It’s not uncommon for us to get questions on a daily basis at the garage, from friends or whenever in uniform like: I’ve damaged my car bumper, should I get a replacement or repair it?
Well, the best thing to decide whether you should get it repaired or replaced is to decide which conclusion is more cost-efficient for you. Both a repair and a replacement will make your bumper look seamless once again. The real question is: which is option makes more sense from a financial perspective?
Getting a bumper repair is going to be cheaper than a replacement.
However, generally speaking, a replacement bumper is going to be sturdier than a repaired bumper. This means you have to assess how likely it is your car will suffer more damage in the future after being repaired. If likely (due to your surroundings/driving style etc.) or that you simply don’t want to risk more damage, it could be less costly to get a replacement.
So, a repair might be cheaper at first, yet more likely to break in the near future and meaning you have to make two payments for the same result.
Both are good options for their own reasons.
We are happy to be your reputable car body repairs in London team if you need any help with damages to your car!
Let’s help you weigh up the best decision for you and your car below.
You should get your bumper replaced if…
For more extreme damages it can be a wiser choice to go for a replacement rather than a repair.
The key reason for this?
Because a new bumper will be far stronger than a repaired bumper when the original damage was severe. Severe damage would be if the bumper has split open, been severed or cracked. Basically, structural damage. You can’t just paint over structural damage, the structure needs to be re-built.
When structure needs to be re-built and repaired, it generally is not as strong as if a brand new, undamaged bumper is put on. The materials have not been compromised so it is stronger. The filler used to mask (and for certain, you won’t notice any old damage) the hole where the car is severed will be filled by a weaker substance than what the car body is made from. Therefore, your car body will be weaker.
So a good general rule is to expect to have your bumper replaced if severely damage.
Of course, this depends on the car and a professional seeing it. I’m just giving you best general practices.
Now, you can opt for a repair over a replacement if you really want. There are some drawbacks for trying to save a bit of money though. Let’s say your car is severed but instead of going for a slightly more expensive replacement, you opt for a repair. Fine.
We can’t confirm exact prices but this is generally accurate. Let’s say a repair is around £200-£220 for a split from the edge of your bumper 6 inches up towards your windows.
Or you could go for a replacement, which will generally be around £320 – £420.
For around £120-£200 more, you could get a brand new bumper instead of settling for a less sturdy bumper for a little more money.
Not only that, you might repair your bumper, damage it again where it was previously damaged, the split opening up again and having to opt for a replacement.
Now you have spent more than if you simply got a replacement in the first place.
Again, each case should be taken individually so we aren’t saying one is better than the other. We are simply weighing up facts.
If you split your bumper on a relatively cheap car (sub £20,000) after 20 years of driving without any other accidents, and you are planning to replace the car within 6-24 months anyway – then you might as well get the thing repaired,
However, if you are a young driver that has perhaps overspent on their Ford ST, have had a few accidents after only 3 years driving… Your money might be better spent with a replacement rather than repair.
You should get your body bumper repaired if…
You should get your bumper repaired if the damage is more minor. That is, not structural damage where parts of the car have to be moulded together. We are referring to chips, scratches, bumps and dents. All of these could be picked up from stones kicking up, people hitting your car, trolleys hitting your car etc.
All of these repairs are relatively straightforward compared to the structure being deformed.
Your car is actually designed to absorb a good amount of these minor damages. Of course, it doesn’t always seem like that if you end up with a chip, bump and a scratch in one year, but they could be a lot worse than the way you are designed.
There are multiple techniques used to get rid of minor damage. Some involve small amounts of filler and repainting, some can be repaired using the SMART technique, sanding, heating filler and so on.
It’s not like we come in with a magic pen, draw over scratches and that’s it. This is a mechanical process which is going to take some time and expertise.
How will my car look after a repair, anyway?
As you can see in this excellent video of a bumper crack repair video, this is how a bumper will look after the repair.
As you can see by the very last clip, the bumper is as good as new. It looks as if the car was never severed from the bottom. This is how your car would look after repairing any sort of damage, be it a dent, crack or scratch
Another thing to point out is that the repair was made on the client’s driveway. Mobile repairs are convenient if you don’t have time to come to the garage. We can come to you, wherever you are.
How long will the repair take?
With minor to medium sized damages, your car is usually going to take at least an hour to repair, but could be more like 3-4 hours depending on the extent of damage. Each repair is usually multi-layered in that each kind of repair requires plenty of steps. We have to cover other parts of the car so they are not damaged or spray painted. Then we have to clean the area where the damage is. We might have to add filler, sand the excess, heat the filler substance, re-sand, repaint etc.. So the time is similar to as if you went to a garage. With the mobile repair process you get the convenience of being able to be at home while we make the repair.
Now, this sounds intense for your car to go through but you can be assured that the damage will look like it was never there before after we make a repair. Some cases are different but this is generally the result. You can trust us with your car to do an excellent job no matter which paint job or model of car you have.
Because we would love to replace or repair your car bumper! We love cars but we like people more. We are always trying to help as many people as possible with their cars, getting them the best results for their money and generally making their car driving experience better.
Also published on Medium.