Metal Auto Body And Panel Repair

Each car is unique and even when collisions seem similar, each car is different, that means the damage to your car is unique.  Accidents mean your car might need minor to major metal and panel repair. 

At West Coast Body and Paint we study the damaged area of your car to locate the point of impact.  We study the damage of your car carefully in order for us to understand what are the best steps and methods to take in order to repair your car’s damage.  Our bodyman will assess the damage thoroughly so we can determine the best procedure to follow when removing the damage(s) on your vehicle.  This avoids additional work or cause further damage to your car.

The Metal Auto Straightening Process

Metal straightening requires more skill than any other task in the auto body repair shop.  To straighten damaged metal components properly on your car we need to understand the basic properties of metals and the type of damage it is.

There are four basic types of metal damages:

  • Direct
  • Indirect
  • Minor
  • Major

Direct Auto Damage

Direct damage is the result of direct contact with an object.  About 10% of total collision damage is direct damage.  Examples of direct damage are:

  • Holes
  • Tears
  • Gouges
  • Scratches

Indirect Auto Damage

Indirect damage is the results of direct damage.  For example, a front-end collision may result in direct damage to the front of the car, but indirect damage may occur in the underbody and the rear panels.  About 90% of all collision damage is indirect damage.

Minor Auto Damage

Minor damage involves repairs that require relatively little time to complete.  A simple dent can be considered minor damage.

Major Auto Damage

Major damage involves repairs that require more time, equipment, and skill to repair.  Repairing major damage generally involves replacing body panels and straightening structural parts.  Examples of major body damage:

  • Severely bent body panels
  • Damaged frame
  • Damaged underbody components

Metal Panel Repair

In theory, dent repairs are very simple, but when two vehicles collide, or your car strikes a tree or utility pole, dents become much more complex.  Automotive collisions are not that simple since the actual crash is rarely limited to a single point of impact.

The Metal Panel Repair Process

  1. Remove the paint from the panels that need to be repaired
  2. Straighten the deformed sheet metal as much as possible
  3. Apply a thin coat of filler or bondo to perfect the surface of the shape
  4. Prime/Sealer
  5. Paint/Color and Clear

Panel Replacement

Repairing bent sheet metal components is a relatively simple but when the body damage to your vehicle is more severe, it will need to be replaced.

Panel Alignment

Once the panel is straightened, dent free, no ripples, and the panels have been repaired or replaced, we make sure that all of the panels fit together as they should.  All the bodylines will align form one panel to the next.

Where can you find a metal auto body repair shop in Los Angeles?

At West Coast Body and Paint!  Our bodyman technicians have over 50 years of experience put together.  We work on all makes and models, classic cars, mopars, and luxury vehicles.  Come to our shop for a free auto body repair estimate, give us a call 818.785.2639 or email us at  We are located in Van Nuys, we serve the San Fernando Valley and the Los Angeles area.