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Car Paint Protection in Summer Heat

Posted on: July 8th, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

car paint protectionThere are many benefits to living in the Mile High city, but the effect of the sun on vehicle paint is not one of them. If you’re looking for ways to protect your vehicle’s paint in the summer heat, there are a few things you can do.  And, if all else fails and you need shiny new car paint and refinishing, we can help!

Limit Sun Exposure  

Like most things, when continually exposed to sunlight, your vehicle’s paint will start to fade. This takes quite a bit of sun exposure, but one way to protect your paint in the summer heat is to keep direct sun exposure to a minimum. Park in your garage whenever possible and look for spots in the parking lots or on trees that offer some shade coverage. Not only does it make a difference in the comfort of your vehicle’s interior when you get back in, but it also shields your paint from unnecessary sun damage.  

 Wax  

Believe it or not, a coat of fresh wax can protect your paint from the sun, too. You can apply this yourself or have it applied at a full-service carwash location. Waxing your vehicle just adds another layer of protection between your vehicle and the harmful UV rays of the bright Colorado summer sun.  

Regular Car Paint Maintenance  

Regular maintenance is important for your vehicle year-round for a number of reasons, but as part of a regular checkup, your technician may recognize signs of wear and tear that you missed. Early awareness of potential paint peeling or fading due to sun and extreme heat exposure can help you reverse the damage and prevent any further damage as well.  

Paint Protection Coats  

If you want to add even more protection, there are paint protective coats that can be applied in order to add more protection than a simple wax or limited sun exposure. If getting out there and spending long periods of time on the road is just part of your life, this might be the best choice for you. These protective paint coatings should be applied by a professional and are likely available at your local auto body repair shop.  

 Let’s face it, the elements can take a toll on your vehicle over time. Whether you’re worried about springtime hail, debris, and tree branches from those unexpected summer afternoon storms, or the heat of the summer sun, there are always extra steps you can take to keep your vehicle protected. After all, paint integrity is one of the things that protects the other parts of your car from wear and tear, so wanting to keep that paint coat as perfect as possible for as long as possible makes sense on more than just an aesthetic level. If you’re curious about a professionally-applied protection coat for your paint, give us a call at 303-344-2212 or schedule a free estimate.

Summer Car Maintenance – Key Things to Check in the Summer

Posted on: June 29th, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

summer car maintenance

Even though many of us are driving less often these days, maintaining your car’s health in the summer is as important as ever. After all, the last thing you need is a breakdown when you finally get to take that road trip into the mountains after quarantining all these months. So what should you pay attention to this time of year? As your Denver auto body shop, here are a few things to consider.  

Coolant  

Coolant is important for your engine year-round, but obviously the necessity of ensuring the right coolant levels is more important in the summer. Because you’re dealing with hotter temperatures and instances where your car may have to be left out in the sun for long periods of time, your engine needs the assistance of well-maintained coolant levels to cool down properly and avoid overheating.  

A/C Status  

Just like your engine needs to be able to avoid overheating, so do you. Maintaining comfortable driving environments is important for your health as well as the health of your car. Make sure your air conditioning system is in proper working order and if it’s not, consider getting an appointment with your local repair shop as soon as possible.   

Battery Health  

Your car’s battery should always be in as good of condition as possible, but during the summer it’s especially important. Because summer heat can wreak havoc on battery conditions if your battery is already struggling, getting a “wellness check” done on your vehicle with your regular oil change during the summer is incredibly important. After all, your vehicle doesn’t do you a whole lot of good without a working battery.  

Tire Inflation  

Just like winter temperatures can cause problems with your tire’s air levels, the summer can, too. Not only are there often more sharp objects and debris on the roads during the summer that might cause a puncture in your tire, but the heat itself can cause your tires’ air levels to fluctuate. Driving on under-inflated tires in the summer is especially dangerous because it increases the likelihood of your tires overheating, and paired with the high temperatures, puts you at a much greater risk for a tire blowout. Keep in mind that tires usually lose about one pound of pressure over the course of a month from normal seepage, and aim to check on your tires’ air levels at least monthly.  

All Fluids 

Ensuring your coolant levels are appropriate in the summer is critical, but so is ensuring all fluid levels in your vehicle are topped off and ready to roll. Almost all the fluids present in your vehicle’s engine system serve as a minor coolant for your engine, so letting any one of these go too low could result in engine damage or overheating.  

Keeping things cool (outside and in), and maintaining proper tire health are your two main needs for summer vehicle maintenance, but just as with all the other regular maintenance needs (filter replacement, oil change, etc), keeping an eye on the overall health of your vehicle and the systems that help it run smoothly is as important now as ever. 

As always, if you are out and about and should have a need for auto body repair, please do give us a call or schedule your free estimate.

Planning a Roadtrip During COVID

Posted on: June 22nd, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

roadtips during covid

Summer is so often the time that families gear up and get ready for road trips. This year, things look very different for all of us. With air travel still not recommended unless necessary and self-quarantining still encouraged for those with weakened immune systems, Coronavirus has shifted how families might getaway this summer. If you’re itching for a little travel but unsure how to approach it amidst the pandemic, as your Denver auto body shop, here are some tips to consider.  

Pack Cleaning Supplies  

Everywhere you’re going to go right now is likely to have strict cleanliness guidelines to follow, but if you’re worried, or want to be able to clean, wipe, and sanitize as you go (especially if that road trip is including stops at multiple gas stations along the way), pack your own cleaning supplies! It never hurts to have extra sanitizing wipes and hand sanitizer on hand.  

Don’t Forget Your Masks  

Wearing masks or face coverings that fully cover your mouth and nose is just good sense right now. It’s the first line of defense everyone has, and everyone wearing their masks does the most good toward keeping people healthy and safe, and COVID-19 on the decline. Whether you have disposable masks for your family or cloth, reusable ones, don’t forget to bring them along. It may not be on your usual pre-vacation checklist, but for your 2020 trips, it’s a requirement. 

 Prepare for Longer Waits  

Everyone is doing their best adjusting to the new guidelines, but because of social distancing guidelines and the state orders that require them, you should be prepared to have to wait a little longer than normal if you’re hoping to go out on the town wherever you’re visiting. It might ask quite a bit of your patience, but it’s just part of life these days.  

 Be Safe  

What “safe” looks like outside the necessary guidelines will look different for everyone, but following social distancing practices and washing your hands frequently should still be high on your list of priorities, even on vacation.  

 Self-Quarantine 

Especially if you’re traveling to mountain towns where the pandemic first broke out in Colorado, but regardless of where you end up road tripping to, when you get home, self-quarantining for 2 weeks is the sensible thing to do.   

 At the end of the day, choosing to travel is still exposing you to more risk of the virus than staying put would. But if that travel bug just really has you itching, using these tips should help make your trip safer without taking all the fun out of getting away with your loved ones.   

Best Wipers to Survive Colorado’s Rainy Season

Posted on: June 1st, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

Windshield wipers are one of those vehicle features that either make your life much easier or make it incredibly difficult. Your windshield needs to be clear in order for you to see the road ahead of you, and that’s pretty critical to driving safely. If you’ve ever had a pair of bad wiper blades before, you know how quickly that can muck up your line of sight (which can lead to the need for auto body repair). So, as we head into Colorado’s rainy season, we wanted to look at a few places for consideration when it’s time to replace your wipers. 

Beam Blade vs Bracket Type 

Beam blade and bracket-type wipers are the two main categories of wipers you’ll find on the market. Bracket types are often a bit cheaper, but because the wipers are attached to a metal frame, the way they wipe your windshield can get far less effective when exposed to snow and icy conditions. This is less of a consideration for the rainy season, but a beam blade wiper typically has a better ability to adhere to the curvature of your windshield, making it more effective in most cases. 

Pay Attention to Fit 

Even the “best” wipers on the market aren’t going to do a darn thing for your vehicle if they aren’t the right size for your make and model. Pay attention to fit when buying new wipers so you can ensure a clear and full field of vision no matter what the weather. If you’re not sure what fit to look for, a quick Google search of “your make and model + windshield wiper size” ought to do the trick. 

You Don’t Need Fancy Features 

There are a number of wipers out there that offer a host of new and innovative features, but we like to make it clear that those are simply added perks that you can choose if you want. However, you don’t need them to have effective wipers that keep your windshield clear against even harsh weather. However, if you’re hankering for some heated wipers to make your winter days easier, well, we can’t say we blame you. 

Consider Wiper Lifespan 

When looking at your options, remember that your wiper blades should last you a decent amount of time. Check on any warranty options and search around to see what the average span of a windshield wiper’s life is. You don’t want to buy the perfect wipers for the rainy season while forgetting that they will also need to perform in the winter, or vice versa. 

At the end of the day, the best wipers for your vehicle are going to be ones that fit well and have the features you desire. Their number one job is keeping your line of sight clear of water and snow during inclement weather – keeping you safe. If, however, you find yourself needing a Denver auto body shop, please reach out to us for a free estimate. 

Car Repairs During COVID

Posted on: May 27th, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

Car repair COVIDThe world has changed, but it also must go on. And as long as there are drivers on the road, the need for car maintenance and repairs will continue to exist. If your vehicle needs maintenance or repairs, you don’t have to put it off until things are back to “normal.” However, as your auto body repair shop, there are some extra steps you should take during this time to make sure that you and the staff handling your vehicle are safe during the process.  

Ask About Procedures 

Don’t be afraid to ask about how the shop’s processes and procedures have changed in light of COVID-19. We can’t operate exactly the way we used to, and though the cleanliness standards at your shop of choice should have been high before the virus, they should be doing more, now. How they answer this question can and should impact whether or not you bring your vehicle to them. 

Pay Attention In Shop 

Of course, it’s not enough just to talk the talk. When you bring your car in for an estimate or inspection, we urge to pay attention to how things are handled within the shop as well. Are the staff wearing masks? Is hand sanitizer readily available? Are staff members following social distancing protocols wherever possible? If not, ask questions about why. We all have to do our part right now to keep our communities safe and healthy. Vehicle mechanics are no exception to the rule. 

Don’t Touch Unsanitized Items 

When you come to pick up your vehicle, we recommend not touching items that haven’t been sanitized. Counters should be sanitized regularly, in accordance with CDC guidelines, and your keys should be sanitized before they are handed to you. On a similar note, make sure your vehicle has been sanitized as well. 

Wipe Down Your Vehicle  

And while you can trust a repair shop worth its salt to do right by you as a vehicle owner and concerned citizen, it never hurts to do a little double-duty yourself. When you get your vehicle home, we recommend wiping it down with sanitizing wipes as well. 

With the addition of these steps to your normal vehicle repair process, you should feel comfortable and safe getting those repairs done and keeping your vehicle in the best possible condition to keep you safe on the road. If you have questions about how Accurate Auto Body has adopted COVID procedures to better care for your health and safety during this time, give us a call today.

Car Sanitation Tips – Beat COVID

Posted on: May 4th, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

COVID Car Cleaning Tips

We’re living in a whole new world these days, and as the COVID-19 outbreak continues to impact our communities all across the nation, it’s important to do as much as we can to keep ourselves and our environments safe and clean. Even though many of us are driving less and staying home more these days, our vehicles are still an essential part of our lives, and therefore should also be an important part of our COVID prevention plans. If you’re not sure how to keep your vehicle as safe as possible, our collision repair experts have a few tips to consider. In fact, when we return a car from auto body repair, we thoroughly sanitize it following many of these same protocols and more.

Sanitize Your Interior

Sanitizing the interior of your vehicle might seem like a daunting task, but it’s an excellent place to start. If you’re unsure of which cleaning agents to use, based on the interior fabric of your vehicle, do a little research. For most of the cars, isopropyl alcohol is a safe disinfectant to use. If you have a leather interior, warm soap and water should do the trick, and for all surfaces on your vehicle we recommend using a microfiber cloth. It does a phenomenal job at trapping dust, dirt, and other microbial agents without the fear of scratching anything in your vehicle. We also suggest wearing gloves the first time you perform this interior sanitizing.

Don’t Overdo it With Water

If you have a cloth interior, your cleaning protocols will look a little different. On top of sanitizing your interior with the proper cleaning agents, you want to make sure you don’t use too much water. With a cloth interior, you run the risk of the water seeping through to the cushion beneath. This can not only promote mold growth, but in the event of a super-soak, can also potentially damage some of the electrical components within the seat as well.

Prioritize Cleaning

When you’re sanitizing your vehicle’s interior, we recommend starting with and focusing the bulk of your attention on those high touch areas such as the steering wheel, the gear shifter, the knobs and dials, the air conditioning vents, door handles, etc. Wherever people most come into contact with your vehicle, these should be priority number one. Then, work your way through the rest of the fixtures and components of your vehicle’s interior until you’ve cleaned it all.

Know Your Risk

How often you repeat the interior sanitizing process will depend on a few factors for you, individually. First, how many people are in your vehicle? Ideally, the answer is no one you aren’t already quarantining with, but for families with shared cars, it may very well be more than just yourself. If you aren’t sick, and you don’t believe you’ve had anyone sick in your vehicle, this doesn’t exactly need to become a weekly priority or anything. However, the more you’re out there, running essential errands or driving back and forth to your essential job, the more people you’re coming into contact with, and the more likely it is that you may come into contact with the virus as well. Understanding you and your family’s risk factors will help you determine how frequently you feel comfortable performing this preventative measure.

Follow Personal Protocols

Once you’ve sanitized the interior of your vehicle, the best way to keep it clean is to follow all the personal protocols suggested by your local and state governments. Wash your hands before driving anywhere, and rewash them when you return home. Wear your mask in public and only leave your home for essential errands and appointments. We know things feel a little strange right now, and you might be going a little stir crazy, but the health of our communities outweighs the inconvenience. Wherever possible, we urge everyone to continue doing their part to stop the spread of the coronavirus. In the meantime, keep your vehicle clean and stay safe!

Things to Check After Auto Body Repair

Posted on: April 10th, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

auto body repair checkHaving auto body repair work done on your vehicle is often such a relief that by the time you get your vehicle back, you’re ready to ride off into the sunset without a second thought. However, even with the most trusted auto body shop teams, it’s important that you take a little time for a post-repair inspection. Not sure where to start? Here are a few key areas to look over and double-check before getting too far down the road.  

The Area of Repair  

Whatever part of your vehicle needed tending to, it’s time to look that area over. Check for dimpling, make sure alignment is correct and the paint color matches. Don’t be afraid to get up close and personal. Any auto repair team worth their salt will encourage you to do just that. Looking over the repair area is the first step to ensuring all is well after the repairs have been finished.  

All Electronic Components and Features  

The next step is one that people often forget, only to find out three days (or weeks) later when someone sits in their back seat for the first time that the window won’t roll down or the door won’t unlock like it’s supposed to. Checking all electronic components like windshield wipers, radio, automatic locks and windows, blinkers, etc. Is a critical step that you’ll thank us for later. Often it’s just a matter of connecting a wire that accidentally got left unconnected or flipping a switch that was overlooked in the final check before you were given a call.  

Alignment  

Depending on the work done, your alignment should be checked. Most auto repair shops will ensure that the alignment of your vehicle is adjusted if necessary even if the repairs they’re doing don’t directly affect that. For this step and the following two, we recommend asking your repair team if you can do a quick drive around the block before signing off. Making sure it drives like it should and feels normal is an important piece of the post-repair check puzzle.  

Sounds  

While you’re giving it a test drive, keep the music off (once you’ve checked to make sure all the music inputs and outputs work and the speakers sound like they ought to.) This is important to make sure your vehicle isn’t making any strange or new noises. If you notice anything that you didn’t hear before you brought it in, make sure you bring it up to your repair team so they can check it out.  

Brakes  

Brakes are an essential part of driving safely. Testing your brakes in a few different scenarios is a must-do when you’re checking your vehicle after a repair. Test them normally, and test having to pump them hard. No, we don’t recommend getting yourself in situations where that is required as it’s a very quick way to wear your brake pads out, but should a situation arise where you need to brake hard, you want the peace of mind knowing that your vehicle can do that. And if anything got messed up in the repair, it’s better to know now, in a situation you’re controlling, than last-minute when you can’t.  

Looking over the work done is not an insult to your auto body repair team, it’s a necessary part of the repair process. Conducting a post-repair inspection is expected and encouraged. After all, it’s your vehicle, and you deserve to feel fully confident in the work done. We know the world is a little intense right now, but we’re proud to be essential workers still open and operating for your auto body repair needs in this time. Need an estimate? Wondering how our processes have changed in light of social distancing regulations? Give us a call today or schedule an estimate online.  

Does My Car Qualify for Paintless Dent Repair?

Posted on: March 18th, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

paintless dent repair

Dents, dings, and small issues are a common thing all car owners deal with. It’s the nature of being a driver in today’s world. Thankfully, technology has advanced over the years so that not all dents and dings require expensive, overhaul-focused autobody repair in order to get your vehicle back in tip-top shape and on the road again. With paintless dent repair, you have the opportunity to save money and time, but knowing whether or not you qualify can be a little confusing at times. Not sure whether or not your vehicle’s dents and dings could benefit from paintless dent repair? Here are some things to consider.

Model Year

While paintless dent repair may be possible on older model cars, the process itself works best on vehicles model year 1990 or newer. The construction of vehicles and the panels that make them up has changed in that time to make it easier for auto body repair workers to utilize the tools and access the panels of the vehicle the way they need to in order to effectively enact this repair process.

Damage Location

Where your vehicle is dented will have an impact on whether or not paintless dent repair will be effective. Because the shell of your vehicle is made up of panels, some locations on those panels are far easier to fix via this process than others. For example, if the damage is located close to the edge of the panel, it will be more difficult to repair in this fashion because of the internal way experts access the dings in order to avoid needing to paint over the repair.

Panel Status

In addition, the condition of the panel where the damage is located will play a factor as well. It’s easiest to perform paintless dent repair on an original panel that has never previously been replaced. That being said, it is possible to do the repair this way on non-original panels as well, though your repair partner may have different questions or requirements for you depending on the panel’s status.

Paint Condition

Okay, so this one might be a little obvious but it’s worth talking about all the same. If your dings and dents come with damage to your paint, paintless dent repair is likely not your best choice. Though the process could still potentially be implemented, any savings you might have would likely be gone with the additional cost of painting over the damaged paint areas. Because paint is more than just an aesthetic choice on your vehicle, any good repair person worth their salt is going to heavily recommend that you cover any areas where the paint has been chipped or damaged. Your vehicle’s paint protects your car from all manner of elemental wear and tear, so it’s important to keep your vehicle’s paint in-tact.

If you’re dealing with dents from something like hail damage or an unexpected bump into something, and there’s no paint damage around the dents, you may be the perfect candidate for paintless dent repair. Be sure to ask your auto body repair shop about your options! Still not feeling sure about your particular situation? Give us a call today.

How Often Should I Wash My Car?

Posted on: February 26th, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

how often to wash carOur auto body repair experts get this question all the time, but there isn’t a hard and fast rule to answer it. There are a number of things to consider, including environmental factors and personal driving habits. If you’re not sure what to consider when setting a carwash schedule, factor in the things we discuss in this article.

Paint Protection

Car washing is often about aesthetics, but it’s also about keeping your car in the best condition possible for as long as possible. While chips, wear and tear, or dulling of your vehicle’s paint might not seem like more than a cosmetic thing, that’s not always true. All of those things can contribute to the weakening of your vehicle’s exterior and may indicate larger problems on the horizon – like rust. The car paint does more than just make it look pretty – it helps protect and maintain, too.

Salt Buildup

This time of year, when the weather gets snowy and the roads get salty, buildup is one of the main concerns that brings this question about time and time again. Yes, the salt buildup can cause premature rusting on your vehicle. This means that yes, you should wash it more frequently in the winter when the weather gets bad, but it’s not an immediate or critical danger. It takes a lot of salt sitting on your vehicle for a long time to cause irrevocable damage. If you have a regular car washing routine in place, that should be sufficient enough to keep up with the salt buildup around the Front Range. Adding in an extra wash or two when the snow melts between storms isn’t the worst idea.

Facing the Elements

Snow and the salt that keeps us safe in winter weather aren’t the only things that can cause premature wear and tear to your vehicle. All year round, your vehicle faces the elements when you drive. Bright, hot sun, rain, mud, dirt, dust, rocks. It all impacts your vehicle. Understanding the impact that these elements have on your vehicle’s exterior can help you set the proper car washing cadence for your vehicle and situation. For example, if you work at home and only go out on the weekends, you’re less likely to need a car wash as often as someone who commutes an hour both ways daily and ventures out into the mountains on their off-days.

Like we said at the beginning, there isn’t a hard and fast must-follow rule when it comes to washing your car. However, we encourage owners to treat it like any other part of regular vehicle maintenance. Set a schedule and stick to it. Add “emergency” washes when you need to and conserve when you don’t. If you want a rule of thumb to follow, every two weeks would be ideal with daily usage. Keeping your vehicle clean and free of dust, debris, salt, and more extend its life and its peak performance years. As long as you’re regularly washing it, you should be good.

What is Accident Alert?

Posted on: February 10th, 2020 by Accurate Auto Body Shop No Comments

What is Accident Alert?

Maybe you’re used to seeing it on your TV screens or on the LED signs over the highways, or maybe you just saw it for the first time the other day and now you’re wondering – what does a city-wide accident alert really mean? As collision repair experts, we see this alert a lot, and we do field our fair share of questions on this. Truthfully, it depends. There are a few things that could cause it, but here are the basics of what you should know and when you might want to keep an eye out for the notification.

What You Need to Know About Accident Alert

When an Accident Alert is in effect, the volume of calls regarding crashes and automobile accidents is often so high that police cannot respond to all of them. The reasons for this volume may be a result of a number of different things, but when an Accident Alert is declared, there must be the following things in place to warrant police presence at the scene of a crash:

  • Damaged vehicles are causing the street to be closed
  • Fatality or injuries requiring immediate medical attention are present
  • Impaired driving (drug or alcohol-related) played a part in the accident
  • Any drivers fail to remain on scene
  • Any drivers do not have a valid license
  • Damage to public property
  • Involvement of on-duty City personnel

Because of the volume of accidents expected when an Accident Alert is issued, only the most pressing and critical ones can be addressed with the limited police resources available. So, now we know what the police will respond to during an Accident Alert. But what causes an accident alert?

Severe Weather

Severe weather is the number one reason for this alert to be issued. This time of year, when the snowfall hits record amounts and the winter weather is often in short, severe bursts, Accident Alerts are the most common. Winter weather creates hazardous road conditions more quickly than most other types of weather. However, it’s not uncommon to see this alert in the spring, summer, or fall when flash flooding becomes an issue.

Community Emergency

Outside of severe weather, other community emergencies may spawn an Accident Alert as well. This may include city-wide traffic light outages, broken water mains, avalanches in the mountain roads, or other similar issues. If the community is facing an emergency (especially if the mayor declares a city-wide emergency), expect an Accident Alert to be in place as well.

Be Cautious

When an Accident Alert is in effect, it’s important to exercise greater caution than normal while driving. Not only because police resources are limited, but because the likelihood of an influx of accidents means a greater likelihood that you may encounter an accident or two in your driving. Encountering accidents can increase the likelihood of getting involved in one yourself if you’re not careful to avoid curiosity slow-downs or don’t give yourself enough time to get out of the path of the accident. For that reason, exercising extreme caution on the roads during an Accident Alert is incredibly important.

If you find yourself caught up in the influx during an Accident Alert, give us a call. We’ll help get you back on the road as quickly as possible without sacrificing the quality of auto body repair.