No-one likes unexpected vehicle damage, and sometimes, no matter how carefully you may drive, it’s inevitable that you’ll encounter some issues every now and then. A front bumper repair cost can vary between $50 and $2,000 depending on the amount of damage encountered, if any replacement parts are necessary, your provider, and other factors.
The Costs Involved in Damage to a Front Bumper
$50 to $2,000 is quite a varied figured, so what differences are involved in these costs and how long does each repair typically take?
If your bumper encounters a few scratches but there’s no paint removed, it’s a clear-cost scratch that typically takes 30 to 60 minutes per panel to complete. The price typically costs $50-$200 each. This is the best-case scenario since it’s the cheapest and quickest option.
If your bumper has deeper scratches and scuffs that have removed some paint, you can expect to pay $200-$400 with a two to three-hour completion. This process involves removing the paint off the entire layer in order for it to be scuffed and repainted. You’ll notice that the bumper isn’t dragging and there’s no significant damage to the exterior other than a knock to its appearance.
If you notice that your bumper has more intense scratches that reveal metal or plastic, there’s deep damage, which can cost $300-$600 and typically takes three to five hours to repair. These scratches are unnoticeable and will typically involve some dents to other areas on the bumper.
Perhaps your vehicle has dents with no or little paint damage on the bumper. A paintless repair is a common method of removing dents without touching-up paintwork. This process costs around $150-$250 and typically takes 1 to 2 hours to complete. It requires using specialized equipment with heat to pull out the dent and restore the bumper to its original state. The price reflects the number of dents and their intensity.
In the event of an accident, it’s likely that your front bumper will encounter some cracks. Fortunately, many garages can repair cracks or splits in the bumper by filling in the area with a plastic filler and sanding the material until the surface is smooth. Once the filler dries, you can paint the bumper its original color. As filling-in cracks requires more work and materials than dents and re-paints, you can expect to pay $300+.
The most expensive option is a bumper replacement. This is when all of the above avenues aren’t an option because the damage is too intense or the bumper’s condition could put you and others in danger. Expect to pay $400-$1,000, though the price depends on the materials used and if the car’s frame has also been affected.
Using Your Insurance Provider for The Repair
If your bumper became damaged to someone else’s fault, you can claim the repair or replacement through your vehicle insurer. This can be a common consideration for those not at fault or individuals experiencing financial difficulties.
Before you immediately contact your insurance provider, bear in mind the consequences of doing so. Will you lose your no-claims or have to pay a large upfront fee? There are advantages to heading down this route, such as a guarantee for repairs and financial relief.
If you were at fault, filing a claim can cause your insurance rates to rise in the future. Despite having collision coverage, the moment you’re responsible for any damage or malfunctions, it can make things very difficult for you. In fact, some owners discover that a front bumper repair cost is typically around the same amount as their deductible so they choose to pay the repairs out of their own back pocket. Plus, if the damage isn’t significant with no mechanical issues, the repair might involve adding some extra material to cushion the bumper.
Important Things to Know About Damage to Your Front Bumper
You may have been involved in a small collision that’s caused your front bumper to look a little sore. But what are the other implications of a damaged front bumper and are they that severe?
The biggest concerns of vehicle owners with a damaged front bumper are internal issues. A dented bumper can cause your vehicle’s alignment to be unnatural — putting you and passengers at risk when you’re on the road.
You may look at the bumper and the damage appears minor with a few unbalances, scrapes and a little nurturing required. But, you can’t see the inner damage by observing the vehicle’s exterior. A mechanic will have to remove the bumper to observe the severity of the damage.
The most detrimental impact is the bumper no longer being able to absorb energy — a factor that can make driving your vehicle dangerous.
Repair or Replacement?
It’s most cost-effective to have a bumper repair than replacement, and it gets your vehicle on the road quicker. But before you take your vehicle to a garage, let’s take a look at some signs that differentiate between needing a bumper repair or replacement. Please consider that these points are generic, so you shouldn’t continue driving your vehicle if you’re unsure of any catastrophic or internal damage.
Scratches, scrapes, and scuffs, typically caused by accidentally turning too narrow in a parking spot, can scrap paint off of your front bumper. This results in paint damage that’s repairable and doesn’t require a replacement. Fortunately, the process isn’t too expensive or tiring, so you can be on the road again in no time.
Dents are usually encountered by bumping your vehicle into a signpost or large object — though not usually another vehicle. Depending on the severity of the dent, this damage is more than likely repairable. Bumper plastic is a quick and easy fix, usually requiring some heat, TLC, and paint.
On the other end of the spectrum, more severe damage from the examples above can lead to replacements. This is necessary if the bumper’s structure can’t be salvaged and yours and passenger’s safety could become a danger.
If you encounter holes and punctures in your bumper, it could expose metal or other materials underneath, resulting in an immediate replacement.
Choosing the Right Service for You
So many garages claim to offer the best quality service for your vehicle, but how do you know which one to choose and trust?
The best way to get peace of mind that you’re in safe hands is seeing repairs the mechanic has worked on previously. The repairer should have before and after galleries and maybe even testimonials (although these aren’t as important) that can give you confidence before having over your vehicle.
The garage should also offer a lifetime guarantee on any repair work and replacements they conduct. Some of the best also offer an accident replacement vehicle at a small fee if there’s an unexpected delay or error in repairing your car’s front bumper.
Cars are our pride and enjoy and we don’t realize how much we rely on them until they’re no longer there. A mechanic should be comfortable with you asking questions before handing over your vehicle and keys. The best service takes pride in their work and delivers excellent customer service, too.
The Importance of a Front Bumper
We understand that you don’t want to drive around with your front bumper hanging off, but what’s the front bumper’s role and why is damage so detrimental to your safety?
Most vehicle owners’ answer would be to prevent the severity in an accident, and while this is true, it’s not the sole purpose of a front bumper. In fact, it’s designed to reduce the amount and severity of physical damage to the front of your vehicle in collisions.
They’re placed over the hood, trunk, grille, exhaust, fuel, and cooling system for a reason. Imagine the amount of damage involved if you didn’t have a bumper to shield these important components? All these materials would be on display with nothing to guard the damage. Fortunately, front bumpers absorb shocks from low-speed crashes, minimizing the damage.
Signs Your Bumper is Damaged
If your vehicle’s been involved in a collision, the damage could be minor to severe. Here are some important signs to watch out for post-accident.
A Cracked Bumper
The most obvious and common damage is a cracked bumper that requires repairing or a replacement. Depending on the amount of damage and materials of your current bumper, you’ll more than likely need a replacement. This process can be costly and timely, though, if the bumper has become misshapen and cracked, it won’t offer much protection in the event of an accident.
Don’t ignore the cracks and get in touch with a trusted mechanic straight away.
Damage to the Paintwork
Another common feature of a damaged bumper is chipped or scratched paintwork. Rather than repairing, it’s much easier to have a full replacement, and the result will have better quality, too. If there’s a large number of scratches or scrapes, the bumper will need to be sanded down to make it level, ready for a paint job. But for deeper damage, it’ll need to be filled with a compound to make the surface even again.
Damaged or Broken Hooks
Finally, take a look at the bumper. Do the hooks appear misshapen, damaged, or broken? These hooks are important for keeping the bumper in place. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to replace or repair hooks once they’re misshapen, and a full bumper replacement is essential to eradicating the damage.