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Repair or replace door

Hey. My first post here, this seems like a helpful place. I seem to be having a lot of anxiety over this.

I had an accident and got the police report for repair and it mentions repair should be done for the doors, rocker panel and rear bumper. Should I replace the doors or is repair possible. And how long (amount ofcould it take to finish
a. Replacing the door
b. Repairing it


That door is should be replaced. A good metal man MAY be able to get it back into shape but the labor cost will outstrip the cost of even a new door shell. A used door from a junkyard would be the cheapest solution. Replacing could easily be done in 2 days or maybe even 1 if the paint shop is ready for the door when it arrives.

The OTHER stuff will take longer. I can’t see the rocker damage very well but it appears to be under the front door? Looks minor. Pull, fill and paint. That front door I think might be a tossup between fix and replace. Plus the fender lip needs repair and the rear bumper cover.

You really need a body shop to give you a free estimate on cost and time.

The police don’t decide what approach to take. That’s up to your body shop and insurance adjuster. The back door will almost certainly be replaced. They might try to repair the front door but they also might decide to replace it.

Once again, this is an insurance problem. The insurance companies involved, the adjusters and the repair shops are the only ones with real answers.

By “repair” they are simply saying to restore it not how to do it. Doors are generally not replaced but the outside sheet metal is replaced, called a door skin. They pull the door, grind around the outside door skin, and weld or glue a new skin on and refinish. Doesn’t take long compared to pounding out the damage. Plus better rust protection. Many times when pulling a dent they will weld tabs on the door or drill holes to use a dent puller. Then weld the holes back up and fill over it. Problem is those holes are potential rust spots under the filler or on the back of the door. One door skin, maybe two. If you have a choice from the shop, go with two.

The doors will be replaced with used doors from an automotive recycler.

That’s the fastest/cheapest repair.


It depends on the cost and availability of a used door, I have seen our body shop replace a lot of door shins. Door shins are cheap.

That’s a very common type of damage. Body shops fix this kind of problem all the time. They can fix it in their sleep practically. Your insurance company will give you some leads on what shops to use. Ask a few of them how long they’d have to keep the car. They might tell you – if they think doing this is safe – to keep the car for your use while they seek out all the replacement parts. Then when all the parts are in to bring the car to the shop. That will minimize the time you’ll not have use of the car.

We all become so dependent on our cars that we can freeze up if posed with the possibility of not having one. But you always have options, right? I mean there’s lots of folks who don’t have a car to worry about not having. Some options at your disposal

  • Rent a car
  • Ask the body shops if they offer loaners
  • Ask friends, relatives for a lift
  • Take public transportation, cabs, etc.
  • Arrange your affairs so you can stay home for a few days, work from home, etc.