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Frequently Asked Body Shop Repair Questions Answered by the Serra Collision Center

We understand that getting in an accident is stressful, which is why we want to make the repair process as simple as possible to help get you back on the road in no time. When it comes to having your damaged vehicle repaired at a local auto body shop or collision center, Serra Traverse City is a full-service auto body repair shop and we’re happy to answer every single one of your questions. Below you’ll find many frequently asked body shop repair questions answered by the expert Collision Center Team at Serra of Traverse City. If you don’t see the answer to your body shop question below, please reach out to us via our online FAQ form or call (231) 947-9000 – We’re here to help!


How do I get a copy of the accident report?

Your insurance company will request a copy of the Police Accident Report as part of the insurance claim process. If you are seeking to obtain a copy of the Police Accident Report for your own use or at the request of your insurance company, you’ll need to contact the office of the responding police department.

What should I do if I have an accident?

If you are involved in an automobile accident, you should call 911 to alert the proper authorities to document the accident. If an injury has occurred with either party involved, 911 should be called immediately. You will also need to exchange license numbers, vehicle registration, and insurance information with the other driver(s) involved. If a parked vehicle or other property is damaged, or if a domestic animal is injured, you will need to locate the owner or contact the police. It’s imperative that you never leave the scene of an accident unless you are absolutely sure you have all the information you need to file your insurance claim. If you are unsure at any point, call the authorities.

Should I contact my insurance company, or will the Serra Collision Center do that for me?

We suggest that you contact your insurance company first to set up your claim. If you have any questions about filing your claim, we are more than happy to help. Once your have set up your claim, we'll handle the rest! Our staff at Serra Traverse City is here to make this difficult process as easy as possible.

Where do I get a claim number?

Your insurance company provides claim numbers at the time you report your accident. You will need to bring that number with you to the Serra Traverse City Collision Center and we’ll take care of the rest.


Will the Serra Collision Center order the parts needed before I bring my vehicle in?

Yes, as soon as you give the Serra Traverse City Collision Center approval to repair your vehicle, we will order the parts to do so. This allows us to begin repairs on your vehicle as soon as you bring it in, getting you back on the road as quickly as possible.

How long will it take to fix my vehicle?

It is our goal to make sure your damaged vehicle is repaired in a timely manner. However, the time it takes to make the necessary auto body repairs will depend on the availability of the parts needed and the severity of the damage.

If my vehicle’s frame is damaged, is my vehicle a total loss?

No, your vehicle is only a total loss if the damage incurred exceeds the value of the vehicle – a value that is determined by your insurance company. Many of today’s cars have what is called a unibody, where the frame and body are molded into one. Our technicians are equipped with state of the art equipment to help restore your vehicle back to factory specifications. However, if the damage is too extensive and we cannot repair it, we will replace that part of the vehicle.

Can you match my vehicle’s paint color?

Yes. Our extensive paint mixing system allows our technicians to precisely match your car’s existing paint color.

Should I replace my child’s car seat after an accident?

Yes. The National SAFEKIDS Network recommends that you replace any car seat that has been in a vehicle during an accident.

Can I wash or wax my car when I get it home after it’s been painted?

Yes. However, we suggest that if you are going to wash your car, use a mild soap and a soft cloth or sponge. We ask that you DO NOT take your vehicle to a commercial car wash for 30 days, since the stiff brushes and super jets can scratch the finish. We also suggest that you do not wax your vehicle for 30 days, simply because the paint needs time to cure. The first 30 days are crucial for your car’s finish. The care you give it during this time period will determine how the paint will look for years after it has cured.

Do I have to pay a deductible when I pick up my vehicle?

Yes. If you are required to pay a deductible, you will need to pay it off at the time your repairs are completed and you pick up your vehicle.

What types of payments do you accept?

We accept cash, check, VISA, MasterCard, AMEX, Discover, and money orders.

Can I get a ride home when I drop my vehicle off?

Yes. We'll gladly drop you off at your home, work, or anywhere within a 10 mile radius of Traverse City, when you bring your vehicle in to the Serra Traverse City Collision Center. Also, if you need a ride back to the dealership once the repairs are completed, we are more than happy to come and pick you up.

What areas do you service?

Serra of Traverse City services auto owners from all over Michigan but specifically the Cherry Capital and Grand Traverse areas, including Old Mission, Acme, Garfield Township, Mayfield, Interlochen, Solon, and more

Serra Traverse City Cadillac, Subaru, Toyota, Audi,
VW, Nissan, Volvo, Car Dealership

The Serra Automotive Group of Traverse City located along S. Garfield Ave. in Traverse City, MI is your destination for your next new or used car, truck, SUV, crossover, or van. With seven different auto brands including Subaru, Toyota, Nissan, VW, Audi, Cadillac, and Volvo, and a vast inventory of pre-owned vehicles, our team of friendly auto professionals can help you find your next vehicle. With such a wide selection of vehicles to choose from, Serra of Traverse City is your destination for your entire vehicle needs in the Cherry Capital area. Not only can we help you find a new or used vehicle, but our experienced Service Team is qualified to take care of any of your auto service needs from routine maintenance to transmission service, and every auto service in between. Feel free to explore our extensive inventory online, or schedule an appointment for any of your vehicle needs – we’re here to help! You can also stop by or give us a call at 231-947-9000 for our Subaru/Cadillac Campus at 1747 S Garfield Ave, Traverse City, MI 49686 or 231-946-5540 for our Toyota/Audi/VW/Nissan/Volvo Campus at 1301 S Garfield Ave, Traverse City, MI 49686.