OEM Certification Requires Culture Shift for Body Shops

There’s a giant gap between body shops willing to invest in the training, tools, and equipment to perform proper repairs and those that aren’t, according to a recent article in Body Shop Business. Experts note that there are a relative handful of really good autobody shops in the county. After those elite shops, there is a steep decline.  

For those that aren’t there yet, getting up to date and staying there is an uphill climb.

First, there is the cost. Training requires technicians to take time away from the repairs that make money for shops. Acquiring proper tools and state-of-the-art equipment isn’t cheap either. It requires a culture shift away from short-term profits to long term thinking.

Management has to completely change their thinking. They need to switch from relentlessly maximizing productive hours and bottom-line numbers to building a new blueprint for estimating and parts procurement that includes new training and equipment.   

Why does this culture shift need to happen now?

Technology is changing so quickly that shops not investing now will only fall further behind. Owners who don’t put money into training, tools, and equipment is guaranteeing poor quality for their customers.

This isn’t just about money. It is also about mindset. For those that have been in business 20 years, they may resist these changes. “I know what I’m doing,” they say. But this opposition will leave them unprepared as the auto industry hurtles forward.

Experts suggest that everyone in the shop needs to be willing to learn. Approaching the business as a perpetual student is the only way to give customers and their cars the safe reliable service they need. As the rate of technological change increases, so does the need for education and equipment that moves shops into the future.

Cline Collision Center continues to invest so that it is an elite autobody shop now, as well as in the future. We are FCA US Certified. This guarantees that we use OEM parts in repairs, ensuring fit and function you can depend on. It also tells you our technicians are trained to restore your vehicle to pre-collision condition. We are also certified by Ford, Chrysler-Fiat, Hyundai, Infinity/Nissan, Kia and Honda for services including auto detailingdent removal, and exact-match painting. Contact us online or call us at 707-591-9909 today!

What Does MOPAR Stand For?

At Cline Auto Collision, we’re a MOPAR auto body shop, but what does that actually mean?

What is MOPAR?

MOPAR was named by combining the words “motor” and “parts.” MOPAR is the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FAC) Global Service and Parts division that’s responsible for manufacturing and distributing authentic replacement parts, components and accessories for Fiat, Chrysler, Jeep, and Dodge vehicles. Despite being a department within the Fiat Chrysler organization, many car owners refer to all vehicles produced by them as MOPAR.

What is a MOPAR Shop?

As a MOPAR auto body shop, this means we only use OEM (original equipment manufacturer) parts for all FAC repairs. The label of MOPAR is the same as saying that we’re FAC certified and means FAC has acknowledged that we meet their strict standards for repairing all makes and models manufactured by them. We make sure not only to use OEM parts but also to follow factory approved procedures and recommended equipment for every FAC repair job.

Why Use MOPAR Parts?

It’s crucial to use MOPAR parts for your FAC vehicles because every part is engineered specifically for your car. While aftermarket or generic parts can cut costs significantly, they may be of poor quality, fit irregularly, or may even potentially alter the appearance or structural integrity of your vehicle. Using MOPAR parts will ensure you receive high-quality repairs that restore your vehicle to factory standards while keeping your vehicle safe and reliable. If you’re in need of repairs for your FAC vehicle, contact Cline Collision Center! We’re proud to be a MOPAR auto body shop offering superior repairs that will make your vehicle look and feel like new.

What is an OEM Authorization Certificate?

If you’re searching the net for auto body shops, you may have noticed that some of them say they’re OEM certified. There used to be two types of shops you could go to for repairs: auto dealerships and independent body shops. The main difference was that dealerships were typically pricier, but they offered higher quality repairs than body shops. There’s now a third choice: OEM certified or authorized body shops.

OEM stands for original equipment manufacturer; when a shop receives an OEM Authorization Certificate, it means that the auto body shop has been recognized by manufacturers as working within their repair parameters. This means the shop uses only factory-approved parts, follows factory-directed procedures for repairs, and has the proper equipment to complete the repairs within factory specifications.  It also means that all the technicians are fully trained in all aspects of OEM procedures.

Why does being OEM certified make a difference for your repairs? Our technicians are experts on each of the manufacturers, makes and models that we’re OEM certified to work on. They understand the different materials used by each manufacturer, the best tool for the job, and the best procedure to use to make a high-quality repair. For example, the Ford F-150 has an aluminum frame; aluminum requires different equipment to make repairs than a vehicle that uses a steel frame. Since we’re OEM certified by Ford, we have the proper equipment to perform an ideal repair, returning your vehicle back to factory standards. 

At Cline Collision Center, we’re OEM certified to work on a Ford, Fiat, Chrysler, Hyundai, Nissan, Kia, and Honda. This means each of these manufacturers has fully recognized that we meet or exceed all OEM repair standards set forth by them. Our technicians are highly trained on OEM procedures and are certified through the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) and Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (II-CAR), considered the gold standard of auto body certifications. 

If you have any questions about OEM authorization certification and how it may relate to repairs your vehicle needs, feel free to give us a call. Our friendly staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have. 

Is OEM the same as original?

Cline Collision Center prides itself on being an OEM auto body shop. You can see our list of OEM certifications here, for car makers like Honda, Hyundia, Infiniti, Nissan, Ford, Dodge, Chrysler, and Kia. You may have heard the term OEM over and over again and wonder what it means and the burning question: is OEM the same as original? 

What does OEM mean?

OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, and indicates that the manufacturer was the original producer of the part – fenders, quarter panels, headlight cover, grills, etc – when the car was built. In car lingo, original parts are used to refer to the parts that the car is assembled with in the factory. Every piece of the car as it exits the factory is an original part. Anything that is replaced, including a tail light, is no longer an original part. However, OEM parts are the same as the original in the sense that they are made by the same manufacturer, with the same materials, to the same specifications. OEM parts are markedly different than aftermarket parts. Aftermarket parts have questionable quality; while they may be cheaper, they also may be inferior and more likely to show uneven wear, not align with the seams of the car, and break down over time. By using OEM parts car owners know that they not only receive a vehicle that is completely returned to factory standard in appearance, they also know their car is restored in structural integrity as well.

After a collision, your car may need repairs to the body. While the replacement parts will not be original to the vehicle, they will be OEM parts that seamlessly fit in with your vehicle and ensure its resale value, structural integrity, and restored appearance. Cline Collision Center always uses OEM parts and proper repair procedures and equipment, which is why we are recognized by so many auto makers as a factory approved facility. Need auto body repairs to your vehicle after an accident? Call us today!

What is the difference between OEM and OE?

There are a lot of different terms used when it comes to auto body. There’s OEM, OE, aftermarket, alternative, the list seems to go on and on. We talked in another post about what MOPAR means. One of the biggest questions car owners have is: what is the difference between OEM and OE?

OEM stands for original equipment manufacturer. OE stands for original equipment. OE parts are the components of the vehicle as it’s made in the factory – all of the original parts that the car was first built with. Once the car comes out of the factory, everything else is not an OE part.

OEM is original equipment manufacturer, which means this manufacturer was the original manufacturer of the part and is approved for use in the brand’s vehicles. For example, Cline Collision Center is certified by Honda, Kia, Ford, Nissan, Fiat Chrysler, Hyundai, and Infiniti as an approved collision center. These certifications acknowledge our high tech equipment, adherence to factory-approved procedures, highly trained auto technicians, and dedication to using OEM parts. OEM parts are created for specific makes and models, and approved by the automaker, to fit in the car. By using OEM parts, you uphold the structural integrity of your vehicle, retain its resale value, and make sure it retains a seamless appearance.

Use OEM Parts for the Best Auto Body Repairs

Although sometimes used interchangeably, the terms OE and OEM are different. OE parts are the parts your car exited the factory with. Certain things – like bulbs and belts – are going to have to be replaced. Other times, an accident means your vehicle needs major repairs. By using OEM parts you can ensure your vehicle gets the best repairs. Cline Collision Center is committed to only using OEM parts. “Alternative” parts, such as parts that are salvaged off a totaled vehicle, cheaper versions made by other manufactures, and parts that you don’t know the origin of, might be cheaper, but you don’t know where they come from. They could weaken your vehicle’s structural integrity, wear out before other parts, or not fit seamlessly with your car. Get the best parts – and the best service! – by turning to Cline Collision Center.

OEM Certification And What It Means

It used to be that there were car dealerships and independent body shops. Car owners could decide to take their vehicle to the dealership for auto body repairs or go to a local independent body shop. Dealerships are typically pricier, while independent body shops are less reputable and may offer substandard repairs.

However, there’s a better option. There are now OEM certified independent body shops, that offer high quality repairs that have been approved by the automaker, with the convenience and price break of using a local facility. OEM Certification requires numerous stipulations like:


·         Having the facility and equipment necessary to complete the highest standard of work

·         Thoroughly trained and well qualified auto technicians

·         Only using OEM parts


OEM stands for original equipment manufacturer. OEM certification means that a body shop has been acknowledged to only use factory-approved parts. It also means that the facility has the correct equipment to install those parts, and uses only factory-approved procedures. For example, Cline Collision Center is a Ford Recognized auto body facility. This means that Ford has authorized Cline to do work on all Ford vehicles, including the new F-150 that has an aluminum frame. Aluminum frame vehicles require different equipment than traditional steel ones; because of the corrosive nature of the metals, completely separate equipment, tools, and space is needed when working on an aluminum vehicle. Cline has the right environment to offer top-notch Ford repairs.


OEM Certifications from Several of the Top Automakers

Ford isn’t the only automaker that has recognized Cline Collision Center’s work as meeting or exceeding the stringent standards expected for top-tier auto body repair. We are also certified through Fiat Chrysler, Hyundai, Infiniti, Nissan, Kia, and Honda. In fact, our technicians carry the highest level of training, including certification through Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) and Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (II-CAR), the gold standard of auto body certifications. If you have any other questions about OEM Certification and how it pertains to your vehicle’s repairs, call Cline Collision Center.

What is an OEM endorsement?

If you’ve ever been involved in a car accident, you know that the last thing you want to worry about in the moment is whether or not you’ll get quality repairs with OEM parts, or if your insurance will recommend cheap knockoffs.

Many insurance companies steer their customers towards using aftermarket parts. These knockoffs are cheaper and cost the insurance company less money in repairs. However, these parts are not specially made for your vehicle, could pose a safety risk, and could deteriorate faster than their OEM counterparts.

An OEM endorsement is an additional clause on your insurance that ensures aftermarket parts won’t be used to repair your vehicle. With this stipulation, you make sure that only original equipment manufacturer auto parts are used on your car.

Where can you go for OEM collision repair? Cline Collision Center in Santa Rosa can help you. Our MOPAR and FCA certifications give you the advantage of knowing our technicians will be using OEM parts on all of the repairs they make on your vehicle. These parts are made and designed specially to fit your vehicle exactly, while guaranteeing both that it will once again function to the best of its ability and that it will look exactly like it did before any damages took place.

Everyone knows that car accidents are extremely stressful, inconvenient and potentially costly events. Let us make the process a little bit easier for you by coordinating with your insurance, giving you updates on all of your repairs, and offering consistent and quality customer service throughout the entire process.

Cline Collision Center is also a locally owned, operated, and loved Santa Rosa business. Our customers trust us to prioritize the overall performance of their vehicles with top-quality service in order to guarantee the absolute safety of its passengers. Give us a call today at (707) 591-9909 to make an appointment.