TEMPE BODY SHOP EXPLAINS 3 WAYS NOT TO HAMMER OUT A DENT
Tempe body shop technicians understand nothing if not the satisfaction of repairing ugly damage with one’s own two hands - and a handy hammer or mallet, of course. Here’s the thing, though: it’s entirely possible that any Tempe body shop technician that has ever lovingly restored your vehicle’s factory perfection has experienced a little early dent or ding to the ego after some early attempts at self-sufficient repairs made the damage worse.
Experience is a powerful teacher that way. It can also create unnecessary expense faster than hammering out a dent can give way to a red-letter moment of innovating brand-new strains of frustrated profanity.
Hammering out a dent can easily save hundreds of dollars on professional repairs. Your handiwork can also swell a small-but-embarrassing boo-boo into an even more shameful swollen spot in your bodywork. All things considered, we would always rather you trust a professional Tempe body shop that takes pride in thorough attention to detail with experience-honed technique. We hate to think of our friends and neighbors settling for less than 100% trustworthy body repairs.
However, if you must dive in and bring the hammer (or mallet) down, please, avoid these three beginner mistakes especially, lest a Tempe body shop visit enter your future anyway to rectify work that probably still deserves an “A” for effort…
- TUCSON COLLISION REPAIR “DON’T” #1 - WRONG TOOL FOR THE JOB
Yes, there is definitely a difference. Ideally, a hammer designed especially for bodywork should always be the first choice. If you don’t have one handy or just don’t feel like putting down a few one-time bucks to add one to your toolbox, several household equivalents will do. Just be sure you’ve picked the right one for the dent before you make matters worse. Rubber mallets are great for larger damaged areas, but always hammer in smaller strokes and check your work often to avoid pounding the dent out too far. Otherwise, a metal hammer with a rounded head is great for small, uneven dents and easier resurfacing work to follow.
- TUCSON COLLISION REPAIR “DON’T” #2 - DIRECT HIT
Unless you want to really see how much uglier your bodywork can get, don’t just go to town tapping away directly on the metal even with a rubber mallet. Keep some thicker rags between the metal and your hammer. The idea being, you want to soften the impact enough to avoid making more dents, but still push out the surface as needed. It may seem like common sense, but this results in some of the most cringeworthy, unnecessary additional damage we see when someone has decided to go DIY on a ding.
- TUCSON COLLISION REPAIR “DON’T” #3 - WHAT SANDING?
More often than not, your dent-repair job won’t be done once you’ve put the hammer down. You likely still have some surface imperfections to mask from the impact of whatever did the deed in the first place. Rest assured, paint alone won’t do it. Without sanding before the painting, your paint merely serves as a spotlight on a crudely repaired dent. Before adding an undercoat or matching the paint, always sand the affected area after hammering out the dent if you want a truly factory-worthy state of repair.
We don’t assume that our customers can’t handle some independent repairs on the their own - far from it. Again, we even understand if it’s a minor fix that you would prefer to tackle yourself. It’s just that Tempe body shop pros are schooled as much by some early flubs as the times we’ve restored a beaten-down vehicle to immaculate condition. If we can’t have the pleasure of applying our expertise to your wounded wheels, we hope our “oops” experiences - and the ones we’ve personally made right for others - have offered some additional free lessons in how NOT to apply vehicular First Aid.
Drive safely, Tempe.