Getting a paint shop pro to do the work for you.
You don't need to be a paint shop pro to fix up your car, but it can sometimes be worth going to the experts, if you are not confident in your own abilities, you do not have the time to do it yourself, or are perhaps going for something a bit more specialized. After all, your vehicle probably represents a hefty investment, and a bad paint job can substantially reduce its value. That's why it's sometimes just worth leaving to the professionals. Paint jobs are also commonly done as a result of damage to a car, so they are often done in addition to further work- fixing up bodywork, replacing cracked bumpers or glass, and so forth. It's well worth going to a garage and talking your paint job over with an expert; doing this will give you the chance to get an idea of how costly a job can be, how much time is involved, and most paint shops will be happy to give you the opportunity to weigh up your options. Take as much time as you need to make a decision, but before you do, make sure you have answers to the following questions;
- How much paint is going to be required? It is really hard to estimate this, as there are so many variables involved. The size of your vehicle is the most obvious one, but things like the shape of the bodywork, the quality of the paint being used, and even the effectiveness of the spray gun applying it, are all factors.
- How long will the job take? I'm not talking here about the actual time it takes to paint the vehicle (although that is a consideration), but if you are leaving your vehicle with a paint shop pro, yours will not be the only job they are doing. Furthermore, if you are using unusual blends of paint- perhaps from an older or classic car, or a high-status Pearl finish, it can sometimes take longer to get this ordered in. You may well be reliant upon your car for transport, and in that case, you will have to take into consideration how long you can go without, and also what assurances they can offer. If the work over-runs, will there be a discount?
- How much are they charging for labour? Will this be a fixed price, agreed at the outset, or are there any other charges you have to take into consideration?
- Is it possible to see other examples of their work? A competent paint shop pro should be able to show you that they know what they are doing. If possible, talk to a previous customer, to get an independent point of view.
These are all common sense guidelines, and of course your own judgement of the person you are talking to is more important than any checklist. Other standard consumer caveats apply, of course; always shop around, and if something is too good to be true, it probably is!
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