If you’ve been involved in a car accident, your priority should be the safety of you and your passengers. Afterward, you should turn your attention to the car accident repair process. Whether you were in a serious accident or a minor fender bender, you’ll have a smoother experience if you follow the right steps.
1. Check Your Tires
Normally, all of your car’s tires should be aligned. After an accident, however, you may find that some of those wheels are out of alignment. Not only can alignment problems make it difficult for you to drive straight, but they can cause damage to your tires over time.
That’s why it’s important for the car accident repair process to check your tires after an accident and look for signs of damage. Keep an eye out for issues like uneven tread wear or blisters on your tire’s sidewall. You should also watch out for other signs of misaligned tires, such as a vibrating steering wheel.
In addition to a visual inspection, you may want to check how your tires perform when you drive. If your tires are wobbling, or if they’re unusually noisy, it’s possible that there’s an issue with your suspension. Suspension system damage can impact the performance of tires.
If you suspect that your tires have been knocked out of alignment, you should visit an auto shop that offers wheel alignment services. While you may need to replace their tires if they’re damaged, rotating and balancing your tires may be enough to resolve the issue.
2. Find the Right Auto Shop
It’s important to work with an auto shop that you can trust, especially if your vehicle needs significant repairs. Before you explore your options, you should talk with your insurance company. Working with one of your insurer’s preferred mechanics could save you time and money.
In addition to talking with your insurance company, you should look for local auto shops that are AAA affiliated. It’s also smart to work with mechanics that have Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certification. If your vehicle is under warranty, you may want to bring your car to a brand-affiliated auto shop.
Take the time to read online reviews for different shops. Ideally, you should bring your vehicle to a shop that has consistently received positive feedback from customers. Don’t be afraid to reach out to an auto shop if you have questions or need more information.
You may need to bring your vehicle to a mechanic that specializes in specific repairs, like bodywork. Tire shops could be your best bet if you need to replace your car’s tires. The sooner you find the right auto shop, the sooner you’ll be able to get your vehicle back on the road!
3. Purchase Protective Auto Parts
There’s no guaranteed way to prevent accidents, but you can take precautions that will reduce the risk of future damage. Body-side molding is a protective accent that can create a buffer between your car and other vehicles on the road. It can keep paint from chipping and shield vehicles from dents.
Parts like grill guards and car bras can protect the front end of a vehicle. Grill guards are made of metal and can reduce the risk of damage in a collision at low speeds. Car bras are made from padded vinyl and protect your front bumper and hood.
If you own a truck, a truck bed liner can keep cargo from shifting while you drive. These liners can also protect trucks from the elements. With a bed liner, your vehicle will be less likely to rust or show other signs of damage.
While some protective parts give you security on the road, there are also parts that can keep a vehicle safe while it’s parked. Car covers can shield vehicles from UV rays and keep away bugs and dirt. If you’re concerned about thieves, a car alarm could also be a worthwhile purchase for the car accident repair process.
4. Get The Necessary Part Repairs
There are many parts that may need to be repaired or replaced after an accident. Some of the parts that are most likely to sustain damage include the fender, hood, doors, or headlights. Since many insurers have a time limit for repair work, it’s best to seek car part repair services as soon as you can, as this will smooth the car accident repair process.
You should always have a mechanic check your vehicle after a collision, even if you haven’t seen any signs of damage. While some types of damage are obvious, other issues can be difficult to spot. If you drive a car that has faulty parts, it could cause more damage to your car.
Typically, after you take your car to an auto shop, a mechanic will check the vehicle for signs of damage. After they’ve looked at the car, they’ll call you back and tell you more about the types of repairs it needs. Keep in mind that part repairs can take time, especially if the mechanic has to order replacement parts.
Before you agree to repairs, you may want to ask the mechanic if they use original equipment manufacturer (OEM) or aftermarket parts. While aftermarket parts can be easier to obtain than OEM parts, installing aftermarket parts could potentially void your vehicle’s warranty.
5. Get Your Engine Inspected
Auto accidents can cause damage to your engine, even if the vehicle is hit from the rear. You should watch out for signs of engine problems and have your engine inspected if you notice anything unusual.
One of the most obvious signs of a problem is seeing the check engine light come on. If there’s a serious issue, you may see a flashing check engine light. When this light comes on, you should try to avoid driving your car until it can be diagnosed by a professional.
Unusual sounds can also be a warning sign. If you hear a knocking sound coming from the hood of your car, it’s possible that your rod bearings are loose. Grinding or squealing noises can also be indicators of engine issues.
If you have a diesel engine, you should pay attention to how much oil you’re using. Going through oil quickly can be a sign of an oil leak or a faulty fuel injector. Other warning signs to watch out for include smoke, braking issues, and unusual sounds. Taking these precautions will ensure an efficient car accident repair process.
6. Replace Damaged Windows
A broken car window can put you at risk every time you step behind the wheel. Without functioning windows, your car is more likely to be damaged by the elements. You could also be struck by debris while you’re on the road.
Not only can a missing window put you at risk, but it could potentially harm other drivers. If you’ve covered your window, your cover could detach from your vehicle and hit another car. This could block their field of vision and could even lead to another accident.
A car with a broken window is also likely to attract thieves. It’s easy to break into a vehicle with a missing window. Any items inside your car could be stolen, and thieves could take car parts as well.
While a cracked window might not seem like a big deal, cracks can grow larger over time. Eventually, the window could shatter. If this happens while you’re behind the wheel, it could lead to serious injuries.
Instead of trying to get by with a missing window, you should have new windows installed right away. Whether you need to replace a rear window, a side window, or your windshield, acting quickly can help you avoid additional problems.
7. Make Additional Treatments
It can be tough to find time to take your vehicle to an auto shop. If you’re already having repair work done after an accident, you may want to look into other treatments that could improve the condition of your car.
Rain-repellant treatments for windshields can make it easier for you to see clearly in stormy weather. After the treatment has been applied, rain should roll off your windshield. These kinds of treatments can also prevent ice from sticking to the windshield as well.
A window treatment is another option that’s worth exploring in the car accident repair process. Tinting your car windows can protect the interior of your car from UV rays. Window tinting could also improve your vehicle’s gas mileage and give you more privacy.
Applying a sealant to your vehicle is an excellent way to protect its paint. Sealants can shield a vehicle from UV rays, rainfall, and other types of elemental damage. Many sealants will also give vehicles an appealing glossy finish.
8. Find Legal Assistance
If you’ve been involved in a serious car accident, you may want to talk to motor vehicle accidents lawyers. Attorneys can handle negotiations with insurance companies and can even file your insurance claim. Working with lawyers will make it easier for you to recover any compensation that you’re owed and cover the financial losses that occur in the car accident repair process.
If you’ve been involved in an accident with an uninsured driver, your insurance payout may not be enough to cover your damages. An attorney can assist you if you choose to file a personal injury lawsuit. This will allow you to seek compensation directly from the other driver.
If you do plan on seeking legal assistance, it’s best to talk to a lawyer as soon as possible. Working with an attorney early on will make it easier for you to gather evidence that will support your claim. It’s also important to remember that there are statutes of limitations on car accident claims.
Many lawyers offer free consultations, which means you can learn more about your legal options without having to worry about potential costs. Some auto accident attorneys even work on a contingency basis. This means that the attorney will waive fees in exchange for a percentage of your future settlement.
Advice for ATV Owners
Most auto insurance policies don’t provide coverage for all-terrain vehicle (ATV) accidents. While some health insurance companies will cover ATV injuries, other policies may not cover injuries caused by recreational ATV use. There are ATV insurance policies that provide coverage for damage that may occur during an accident.
While auto accidents usually occur on public roads, many ATV accidents happen on private property. In some cases, another party may be liable for damages caused by the accident. For example, the owner of an ATV could be liable if they’ve failed to maintain the vehicle.
Since ATV accidents can be complex, you may want to consult with an ATV accident attorney. A lawyer can let you know if you have a valid negligence claim. Even if your accident wasn’t caused by another person’s negligence, it’s possible the vehicle manufacturer was negligent.
Since trucks are larger than other vehicles, truck accidents can cause significant damage. Accidents involving commercial trucks are especially dangerous and are more likely to result in fatalities. Unfortunately, many commercial truck accidents are caused by driver negligence.
Driver fatigue, distracted driving, and driving under the influence are all common causes of accidents. In some cases, a trucking company could be responsible for an accident if the company failed to maintain the vehicle or asked a driver to work long hours without taking a break.
If you’ve been in an accident with a truck or another commercial vehicle, you should discuss the accident with an experienced truck accident attorney. Not only can these accidents cause significant damage, but the laws surrounding truck accidents can be complex. Working with a lawyer will make it easier for you to determine what you should do next.
Truck drivers that have been involved in accidents should pull over and turn on their hazard lights, even if the collision was a minor one. It’s never safe to drive a vehicle after an accident, and driving a large commercial vehicle can be especially risky. Many trucking companies have accident plans that are designed to keep drivers safe.
Auto accidents are common, but they can also be very upsetting. While drivers often feel overwhelmed after an accident, safety should always be the top priority during your car accident repair process. Having a car checked out and repaired right away can prevent additional damage.