If you haven’t used the service before to submit questions about estimating collision repair work or just browse responses to other carrier and shop questions, check it out. It’s a good — and free — way to find IP best practices and help write the most accurate estimates or appraisals possible.
CCC’s MOTOR guide also has a nice description of acoustic and structural foam in case an estimator or insurer is unfamiliar with the technology. It also suggests reasons why foam work isn’t included — CCC has no way of knowing if the circumstances of a collision and accompanying repair necessitated welding or heat anywhere near the substance.
This type of product is used by some OEMs to control NVH (noise vibration and harshness) or add structural integrity to the vehicle body. Acoustical foam is a soft to firm, pliable product while structural foam is a hard, dense, rigid product. Acoustical and/or structural fillers may be found internally on vehicle panels; therefore, identification of foam type and location may require an inspection after vehicle disassembly. Foam products must be removed if within 6 inches of an open flame, excessive heat (600 degrees) or welding operation. Any foam damaged or removed during the repair process must be replaced. Always use the correct replacement product.
Audatex: Backup sensor holes not included
If a bumper fascia doesn’t include the holes for backup sensors, Audatex doesn’t include the time to drill those holes, the DEG wrote in May.
“Located in the back of the Audatex DBRM is a Glossary of Terms,” the DEG wrote. “They are definitions for items that you may find in the Audatex Estimating System. Located in the same area is a Glossary of Refinish Terms. For example, … their definition of ‘Application of guide coat’ and ‘Apply a flash color.'”
For the record, applying a guide coat means the “Application of a light coat of paint before sanding to expose high and low points on the panel,” while applying a flash coat occurs when you “Apply basecoat to the surface and allow to flash,” according to Audatex.
Audatex: Distinguish your own labor rates
A software update granted Audatex users the ability to generate their own labor rate categories and input the accompanying rate, the DEG wrote in May.
“This is especially helpful when working on complex vehicle designs with advance types of vehicle construction used,” the DEG wrote. “A user can now charge a separate rate for aluminum, carbon fiber or any other type of specialty material they are working on. A User Defined Rate can be accessed thru the ‘Rate Section.’ The user can manually change the charge category on a specific labor or part line and charge the correct labor rate for that specific line they are working on.”
If you don’t know precisely what a part is called in CCC ONE or for some reason can’t find it, don’t worry, according to the DEG.
“CCC has a search bar feature where you can search by a valid part number or part description,” the DEG wrote in June. “This is especially useful for damaged parts you are unsure about, but are able to access the part number from the part itself.”
But don’t use anything other than letters or numbers, according to the DEG.
“When using the part number search function, always exclude spaces, hyphens, dashes from the number when searching,” the DEG wrote. “Example: Instead of 72380-SDA-A01, use 72380SDAA01.”
The Database Enhancement Gateway is advertised on the side of the Society of Collision Repair Specialists booth at SEMA on Nov. 3, 2016. (John Huetter/Repairer Driven News)
A software update granted Audatex users the ability to generate their own labor rate categories and input the accompanying rate, the DEG wrote in May 2017. (Screenshot of Audatex provided by the Database Enhancement Gateway)
“CCC has a search bar feature where you can search by a valid part number or part description,” the DEG wrote in June. “This is especially useful for damaged parts you are unsure about, but are able to access the part number from the part itself.” (Screenshot from CCC ONE provided by the Database Enhancement Gateway)