Car Dent Repair And Cost [Super Simple Guide]

The fact that you are reading this guide shows that you are having a tough week.

Whether you’re backing into a pole, turning too sharp, or simply not paying attention, returning your car to its past will carry a hefty price tag.

How much does a car dent repair cost? There are many factors to consider, including the extent of the body damage, its location, and where you are doing the bodywork. If the dent is small, expect to spend between $50 and $125.

But let’s be real, if it’s more than a door ding, the cost goes up significantly.

How many?

Let’s first review each of the above factors in detail so you can better understand what’s involved. Along the way, you’ll also learn the exact cost of dent repair.

Let’s start now!

What Makes Car Dent Repair So Expensive?

Dent Size and Repair Method

The more damage, the more expensive the repair costs. Why? One reason is that larger dents tend to override Paintless Dent Removal (PDR).

What is PDR? It is a newer, low-cost alternative to traditional body shop method. As the name suggests, PDR work does not require sanding, painting, or drying. This not only makes it faster but also cheaper. The process involves reshaping the damaged body part back into its original shape by reshaping the metal.

As we mentioned earlier, repairing a smaller ding (parking lot damage) will cost between $50 to $125.

If less than ding and more than DANG, possibility for PDR out the window. In this case, the entire area must be sanded, painted and then dried. This means paying a skilled autobody professional to do things the right way with the right materials (more on that later).

For a medium sized dent, expect to spend $2,000 or more to restore your car to its former glory.

If PDR is not possible, and is not worth painting, You may have to replace the entire panel (and painted).

Depending on the body part, this may or may not be a cheaper alternative. Front and rear bumpers tend to be cheaper than other panels because they are usually made of plastic, but they can still go as high as $300-$700. Nails to paint it, and you’re looking for as high as $1,000 which is cool all said and done – just for the bumper.

Number of dents and their location

a car with a dented back

This one goes hand in hand with the size of the dent. Because how many there are and where they are are just as important.

Why? Well, for one thing, the more damaged panels, the more work is required to fix them. You can basically take the example above and multiply it by how many dents there are and how many body parts are affected.

This is why hail (a literal ball of ice falling from the sky) can cost a car the total, as the average repair costs about $2,500.

Another thing is that fixing a dent on the body line is much more difficult than fixing it on a flat surface like the side of a door. While anything can be repaired, if the damage is too severe, your car will never look the same without replacing the panels entirely.

In addition, the type of car can also be a factor, because some manufacturers use special paint and less common metals such as aluminum or steel.

Where You Do Body Work

remove car scratches and dents

As you’ve probably guessed, there’s a huge price difference between hiring someone with a lot of experience versus none. While you can always find someone willing to do anything for $50, you can also find cheap work.

However, due to using cheap paint, substandard equipment, or not having the right location, lower-level jobs are likely to emerge upon further inspection. What does bad bodywork look like? Some signs to look for include:

  • Paint Sagging / Running
  • Color Mismatch
  • spotting
  • More Than Spray
  • Inconsistent Texture (Orange Peel)

The difference between cheap bodywork and quality bodywork? Let’s use a regular sedan car hood as an example. The former will likely cost around $300-$500, and the latter, $500-$1,000. What do you get from a price increase?

Well, in addition to avoiding the poor bodywork above, there are also a number of layers that are sprayed. To save costs, cheap shops will apply as few coats as possible when painting. Not only that, they will only spray the visible areas of the car.

Should you take your car to a top body repair shop? It depends on what you are after.

If the dent occurred while the car was new, hiring a quality repair shop might be the only way to get it back to 100%. If there are already some stains, such as UV rays, deep scratchessigns of age, or other damage, the cheaper option may be best.

Now you know the various factors that affect the price of a dent repair. Let’s take a closer look at the actual costs.

How Much Does a Car Dent Repair Cost?

car dent repair before and after

You can always find $50-75 ding removal via a quick Google search. Beyond that, the shop does what they can to make a little extra. A deep ding? $125.

Bigger dentchances are you may see after hitting a pole or other vehicle, have to walk between $200-$300 depending on the above factors.

Using the figures above, a good way to estimate the price of a dent is to add $50-$120 for every inch. This means that 2 to 3 inch dent that requires no painting and no creases should cost $100-$240.

For dents that cannot be repaired with PDR and need to be painted, do not be surprised to find this number increased a lot. How many? Think extra $200-$500. If the damage is too severe to repair (or in the $1,000-$1,500 range), replacing the entire panel may be best.

Multiply by the number of dents and how many body parts are affected, and you can easily see how quickly it all adds up.

Stop Hitting Things With Your Car

Isn’t that the easiest way?

Either way, it happens, you might as well not think about it. Instead, deal with it as soon as possible before things get worse. Not only does doing it early help keep costs down, it also prevents rust from developing.

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