With more vehicles made out of aluminum, requires more aluminum repair for collision repair technician.
I visited with Steve Widen with 3M at SEMA 2011 and asked him what he thinks a few of the biggest challenges the collision repair industry faces.
Steve mentioned that vehicle technology is changing fast. Getting the new repair methods to the repair shops is a challenge he feels is an issue. We are not going to be able to use the same repair methods that we have in the past. The industry must realize continuos training is essential to stay updated with new repair methods.
The other challenge Steve mentioned was aluminum repair. Aluminum requires separate tools used only for aluminum. Using the same tools used on steel panels will cause galvanic corrosion. Another thing Steve mentioned, was having a clean work station to repair aluminum. If an aluminum repair is being repaired near another repair, the surface may get metal contaminates embedded into the aluminum surface. This may not show up immediately, but with time the contaminates causing galvanic corrosion.
To prevent this, body shop’s are going to need separate work stations for aluminum repairs.
This is going to effect all body shops, as more vehicles are being made with aluminum parts. The new F-150 Ford pick-up will consist of mostly aluminum. It’s not just the higher end cars, but the average vehicles are being designed with much of the new technology, which will require new repair methods to consider.
For more things changing the collision repair industry, visit Collision Repair Trends.