Car accidents happen. And when they do, collision repair technicians are there to assess the damage, craft up a repair plan, and bring vehicles back to their former glory. Working in a collision shop using the industry’s latest technology, a career as a collision repair technician can be an exhilarating, rewarding opportunity for the right candidate.
In this blog, Automotive Training Center (ATC) collected career facts to help you learn more about this career path in automotive technology.
What Do Collision Shops Do?
Collision shops assist car owners with the structural, safety, and cosmetic repair of a vehicle that’s received damage, large or small. With a wide range of vehicles coming in on a daily basis, shops count on a courteous and communicative front staff to coordinate appointments, skilled technicians to perform repairs, and appraisers/adjusters from insurance companies to resolve costs for each claim.
What are Some Typical Work Tasks?
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution to repairing a damaged vehicle, as many factors like the speed of the impact, location of the impact, and materials damaged, all come into play. Luckily, collision repair technicians have advanced tools and techniques at their fingertips for reversing any type of damage that comes their way. Some work tasks a job may require include:
- Straightening a vehicle’s frame using computerized frame correction equipment
- Pounding out smaller dents using hand tools
- Filling in damaged areas with plastic body fillers
- Sanding, buffing, or treating a repaired surface to make it smooth
- Using a welding torch to create high-strength bonds between metal
- Replacing damaged body panels, fenders, or doors
- Getting the right paint color to apply a fresh coat of paint or perform touchups using paint matching technology
What are the Key Skills for the Role?
A successful collision repair technician is both a car lover and a life-long learner. Working on vehicles every day at this level demands a passion for the subject. Skills such as a high attention to detail and the ability to collect pieces of information and quickly problem solve are also very important.
A deep mechanical knowledge of a car’s systems and how they interact with one another, as well as knowledge of how to use a collision repair tech’s many tools are a must, as well.
How Has the Collision Repair Role Changed?
With new technologies and systems making their way into today’s vehicles, the collision repair role is moving away from being a physically labor-intensive trade and more toward working with technology for efficient, precision repairs.
These advancements, along with the new materials being used in cars, like lightweight aluminum, add a new complexity to the job, and for problem solving minds and tech smart individuals, that’s a welcome draw for a fun career!
What Education Do I Need to Get Started?
If you’re interested in putting your career sights on the collision repair technician role, work toward fulfilling prerequisites like attending a two-year post-secondary career training school in Collision Reconditioning Technology studies.
Prospective students in Exton, Warminster, and greater southeastern PA seeking more information can check out ATC’s collision focused program.