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Survey: More shops research OEM repair procedures ‘most or all of the time’

The latest quarterly “Who Pays for What?” survey is now open through the month of July and focuses on not-included body labor operations.

Portland, Ore.—More than 3 in 5 shops (61 percent) say they are researching automaker repair procedures on “all” or “most” of the vehicles they repair, a nine percentage point gain since 2020, according to a “Who Pays for What?” survey this past spring.

“It’s still not a high enough percentage, because this must be done every time, but at least awareness of this vital step is increasing,” said Mike Anderson of Collision Advice, who conducts the quarterly surveys with CRASH Network. “OEM information is complex, and can change. I recently wrote an estimate on three of the same year and model of vehicles, but the alignment procedures and battery disconnect procedures were different based on trim levels and engine types.”

About 17 percent of the nearly 700 shops participating in the survey acknowledge that they never or “only occasionally” research automaker procedures when preparing an estimate or repair plan — a percentage that has held steady since 2020.

The surveys have consistently found that about half of shops say the estimator or repair planner is primarily researching OEM procedures, while another 35 percent say an estimator and technician do it jointly. 

The latest quarterly “Who Pays for What?” survey is now open through the month of July. It focuses on not-included body labor operations. Shops can take the survey here.

Survey participants receive a free report with complete survey findings along with analysis and resources to help shops better understand and use the information presented.

The survey can be completed in about 15 minutes by anyone familiar with their shop’s billing practices and the payment practices of at least some of the largest national insurers. Each shop’s individual responses are held in the strictest confidence; only aggregated data is released.

The results of previous surveys are also available online here.

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