"paintless" dent removal minor scam
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    1. #1

      "paintless" dent removal minor scam

      was at the local auto zone today picking up some spark plugs, when a guy approached me in the parking lot as I was pulling out. he noticed a dent in my lower quarter panel, it was there before I bought the car, and i hardly notice it anymore. It was about the size of a dinner plate but very shallow and on a black car it is not too noticible. he offered to fix it for me for $50.00 as he had just come off another job and had his tools with him. I am a bit familiar with the paintless dent removal process and at seemed a fair price, plus he said if I was not satisfied I didn't have to pay. I asked what he could about some paint chips and he said for another $70.00 he could take care of those too. when pressed about how he would take care of the rust at the bottom of the chips he said that he would put a "solution" on it and would fill it in with some touch up paint (I happened to have the proper paint handy), "rust is only a problem if it goes all the way through, so don't worry about it" he said. He followed me back to my house and proceeded to wipe down the affected area with his "metal softning liquid" which looked suspiciously like cleaning fluid, and pulled out the dent with a big orange suction cup. he didn't get it all but it was a noticible improvement, (I didn't let him touch the paint chips). Then he put on a 1/4 inch layer of turtle wax (to re harden the metal) ( and I think to cover up the minor crease that was left behind) I asked how much the charge would be since the was not 100% fixed and he said (with a perfectly straight face) I'll knock off a bit since I didn't get it all, how about $75.00? I was expecting this and I let him know I was having none of it. He guessed that I "misunderstood" his initial offer and we stood there deep in thought for a minute or two. I didn't back down and offered him $40.00 for his time and effort (ten minutes of work and a tug or two on a suction cup) I think we both got a fair deal on this as the car does look a lot better, but it just goes to show you that you have to stand up for yourself, and don't let someone try to screw you over. the whole issue mildly amused me more than anything, but I will get a quote on paper next time to avoid any possible "misunderstandings" in the future.
      thanks for listening

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    3. #2
      Junior Member
      Join Date
      Sep 2002
      Northern Virginia

      Re: "paintless" dent removal minor scam (mldolan)

      These scams have been around forever. When I was in college many years ago (40 years ago, for you young guys) the so-called gypsies would come to the dorms and fraternity houses with hammers and dollies and knock out dents and cover them with wheel bearing grease so that the exposed metal wouldn't rust until you could get the panel painted.

      The deal is the same today. Any body work done in your driveway -- other than by a real PDR guy with a flourescent light and proper tools -- will be nothing more than an improvement and will probably not save you any money if you take the car to get it painted.

      1999 S70 T5 Pewter/Oak
      1999 C70 HT Black/Beige
      2003 C70 HT White/Tan/Beige
      2010 XC60 T6 AWD Cosmic White/Beige-Brown

    4. #3
      Member S.R.'s Avatar
      Join Date
      Nov 2000
      Hampton Roads, VA

      Re: "paintless" dent removal minor scam (mhbva)

      Real PDR Pro's do amazing work. I had three dents fixed on my car and it looks perfect now. They have a collection of very specialized tools. I payed around $110 for the work.


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    6. #4

      Re: "paintless" dent removal minor scam (Drew@Swedespeed)

      I 2nd that. I've gotten the real deal done on my C70, came out flawlessly. The guy took out few dents on the car. None of them were that serious, but annoying enough.

      You just have to find the right reputable shop to do it. Letting someone outside an auto part store to touch my car is never gonna happen. And leading them back to my place...hell NO!

      I wouldn't say you get what you paid for b/c the rate he was charging per dent seems right around the ballpark, but when he whip'd out his suction tool, you should have already sensed something is wrong. If you have seen or heard about the real dent removal process, the tools are definitely not some cheap suction cup.

      I don't know what firm arms you have in your garage or if you have friends standing around when he was trying to rip you off, I'd say you are lucky he walked away with less money than he originally thought he'd get without trying to pull any last minute stunt on you.

    7. #5

      Re: "paintless" dent removal minor scam (Kai)

      Well if it came to that I am pretty well armed, but this guy was just your usual con artist, and probably hoped I'd cave before it came to that. I stood my ground and gave him an honorable exit without being to much of a prick. I have actually been talking to my father who has quite a bit of experience with vacuum pumps and assorted equipment, I think I have come up with a way to do paintless dent removal using some specialized vacuum pumps and paint safe adhesives. when I get a kit together I will try it out at the local junkyard. If it works there I might start a little side business doing dent work. not major body work of course just those annoying dents that we all seem to get. of course volvo owners get a special discount all work gets a written estimate beforehand of course
      Mike in MD

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