A Quick Look at Frame Measuring

The frame of your car is designed to absorb force during an accident, whether you collide with another moving car on the road, hit a stationary object, or are hit by another moving car while you are stationary. The ability of the frame to absorb the force of the collision protects you and many of the internal components of the car, but the damage done to the frame needs to be considered by the auto body shop that is making repairs.

The process of restoring the frame to its proper shape and size is complex, but your auto body shop can ensure that it is done correctly through frame measuring. By measuring the frame after collision repairs are made, the repair shop can be sure that it has been restored to its exact specifications, so that your car drives exactly as it did before your accident.

Michael J’s Body Shop specializes in frame straightening services, including measuring, and can ensure that your vehicle’s frame is expertly restored to its original condition. For auto collision repairs in San Jose, call (408) 279-2070 today.

Highway Driving Tips for New Drivers

Driving on the highway when you’re a new driver can be intimidating. It’s important to be fully aware of your surroundings whenever you’re driving on the highway, and to stay alert at all times. The advice in this video will help you.

For most new drivers, merging on the highway is the most challenging part. Using the merge lane to build up speed will make merging easier. Once you’re on the highway, stick to the middle lane, where you can maintain a safe speed without worrying about allowing other cars to merge.

Accidents do happen, so when your car needs repairs, choose Michael J’s Body Shop in San Jose for auto body repair, dent repair, and auto body paint. To schedule an appointment for service, call (408) 279-2070.

Don’t Be Fooled by These Collision Repair Myths

If you’re in an auto accident, chances are that you’ll hear a lot of misinformation about the collision repair process. These myths can cost you money and affect your ability to restore your car to its original condition. Don’t let misconceptions about how collision repairs work keep you from getting the best service for your car. Here is what you need to know about the misinformation that could cost you during the repair process.

Myth: Your insurance company can tell you which auto body shop to use.

This myth is one of the most persistent ones that drivers encounter. Although your insurance company may have preferred auto body shops in your area, that doesn’t have to dictate where you take your car. Your insurance coverage extends to a body shop of your choice. Don’t let your insurance company sway your decision by offering you a warranty for your repairs. Your warranty should come from the auto body shop, not from the insurance company.

Myth: Damaged frames can’t be fixed.

Frame damage can have serious implications for your car, but the notion that your frame can’t be repaired is outdated. Advanced frame straightening procedures make it possible for bent frames to be returned to their normal conditions safely and effectively. Make sure the collision repair shop you choose is experienced in frame straightening, so you can save your car from being totaled because of frame damage.

Myth: Anyone can do paintless dent repairs.

Paintless dent repair is a much more complex job than it seems on the surface. It’s necessary for auto body shops who offer this service to have extensive training. Poor paintless dent repair jobs can leave damage in the metal of the car and cause paint chipping and flaking. Be sure the auto body shop you choose for paintless dent repair is experienced.

Get the most out of your collision repairs by choosing the right auto body shop to get you back on the road. At Michael J’s Body Shop, we’ve been providing customers with the highest quality auto body repairs in San Jose for decades. Find out for yourself why drivers choose our shop by calling (408) 279-2070.

Do You Have a Roadside Emergency Kit Yet?

Even with careful driving, being out on the road is unpredictable. You never know when a collision or mechanical issue will leave you stranded and in need of help. Cell phones may make it easier than ever before to get assistance, but you can’t always get a signal, and you may need to care for yourself before help can arrive. That is why having a roadside emergency kit is so important. Along with a good mechanic and a good auto body shop , a roadside emergency kit is a must-have for car owners. Here is a look at what needs to be in your kit.

Jumper Cables

Jumper cables are a must for drivers. If your battery runs flat, you can use the cables to restore its charge using power from another car, so you can drive to a repair shop. Alternatively, stock your emergency kit with jumper cables that run off a lithium ion battery. Although those batteries have to be kept charged, they will allow you to jump your car even if no other vehicles are around.

Triangle Reflectors

If you’re involved in a collision or have a broken-down vehicle, triangle reflectors let other drivers know that you’re there. They are especially useful if your incident happens on a dark road with poor visibility. LED flares are another option to increase the visibility of your car when you’re stranded.

Food and Water

If help isn’t immediately available, you may have to wait for your car for an extended period of time. Keeping a supply of granola bars, energy bars, and water in your kit means you’ll have sustenance while you wait. It can also be helpful to keep a blanket in your kit in case you’re stranded during cold weather.

After a roadside emergency, Michael J’s Body Shop is ready to get you back on the road with our collision repair services in San Jose. Whether you need minor dent repairs or a major frame straightening, call our auto body shop at (408) 279-2070 for service.

What Are OEM Parts?

Supermarkets stock both brand name products and generic or store brand products. Both products are similar, but sometimes there can be a difference in quality. The same is true of OEM and aftermarket car parts. Original Equipment Manufacturer parts are made by the manufacturer of the vehicle. They were designed and produced to perfectly fit that particular vehicle. Aftermarket car parts can be designed to work exactly the same way as their OEM counterparts, but they aren’t produced by the manufacturer. When you visit an auto body shop, the technician can help you figure out which is the best choice for your vehicle.

OEM parts are more expensive and usually higher in quality, which is why not all insurance policies will cover them. If yours won’t, you can ask the auto body technician to use the highest possible quality of aftermarket parts. Or, you can check with the insurance company. Some will allow drivers to use OEM parts if the drivers agree to pay the difference between the cost of the OEM and the aftermarket part.

At Michael J’s Body Shop, we’re known for our world-class craftsmanship and unbeatable customer service. Call our auto body shop in San Jose today at (408) 279-2070 to request free pick-up assistance or to ask a question about your emailed repair estimate.

How Frame Straightening Machines Work

Auto body shops have specialized frame straightening machines capable of repairing damaged vehicle frames. When you watch the accompanying video, you’ll see a frame straightener at an auto collision center.

The damaged vehicle is placed on a platform. It features two towers, which are upright posts, and a hydraulic ram. Clamps are mounted on the vehicle to hold it still, and chains connect the frame to the machine. Using hydraulics, the towers pull the chains in precise ways to gently and slowly straighten the frame until it’s been restored back to factory specifications.

Expert collision repair services in San Jose are available at Michael J’s Body Shop. Give us a call today at (408) 279-2070, and our team of trained frame straightening technicians will have you back on the road in no time.

A Look at the Evolution of Auto Safety

Auto safety features have evolved considerably since an experimental steam-powered car killed a scientist, Mary Ward, in Ireland in 1869. Ward has the dubious distinction of being the first known car crash victim. Back then, steam cars were seen as an eccentric hobby, and safety features were unheard of. Just as auto body shops have become more technologically advanced over the years, so too have the cars themselves.

Early Auto Safety Improvements

Driving pioneers had to use a hand-crank to start their cars, and to stop them, most of the drivers used a lever system to apply a block of wood to the wheels. This primitive brake became virtually useless when rubber tires were introduced. The need for safety improvements in general and better braking in particular became clear in 1899, when North America’s first recorded death by car occurred . Henry Bliss, a realtor in Manhattan, disembarked from a streetcar and was quickly struck by a taxicab. Bliss suffered massive internal trauma and died the next morning. After Bliss’ death, manufacturers and the public became keenly aware that changes were called for. In 1922, the first four-wheel hydraulic brake system was installed in a car, but it wasn’t until 1949 that the first model received standard disc brakes.

Evolving Auto Safety Features

In 1930, Ford began requiring all models to have a “safety glass.” This was a big year for auto safety, as it’s also believed to be the first time that safety proponents called for installing seat belts. Padded dashboards were also recommended. Here’s a timeline of other major milestones:

  • 1934: First barrier crash test performed by General Motors
  • 1936: Back-up brake system introduced by inventor Hudson Terraplane
  • 1937: First turn signals introduced by Buick
  • 1948: First front seat belts installed (not a common option until later years)
  • 1958: Three point lap and shoulder belt invented by Volvo
  • 1984: Mandatory seat belt laws passed
  • 1989: Mandatory front air bag laws passed

Auto Safety Failures

Of course, not all inventions worked. There have been plenty of failures along the road. In 1907, the O’Leary Fender was invented. It was a mesh-like device that attached to the front of a car for the purpose of pushing pedestrians out of the way. Needless to say, it didn’t catch on. Another ill-conceived idea was a padded crash compartment, into which passengers were supposed to crawl when a crash was about to happen.

Here at Michael J’s Body Shop, we have all the high-tech collision repair equipment needed to do flawless dent repairs and bumper repairs in our San Jose location. We even offer rental car assistance! Call us at (408) 279-2070 with any questions you may have.

Overcoming Driving Fear After a Major Accident

The average car accident lasts a mere matter of seconds, but it always leaves a lasting impression. A serious wreck, especially one that caused major injuries, can cause psychological trauma. If you’re feeling nervous after a wreck, you might find yourself unable to drive your repaired car home from the auto body shop . Aside from working with a mental health counselor, there are a few strategies you can try to overcome your fear.

Bring a friend along for a ride.

The first time you drive after the accident, you could ask a sympathetic friend to join you. Choose someone who has a naturally calming presence, if possible. Your first drive after the crash shouldn’t be to a scheduled appointment or other time-sensitive commitment. This will only make you feel pressured. Instead, you could drive you and your friend to a coffee shop or your favorite retail store.

Take a defensive driving class.

Defensive driving classes are appropriate for drivers of all skill levels. Taking one doesn’t mean that your technical skills were to blame for the crash, as any driver could potentially get into an accident. However, a defensive driving class can help you feel more confident behind the wheel. Even if you don’t learn anything new, you’ll gain more time behind the wheel without any additional negative experiences. Plus, your insurance company may offer you a discount for completing the course.

Resume driving activities gradually.

It probably isn’t reasonable to expect that you’ll be able to take a cross-country road trip the week after the crash. Ease into your driving activities gradually to give your mind time to heal and adjust. Start with shorter trips and avoid rush hour traffic. As you gain confidence, you’ll be able to get back into your usual routine.

When you choose Michael J’s Body Shop to perform your collision repairs in San Jose, you can have full confidence knowing that your car is as safe as it can possibly be. For more than 20 years, area residents have trusted our experienced collision repair technicians to restore their vehicles back to pre-accident conditions. Call us today at (408) 279-2070, and we’ll make the repair process as stress-free as possible for you.

Comparing Basecoats, Clear Coats, and Sealers

An auto body paint job is a lot more involved than just spraying on a quick layer. When you take your car to a professional auto paint shop, your ride will be treated to multiple coats of carefully applied, specially formulated paint and protective materials. First, primer is applied to any unpainted surface. When working on a car that has been previously painted, the technician will use sealer or primer-sealer. As the name suggests, a sealer seals the underlying surface and prepares it for a fresh application of paint.

After applying the primer or sealer, the technician will apply the basecoat of paint. Basecoats tend to be strongly pigmented for maximum color and gloss. Usually, two to three layers of basecoat are needed, with drying time in between applications. Lastly, the technician applies the clear coat. Clear coats lack pigment. Instead, they specialize in durability and gloss. The job of the clear coat is to protect the basecoat.

Looking for a high-quality car paint shop in San Jose that prides itself on superior craftsmanship? Look no further than Michael J’s Body Shop—a full-service collision repair company. Call (408) 279-2070.

Simple Preparedness Tips for New Drivers

As a new driver, you probably aren’t expecting to wind up at a collision repair shop any time soon. But accidents do happen and cars do break down unexpectedly, so it’s important to be prepared for anything. You’ll hear an introduction to basic preparedness when you watch this video, presented by a life coach.

She recommends that all new drivers learn how to change a tire and check fluid levels. Keep an emergency kit in your trunk at all times, with essential items such as road flares, a cell phone charger that plugs into your car, a tire repair kit, and a plug-in tire inflator.

Michael J’s Body Shop offers expert collision repair at our San Jose location. Call us at (408) 279-2070 to schedule our next available appointment, and please, stay safe on the roads !