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Audatex updates DBRM refinish guidelines, removes 50% blend formula

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Business Practices | Collision Repair
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Audatex/Solera’s blending refinish guidelines have officially been updated in its Database Reference Manual (DBRM).

Under Section 4-4 “Refinish Guidelines,” Solera removed its previous blend formula — “50% of Audatex estimate refinish labor after overlap consideration, including two-stage or three-stage allowances, if applicable for the panel to be blended” — and replaced it with the following:


As of October, repairers using Audatex can specify profile settings for blending, based on a user-defined percentage of the refinish labor in any value between 50% and 150%.

Product Management Senior Director David Davoodi told Repairer Driven News last month that Solera was already aware of the concerns the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) and other repairers had for months, if not years, prior to the release of the results of the association’s blend study results in November 2022.

The blend study was conducted by SCRS in August 2022, in coordination with AkzoNobel Vehicle Refinishes, Axalta Coating Systems, BASF Automotive Refinish, PPG Industries, and Sherwin-Williams Automotive Finishes. The purpose was to study the comparative difference between the time necessary to perform a full refinish on an exterior panel and the time needed to blend the same panel.

The study concluded blending took 31.59% more time on average than a full refinish based on results from refinish operations compared on 45 different parts with three colors from the five paint and coatings companies. The results were a stark contrast to the 50% less time historically allocated in the three estimating systems.

Once a default percentage is chosen, Davoodi noted estimates that are already written or ongoing in different versions of Qapter won’t reflect the change. It will only apply to a new estimate because the previous default, similar to rates, will be stored for the life of that claim until a manual adjustment is made.

CCC Intelligent Solutions has also made updates:

    • CCC’s Zendesk Knowledge Base states, “Per MOTOR’s revision, the refinish time associated with color blend of adjacent panels will defer to the judgment of an estimator or appraiser.”

CCC allows for default percentages up to 200%, which can be specified separately for two-stage and three-stage blending.

Mitchell International hasn’t provided any information on what changes, if any, they plan to make.

Anyone who needs credentials to view the DBRM can email The current DBRM can also be found at


Featured image: A painter takes part in the audited and monitored SCRS blend study in August at the Global Finishing Solutions (GFS) Center for Excellence in Osseo, Wisconsin.

Screenshot of updated blending language taken from Solera’s Database Reference Manual (DBRM) on Dec. 4, 2023. 

Qapter screenshot provided by Solera 

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