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Cost to Fix Hail Damage: A Simple Guide 1.0

Hail can damage your car and cost you money. Every year, over a billion dollars in hail damage compensation is paid out by insurers.

It’s important for car owners, especially in places with lots of hail, to understand the cost to fix hail damage. This article talks about what makes hail damage repair costly and how body shops, paintless dent repair techs, and insurance adjusters figure out how much the repairs should cost.

Different variables change how much it costs to fix hail damage:

  • Extent of Damage: More damage means higher costs. Small dents cost less to fix than big or many dents. If the storm was extreme, and trim or glass or other parts were broken, the cost will grow, quickly.
  • Type of Repair Method: There are different ways to fix hail damage. Methods like paintless dent repair (PDR) often cost less. If the vehicle needs replacement panels and paintwork, the costs increase.
  • Vehicle Make and Model: Some cars cost more to fix because of their parts, value, and how complex the repair is. Obviously, high dollar vehicles tend to have more expensive parts.

Every hail storm is different. There tends to be three things that effect the cost to fix hail damage that are tied to the storm itself. One, the size of the hail. Two, the density of the hail (hail can be softer or harder). Three, how much wind is driving the hail.

The larger, denser and more wind driven a storm is, causes the cost of repair to increase.

The primary two ways to repair hail damage are with paintless dent repair (paintless dent removal) or conventionally through an auto body shop. There is justification to use both types of repair.

Auto body shop handling the repair (without a hail repair technician) tend to have direct relationships with the insurance companies (called direct repair programs, or DRPs) they often have more efficient access to parts and they have a bigger staff. The detractors to using an auto body shop to handle the repair is the cost is likely much higher as they are replacing parts, repainting many of the panels and you WILL likely have to pay your deductible.

Not only will the cost to fix hail damage increase using an autobody shop, the time it takes them to repair will typically increase tremendously. <—–COST AND LOSS OF USE TIME INCREASE

If a paintless dent repair tech is performing hail damage repair, your repair time reduces, panels aren’t replaced as often and you maintain a lot of value on your vehicle. <—-TYPICALLY LOWER COSTS AND TURNAROUND TIME IS QUICKER

Every vehicle has different pricing regarding parts, paint costs and labor times involved. The more luxurious a vehicle is, the likelihood of increased costs.

When a vehicle has a high production run number, they create more parts to match the volume of vehicles manufactured. Luxury models are the opposite.

Luxury models more often have something called tri-stage paint. Rather than a base coat – clear coat system, they employ a base coat – mid coat – clear coat. This can increase paint cost by up to a third.

Some vehicles require technician repairing them to receive specialized training. Not all shops have that ability.

And don’t get us started on union strikes and how they cripple the auto body repair industry.

On the “HAIL MATRIX” used by ALL INSURANCE companies, PDR, or paintless dent repair typically starts at $125.00 for the first dent. As the number of dents and size of dents increase, this moves up.

The material the panel is constructed with effects cost as well. The cost to repair hail damage on hood is higher if the hood is aluminum.

If a vehicle is tall, i.e. a truck or SUV, the cost to repair hail damage on the roof roof is bumped up 25%.

We also have a guide you can use to understand the matrix better, it’s located here: HAIL CHART.

You can also opt to use our auto hail damage repair calculator.

cost to fix hail damage hail matrix