Tag: A&Jcollisionrepair

Purchasing a Vehicle, Let Us Help

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                After filing taxes and getting the return, the next move is to decide what to do with your refund. Some choose to add the amount into saving, while others make a purchase. The most popular purchase that is made is a vehicle. Since it is tax season, using the refund as a down payment helps in the long run.

More and more people are buying used vehicles over new ones. There are many incentives to buying a used over a new vehicle. It helps save money on insurance, registration, taxes and depreciation. Vehicles today are very reliable and so it just makes sense to go the used route.

Buying a vehicle can be very stressful for everyone. At A&J Collision Repair, we want to help make that process easier. There are several steps that can be taken to ensure the purchase of a vehicle is a good one. Some steps that can be taken prior to even stepping onto a car lot would be to: set your budget, choose the right vehicle, check reliability and ownership costs, locate good used vehicles, price the vehicle, check the vehicle history report, contact the seller, go on a test drive, negotiate the best price, and close the deal. These are all important factors to consider since a vehicle is a big purchase for anyone.

Setting the Budget

When purchasing a vehicle there are only two ways to purchase it; paying cash or taking out a loan. If paying with cash, that makes budgeting simple. However, it is best to not spend all the contents of the savings. There needs to be money set aside for registration and insurance. If using a loan, it is best to put 10% down and finance the vehicle for three years.

Choose the Right Vehicle

The most fun part, picking your vehicle. It is important to take inconsideration what the vehicle will be used for. Narrow the field by making a list of must have features. Based on that list, search for models that will fit your needs best.

Check Reliability and Ownership Costs

Every used vehicle is different. Some have gone more miles than others and some have more wear and tear. It is best to pick a vehicle known for dependability. While some cars are cheap to buy, they may have issues in the long run because of maintenance and repairs.

Locate Good Vehicles

There are lots of websites that list used vehicles. Each site has its own character. Go with that best fits your list of needs.

Price the Vehicle

Once there are several models of vehicles chosen, look up their price. This can be done through several vehicle model pricing guides found online such as Kelly Blue Book and NADA. When doing this make sure to include the year, make, model, options (such as navigation), mileage, and condition level.

Check the Vehicle History Report

It is good to run a history report on the vehicle before ever going to see it. Running the report only requires the VIN number. This is to make sure there is a clean title, any serious accidents, and if there was regular maintenance done on the vehicle.

Contact the Seller

By calling the seller, you will get a lot of questions answered and it will save you some time. A few basic questions to ask are: how many owners have there been, are the service records available, do you have the title and is it clear, can I have the car inspected by a mechanic?

Test Drive the Vehicle

Until now the vehicle has not been driven. When you go to test drive make sure to drive on various roads, (hills, rough pavement, curves and a stretch of highway), that way you can feel how it drives on all road types. You will want to pay attention to the following: visibility, acceleration and cornering, brakes, ergonomics, mechanical condition.

Inspect the Vehicle

If the vehicle drives well and seems to be in good condition, it should still be taken to a mechanic. Here at A&J Collision Repair, we offer a free pre-purchase inspection. You can bring a vehicle that you are hoping to purchase, and we can inspect it for you. We will look it over and make sure that all components are working properly.

Negotiate the Best Price

This part of buying a vehicle always stresses people. If you have done the proper research, this will be a piece of cake. When offered the price compare it to the average market price. It is up to the seller to either accept your offer or make a counteroffer.

Close the Deal

Before taking ownership of your vehicle, add it to your insurance. Then, you will only need to pay for the vehicle. Make sure to get the title and have the seller sign it correctly. Once the sale contract is signed, the vehicle is yours. Take time to review the contract and do not let yourself be pressured into signing it just to get it over with.

Emily Patterson

Receptionist, A&J Collision Repair

1215 Thomas G Wilson Dr

Conway, AR 72032

501-327-1882

CONSUMER ALERT: Fake Insurance Policies

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In recent days, there are reports of individuals posing as car insurance agents trying to sell fraudulent policies at dealerships. This statement was released by Arkansas Insurance Commissioner, Allen Kerr.

He stated that these complaints were received from Progressive Insurance about people posing as Progressive agents. These individuals were attempting to sell policies to consumers looking into purchasing a vehicle.

Progressive Insurance has referred roughly 240 initial cases of alleged fraudulent insurance that was sold and have sent it to the Arkansas Insurance Department for investigation. The company stated that the individuals frequented the area dealerships presenting themselves as Progressive agents, offering services to assist car buyers in getting insurance online. These policies were purchased by paying cash to the individual at the car lot.

The fake agents would then go online to purchase a Progressive policy using a checking account. The individuals would then claim the transactions as fraud, lending to a return of the purchase and rescission of the policy.

Arkansas Insurance Department encourages consumers who may have been victims to contact the Criminal Investigations Division at 866-660-0888.

The Commissioner reminds Arkansans that people who sell or are in possession of a false, fake or counterfeit insurance policies or insurance identification care may be charged with committing a fraudulent Insurance Act, which is a Class D Felony that carries a maximum penalty of six years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Information source:

www.insurance.arkansas.gov

Emily Patterson

Receptionist-A&J Collision Repair

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Dr Conway, AR 72032

501-327-1882

Hit A Deer…Now What?

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The most common vehicle accident seen is a deer hit. They come out of no where and suddenly the driver now has damage to their vehicle. That also comes with many questions, some which do not have a straightforward answer. Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about deer hits.

“So I hit a deer, am I covered?”

                In order to be covered for a deer hit you must have comprehensive coverage on your insurance policy. This type of coverage is for accidents other than collisions. Although the deer did strike or collide with your vehicle, it is specifically listed as a loss covered by “other than collision”. If you have only liability coverage, then the insurer will not pay for the damages from hitting the deer.

“I swerved to miss a deer, then hit ____. Will I be covered?”

                If it was only the deer that hit the vehicle, then it would go under comprehensive insurance. If the driver swerves to miss the deer and then hit something else, such as another vehicle, guardrail, tree or roll the vehicle, then that turns into a collision claim. Even though the deer started this ordeal, contact with the animal was never made so that is not a comprehensive claim.

“Will the state pay for the damage, or for my deductible”?

                The state will not pay for the repairs or deductible. There is an agency that does manage the deer population, but they cannot prevent deer from crossing roadways.

“Do I need to file a police report?”

                Most insurances do not require the insured to fill out a police report for a comprehensive claim. It is best to contact authorities if there are any signs of injury.

“Will my insurance go up?”

                Usually with a comprehensive claim, the company will not raise your insurance rate. If there are multiple claims filed over a period, then that can raise rates.

We here at A&J Collision Repair are always available to help you with any claim that needs taken care of. Give us a call today!

Emily Patterson

Receptionist

1215 Thomas G Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

501-327-1882

They save lives, but . . .Know what happens when an airbag deploys!

News

In 1969, the new trend in driving safety was air pillows. Those pillows stayed around but their name changed, and no wonder.

An airbag is no pillow, but while a deployed airbag is not a comfy experience, it remains a landmark of safety.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that airbags have saved 44,869 lives from 1987 to 2015.

According to Popular Science, in a head-on collision, a car stops fast, but the bodies inside the car don’t.  The momentum of the bodies inside continues until the windshield, dashboard or steering wheel brings them to a stop — usually with dire consequences.

The idea of an airbag is not just to pillow the blow, but to lower the impact by spreading it over a larger area of the body.  No single area of the body bears the brunt of deceleration, according to Popular Science.

To accomplish this, airbags deploy within 1/25th of a second of impact, filling the nylon airbag with nitrogen and instantly deflating. Tiny holes in the bag begin releasing gas the moment a driver’s head hits the bag, absorbing the impact. This is why the driver’s head doesn’t hit the bag and then whip backward.

A white puff of cornstarch might also come out of the bag. The cornstarch keeps the bag supple while it is in storage. Newer cars have airbags with silicone coatings that make the cornstarch unnecessary.

Because airbags stop the body, they prevent deadly head injuries and whiplash.  But they do sometimes cause red impact burns on the body and break eyeglasses.

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

(501)327-1882

Cellphone usage while walking or driving is BAD….

News

Pedestrians are dying at levels that haven’t been seen in 25 years, according to a new Governor’s Highway Safety Association report.

The reason appears to be that people are ignoring some of the first lessons they learned as children: Watch where you are walking and look both ways.

The reason for that?

Walkers using cellphones, for one thing. More specifically texting while walking. Combine that with drivers using cellphones and the death toll is mounting.

Nearly 6,000 pedestrian fatalities occurred in 2017, a jarring statistic. In fact, the spike in pedestrian deaths began in 2015 with a 9.5 percent increase over the previous year. In 2016, there was another 9 percent increase.

Improvements in vehicle safety such as automatic emergency braking, rearview cameras and collision alert technology have not been able to change the pedestrian death trend, according to the National Highway Traffic Administration.

About 75 percent of pedestrian deaths happen at night. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, dim headlights might bear some responsibility. Every year, about 2,500 pedestrians are killed at night while crossing a road. In many cases, drivers can’t see them because their headlights are not bright enough.

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

(501)327-1882

Frequently asked questions with answers!

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Do I Have The Right To Select The Shop That Will Repair My Vehicle?

It’s your car, your choice! We recommend you select a repair shop that will be an advocate for you, the vehicle owner.

Why Can’t I Get An Estimate Over The Phone?

There are many factors that can greatly effect estimated repair costs. Parts prices and repair time are determined by professional estimating software. Repairs often have hidden structural or frame damage that is not visible and may also need wheel alignment. Our expert staff will provide a thorough, accurate estimate after carefully examining your vehicle.

Do I Have To Pay a Deductible?

The amount of deductible that you will be responsible for is determined by your insurance policy. Insurance companies determine fault by your account of the accident when you make the claim, and by reviewing the accident report filed with the police department. If you aren’t sure about your deductible, we can call the adjuster and he or she can tell us whether your insurance company has waived your deductible or whether you will be responsible to pay this when you pick up your vehicle.

Who Do I Pay My Deductible To?

If your deductible is not waived, it will be your responsibility to pay us when you pick up your vehicle.

If My Vehicle Frame Is Damaged Is It a Total Loss?

No. A car is a total loss only when the price of repairs exceeds the insurance company’s determined value of your vehicle. Today most cars are built using unibody (frame and body as one) construction. Our highly skilled technicians, with the aid of our state-of the-art computer measuring system, can return your vehicle to its original factory specifications. If it is determined that the frame section is bent beyond repair, that section can simply be replaced.

Can You Match The Paint Color On My Vehicle?

Yes. Today’s modern factory finishes incorporate multiple layers of highly specialized paints. We have made a major investment in the finest paint system available and constantly upgrade our technology and equipment to ensure that each vehicle’s paint matches. We take special pride in our ability to match factory finishes as the final step in the restoration process.

How Can I Get a Rental Car?

If you need a rental car, we can help you make the necessary arrangements. Insurance companies will only pay for a rental car if you have that option on your policy or if you are the claimant. We will call your insurance company to find out if you have rental coverage and what your specific limitations are.

 

If you have any more questions don’t hestiate to email me: rachel.sharping@ajcollisionrepair.com and I will get them answered for you!

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

(501)327-1882

Understanding Air Bags!

News

Overview

In 25 years—from 1987 to 2012—frontal air bags saved 39,976 lives. That’s enough people to fill a major league ballpark.

NHTSA provides information about the safety benefits of frontal and side air bags and the importance of using seat belts—your first line of defense. We also test and provide guidance on the risks of counterfeit and defective air bags, and urge vehicle owners with recalled air bags to immediately get their air bags replaced by a dealer.

Protection

Air bags are supplemental restraints and are designed to work best in combination with seat belts. Both frontal and side-impact air bags are designed to deploy in moderate to severe crashes.
Air bags reduce the chance that an occupant’s upper body or head will strike the vehicle’s interior during a crash. To avoid an air-bag-related injury, always ensure proper seating position. Wearing your seat belt properly helps ensure that you’re properly seated.

Vehicles can be equipped with both front and side air bags (SABs). Frontal air bags have been standard equipment in all passenger cars since model year 1998 and all SUVs, pickups and vans since model year 1999. SABs are being offered as standard or optional equipment on many new passenger vehicles.

AIR BAG DEPLOYMENT

HOW AIR BAGS WORK

When there is a moderate to severe crash, a signal is sent from the air bag system’s electronic control unit to the inflator within the air bag module. An igniter in the inflator starts a chemical reaction that produces a harmless gas, which inflates the air bag within the blink of an eye – or less than 1/20th of a second. Side-impact air bags inflate even more quickly since there is less space between the occupant and the striking object, such as the interior of the vehicle, another vehicle, a tree, or a pole.

Because air bags deploy very rapidly, serious or sometimes fatal injuries can occur if the occupant is too close to – or is in direct contact with – the air bag when it first begins to deploy. Sitting as far back from the steering wheel or dashboard as possible and using seat belts help prevent occupants from being “too close” to a deploying frontal air bag.

To ensure the continued protection of occupants, used air bags should be replaced without delay by an authorized repair center before the vehicle is driven again.

 

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

5 Things YOU need to know about YOUR car!

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5 things everyone should know about their car

With the amount of money we spend on the payments, maintenance, and repair of our cars, you’d think we’d have a better relationship with our vehicles. But understanding our cars—how they work, how to care for them, repair costs—can be overwhelming. All the parts, fluids, guidelines to follow, and things that can go wrong make cars and repair garages seem intimidating, but they don’t have to be.

You don’t need to know everything about your car but you should have a handle on some of the basic elements. To help you feel more confident as a car owner, here are five things you should know before you get behind the wheel:

  1. Year, make and model

The first thing you should know about your car is the year it was manufactured, the make of the car, and the specific model. This seems like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised at the amount of people who do not know this information. Often they are mistaken on the year or the model, which can lead to big mistakes. Fluids, parts, and the accessories to repair and maintain your car are all based on the car’s year, make and model, so it’s critical to know the exact information. Design, construction and models of cars can change significantly in a year, and the parts required for your car will as well.

  1. VIN

Your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is your car’s fingerprint. It is a 17-digit number that identifies your car’s manufacture date, place, make, model, engine size, etc. The VIN stays with the car throughout its life. You need to know where to find this number, but you don’t need to memorize it. The easiest way to find it is to stand outside of the vehicle on the driver’s side and look at the corner of the dashboard where it meets the windshield. Your VIN is useful when talking to mechanics and insurance companies. You can use your VIN to look up information if you want to purchase a car or buy parts for it.

  1. Maintenance schedule

Your best bet for keeping your car running well is sticking to your car’s specific maintenance schedule. Your schedule will tell you things like when to change your oil (it’s no longer 3,000 miles or every three months), when to check your fluids and when to rotate your tires. Each car has its own maintenance schedule that should be followed to maintain optimal performance, health and longevity of your car. Your maintenance schedule is in your owner’s manual or in the separate booklet that comes with your owner’s manual. Read it and strictly follow the recommendations for checking and replacing those parts or fluids in your car.

  1. Tire pressure

Proper tire pressure is probably the most ignored maintenance concern on our cars. When that light pops up on the dashboard, we often wait until we need to fill up the gas tank. Then that time comes, and we don’t have any change for air or we just don’t feel like doing it. Truth be told, I hate putting air in my tires like I hate pumping gas, but ignoring this light only causes us to be more likely to get a flat or blow out, pick up a nail in the tire or wear our tires out faster. Stop this bad habit now because it can decrease the life of our tires and force us to buy them more frequently. Tires are expensive, but some can last you over 50,000 miles if you take care of them correctly. On the flip side, make sure to never overfill your tires!

  1. Engine light

While we may experience major anxiety when dashboard lights come on, they are a window into our car’s health. I always got nervous when a dashboard light would pop up because I dreaded what the mechanic would say was the cause. Your owner’s manual will tell you what your dashboard lights mean, as they vary among car manufacturers, but they may not express how important or insignificant certain lights are. I separate dashboard lights into three categories:

Red: Get help now! These are sometimes related to passenger safety.

Yellow: Check this out as soon as possible!

Green or blue: Go or activated!

Understanding these key pieces of information is your first step to feeling in control of your car, talking to a mechanic with confidence and making better choices for your car’s maintenance. Now grab your maintenance manual and stay up-to-date!

 

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

National Transferable Lifetime Warranty

News

Have you ever wondered about the warranty of repairs on your vehicle?  Starting out in 2018, we are starting a new warranty program with the NTLW!  Watch this video to find out more and if you have more questions give us a call at (501)205-1218.

 

Customer Service Representative

1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive

Conway, AR 72032

Driving in the Rain

News

Singing in the rain is fun. But driving? For some people, it’s anxiety-producing. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, there are on average more than 950,000 automobile crashes each year due to wet pavement, resulting in approximately 4,700 deaths and 384,000 injuries.

 

But being behind the wheel and a rain-splattered windshield doesn’t have to be a white-knuckled, nerve-racking experience. Brent Praeter, a supervising instructor at D&D Driving School, Inc. and a member of the Driving School Association of the Americas, both in Kettering, Ohio, offers these tips for driving in a downpour:

 

Think. “Many people drive subconsciously, out of habit,” says Praeter. “And when it rains, they often don’t adjust their thinking.” When conditions are less than ideal, drivers need to stay alert and focused on what’s going on around them.

Turn on those headlights. It’s the law in all states to turn on headlights when visibility is low, and many states also require having the headlights on when the windshield wipers are in use. Praeter says that well-working wipers and relatively new (not threadbare) tires also are must-haves when driving in rain.

Beware of hydroplaning. That’s the technical term for what occurs when your tires are getting more traction on the layer of water on the road than on the road itself—the result is that your car begins to slide uncontrollably. It’s easy enough to hydroplane: All you need is one-twelfth of an inch of rain on the road and a speed of more than 35 miles per hour. If you start to hydroplane, let off the accelerator slowly and steer straight until you regain control.

Turn off cruise control. Ironically, on rain- or snow- slick surfaces, cruise control may cause you to lose control. You might think it’ll help you stay at one steady speed, but if you hydroplane while you’re in cruise control, your car will actually go faster.

Slow down. “Speed limit signs are designed for ideal conditions, says Praeter, ‘and that means driving when you have little traffic and good visibility.” That’s hardly the environment you’re driving in when it’s raining, so let up on the accelerator and allow more time to get to your destination.

About

A & J Collision Repair is a full service auto body repair shop. We are located at 1215 Thomas G. Wilson Drive in Conway Arkansas 72032. Come by and visit or give us a call at 501.205.1218.
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