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Small round dents stand out on the roof of a dark blue car.
Hail damage is one of the easiest dent repair fixes.

If you have small dings on your car, it may be hard to bring yourself to get dent repair. Smaller dents may be the result of hail, or a minor accident, and are often cosmetic.

You may choose not to make the repairs on dents especially if you think repairs will cost more than the value of your vehicle. But some dent repair is more expensive than others. One method, paintless dent repair, is actually quite affordable.

What is paintless dent repair?

Paintless dent repair, or PDR, is a process of removing dents from a vehicle without altering the finish. Technicians use specialized tools to remove small dents. PDR works best on vehicles when the paint is not damaged. This often includes hail damage and door dings.

Auto body or PDR?

A 3-inch dent on the door of a red-orange car.
Sometimes damage that looks minor on the outside can still affect the internal mechanisms of your car.

With damage from a major collision, the repairs will have to be done by a body technician at an auto body shop. For smaller dents, you have more options.

You can find PDR at some repair shops that don’t specialize in bodywork. However, auto body shops are more familiar with fixing body damage and may notice internal damage that a regular repair shop may not.

With any auto body repair, get several estimates to compare prices. You may decide to use paintless dent repair on your vehicle because it is cheaper but listen to the recommendations from auto technicians. If more than one suggests collision repair over PDR, it may be because the damage is greater than it appears.

For example, a dent in a door may not look significant, but it could have caused damage to the mechanisms inside the door that can’t be seen. This type of damage would be better off as an auto body repair.

Ask about a warranty

Before you go ahead with the repair, ask the shop about guarantees and warranties with any work done on your vehicle. Some shops offer lifetime guarantees on their work. Warranties will cover any problems you may encounter with that part later down the road.

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Dent repair is easier than you think
Dent repair is easier than you think
Small dents aren't a priority fix for most car owners, but getting them fixed is easier than you think. Learn about paintless dent repair and other options.

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