Every year, car accidents cost Americans more than $240 billion. Between auto repair bills and medical bills, a single car crash can end up costing tens of thousands of dollars.
If you’re ever involved in a car accident that does a lot of damage to your car, you might not think that your car is worth saving. This is especially true for older cars that aren’t worth a whole lot of money anymore.
But before you say goodbye to your car and run out and buy a new one, consider learning how to fix a car that’s been involved in an accident. You might be surprised at how easy it is to bring some cars back from the dead following car crashes.
Here are seven tips on how to fix a car after an accident.
1. Start by Performing a Thorough Inspection of Your Car
Before you start trying to figure out how to fix a car, it’s important for you to inspect every single part of it to see what kind of condition it’s in.
From the outside, your car might look like it simply needs a new bumper and some new taillights after getting hit from behind. But once you do a little more digging, you might find that the frame for your car was damaged during your crash.
It would be a real shame if you spent a lot of time and money fixing the bumper and the taillights only to later find that the frame of your car is also an issue. You want to know what you’re walking into before you get started.
2. Dismantle Your Car’s Battery
In addition to inspecting your car before making any repairs to it, you should also dismantle its battery as soon as you can. The last thing you want to do is do major work on your car when you still have the battery sitting inside of it.
You could inadvertently end up shocking yourself if the battery is still installed in your car. The battery could also die on you if you let your car sit for an extended period of time without turning your car on.
Take your battery out of your car and start charging it. This will help preserve your battery and allow you to put it back into your car later without encountering any problems.
3. Consult Your Car’s Repair Manual to Find Out How to Fix It
Once you have some idea as far as what needs to be done to your car to repair it, pull out your car’s repair manual and find the pages that deal directly with the parts that you need to repair or replace.
You can usually find a repair manual for a car in its glovebox. But if it’s gone missing, you can also find a replacement for it online. It’ll really come in handy when you’re working on a car.
4. Take Apart the Portion of Your Car That Was Damaged
At this point, you should know exactly what needs to be repaired on your car. You should also have some idea of what you’re going to need to do to repair it.
But before your repairs can begin, you’ll need to take apart the portion of your car that’s going to get fixed. Do this slowly so that you don’t do any more damage to your car than what’s already been done.
If there are any fluids that are leaking from your car or on the verge of leaking, drain them to prevent them from leaking onto the ground beneath your car. You don’t want to let toxic chemicals seep into the soil on your property.
While you’re doing all this, take lots of photos of your car. These photos might be lifesavers later when you go to put your car back together again.
5. Purchase the Parts You Need to Repair Your Car
After you’ve taken apart the damaged portion of your car, you’ll be able to see what you can salvage from it and what needs to be replaced. Go out and buy any parts that need to be replaced for your car.
This is the part of the process that could potentially be time-consuming and, in some cases, expensive. You can attempt to save some money by searching for used auto parts, whenever possible.
You might also be able to get money to repair your car by calling on a car crash injury lawyer for assistance.
6. Make the Necessary Repairs to Your Car and Piece It Back Together
When you have all the parts that you need to repair your car in hand, you can go ahead and make the repairs that need to be made to your car. In some instances, these repairs will only take an hour or so, and in others, they might take days or even weeks to finish.
The key is using your repair manual to make sure they get done right. You do not want to put your car back out onto the road with parts that weren’t installed properly.
7. Turn to a Mechanic for Help If You Get Stuck at Any Point
If you’re not sure what you’re doing during a repair at any point, stop. Call on a local mechanic to come and take a look at your car to see what you need to do to finish your repair off.
They can either help you get your repair done or talk to you about why it might not be the best idea in the world to drive your car. It’ll give you peace of mind one way or the other as you strive to finish off your car repair after an accident.
Learning How to Fix a Car After an Accident Could Be Well Worth Your Time
There are times when learning how to fix a car after an accident will be a waste of time. If your car is in really bad shape, you’ll be better off scrapping it and buying something new.
But it could be worth your while to at least investigate the possibility of repairing your old car. It might not look very pretty right now, but that doesn’t mean you can’t inject life back into it by making a few relatively basic repairs.
Check out our blog for more tips on repairing cars that have been damaged during accidents.