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#4754192 - 05/11/18 12:53 PM Paintless Dent Removal Opinions
EdwardC Offline


Registered: 11/14/13
Posts: 1849
Loc: Chicago, IL
I did a quick search and found this old thread, all with mostly good PDR comments, but am wondering if there's anything that may have changed in the last few years.

https://bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php/topics/3231065/Paintless_dent_removal

I have a few door dings that I can't help but notice on my cars, wondering if there is any reason not to try a PDR service? (It's not worth the money for any kind of repaint job) Anything I should look out for when looking for a PDR service? Would it be beneficial to remove interior panels before taking it in? My only concern is that they may not take as much time or care to avoid breaking or losing any clips (or am I over thinking this - they're the professional, they should know what they're doing).

Thanks!

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#4754202 - 05/11/18 01:06 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
maxdustington Offline


Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 393
Loc: Toronna
I think it depends on how many times they have taken that car apart. Either way, then probably just look up the directions on google just like any DIYer.

I've taken the door panels off of my car and many cars in the yard and by the third time there are no surprises.
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#4754218 - 05/11/18 01:29 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
Trav Offline


Registered: 11/20/06
Posts: 18553
Loc: MA, Mittelfranken.de
Do not remove any panels they can usually work around it with the window down. PDR is like anything else the quality of the repair depends on the guy going it.
Go to a dealer and ask the parts guy for the number of the guy doing theirs, if he sucks they wont keep using him, arrange it as a cash job on the side.

I usually get 3 or 4 cars together and have him knock them all off in a morning, you cant tell it has been touched or dinged.
Park the card in the shade or garage with plenty of room to work so he can look at the mirror better and get coffee and donuts.
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#4754234 - 05/11/18 01:47 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
Gimpy1 Offline


Registered: 08/24/17
Posts: 76
Loc: Displaced Texan in Mexico City
PDR is somewhere between an Art and Science, and like everything else there are people who are great at it and then there are people that should find another line of work. PDR has the benefit of not damaging the factory finish, and in most cases is cheaper than traditional body work. Just be aware that PDR does have its limitations. I had a really great CE class on PDR and we watched a guy that had been doing PDR for 25 years. He explained that a good PDR tech will NEVER drill holes to get access to a panel (first thing to look for), also avoid getting PDR during hail season, that's when the storm chasers are out and prices are generally higher and quality is lower since the guys are trying to do the most amount of jobs in the shortest period of time. Also remember that Aluminium body panels require more work and will be more expensive but in most cases the panel can be PDR'd. You don't need to remove interior panels for them they will do it if the need to gain access, in fact look at their tools most are designed to access panels without removal. They only thing I would recommend is that you wash the car prior to taking it in.


Edited by Gimpy1 (05/11/18 01:48 PM)

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#4754253 - 05/11/18 02:09 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
Johnny2Bad Offline


Registered: 05/20/13
Posts: 1721
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
It works, it's all about who does it. Try whatever local recommendation you can find (car dealers, car clubs, friends, etc). There are websites that claim to vet local contractors but I am suspicious of them, they could be advertiser or pay-to-play operations.
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#4754288 - 05/11/18 02:39 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
demarpaint Offline


Registered: 07/03/05
Posts: 29567
Loc: NY
If the guy knows what he's doing it can come out perfect. I had a kids bike fall into the right rear door on my Liberty. The paint wasn't scratched because there was a rubber hand grip on the handle bars. Long story short I called a guy I met a years ago that would do paintless dent removal at a few dealerships I worked at. $50 later was able to challenged people to tell me where he did the repair, and I'd win. Bottom line like any skilled craftsman, there are good mechanics and hacks. This guy was a master of his craft.
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#4754332 - 05/11/18 03:46 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
Danno Offline


Registered: 10/07/12
Posts: 1951
Loc: Northern Ontario, Canada
My SIL opened her car door into a concrete curb, left a sharp, deep dent, low on the door. Took it to a local guy, can't see where it was, it is quite amazing.
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#4754387 - 05/11/18 05:19 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
Traction Offline


Registered: 06/04/13
Posts: 967
Loc: iowa
I've had several cars fixed perfectly with PDR including a golf ball hail repair, and on my wife's friends new car when the wind caught her door, and creased the door from top to bottom. The good techs are magicians, as I've found out after spending several hundred dollars on PDR tools, videos, and even a good LED PDR light. I've had some success, but it really is an art.
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#4754432 - 05/11/18 06:31 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: Trav]
dparm Offline


Registered: 04/19/10
Posts: 13466
Loc: Chicago, IL
Originally Posted By: Trav
Do not remove any panels they can usually work around it with the window down. PDR is like anything else the quality of the repair depends on the guy going it.
Go to a dealer and ask the parts guy for the number of the guy doing theirs, if he sucks they wont keep using him, arrange it as a cash job on the side.

I usually get 3 or 4 cars together and have him knock them all off in a morning, you cant tell it has been touched or dinged.
Park the card in the shade or garage with plenty of room to work so he can look at the mirror better and get coffee and donuts.



This. You may even want to go to the higher-end dealerships (BMW, Mercedes, etc) and see who they're using.
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#4754567 - 05/11/18 09:14 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 41654
Loc: New Jersey
Ive used it a number of times on different cars. Even on very old cars with original paint. My current guy is very good.

The only thing to watch out for is that a PDR guy may not have the same standards as you with respect to paint cleanliness and marring. What they use to wipe a surface clean to work on may not be up to your standards.

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#4754606 - 05/11/18 09:47 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: JHZR2]
69GTX Offline


Registered: 09/23/15
Posts: 3780
Loc: Connecticut
I did it twice on classic collector cars. They didn't tell me their "magic" included drilling holes in original sheet metal to get access to outer body panels, etc. Other than that stupidity, their work was good. Believe me, it wasn't "painless" for me when I saw the holes they left behind. They could have at least given me the option of not drilling the holes and letting the dent stay put.
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#4755178 - 05/12/18 04:17 PM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: EdwardC]
EdwardC Offline


Registered: 11/14/13
Posts: 1849
Loc: Chicago, IL
Thanks guys, I'll have to look around for a good PDR specialist here in Chicago (there's gotta be tons considering how many dings I get).

Thanks for the heads up, 69GTX, I definitely don't want any holes drilled!

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#4756704 - 05/14/18 09:17 AM Re: Paintless Dent Removal Opinions [Re: 69GTX]
Cujet Offline


Registered: 02/15/03
Posts: 7062
Loc: Jupiter, Florida
Originally Posted By: 69GTX
I did it twice on classic collector cars. They didn't tell me their "magic" included drilling holes in original sheet metal to get access to outer body panels, etc.


Exactly! If you feel access to the back side would be easier with a panel removed, remove it. The alternative is a drilled hole with a plastic plug.

The PDR guy that did my F150 drilled a number of holes by the door handle on the drivers door. Then plugged them with matching black plastic plugs. Not only do I now have unwanted holes, but the dent is still there, albeit not as big.

I really wish I had pulled the door panel and associated parts (door handle) before the guy arrived. The result would have been better all the way around.
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