Rackhams Auto Body Shop

Advice & FAQ

Q. Is it true that if I’m making an insurance claim and I have an excess on my policy, I will need to pay this to Rackhams when I have the vehicle repaired?
A. It depends if the incident was your fault and if you are claiming on your policy or somebody else’s. If the damage was caused by somebody else, and you have their details, you may be able to claim direct from their insurer which means you would not need to pay your excess. However this route can sometimes take longer then paying your excess up front and then having your own insurer claim it back for you. If the incident was your fault or there is nobody to claim from (example hit and run or vandalism) then unfortunately when making an insurance claim you obviously would have to pay the excess when you collect the vehicle following repairs.
Q. If Rackhams carry out the repairs to my vehicle will I be given a replacement?
A. We have a large fleet of courtesy vehicles specifically for this purpose. All that’s needed is to swap your insurance cover from your own vehicle to ours, which usually involves a simple telephone call. If you happen to be insured with one of the many insurance brands with whom we work as an Approved Repairer then the switch of cover is often seamless and happens automatically. If someone else was to blame for the damage to your vehicle then other options are available to meet your needs for a replacement vehicle.
Q. I’ve heard that I must use an Approved Repairer if my insurer is to pay the repair bill. Is this true?
A. Usually not although some policies stipulate that certain benefits or features of the policy may be forfeited in the case that you used a non Approved Repairer. This need not mean however that you don’t have a choice. We suggest calling us to discuss your situation if you would like us to take care of your vehicle as often we’ve found that we’ve been able to match or even improve upon the overall service you would have received elsewhere and we’ve been in the business a long time so we’re well known by all the popular insurer representatives.
Q. Will I receive genuine Manufacturer parts on my repair?
A. This is really a question that you need to be asking when you take out your policy. It’s important to make sure that when you compare insurance quotes that you are comparing like with like as there may be some hidden differences and all too often people choose the cheapest policy only to find that it’s woefully inadequate when you actually come to make a claim.
Q. If I’m VAT registered will I have to pay the VAT on the whole repair when making an insurance claim?
A. Yes, if the vehicle is a business asset and this would still be the case even if you were claiming directly from another person’s insurer. If you don’t know what being VAT registered means then you probably aren’t VAT registered! Please note that the VAT payable would be VAT on the whole repair cost so for example if the cost of repair was £1000 you would need to pay (at current rates as of April 2009) £150 plus any excess applicable.
Q. Would the repairs carried out be guaranteed?
A. Yes. We guarantee all areas of our repair for the remainder of any manufacturers warranty, the period stipulated in an Approved Repairer agreement, or 24 months, whichever is the longest.
Q. Which forms of payment do you accept?
A. We accept Bankers drafts, all major credit and debits cards within their respective limits and cheques up to the value of the guarantee card, and cash. If you wish to pay by cheque over the value of the guarantee card or by business cheque that’s fine but we would need to clear it before releasing the vehicle. Please bear this in mind when making any arrangements as it can take up to a week.
Q. What will happen if my vehicle is a write off (Total Loss)?
A. If your insurance type is fully comprehensive then your insurer will negotiate with you as to a settlement value. This may be done by them sending a representative to the location of your vehicle or it may be that your vehicle could come to us and they would inspect it here. Please bear in mind that if you intend to drive your vehicle to us and leave it here then it’s well worth removing as many personal effects as possible if you feel it may be a total loss as sometimes they are moved to a salvage agent fairly quickly.
Q. If I drive my vehicle in to have an assessment of the damage carried out, how long will this take?
A. Most estimates take about 20 minutes or so for vehicles that are still driveable. We encourage people to bring along any relevant information such as insurance details both for you and any other persons involved in the damage. Experience has shown us that much more often than not people end up claiming on an insurance policy even where they had initially felt that the bill would be settled privately.
Q. How long will the repair take?
A. We cannot accurately predict how long it might take for every given repair. We would be able to provide a target repair period after having viewed the damage but every repair is unique and so many external factors that are uncontrollable come in to play. However we always update our customers of any delays during the repair and would like it known that having a customer’s vehicle here for any longer than is absolutely necessary is of no gain to us so you can rest assured that we’ll always be doing all we can to get it finished.
Q. Will my vehicle have a valet following the repair?
A. Yes. As standard procedure we shampoo pressure wash each vehicle at the end of the repair and vacuum the inside. If you would like to upgrade this then please mention it to our reception staff, who will be pleased to explain further the extras we can offer.
Q. Do you do non-insurance repairs?
A. Of course. It really comes down to the budget you have in mind for any given piece of work required. If it’s really minor why not take some digital images and e-mail them to reception@rackhams-bodyshop.co.uk. We may then be able to give you a rough price from having viewed the images. If you wish to do this please try to provide images that are approx 200/300 KB in size and take some from a couple of different angles. We also offer many other services in addition to just plain body repair, such as Paintless Dent Removal, tyres, Air Con servicing, Supagard Paint Protection System etc so it’s always worth a quick call or visit.
Q. Do you offer re-sprays and/or rust work?
A. As a general rule of thumb, no. We’ve found that not only does it not provide an acceptable return on investment, but also we’ve historically tended to be more expensive than is envisaged by our customers in this area. We have carried out a very small number of extensive restorations in the past however but they were very special projects involving very large sums of money.
Q. What are the advantages of bringing my vehicle to a Bodyshop approved by the manufacturer?
A. Many. We enjoy product specific training, have access to detailed technical information, have developed extensive experience on these makes and offer full guarantees backed by the manufacturers themselves. Of course we can also repair all makes of vehicle, having been an independent professional business for 35years.