly match your paint color, we’re also able to use a high-quality base that makes it sit just right, dry quickly, and sand well. It’s also approved by multiple car manufacturers for use with OEM parts, which is no small feat.

We love Spies Hecker paint tools, primers, surfacers, and clear coats. When we work with their products, we know we’re working with the best. Now you do, too. Have questions? We’ll be happy to answer. Cline Collision repairs most major makes and models of car and truck, whether you need dent removal or extensive body work. We also include refinishing with our services so your car looks like you drove it fresh off the lot for a second time.

What Are the Benefits of Electric vs Hybrid Vehicles?

You’re trying to decide whether you should buy an electric or hybrid vehicle – congratulations! You’re taking a step toward the future. As we move away from gasoline engines and toward a more sustainable fuel or power source for our cars and trucks, we’re getting that much closer to reducing our negative impact on our air, our environment, and our planet. It’s a big step. But now comes the bigger question: which greener vehicle do you choose and why?

What Are the Benefits of Electric vs Hybrid Vehicles?

First, let’s review the difference between an electric vehicle and a hybrid vehicle.

Electric vehicles, or EVs, are powered by electricity alone. That electricity can be generated in a number of ways depending on the type of vehicle, from solar panels to batteries holding a charge. Many vehicles run on electric power, including trains and buses, but for our purposes, we’re discussing personal vehicles like cars and trucks.

Hybrid vehicles use combined engines that can run on both gasoline (or ethanol) and electricity. They are a marriage between traditional combustion engines and newer electric vehicles. There are different types of hybrids – some generate their own power by charging the battery through the internal combustion engine and regenerative braking, while others are “plug-in” vehicles, which means they charge more like a typical electric car by using a charging station.

What are the pros and cons of an electric car?

These days with the push for alternate energy and greener solutions, there are a lot of rebates and incentives for owning an electric vehicle. Electric cars offer a lot more simplicity than their combustion engine counterparts – their engines are more streamlined and don’t have nearly as many moving parts. This makes repairs and service relatively straightforward. Not a lot of surprises there. They release no emissions, which eliminates the need for emissions testing, and electricity is a more affordable option than gasoline when you crunch the numbers. They also operate very quietly – no rumbling engine to worry about.

On the con side, electric vehicles require a higher upfront cost and a significant amount of time to charge. There’s a limited range to a full battery charge and far less accessibility when it comes to recharging your car – charging stations remain much more difficult to find than gas stations. If you don’t have access to a proper charging outlet at your home, charging there can be a problem.

What are the pros and cons of a hybrid car?

There are different types of hybrid vehicles, but we’ll be focusing mainly on a “parallel” hybrid, which is what most people think of when they think of these cars. The advantage here is that you get excellent fuel efficiency and save on gas costs thanks to an electric engine that doesn’t require you to rely solely on your combustion engine. For traveling longer distances, these cars are ideal because you can switch over to the internal combustion engine and find gas more easily. It’s a great compromise between cost and alternative energy.

However, they are more expensive than a standard ICE vehicle and typically have lower power output. The ICE still leaves the issue of emissions. While lesser, they are still a concern, as is emissions testing.

What do you think? Which sort of vehicle feels right for you?