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Maaco's Frequently Asked Questions

Maaco has been helping people transform the car they drive, back into the car they love, for over 40 years. We've been asked a few questions along the way. A few of our more frequent questions are below.

Service faq's

Service faq's
Q: Will you sand my vehicle before painting it?A: Absolutely! We sand every surface that will receive paint. Sanding allows for a mechanical bond between the old surface and the new. Without proper sanding, paint will be much more likely to peel. Based on the individual needs of your vehicle, we also machine sand problem areas according to the package purchased.
Q: What is the difference between single stage and base coat - clear coat?A: Base coat clear coat finishes are what car manufacturers’ use when building new vehicles since 1985. Base coat - clear coat is also known as a two-stage finish. The first stage of the finish is the color you choose. Once that has dried, clear coat is applied over the base coat. The clear coat is what provides the gloss and protective layer that contribute to the longevity of the paint job. Base coat - clear coat finishes are the most durable and maintenance free of all finishes and the best option for color match. They are also the most expensive. Single stage finishes uses a technology that allows the color and protective resin to be applied in one single step and because of this can be more difficult to color match.
Q: What is a sealer?A: Contrary to popular belief, sealer is actually sprayed on before the paint is applied. The purpose is to create a uniform surface for your new paint to adhere to. It provides a slicker, more uniform looking paint job, especially for color changes and vehicles that have had bodywork performed.
Q: How long will the paint last?A: How long your paint will last is totally subjective to the way in which you care for your vehicle, the conditions in which it is driven and stored, environmental factors and more. All of our paint jobs are guaranteed for varying lengths of time. However, you can significantly increase the life of your paint job by keeping it washed and waxed.

Estimate faq's

Estimate faq's
Q: Why won't the shop give me an estimate over the phone or from an email with a picture?A: Without seeing the car in person, it's nearly impossible to provide an accurate quote. It is very common for vehicles to require additional prep to ensure the smoothest finish possible. This could include peeling, delaminating or cracks in your old finish, which are difficult to spot in pictures.
Q: Do I have to make an appointment for an estimate?A: Appointments are not necessary, but we do schedule appointments for your convenience. Select your preferred center and complete our appointment scheduler online or call the center.
Q: Do I have to pay for an estimate?A: Estimates are 100% free of charge and obligation.
Q: Question:Will the price I pay be the same as the estimate? No surprises?A: Answer:Yes. The price you pay could be higher than your initial estimate if hidden damage is discovered during the repair and/or refinishing process or if the cost of parts increases. This is extremely uncommon; however, when it does occur, we will always call to discuss your options and offer you the opportunity to come in and see the repair area first hand and discuss costs.

Pricing faq's

Pricing faq's
Q: How do you paint cars so inexpensively?A: Maaco has developed the easiest, most affordable and reliable paint process in the world. Our more than 40 years of experience makes our approach to overall auto painting the best way to turn the car you drive back into the car you love. We also have the advantage of volume. Our more than 475 locations nationwide and long-term relationships with vendors allows us to buy materials at deeply discounted prices. In turn, we pass that savings on to you.
Q: Why does it cost so much to repair a small ding?A: We get asked this question more than almost any other question! Repairing a dent or ding is a very involved process. There is a minimum amount of time it takes to repair one dent. Picture this: a body repair technician must first grind all of the paint off of the area to be repaired, then he must prepare the filler compound, apply it uniformly, then wait for it to dry. It's then sanded and either glazed or a second coat is applied, at which point you have a second round of drying. We sand it again, mix a 2k primer, apply the primer and paint. Only then is the job finished!
If you are concerned about cost, be sure to ask your center about paintless dent repair.
Q: What if I don't want to pay for the extra prep to take out the scratches and dents, won't my car still look better with new paint?A: You may choose to simply have your vehicle painted without addressing issues like peeling, cracking and old bodywork. Keep in mind that in order to receive the smoothest possible finish and highest possible gloss, these issues will need to be addressed. If the conditions are bad enough, it can and will affect the gloss and overall appearance of the newly painted surfaces. While you will receive a warranty if you choose to paint over dings and dents, that is not the case if you decline to repair conditions that your estimator has advised you to repair.
Q: How much does it cost to change the color of my car?A: If you simply want to change the color of the exterior, there is a charge in addition of your paint package to do so. Although it is not necessary, you can have your doorjambs, under the hood and trunk painted for an additional charge.

General faq's

General faq's
Q: Will my car look like new after a Maaco paint job?A: Most likely not! It will look like your car with a new paint job! Although a new paint job goes a long way towards making your vehicle look great, nothing we can do will make your car look new again.
Q: Should I wash my car before I bring it in for painting?A: It is not necessary, but we welcome you too! The cleaner your vehicle is, the easier it is to prepare for paint.
Q: Is body repair included in the promotion?A: No! Body repair is a laborious process requiring specialized skills, tools and materials. For this reason, we employ extremely skilled technicians that have dedicated their careers to the art of repairing damage to vehicle bodies. The only way for you to know exactly what this will cost is to come by and let us take a look at it. We offer free estimates, any time during business hours, with or without an appointment.
Q: How long does it take to paint my car?A: 80% of all vehicles we paint are ready in 2-3 business days. You can add a day or two if you have a significant amount of bodywork, need replacement parts or if your vehicle requires extra preparation to repair existing paint damage. It is not uncommon for customers to drop their car off early one day and have it back by the end of the next business day!