3 Types Of Body Panel Replacements [Step-by-step DIY Guide]

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Auto body panel replacement is the last resort for mechanics when everything else fails. It is the ultimate method for bringing your car to its former glory.

So if you have been part of an unfortunate accident and your vehicle is being badly hit, chances are its body will be beyond repairs. Your car will, thus, have to go through various auto body panel replacement techniques to shine as before.

There are several types of auto body panel replacements and there are multiple methods to perform each one of them.

Different types of body panel replacements

Door replacement, hood replacement, and bumper replacement are the most common types.

1. Bumper Replacement

Replacing a bumper might set you back by more than $500 to $600 but that will save you twice the amount, which you would have invested in repairing and labor costs.

Here’s how you can do it yourself:

Step 1: Gather the required materials

You will need things like a spray rust penetrant, the exact bumper (different variants for each vehicle are available. Each variant differs in the quality aspect), extra brackets, cardboard, bumper removal utilities like screwdriver and plier, insulated gloves, and other utilities prescribed in your car manual.

Step 2: Assess the area and components

Before working on the bumper, study all its components and mechanisms. This will make your job easier and you’ll get a rough idea regarding all the important parts.

Step 3:  Remove the fasteners

This is the most complex part and will need careful consideration. Use a rust penetrant to make the process easier.

Step 4: Remove everything except the bumpers

Start by removing all the extra accessories such as bulbs and light connections. Then move on to the brackets and bolts. And in no time, you’ll have your bumper ready to be removed.

Step 5: Remove the damaged bumper and install the new one

The damaged bumper will be fairly easy to remove. After it is done successfully, grab on to the new bumper.

While handling the new component, make sure that you place it on an even surface so there are no scratches and dents. Also, install the old accessories (those in a working condition, else, buy new ones) before installing the bumper.

After attaching the accessories to the bumper, lift it carefully and install it to the vehicle with the new bolts and brackets.

2. Hood Replacement

If you’re involved in any kind of head-on collision, then you probably need your car hood replaced. Collisions of high intensity cause more than just a car scratch that is easy to remove

But these severe dents caused due to high-intensity collisions are hard to get rid of. 

And the repair will involve extravagant labor charges and a huge amount of time. On the contrary, hood replacement is fairly easy.

Here’s how you can do it:

Step 1: Buy the required materials

You will need a new car hood, ratchet, and new bolts if old ones are damaged.

Step 2: Open the hood

Get someone to help you with this process. Be careful with the rod and make sure it is firmly stabilizing the hood. 

Step 3: Remove the hood

Use the exact sized ratchet as mentioned in the car manual to remove the hood. Remove the bolts from both sides with the help of the ratchet. Before displacing it from the vehicle, get rid of the rod. And then go for the hood.

Step 4: Install the hood

Now here again go for the rod. Install the rod so that it can take the weight of the new hood. After this is done, try to get a hand from someone to place the new hood firmly and install it.

While you’re at the hood, it will be a wise decision to check the fuel injectors, too. Here are the 7 DIY steps to clean fuel injectors.

Use the bolts if necessary and make sure they are firmly tight.

3. Door Replacement

Similar to previous auto body replacements, the need to change the door arises when it has rusted beyond repair or the vehicle is involved in a side collision.

Here’s how you can change the doors with little to no hassle:

Step 1: Gather the required tools

For this job, apart from a new door, you’ll need tools like wrenches, bolts, hinges, and holders. You can also get a plain soft surface to place the new door to avoid any kind of scratches.

Step 2: Uninstalling the damaged door

Before you hop on to this step directly, remember that modern cars are IoT (Internet of Things) enabled. What this means is that the doors will contain complex wired systems that process the functionality of systems such as auto-lock/unlock, security systems, and remote use. 

Thus, first, start by removing these wired connections from its source. It will be easily identifiable as these wires are encompassed into a rubber tube. 

Follow this tube to its root and you’ll see a connector. Unplug this to safely remove all the wires.

Your most complex tasks will be done by now. 

Here further, unbolt the door holder and the hinges. It is a simple task that can be done within a few minutes with the help of appropriate-sized wrenches.

Get help from your friend in this process. Ask him/her to hold the door while you’re unbolting it, so it doesn’t fall off.

Slowly and carefully unmount it.

Step 3: Installing the new door

This process is exactly the reverse of the previous step. With help from your friend, get the new door near your vehicle.

Place it in the right alignment to your hinges. This will make your bolting process easier. After the door is mounted, carefully install the wire tubes. This is a complex system, so be extra cautious during the installation process.

Step 4: Check functionality

Just to be sure if everything is working fine, test all the functionalities of the door. The moving mechanism, window operation, and IoT benefits.

Then, apply fluids to prevent wear and tear of this new door.

Seems Like A Complex Task?

Although these tasks seem straightforward, there are a lot of complexities involved. And getting even a single process wrong may cost you more than a couple of hundreds of dollars.

Thus, you should get help from experts in the field. If you’re looking for automotive repair in Doylestown,PA then A&G Customs has been a pro for decades and can be your best bet.

If you want to have your body panel replaced or need any other kind of automotive repairs or even emergency towing, call 215 669 3072 and we’ll be happy to help.