What do Automotive Body and Related Repairers do?
Repair and refinish automotive vehicle bodies and straighten vehicle frames.
- Follow supervisors' instructions as to which parts to restore or replace and how much time the job should take.
- Review damage reports, prepare or review repair cost estimates, and plan work to be performed.
- Sand body areas to be painted and cover bumpers, windows, and trim with masking tape or paper to protect them from the paint.
- Fit and weld replacement parts into place, using wrenches and welding equipment, and grind down welds to smooth them, using power grinders and other tools.
- Prime and paint repaired surfaces, using paint sprayguns and motorized sanders.
- Remove damaged sections of vehicles using metal-cutting guns, air grinders and wrenches, and install replacement parts using wrenches or welding equipment.
- Chain or clamp frames and sections to alignment machines that use hydraulic pressure to align damaged components.
- Fill small dents that cannot be worked out with plastic or solder.
- File, grind, sand and smooth filled or repaired surfaces, using power tools and hand tools.
- Remove upholstery, accessories, electrical window-and-seat-operating equipment, and trim to gain access to vehicle bodies and fenders.
- Position dolly blocks against surfaces of dented areas and beat opposite surfaces to remove dents, using hammers.
- Mix polyester resins and hardeners to be used in restoring damaged areas.
- Adjust or align headlights, wheels, and brake systems.
- Cut and tape plastic separating film to outside repair areas to avoid damaging surrounding surfaces during repair procedure, and remove tape and wash surfaces after repairs are complete.
- Remove small pits and dimples in body metal using pick hammers and punches.
- Fit and secure windows, vinyl roofs, and metal trim to vehicle bodies, using caulking guns, adhesive brushes, and mallets.
- Remove damaged panels, and identify the family and properties of the plastic used on a vehicle.
- Clean work areas, using air hoses, to remove damaged material and discarded fiberglass strips used in repair procedures.
- Apply heat to plastic panels, using hot-air welding guns or immersion in hot water, and press the softened panels back into shape by hand.
- Inspect repaired vehicles for proper functioning, completion of work, dimensional accuracy, and overall appearance of paint job, and test drive vehicles to ensure proper alignment and handling.
- Read specifications or confer with customers to determine the desired custom modifications for altering the appearance of vehicles.
- Measure and mark vinyl material and cut material to size for roof installation, using rules, straightedges, and hand shears.
- Replace damaged glass on vehicles.
- Soak fiberglass matting in resin mixtures, and apply layers of matting over repair areas to specified thicknesses.
- Cut openings in vehicle bodies for the installation of customized windows, using templates and power shears or chisels.
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