Repairing Collision Damage After Hitting A Deer

Posted on: 30 March 2016

Hitting a deer is a dangerous and, unfortunately, common hazard of driving in many areas. Nationwide, your odds of hitting a deer in the next year are about one in 169. If you are lucky enough to survive an accident of this type without serious injury, you will still need to repair the damage done to your car. These five steps will help walk you through the process of ensuring your car is roadworthy once again. 

Determining Your Insurance Coverage

Although it may seem counter-intuitive, many insurance companies handle deer impacts under comprehensive policies rather than collision. This is because deer are viewed more as a force of nature than another vehicle or an immobile object. Talk with your insurance representative to get a better idea of what will and will not be covered under your policy before you begin making any arrangements. 

Checking for Structural Damage

Prior to beginning repairs, your mechanic should run a thorough inspection of the vehicle to determine the extent of the damage and whether it is superficial or structural. If you hit the deer at high speeds, it may have damaged the frame or engine of your car, resulting in much more extensive work. Ignoring this damage, however, can gradually lead to even more expensive breakdowns later. 

Repairing Dents and Scrapes

Superficial damage, like a scraped hood or dented bumper, are usually a quick and painless fix. You might need a few replacement parts, but your car will typically be returned to you within a couple of hours or days looking no worse for the wear. Your car may also require new headlights and work done on the roof or side panels, depending on the severity of the collision. 

Replacing the Windshield

In other cases, the deer may have cracked or broken your windshield during the crash. This form of damage can be upsetting and highly visible, but it is often a quick repair once the new windshield is on hand. For obvious reasons, you probably will not be able to drive your car until this problem is fixed. 

Refurbishing the Interior

If your windshield was broken, it is likely that the interior of your car suffered as well. Having a deer go through the windshield can be incredibly dangerous for the driver and any passenger, but with any luck it will only be your car that needs repairing. Ripped upholstery, bent steering wheels and stains are all common side-effects of this situation. Once the harm is this extensive, however, you may need to check with your insurance company to determine whether or not the repairs are still worth the cost. Once the estimate from your mechanic exceeds the value of the car, you may simply need to take a payout and begin shopping for a newer vehicle. Contact a business, such as Black Horse Auto Body Shop Inc, for more information.