Have you ever been left wondering whether you should take it to a body shop or a mechanic after your vehicle has sustained damage? Many people have been left with the ordeal of determining the key differences of a body shop vs mechanic, and the truth is that many people tend to confuse these two types of businesses even though they provide vastly different services.
According to Statista, the number of auto repair and maintenance businesses in the United States has grown significantly in the last two years, possibly due in part to the fact that more new and sophisticated car models have been manufactured than ever before. This may also be partly due to the fact that many people in the U.S. rely much more heavily on cars than public transportation. Let’s examine the differences between an auto body shop and a mechanic.
What Is a Body Shop?
An auto body shop is an establishment where the primary work performed involves repair to a vehicle’s body (i.e. the “outer shell”). If your car was involved in a (minor or major) collision and consequently sustained scratches, dents, scuffs, and other damage to its doors, fenders, or bumpers, it is recommended to take it to a body shop. Body shop workers typically also know how to restore a car’s frame (i.e. align the frame) and perform custom paint jobs. According to a 2016 survey by the Collision Repair Education Foundation, a large proportion of entry-level auto body technicians are expected to learn tasks such as using a MIG (metal inert gas) welder, repairing plastic, and prepping a vehicle for a paint job.
What Is a Mechanic?
An auto mechanic is a technician who specializes in repairing and maintaining cars. However, this type of professional generally focuses on reviewing and repairing less-obvious damage to a vehicle (i.e. damage to the car’s chassis or interior). Mechanics usually work in garages and need to slide under your vehicle in order to carefully inspect and fix any issues that may be affecting it. A mechanic also often has at least some basic knowledge of how different types of car engines work.
Determining the Differences of Body Shops vs. Mechanics
Mechanics and auto body technicians both perform diagnostics on cars. Nevertheless, each type of worker relies on a unique set of tools and processes to carry out his/her work. Auto body employers need to examine a vehicle’s alignment in order to verify that it is in good condition to drive. An alignment gauge is often recommended to diagnose this type of damage.
Meanwhile, a mechanic often relies on more advanced tools for their diagnostic work, such as a reader that can reveal which parts of your car aren’t properly functioning. If high-tech tools such as these don’t work or aren’t enough, opening the hood can help identify problems as well. Although both body shop technicians and mechanics can be knowledgeable about different engine types, the former kind of employees is generally the ones who perform engine swaps. A mechanic also isn’t usually expected to perform a paint job. However, he can take a look at your car’s brakes and wheels, for example. Evidently, there are several noticeable differences between an auto body shop and a mechanic. The services that these two types of establishments offer should never be conflated.
According to Global Market Insights, the worldwide automotive collision repair industry was estimated to be worth approximately $283.9 billion in 2018 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.5% between 2019 and 2026. One can only imagine at what rate mechanic shops will grow in the coming years.
Contact a Professional Auto Repair Shop
Reach out to the professionals at Robs Customs & Restorations in Manassas, Virginia to receive high-quality auto repair services. We specialize in custom paint jobs. We have experience working with virtually all kinds of vehicles, including classic cars, antique cars, and muscle cars. Regardless of the type of collision that your vehicle may have been involved in, Robs’ team will work tirelessly to ensure it has been fully repaired and restored.
At Rob’s, we can perform both frame alignments (so that your vehicle can properly circulate on the roads) and rust repair, given that certain parts of a car can easily oxidize over time. We can also perform four different types of engine swaps. Whether you’re looking for minor repair work or are hoping to have a sleek new car, Robs is here to help. Call Robs Customs & Restorations today at (703) 552-5001 or contact us online for a free estimate or to learn more about our work.