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DEG inquiry leads to discovery of outdated BMW repair procedures in estimating system

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An inquiry submitted to CCC/MOTOR through the Database Enhancement Gateway (DEG) has corrected outdated OEM repair procedures for 2018 BMW 330i quarter panel installation.

Gregg Rebber, manager at Andy Mohr Collision Center’s Bloomington, Indiana location, reached out to DEG Administrator Danny Gredinberg to find out if part of his repair plan was an included operation. That led to the two discovering incorrect repair procedures in CCC/MOTOR’s system.

“If you don’t understand how to repair the vehicle per the manufacturer, you’re not doing it right,” Rebber said. “They nail it down to exactly how many welds, how many rivets, which rivets, which welds, and the exact spots for them to be in; where you’re supposed to cut the panel up exactly to the millimeter and if you’re supposed to use a sleeve or if you’re supposed to butt weld.

“Without those procedures, you’re just winging it. You’re not repairing it correctly, all the way down to even test welds and test rivets, doing destructive panel tests or if your welder or your rivet gun is not set up correctly it may not be put in properly and the new panel may not hold to the vehicle the way that it should.”

The inquiry states that the labor time seemed to be based on the procedures shown in CCC/MOTOR Repair Methods but repair procedures in BMW AIR call for “more complex work to prep, drill holes, and [follow] procedures to grind the hem flange.”

“Once ready to install, the process requires Multiple SPRs, Blind Rivets, EMC Screws,” the inquiry states. “Lastly, the procedure from BMW has been updated to weld the C pillar with reinforcement plate which is more difficult than the original process of bonding and 2k metal filler. Additionally, we have to make additional modifications to the rocker and roof rail to allow the sleeve joint and requires notching for the screw joint. We must also do additional grinding down of the studs to have a smooth seam/transition. Once the panel [is] cured, we can then perform repairs to the outer wheelhouse to the hem flange repair.”

Gredinberg said resolving the issue and increasing labor time for the job in CCC’s estimating system only took a quick phone call and an inquiry submission.

“There’s a lot of work that needs to be done and part of that work — it’s been updated [in BMW’s repair procedures] — is that there’s a certain area that used to be bonded in the past and they have updated it to do some welding and do some additional work, et cetera,” Gredinberg said. “I went into CCC and I found that they had their version of repair procedures — they take the OEM information and reformat it into a document that’s consistent on their program, for MOTOR’s.

“That repair procedure is much different than the OEM one. It’s missing context. It’s missing a couple of the pages that are required to perform that repair completed. …The fact that there was wrong information in the system to begin with could have led a repairer to perform that repair wrong but also been reimbursed incorrectly because they followed the OEM repair procedure. It’s so important to not trust anything but the OEM repair information and not through a third-party resource.”

Rebber noted that DEG is a resource that not only helps his shop out by resolving inquiries but helps all repairers to have accurate labor times and repair information available to them. “The more people ask for help, the more changes are made to better this industry,” he said.

This particular inquiry led to corrected repair procedures plus 4.5 hours of added labor time.


Featured image: BMW 3-series stopped on the street. (Credit: Tramino/iStock)

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