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Driving After an Accident: Post Auto Body Repair

It is pivotal to implement a thorough inspection before taking your vehicle off the lot after collision repairs are made. Auto body professionals have created a list of repairs and inspection processes that should be considered when a shop communicates that your vehicle is ready for pickup. The post-collision process should never be compromised for speed but should be done using an in-depth investigation with the insurance, the owner of the vehicle, and the collision repair shop. 

What does the inspection process entail?

Professionals recommend always picking your vehicle up during daylight hours to ensure every possible blemish or mishap is clearly identifiable and can be rectified by the collision shop. When investigating the vehicle, collision repair specialists highly suggest the following inspection processes:

  • Ensure there is no overspray on areas where paint is not designed to be.
  • Look at vehicle up closely and from a far.
  • Examine the paint thoroughly and ask yourself, does the color and texture of the vehicle match?
  • Inspect the panel gaps.
  • Open and close vehicle doors including the hood, trunk, and tailgate to ensure of a secure latch.
  • Roll windows up and down completely to ensure windows are functioning properly. 

Auto body collision experts also recommend a more in-depth post-collision repair inspection that includes investigating the alignment of the vehicle by driving the vehicle after accident repairs are made to ensure the vehicle doesn't pull to one side, the body isn't bent, and the unibody structure is properly in-tact. Failure to do so can allow tires to wear out faster which will cost the vehicle owner more money well after driving the vehicle after an accident. It is also recommended that owners inspect the clippings of the vehicle to ensure parts a properly placed, secure, and blend in with the body of the vehicle. Any parts that are not properly placed onto your vehicle can result in parts falling off during operation which is a safety hazard for you and others on the road.

Vehicle Parts

Sometimes collision shops will use aftermarket or used parts to replace damaged portions of a vehicle after an accident, so it is essential to ensure that those parts are of excellent quality. If a vehicle owner is at any point unsatisfied with any repair after an accident, professionals recommend mentioning their concerns to the collision shop that made the repairs and even seek a second opinion from a different shop. The airbags in a vehicle are in place to protect the driver and passenger during an accident and must be properly replaced and installed to ensure that the role of the airbag is never compromised moving forward should another accident occur. Is the airbag indicator light on the dashboard flashing? That means that there is an issue with this component, and it should be evaluated immediately. If the airbag compartment sounds hollow that could be means of fraudulency. 


After an accident, the expected inspection process of collision professionals is in-depth, thorough, and of the highest meticulous regard. Another inspection process involves examining the lights and electrical components of the vehicle. Ensure all the lights are working and bright enough for safety purposes. Experts also recommend inspecting underneath the vehicle to check for any leaking fluids. Leaking fluids can indicate that there is an issue with the engine or transmissions which can be costly and very serious repairs. 


Collisions call for thorough investigations all around between insurance and vehicle owners. It is essential that the inspection process be taken seriously before driving a vehicle off the lot of a collision shop after repairs are made to ensure things are done right and the collision shop is held accountable for every service and repair performed. Accident repair specialists always suggest walking around your vehicle, asking the shop to point out what repairs were implemented, and what the process of the repair involved. It is also highly recommended to always ask the auto repair shop to provide you with documentation of every service performed as well as receipts for any parts replaced on the vehicle. Being thorough after an accident and collecting proper documentation provides the vehicle with peace of mind that they select the right shop to get the job done correctly the first time.