Car accidents can happen here and there, and there are plenty of different reasons why accidents can happen at any given moment. But if you do find yourself in a car accident, it is best that it is simply a fender bender, which is a minor car accident that only involves a dent in the car.
However, can fender benders be fixed without having to file for an insurance claim or even pay for a large amount in a repair shop?
Find out if fender benders be fixed
Fender benders can be fixed in a way that will not cost you a lot of money. There are some home or DIY remedies that you can use in that regard. However, if you want to make sure that your fender bender is fixed properly while retaining the vehicle’s value, it is better to have it fixed.
The thing about fender benders is that they are quite common but people are too quick to file for an insurance claim on such a minor accident.
But the good news here is that you can fix a fender bender yourself or even have a repair shop fix it. That way, you don’t have to worry about that dent or minor car damage, which can easily ruin the car’s appearance or even pull down its value.
What is a minor fender bender?
Some of the most dreaded things that car owners never wish would happen to them are on-road collisions or accidents. While cars do have safety features that prevent injuries to the driver and passengers, such safety features will not save the vehicle from any sort of damage that can happen. Sure, you are thankful that you didn’t suffer any serious injuries, but you still have to spend money on repairs.
Then again, there are some collisions or accidents that tend to be minor that they can hardly cause any injuries or even incur a ton of damage to your car. These are what we call fender benders.
A minor fender bender is the type of accident that you would wish you are in if ever road collisions cannot be avoided. That is because, as the term suggests, these are merely minor accidents. And judging from the “fender bender” name, it is easy to tell what these types of car accidents are.
Fender benders are named as such because, in most cases, the damage to the car is so minor that only the fender gets damaged. The fender is the spot between your front door and the front bumper and is usually the curviest part of the car when you look at the vehicle from the side. So, if ever a car finds itself in a minor accident and is hit from the side, it is usually the fender that takes the brunt of the damage because of how it protrudes more than the other external parts of the vehicle.
Some of the most common reasons why fender benders can happen include:
- A collision during a sudden halt that the car behind you wasn’t able to react quickly to.
- A driver is backing out of a parking space and doesn’t notice that there is a vehicle behind them.
- The driver is distracted while talking to the passengers, changing the music on the head unit, or looking at their phone.
Any of those abovementioned instances can lead to minor fender benders that would require repairs. Regardless of whatever the cause of the fender bender is, most drivers should be vigilant enough to know how to avoid any sort of on-road accident, be they minor or not.
Can fender benders be fixed?
Even though fender benders are quite minor when you compare them to the other types of collisions and on-road accidents, what you should know is that the car will still end up getting damaged. Fenders are not the sturdiest parts of the car and are going to end up getting bent by a minor fender bender. As such, you would need to have the fender bender fixed, or else your car would look unappealing due to the dent on the fender or on any part of the vehicle’s body.
While you may want your fender bender fixed, is it actually possible to fix a fender bender? And if possible, are there any home solutions that you can use to fix it?
The good news is that fender benders can be fixed, and these repair jobs are not too complicated for repair shops to handle. But the problem here is that fender benders repairs can be quite expensive (we’ll get there soon). So, if you don’t want to have a fender bender fixed, another piece of good news here is that there are some DIY solutions that you may be able to use first instead of resorting to expensive repairs.
Here are some repairs that you may try out yourself:
There are some fender benders that can be fixed quite easily using the plunger you have at home. This remedy tends to work best on larger dents because of how much space the plunger can cover.
What you need to do first is to clean the dented area on the fender bender and then put the plunger on the dent. Squish the plunger and then pull it straight out to try to pop the dent out. This tends to work on dents that may be wide but aren’t too dip, but can probably be ineffective against dents that are more complex.
- Hot water
If the damage is on your fender, the good news is that you may be able to fix it using hot water because there are plenty of fenders that are made of plastic. And you must know that plastic tends to be pliable when exposed to heat.
What you can do here is to boil a pot of water and then pour it over the damaged area on the fender bender. This will allow the plastic to soften without causing damage to it. Then, if you can reach the area behind the fender, you can try pushing the dent out. This method can be effective to some extent but isn’t always the best because of how it may cause the plastic to deform.
Another good method that you can use in relation to the fact that plastic softens when heated is the hairdryer method. However, you should also use compressed air here so that you get to fight heat with cold and force the fender bender back to its original shape.
To use this method, you should have a hairdryer or a heat gun. Use the hairdryer on the dented area until the plastic softens up. From there, you should use compressed air on it to freeze the dented area. What happens here is that the hairdryer softens the plastic and the cold air from the compressed air will shrink it to essentially pull the dent out.
How much do fender benders cost to repair?
If any of the abovementioned methods did not work in your favor because of how complicated the fender bender dents are or because such methods just did not work, the best thing you need to do is to have your car repaired even if it is still working well.
The problem here is that, regardless of the extent of the damage to your vehicle, fender bender repairs can be quite expensive. You should expect your total to range from $2,500 to $10,000 because of how expensive these repairs can be. However, the total costs will depend on how damaged your car is and how complicated the dents are.
Another problem here is that there are fender benders that may end up damaging the lights and the hood as well because of how close the fenders are to these components. When that happens, you are surely going to spend more money to repair the fender bender, as repairing your lights should be quite expensive as well. And there are some cases when the fender bender may even cause suspension damage.
This is why it is better to have a repair shop look at your vehicle after a minor fender bender because you can’t be too sure of how damaged your car is. You might think that the damage is limited to the exterior but you probably don’t realize that some of the interior components are also damaged. Even a minor impact can be enough to cause electrical issues in your vehicle.
Before you decide to skip out on having your fender bender fixed because you think that the repairs are too expensive and that the fender bender damage did not impair the functionality of the vehicle, you should know that this is a big mistake that you shouldn’t be making under any circumstance.
Your car may run fine now but, as mentioned, you will never know the extent of the damage until a mechanic checks the car’s condition. Even something as minor as a dent may have caused issues or problems in the car’s interior components, and this might be something that you won’t notice until the wear and tear on such components have already piled up.
Issues will eventually develop, and all of that can be traced to what seemed like a very minor fender bender accident. And the problem here is that your insurance might not cover the repairs when they trace the issues back to your negligence of not having your car fixed right away.
Even if the insurance isn’t your problem, you should also know that the vehicle’s value will drop if you failed to repair the fender bender as soon as possible. The damage will be deducted from its overall value. As such, you would have to pay more for the new car, in case you traded in your old one.