Frequently Asked Questions

I was involved in an accident, now what?

You may see us any time for an estimate and you are not required to speak with your insurance agent first, however, you may choose to. There is nothing wrong with open dialogue between you and your agent. You’re the customer and you may ask anything you’d like without fear of reporting your accident. Your rates should not go up simply because you have a conversation with your insurance agent.

Come by the shop and let us take the information to write your estimate while you wait. Once you discuss the extent of the damage with our appraisers, you will have an idea of how you’d like to go about getting the vehicle repaired. If you decide to go through your insurance company we can help you through the process. You may also choose to pay for the repair out-of-pocket without making an insurance claim once you weigh your options.

I was told that I must use a certain repair facility, do I have a choice?

Yes. You are the customer and it is your personal property. You always have the right to choose which repair facility you would like to use. Your insurance company (adjuster, agent, or other representative) may make suggestions with their interest in mind, but they cannot require you to use any particular facility to make the repairs. This is a law in most states including Pennsylvania.

What about multiple estimates? I was told to get three from different shops.

You are not required to obtain multiple estimates. It’s a game that you do not need to participate in. If you prefer to obtain multiple estimates and shop around then by all means do so. However, you are not required to. But ask yourself why their is a difference in cost if the labor rate is about the same. Why is it less? Are they performing a complete and safe repair, or are they cutting corners to get you in the door?

What's a deductible and when do I pay you?

A deductible is an amount of the repair cost that is not covered by your insurance company. This is an amount that you are required to pay before the insurance company will begin paying. Your deductible amount is set by the terms of your insurance policy, and is commonly seen in $0, $250, $500, $1000 amounts.

As an example: Your total repair bill was $5000. Your policy is written so that you have a $500 deductible. When you arrive at the shop to pick up your vehicle after the repairs have been completed, you will pay $500 to Excel Collision and the insurance company will pay us $4500.

Whether you are paying for your repairs out-of-pocket or you are only paying your deductible amount, you are responsible for paying the full amount upon completion of the repairs.

OEM vs. Aftermarket parts

OEM means Original Equipment Manufacturer. An OEM replacement part is one that was produced by the manufacturer of your vehicle and is identical to the one that was installed on the assembly line during production. An aftermarket part is one that was produced by a third party company as a replica of the OEM part. Depending on the language of the insurance policy you are dealing with, they my only cover the price of aftermarket parts. In any case, it is your car, and you are the customer. You are more than welcome to have OEM parts installed, however you will be required to pay the amount of the difference in price.

How will the use of aftermarket parts affect my repair?

At Excel Collision when we do use aftermarket parts, we only use CAPA certified at minimum in our repairs. When we repair your vehicle using aftermarket parts, rest assured that the part will pass our strict quality standards before it is installed.

[/learn_more caption="Is my car totalled? Who decides whether or not my car is repairable?"]
You have probably heard the term “totalled” in reference to the status of a vehicle after an accident. A total loss generally means that the repair costs exceed the value of the vehicle.

Although we may write an estimate for time and cost to repair the vehicle, it’s up to your insurance company at what limit they will pay to have it repaired before they payout the current value of the vehicle.

We, as a repair facility, have no choice in that decision.