How to Properly Photograph Your Car’s Damage

Published On: January 8, 2020

After an automobile accident, one of the most pressing concerns will be to hire a repair service to fix the damage. Most people will want to shop around, comparing options from various auto shops to figure out which offers the best car bumper repair for the best price. At Bumper Buddies, we can provide a free estimate for services based on a photograph of the car’s damage, but these estimates are only as good as the photo of the damage itself. Therefore, it is critical to take a good photograph of the damage. You don’t want to get an unpleasant surprise when the technician arrives and gives you a price that’s far higher than what you expected based on the initial quote.

Don’t Get Too Close

The first tip is to not take photos too close to the vehicle. We need an idea of how large the damage is and where it is located on the car, whether it’s on a fender, bumper, or car door. This will affect what tools and repair techniques can be used and will have a major impact on the cost of the repair. An extreme closeup is nice for detail, but technicians also need context and clarity before they can offer an accurate estimate.

For scratches, large dents, and bumper cracks, providing two different photographs will be most helpful. One close-up, ideally within one foot, will capture smaller details of the damage, while another photo roughly three to four feet back will show exactly where the damage is on the car.

Take It At An Angle

Smaller damage like door dings and dents that don’t have any paint damage are classified as paintless dent repair, and they can be harder to photograph due to their size and the lack of discoloration. This problem is especially prevalent for cars with black, white, or silver paint jobs, as these tones hide damage better than other colors. While this is good for obscuring damage while you’re still driving the car, it makes it harder for an auto repair technician to identify what’s wrong in a picture. If you’re trying to photograph damage under these conditions, we recommend standing at a thirty to sixty-degree angle from the damage rather than head-on and about three to four feet back from the vehicle. This will help the light catch the dent or distortion, and it will show the technician just how large the size of the dent is and where it is on the panel. 


Follow the Basics

Lastly, you’ll need to follow the same considerations that you would when taking any photograph. Make sure that there’s enough light on the object or that your camera’s flash is enabled and working properly. You’ll also want to make sure that the camera has focused on the correct object, and that you’re holding it steady enough for a clear photograph.

If you follow all of these guidelines, you should have a good picture that will help Bumper Buddies give you a fair estimate for your bumper dent, crack, and scratch repair. At Bumper Buddies, you can text or email us photos of your car’s damage, and we’ll give you an affordable estimate for the cost of repairs. We can also schedule an appointment for one of our mobile bumper repair vans to come and service your vehicle at a time and place of your choosing. Call us today at (888) 711-5074 today to get started.

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