Paintless dent removal or paintless dent repair (PDR) fixes small dents and creases that resulted from dings, hailstorms, or just your neighborhood kids playing ball.
The most important criteria for PDR is that the paint job hasn’t been damaged. Luckily, most manufacturers today use high-quality paints that are more resistant to damage, so your car may just be the right candidate for paintless dent removal.
How Does Paintless Dent Removal Work?
1. Assessing the damage
The first step is to analyze the damaged area. Making sure the paint finish is intact and the dent is not too deep is crucial for PDR. If the dent is noticeable from afar, the metal may be stretched too thin, and the quick fix is no longer an option.
2. Gaining access
Depending on where the damage is, specialized skills and tools may be needed to access the dent from the inside. This could involve removing trim panels and plastic liners while avoiding additional damage.
3. Correcting the dent
Special lighting and panels will be useful in this step as they provide a better outline of the area for repair. There are also tools such as a vacuum suction cup, dent pullers, puller tabs, glue shovels, and a dent lifter to get the job done. Using these tools and applying gentle pressure from both sides, the car’s original look can be restored. The most important thing is not to overstretch the metal, and technicians can do this by massaging the affected area back into place.
The Advantages Of Paintless Dent Removal
Paintless dent repair saves time and money in repairing both aluminum and steel panels.
Unlike more severe damage, PDR can be done within hours, and there’s no need to try and mix and match the paint to the original color.
It can fix door dings, small creases, hail damage, as well as larger dents and bodyline damage. It’s also useful in preparing a damaged panel for repainting because it reduces the need for body filler.
Most importantly, as the process is relatively simple and quick, it’s more cost-efficient whether you hire a professional or do it yourself.
DIY Or Hire A Pro?
There are a few things to consider when deciding whether to fix the bodywork yourself or turn to a licensed technician.
The first things most drivers consider are cost and accessibility. If you often get small bumps, it may be worth investing in a dent repair toolkit and learning how to do it yourself. However, if it’s a one-time thing and you have a good repair shop near you, it may not be worth the hassle.
Also, if you’re not too confident or crafty with your hands, you may end up doing more harm than good. A common mistake is pulling the metal out too much or overstretching it. This will replace the dent with a bulge and could even cause the paint to crack. Then you won’t have a choice but to get professional help.
Final Word Of Caution
While PDR can restore your car’s factory look, it doesn’t mean your vehicle is good as new. The metal is still damaged, so any future damage to the same area may turn out to be more costly to repair.