When a hailstorm strikes in Denver, hundreds or even thousands of Coloradans can be left with significant auto hail damage. Vehicles are often left vulnerable to the impact of hailstones during a storm, and the larger the hailstorms, the more extensive the damage.
Hail damage to your vehicle can often be fixed with paintless dent repair. But, before heading to your Denver PDR shop, you’ll need to file a claim with your auto insurance company to cover the cost of the damage.
Here, we’ll walk you through every step of the auto hail claim process so that you can receive compensation for vehicle repairs after a hailstorm.
Does My Car Insurance Cover Hail Damage?
To make sure that your car insurance policy covers the cost of auto hail damage, it’s crucial to have comprehensive coverage. Comprehensive coverage is a type of car insurance that covers damages caused by accidents that aren’t collisions, like a hailstorm. Usually, this type of insurance has a deductible.
Liability insurance is another type of car insurance that, unlike comprehensive coverage, is legally required for Colorado drivers. This type of auto insurance covers the other driver’s medical bills and property damage if you’re at fault for an accident. But, it doesn’t provide any coverage for your own vehicle and won’t help out with the cost of auto hail repairs.
Although you may be tempted to avoid the added expense of comprehensive coverage, it will save you money in the long run by covering the cost of damages, such as hail damage, that you have no control over.
The Detailed Steps of The Auto Hail Claim Process
Document The Damage.
The first step in the auto hail claim process is to document the damage. Obtaining proof of the damage as soon as possible after a hailstorm is crucial for your insurance claim’s approval. Your insurance company will require proof of the damage before processing your claim.
One way to gather evidence of the damage is to take clear photos of the dents, dings, cracked windows, and any other issue caused by the hailstorm. These photos need to be taken in good, bright lighting that reveals the detail in each dent.
If you don’t want to bank on your photography skills to support your auto hail insurance claim, you can instead head to a Denver dent repair shop for professional help. The dent experts can accurately assess the damage and tell you the best repair method for your vehicle. This can expedite the process of getting your claim filed and approved.
Reach Out To Your Insurance Company.
After promptly documenting the hail damage, the next step is to reach out to your insurance company and begin the process of filing a claim. You have two options when it comes to this step: contact your insurance company on your own or have your auto repair company do it for you.
If you opt to reach out to your car insurance company on your own, first take a look at your insurance card. There should be a phone number on the back of it for claims. Call this number to speak to a representative from your car insurance company and start the claim process for auto hail damage.
Oftentimes, Denver auto hail repair shops will reach out to your insurance company on your behalf to file a hail damage claim. This can make the claim process much easier, given that auto hail repair professionals are experienced in filing claims and may even know how to speed up your claim’s approval. Having your repair company reach out to your insurance company will also save you time and energy in kicking off the claim process.
After filing a claim, you’ll need to wait for a claim number. After a Denver hailstorm, insurance companies often become laden with claims for auto hail damage. As a result, you may end up waiting longer than you normally would to receive your claim number. Again, having your repair specialists reach out to the insurance company for you may help speed this process along.
Schedule an Inspection.
Next, you’ll need to have your vehicle inspected so that your claim can be approved. There are a few options when it comes to this step. For one, you can have your insurance company send out an adjuster to assess your vehicle. If the adjuster does what’s called a field estimate, they’ll head to your home or workplace to look over the damage and provide an estimate of the repair costs. Since insurance companies often have to deal with hundreds of claims after a hailstorm, they may ask you to head to a catastrophe tent to complete your inspection.
Having your hail damage inspection done by an insurance adjuster should be avoided for a couple of reasons:
With a field estimate, the adjuster won’t have the specialized lighting used by auto repair shops to assess hail damage. Professional-grade lighting is required to identify every last dent and ding in your vehicle. So, if the inspection is carried out in your home’s driveway or your workplace’s parking lot, there’s a significant chance that some of the damage will be overlooked, leading to a modest repair cost estimate.
Insurance adjusters aren’t certified auto hail damage repair technicians. This means that they can’t provide as accurate an estimate, again leading to issues with your insurance compensation.
Instead of having an insurance adjuster complete a field estimate, you can head to a Denver auto hail repair shop that works with insurance companies. The experienced technicians can carry out the inspection under specialized lighting and provide an accurate estimate for all of the hail damage on your vehicle.
If you do have an insurance adjuster provide an estimate for the damage and you aren’t content with it, you can check out hail damage repair shops for other estimates.
4. Find a Reputable Auto Hail Damage Repair Shop.
The next step in the auto hail claim process is to select a repair shop to restore the condition of your vehicle. If you’ve already been working with a specific repair shop from the beginning of the claim process, it often makes sense to stick with them. Otherwise, shop around for a company that couples experience and reputability with excellent customer service.
After a hailstorm, the best repair route for many car owners is paintless dent repair. This method has become the gold standard of auto dent repair. It involves pressing out the dent with a specially-designed tool to return the metal to its original position. Also called PDR, paintless dent repair is ideal because once the process is completed, you can’t tell that the vehicle was ever dented or underwent repairs.
For auto hail damage, look for a PDR shop with experienced, trained technicians and a track record of success, such as Colorado Hail Solutions in Denver.
5. Receive an Auto Insurance Supplement, If Needed.
In many cases of auto hail damage, the approved estimate for the car owner’s claim ends up being lower than the actual cost of repairing the vehicle. This generally occurs if the insurance adjuster didn’t notice some of the damage during the inspection. As a result, your technician will let you know that the cost of repairing your vehicle is higher than the compensation provided to you by the insurance company.
This doesn’t mean that you have to cover the difference out-of-pocket. Instead, the auto shop can list the damage that wasn’t factored into the initial estimate and send it to the insurance company in what’s called a supplement request.
Insurance companies are typically aware of the fact that they won’t identify all of the damage during the first inspection. So, supplement requests usually get approved without much of a hassle. However, if the amount requested for the supplement exceeds a specific limit, the company will request photos and receipts or send an adjuster to the repair shop to check that the amount is accurate.
6. Schedule an Appointment For Hail Damage Repairs.
Once your insurance claim has been approved and you’ve selected a repair shop for your car’s hail damage, the next step is to book an appointment to complete the repairs.
Many cases of hail damage can be successfully repaired with paintless dent repair, or PDR. This method of dent repair omits the use of fillers and paint, which makes the repair process much quicker. As a result, you can most likely leave with your repaired vehicle after PDR within a few hours.
At Colorado Hail Solutions, we provide paintless dent repair in Denver. Our experienced team works directly with insurance companies to help you navigate the auto hail claim process with ease. Additionally, we’ll pay your deductible up to $1,000 so that you pay $0 out of pocket for auto hail repairs.
If your vehicle in Denver has sustained damage in a hailstorm, visit Colorado Hail Solutions today for prompt, reliable repairs from expert technicians.