Severe adverse weather can cause serious dents to your vehicle. While hailstones aren't always thought of as "extreme" or "severe", they can do a lot of damage to any outdoor possessions and property. In fact, over 1/3 of Australia's natural hazard insurance claims were caused by hail in the 37-year period between 1968 and 2005.
The two main ways to avoid dents from hailstorms are to seek sheltered parking and to cover your car. However, most advice stops there. What can you do if you're nowhere near your garage without a purpose-made hail cover when hail strikes? Here are 2 top tips to help you avoid dents in a weather emergency.
1. Smartphone Apps
Your smartphone is your best friend when it comes to avoiding hail damage while you're out and about, and it can help you out in two main ways. The first way it will save your car from dents is by sending you weather alerts. Find a highly rated weather app that can send you a message or notification when hail is forecast. This should give you enough time to return home or find somewhere safe to park. The second way you can use your smartphone is as a GPS. A good maps app will let you save the locations of covered parking lots in your area, so you always know how to get to your nearest safe spot if hail strikes too quickly to get home.
2. Makeshift Covers
Whether you can't afford a hail cover or you just haven't got round to purchasing one, there's no need to fear. You can make your own car cover in a pinch using thick blankets. Simply make sure you have some old blankets and a roll of heavy-duty tape in your car at all times, ready for when disaster hits. When a hailstorm is about to begin, simply tape the old blankets over your car. Make sure you test the tape beforehand, as some tapes are strong enough to damage paintwork. If you forget to bring blankets with you, you can use your floor mats to cover key areas.
If you're unlucky and your car is damaged by adverse weather, your best solution is to contact a paintless dent repair service. This type of dent removal does not require re-spraying, making it faster and more affordable than traditional dent repair methods. Paintless dent removal doesn't release environmentally unfriendly chemicals into the atmosphere, and it will also maintain the original structure and paintwork of your vehicle to prevent the car's value from decreasing.
For more information on dent repairs due to hail, contact a local mechanic.