Collision Repair: Damages To Expect From A Side-Impact Collision

Perhaps when you think of the word "collision," you envision a front or rear-end accident involving two or more vehicles. Although these are classic examples of collisions, it is important to note that side-impact collisions can also occur. These collisions are sometimes referred to as "T-bone accidents." The is because when the collisions occur the vehicles form what looks like a capital letter T. These accidents can be serious enough to cause fatalities. However, sometimes no one gets injured or the injuries may be minor. The damages to the vehicles can range from totaled to fixable. Auto body shops can determine if any damage is present because sometimes damage is hidden. The following points identify a few damages that a side-impact collision could cause. 

Wheel Damages

Side-impact collisions almost always involve wheel damage. It is usually as evident as soon as the collision occurs. The wheels will appear to bend inwards. The collision repair for bent wheels involves using a machine that exerts force on the affected wheels and bends them back into shape. 

Door Panel Damages

Since side-impact collisions involve one vehicle striking the side of another vehicle, the side that gets hit will have door panel damage. In many cases, the doors will need to get removed and replaced. The impact of the collision may also require reinforcements to be done to the door jamb of the struck vehicle. The collision can bend critical parts of the door jamb and interfere with its ability to close properly. 

Bent Frame

This is one of the most challenging collision repairs. The frame of a vehicle acts as a foundation. When the frame is bent, it can negatively impact vehicle operation. Auto body technicians have a few techniques they can use to straighten bent frames. The repair may involve removing the bent portions of the frame and replacing them with solid, straight materials. They can also use a shop tool that is referred to as a frame straightener to bend the original frame back into shape. The process chosen will depend on the extent of the damages and their location.

An auto body repair shop is a good resource to use to determine if your vehicle is salvageable after a side-impact collision. If the cost of the collision repair exceeds the value of the vehicle, the insurance company responsible for the payout might opt to total the vehicle. However, if it is deemed fixable and sensible to repair, the collision repair company will provide an itemized list of the damages and cost to fix.

Contact a collision repair shop to learn more.