The 5 Most Costly
Mistakes People Make
When Dealing With Hail
Damage on Their Car

A WHITE PAPER

It’s Easy to Lose Big Money Due to Hail Damage…
Here’s What You Can do to Avoid the Traps.

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Overview

Automotive hail damage is not something most people encounter frequently, if at all. Unfortunately, in Colorado and Texas, hailstorms are just a part of life. Even so, way too many people lose tons of money for no good reason.

As a ‘friend in the business’, I’d like to reveal some very common mistakes that routinely cost people millions of dollars every year… and how to avoid them, so hopefully your own “nightmare from hail” is little more than a tiny bump in the road—you don’t lose any value, and you don’t spend any money. I’ll answer some questions almost everyone has along the way. You might just find yourself with a huge smile on your face in a few minutes.

Blue Quotes

In Colorado and Texas, hailstorms are just a part of life. Way too many people lose tons of money for no good reason.

I’d like to reveal some very common mistakes that routinely cost people millions of dollars every year… and how to avoid them.

Mistake #1

“It’s only super light hail damage, I can hardly see it… it’s probably only a few hundred dollars damage, so I don’t think I’ll worry about it.”

Yes, it’s only cosmetic, and maybe it doesn’t bother you. But what many people fail to discover in time, is that very light hail damage is still devastating to your vehicle’s value. $5,000-$8,000 in damage is very typical, even when you can barely see it.

Ultimately, while many of us do love our vehicles, and work hard to keep them gorgeous; it’s not just about how your car looks. Your vehicle is a savings account of sorts. Eventually, whether you sell it, trade it in, or God forbid—get into an accident… that’s thousands of dollars in value that comes right off the top before you see a dime.

If you can recover $6,000 in lost value by ponying up that $500 or $1000 deductible and getting your car repaired… you’re well ahead of the game.

* Better yet, with the right help, how about getting it handled without spending a penny? Keep reading!

Light Hail Damage
Mistake #2

“I think I’ll wait until hail season is over before I get it fixed… in case it hails again.”

This line of thinking makes sense to many people. Why might it be a mistake? For starters, if you suffer damage from two separate hailstorms, or “events”, and try to get it taken care of with a single claim, you are technically engaged in insurance fraud. Some people do get by with this maneuver, but you should be aware of the risk.

A hail storm

There are also what I would consider much larger risks, more likely to be a problem for you. A second hailstorm hitting your vehicle brings a very strong chance that your vehicle goes from repairable to totaled. Your car’s metal can only take so much mangling before it’s impossible to get it back to its original shape. If a vehicle is declared totaled due to hail damage, you lose big virtually every single time.

Also keep in mind, every moment that your vehicle goes “unrepaired”, you are driving around with “pre-existing damage.”

While you mess with the insurance company, wait for an adjuster, wait for a shop to be able to fit you in, wait for the season to be over, until you have more time, or wait for any other reason… you are leaving yourself wide-open for a potential disaster.

A hail storm

We sadly observe this happen to people all too frequently. Just recently we had someone with $11,000 in hail damage on their vehicle, and they had every intention of having it repaired. The claim was filed, estimate in place, they had chosen our shop to do the repairs… but they decided for their own reasons that they wanted to wait a few weeks before bringing the vehicle in to actually get the work done.

In the meantime, simply stopped at a red light, they were rear ended, and, while everybody was okay, thank goodness—the vehicle was totaled. Now, this was a $30,000 vehicle that the customer owed about $28K on. Insurance paid out $19,000… because the vehicle had $11,000 in pre-existing hail damage, and the customer, like most, did not have GAP insurance. Even people who can afford to lose $11,000 do NOT like it.

A hail storm

* Every day you wait to fix the damage, even if the delays are caused by someone else (including your insurance company!)… is another day you have your savings account sitting unguarded in front of everyone, with the door wide open.

Mistake #3

“If I see hail damage on my car, the first thing I should do is call my insurance company and file a claim, then do what they tell me.”

This is what most people do, and would seem to make sense; after all, you like your agent, and you’ve been with them for years! But before you do this, ask yourself a serious question: “Do I really believe my insurance company wants to pay me as much as possible as quickly as possible?” Hmmm…

After a hailstorm damages a large number of vehicles in an area, insurance companies are often inundated with claims. Sometimes you’ll wait weeks or even months before an adjustor actually inspects your vehicle, creates an “estimate”, and offers a settlement check.

A few problems here. First, don’t forget that during this waiting process you are exposed to a potential loss of thousands at any given moment.

Secondly, that initial estimate is rarely a thorough or professional estimate conducted in the proper environment with the right equipment. Therefore, it is not uncommon at all for the initial estimate to be 40-50% of the actual damages to the vehicle.

Hail storm damages vehicles in parking lot

Keep in mind, depending on their situation, many people will take the money and run… and the insurance company is counting on this.

You might accept a check for $4,000 made out to you and your bank, and simply use it to reduce the amount you owe—many people feel this is a favorable option. The problem is, if in reality you have $7,000 in damage, and accept a $4,000 settlement… you just lost $3,000 and don’t even know it. You only find out later when you trade it in, or have another claim.

Let’s say you understand the value proposition and you definitely want to repair your vehicle. Your insurance company will be happy to provide you with names of repair shops that are on their “Preferred Vendor” list.

Why is this a problem? Well, at the end of the day, a company on this list pretty much works for the insurance company. I’ll let you think about the various implications of that.

For starters, these companies will typically be unable to pay your deductible for you, or help you with a rental car, or bend over backwards for you in any number of ways, like a friend in the business might. They are obligated to work within certain parameters, and work towards the insurance company’s benefit, in order to continue getting the stream of business sent over by the insurance company.

A severely hail damaged vehicle

I wonder if it’s possible they might simply repair the damage indicated by their adjuster’s initial estimate? Personally, I prefer having someone in my corner… someone who is not financially incentivized by “the other side.”

You do NOT have to work with any shop the insurance company might recommend, and you certainly do NOT have to wait for months for your repair. Remember, the longer the process takes to get your car restored, the better the chance the insurance company wins big, and you… well, not so much. The law allows you to choose ANY shop to take care of your repairs.

When you work with a reputable automotive hail restoration company who is 110% dedicated to the best possible end result for YOU… let’s just say you’re going to be a lot happier when all is said and done.

If you’ve done a little homework and already chosen an excellent, reputable shop to work with (wink-wink-nudge), I’d strongly recommend you take your vehicle and drop it off with them as quickly as possible. A great shop should be adept at and willing to contact your insurance company, file the claim on your behalf, and take care of all the brain damage.

This indicates to the insurance company that you’re serious about getting it repaired. You don’t wait weeks to have it looked at, and gets past concerns of those often ‘low-ball’ initial estimates and settlement offers.

Instead, we get your adjuster out to our shop, in the proper environment, and closely examine and record every single imperfection on every single part and panel of your vehicle under special hail inspection lights that make damage spring to life… even when the damage is barely visible to a highly trained eye.

In this situation, the adjuster simply notes the actual damages, and approves them, so a flawless repair can be provided to you.

Hail falls near a car wheel

If you did already file a claim, and receive an initial estimate and/or settlement… don’t worry. You can still leave your vehicle with us, and we’ll have an adjustor from your insurance company come out and go through the same process.

When we find their initial estimate was 3 or 4 grand short, they do what’s called a “supplement”, simply adding to the original settlement so your vehicle can be properly taken care of.

You will not have to negotiate, fight, or plead. We’ll take care of the insurance company and the numbers to make sure the end result is fair to you… your job is to say, “You got HOW much more from them?!”

Blue Quotes

After a hailstorm damages a large number of vehicles in an area, insurance companies are often inundated with claims. Sometimes you’ll wait weeks or even months before an adjustor actually inspects your vehicle, creates an “estimate”, and offers a settlement check.

During this waiting process you are exposed to a potential loss of thousands at any given moment.

Mistake #4

“If I file a claim for hail damage, they’re going to raise my premium, and it’s just not worth it.”

This is a common misconception, and every year people lose a ton of money, because they don’t understand just how costly the damage is, and they don’t want to pay a few extra dollars a month.

More to the point… that’s not how it works. Hail damage is a “no fault” claim, or an “Act of God”, if you will. It’s not your fault, and you can not be singled out for a rate increase simply because you get the hail dents on your car repaired.

Fallen hail on the ground

You’ll notice your insurance has “Collision” coverage, and “Comprehensive” coverage. If you crash into a wall… that’s your fault, goes against your collision coverage, and your rates may well increase.

A hailstorm is not your fault, and falls under your comprehensive coverage. The money is there in a pool, available to fully and properly repair your car… whether you choose to take advantage of it, or simply let the insurance company keep the cash if you think they need it more than you do.

Hail coming down on a car's roof

When there is a large amount of hail damage in a given area, rates may go up, yes… but EVERYONE’s rates go up, whether they filed a claim for damage or not. This is why in our area we already get to pay some of the highest premiums in the country… because of our hailstorms. Of course this also means you’ve already paid for the benefit, so you may as well accept what’s yours.

Blue Quotes

A hailstorm is not your fault, and falls under your comprehensive coverage. The money is there in a pool, available to fully and properly repair your car… whether you choose to take advantage of it or not.

Mistake #5

“All PDR and hail repair shops are the same, it really doesn’t matter where I choose to have it fixed.”

It is generally best to repair your vehicle with a process known as PDR (Paintless Dent Removal, or Paintless Dent Repair).

World-class paintless dent removal for hail damage

This is considered the favored method as there’s no bondo, grinding, resins, fillers, primers and painting involved… where you need to sculpt it perfectly, accurately match the paint, blend it flawlessly in with the surrounding areas and panels, and hope you got a professional job that won’t start fading, oxidizing, or peeling away in a few short years. Sure, you can get a good job done, but it’s not going to be the factory paint, or a custom job costing thousands. That’s why you want PDR if it’s an option.

Sometimes damage is severe enough that traditional collision shop repairs may be required, including new body panels, paint, etc. If possible, though, it is best to utilize PDR wherever feasible.

Best of both worlds… but very difficult to find, is an expert PDR facility that also has the ability to provide conventional auto body repairs in a full-service, in-house operation, so they can best take care of anything and everything your car needs… in the manner that’s most favorable for you.

PDR Hail Repair in Englewood, Colorado

Expert paintless dent repair (PDR)

PDR is a process of using specialized tools to manually massage the metal from the underside, restoring it to factory perfection, and without disturbing the original factory paint. This is the only way to retain your original factory finish, and restore your vehicle back to full book value.

Best PDR for hail repair in Colorado!

Paintless Dent Repair truly is an art form, freehand style. A tech really shouldn’t work on a paying customer’s vehicle without some years of training and practice.

When hailstorms hit, you will often notice tents pop up on corners and car lots around the city offering hail repair. Crews come in from out of state, following hailstorms and cashing in as much and as quickly as they can. I imagine some of them do good work. There are also more established local shops available around the area. I know a really good one that I’m about to tell you about, but regardless… a little research can save you a lot of time, headache, and/or money.

A poor job, unfortunately, occurs all too frequently, and often comes out resembling the texture of orange peel. This, sadly, does not fully restore your vehicle’s value. PDR is a craft that truly requires years to perfect… and it pays off for you in spades.

SHAMELESS PLUG:

Elite Hail Systems was voted Best of the Best for Paintless dent repair in 13 Colorado cities! Serving Amarillo as well, we employ lead technicians who have 20+ years experience, and are unquestionably some of the best in the business. That’s not 20 years combined experience, as many will tout… that’s 20+ years EACH. We specialize in luxury and higher-value vehicles, and are driven to help everyone we can.

Auto Body Repair
Elite Hail Systems offers a full service auto body shop near Denver, Colorado
Paintless Dent Removal
Elite Hail Systems is Colorado's largest full-service auto hail repair and paintless dent removal facility.

When your vehicle is left with us, it will be secured inside our iron-fenced lot, and under constant video surveillance until an adjuster has been out to examine the car with our estimator.

At that point, your car is moved into our 30,000 square foot indoor warehouse and shop, where it is safe and secure while the work is performed.

Those who are able to work with Elite have their repairs completed flawlessly, while their vehicles are kept safe and secure.

Elite Hail Systems carries an “A” rating with the BBB, and of course you will find tons of 5 star reviews online.

Without question, Elite Hail Systems is “the real deal.”

Elite refuses to accept designation as a preferred vendor with any insurance company. This leaves us free to serve YOU in the best way possible.

THE IRRESISTIBLE OFFER: C’MON, YOU KNEW IT WAS COMING…

What exactly can Elite Hail Systems do for you?

  • Cover your deductible for you up to $1,000
  • We’ll also pay for a rental car for you while yours is repaired, if your insurance company doesn’t cover this.
  • We can get your car in right away. No leaving yourself completely at risk while you wait months in line for a smaller operation.
  • We’ll have your PDR done by experts who get it right.
  • We can file your claim, deal with the insurance company, the paperwork, the headaches, and the hassles. We work with all insurance companies.
  • We’ll complete your repair in a reasonable time frame. Generally, once the adjuster has looked at the vehicle and we are approved to move forward, we’ll have your car ready to go in around 7-10 business days.
  • This means you’ll get the best repair available, you’ll get it fast, you’ll get all that lost value put right back into your ‘savings account’, you’ll avoid all the brain damage, your ride will be gorgeous, and you’ll accomplish all of this without taking a single penny out of your pocket.

* Please note, not all cars in all situations will qualify. There is no “bait and switch”, but if you purchased the car with hail damage, insurance will not cover it. If you do not have comprehensive coverage, insurance will not cover it. If it’s totaled, I’m sorry…, an unusual scenario for whatever reason… you get the idea.

Perhaps the most difficult part of choosing Elite Hail to help you out is getting past the old “too good to be true” instinct. Fortunately, you’ll find we really do help virtually all of our customers to get everything handled quickly, painlessly, expertly, and without them taking one thin dime out of their pockets—just as we’d like to do for you.

Whether or not we meet or work together, I hope you found this free report useful. If you have any questions at all, please do reach out. Our team is loaded with good people who are friendly, down-to-earth, know their stuff, and are ready to bend over backwards to serve you.

Our largest source of business is referrals. We like it that way, and so we do everything in our power to make sure you’re blown away by the overall experience, and can’t wait to send your family, friends, and coworkers to us so we can help them too.

So where ever you are in your process… whether you’ve filed a claim yet or not, whether it happened last week or 2 years ago, whether your car looks like a giant golf ball or the damage is so light you didn’t even notice it for 6 months until someone told you… give Elite Hail Systems a call today. We’re eager to rock your world and swap out that “Oh Hail!” look on your face with a perma-grin replacement.

It’s not often you get to painlessly solve a significant problem—without taking your wallet out of your pocket—and end up stuffing cash into your savings account in the process instead. Let’s get you taken care of. Give us a call today!

El

Denver Metro
Colorado Springs
Amarillo, Texas
Wyoming

We are your friend
in the business.