Monday, 04 October 2021 14:02

‘Who Pays for What?’ Survey: Many Auto Body Shops Don’t Bill for Labor to Drain, Refill Fuel Tanks, but Most That Do Get Paid


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Industry trainer Mike Anderson of Collision Advice often suggests an auto body shop wishing to use the results of the “Who Pays for What?” surveys to train estimators or repair planners start by looking at the “not-included” operations listed in the survey reports for which a large percentage of other shops report being paid regularly.

One such procedure from this past summer’s survey, for example, is the labor to drain and refill a vehicle’s fuel tank.


About 70% of those repairers who charge for this work when it is necessary and performed report being paid “always” or “most” of the time by the eight largest insurers. But almost three in 10 shops (29%) overall acknowledge they have never sought to be paid for this operation.


“Repairers should understand that the reason this isn't included in any of the three estimating systems is because it's so variable,” said Anderson, who conducts the quarterly "Who Pays" surveys in conjunction with CRASH Network. “You have a book time to remove and reinstall a fuel tank. But draining, storing and refilling the fuel tank is not included in that time because the estimating system can't know if a vehicle has five gallons of gas in it or 25 gallons of gas. Obviously, it takes longer to drain and refill 25 gallons of gas than five gallons of gas.”


The final “Who Pays for What?” survey of 2021 is now open through the month of October. It focuses on labor operations related to scanning, system calibrations and aluminum repair. Shops can take the survey here.


Survey participants receive a free report with complete survey findings along with...

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