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What does an Automotive Body Repairer do?

Alicia Sparks
Alicia Sparks

Most automotive body repairer careers require applicants to know how to repair or replace damaged parts to a vehicle’s frame or body. Unlike automotive mechanics, who repair the parts of a vehicle that keep it operational, auto body repairs focus mostly on the cosmetic aspects of a vehicle. The scale of tasks an automotive body repairer must be able to perform often depends on the auto body shop for which he works. Regardless, applicants should have at least basic repair skills and be able to safely operate the shop’s equipment. Education requirements and experience for an automotive body repairer job vary by shop, but many vocational schools and even employers provide necessary training.

First, it’s important to know the difference between an automotive body repairer and an automotive mechanic. Auto body repairers fix the frame and body parts of vehicles that have been involved in and damaged by some sort of collision. Mechanics, on the other hand, handle the functional aspects of vehicles. For example, if a vehicle is involved in an accident and suffers both a dented hood and a cracked transmission case, the auto body repairer would handle the dented hood. The mechanic would take care of the cracked transmission case.

Man with hands on his hips
Man with hands on his hips

Therefore, to become an automotive body repairer the applicant must have the skills necessary to repair various parts of a vehicle’s frame and body that have become damaged. This includes parts that have become dented, cracked, or shattered. Such parts might include doors, hoods, bumpers, windows, windshields, and any other part of the vehicle’s body and frame. Also, repairers must be skilled in using the equipment necessary to repair or replace these parts. Some of these tools, such as grinders and metal cutting guns, can be dangerous and therefore require trained professionals.

The specific kinds of skills or job tasks an auto body repairer must possess sometimes depends on the auto body shop itself. For example, some small shops might only focus on certain kinds of simple bodywork such as repairing or replacing dented parts. Others might concentrate on a wider rage of auto bodywork and include services such as repainting the repaired or replaced part, or even providing specialized paint jobs. An auto body shop might hire a certain number of employees to handle specific tasks, or might expect each auto body repairer to have the skills necessary to complete every kind of job. Usually, this depends on the shop’s location, clientele, and size.

Most employers require each automotive body repairer they hire to have at least a high school diploma, a general equivalency diploma (GED), or the region’s equivalent. Some people interested in automotive body repairer jobs begin training as early as high school by taking classes with their schools’ vocational programs. Adults can also receive training at certain vocational schools. As with other kinds of careers, an automotive body repairer job description might call for applicants with more advanced training or experience. On the other hand, some employers prefer to train their staff themselves.

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