So, imagine if you were reversing and you suddenly hear a ‘crashing’ or ‘crack’ sound from behind. That’s really unfortunate and these things can happen, especially with today’s big cars that we are driving that have low visibility at the back. And now you’re asking about how much would a rear bumper repair cost be. Stay tuned because in this article we are going to answer that question and more.
- What Is A Bumper?
- Bumper Structure
- Repair Or Replace
- Light Scratches
- Deep Scratches
- Fixing A Cracked Bumper
- Rear Bumper Repair Cost
Bumpers are essential parts of every vehicle. Without a bumper, you just cannot drive your car on the road. The main reason is that they are a safety feature. With the bumpers, you make sure that you don’t fatally hurt a pedestrian if you, unfortunately, hit them. And number two, they improve the look of your car.
You will get a nicer appearance especially if you run some sport body kits with flares and all that jazz. Sport car bumpers look aggressive and take any car’s looks onto the next level. Not to mention, that these bumpers are far more expensive than the regular ones.
But, it doesn’t matter which type of bumper you have. Once in a while, you will probably get hit or scratch them. It’s just the way it is, they get damaged. Mine has been repainted a few times.
In this article, we are going to cover everything you need to know when it comes to car bumpers. We will start from the basics and move into more complicated topics before we then discuss the rear bumper repair cost. Because that’s why you are here after all. So, let’s begin.
What Is A Bumper?
A bumper is a crash protection structure that is built on every modern vehicle. In the past, these bumpers were made out of solid metal. But this practice was considered very unsafe for pedestrians.
So, imagine if you are a pedestrian. Even the slightest touch by these bumpers could inflict some serious injuries to you. For example, they could have bone fractures that might need years to heal.
To prevent this, something new had to be created. Today, these new bumpers are made out of plastic. Plus, they have the ability to stay uniform at 5 mph crashes. This means that if you have a minor bump or scratch, you won’t have a problem with repairing or replacing the bumper. Although, some minor scratches may appear and these scuffs could easily be removed with a buffer.
The scratches are easy to remove with a buffer because they have not penetrated the paint. They are usually down to the clear coat. And if they are light, they can be easily removed with a small buffing process.
Some deeper scratches are going to require some more persistent buffing or a repaint in some situations. A repaint is required because the scratches are too deep and they have damaged the paint.
This can be solved also with a small touch-up. But if you are a perfectionist, you are probably looking for the rear bumper repair cost. We are going to cover that later in great detail.
Car Bumper Structure
Although the bumper seems simple from the outside. From the inside, it has a complex structure of parts that have their specific purpose of making the bumper durable and safe for pedestrians. And from what parts are the front bumpers made of?
The bumper is made of lightweight and durable plastic that can withstand a beating. This is crucial because this material guarantees the longevity of the bumper in harsh conditions. If they were made out of weaker materials, they would easily crumble or distort from the immense heat during the hot summer days.
Between the crash bar and the bumper, there is a piece of styrofoam that guarantees the integrity of the bumper during some light impacts from the front. If this styrofoam piece isn’t there to protect the bumper, it can be easily damaged if you give it a small bump while parking.
On each side of the bumper, there are bumper retainers. On these bumper retainers, you attach the bumper. They are one of the first pieces that will be affected when you withstand a hit. When there is a crash, these bumper retainers are one of the first pieces that fail and the bumper moves out of its place.
There are also other pieces in the bumper. Some more expensive cars have the lower part of the bumper reshaped into what is called a diffuser. This diffuser is usually used to create downforce in performance cars, but in most road-legal cars is only used to give better looks to the car.
This piece is bought separately and can cost a lot of money and add up the rear bumper repair cost. Other pieces are the parking sensors which also get damaged in an accident and also the license plate cover.
Factors That Are Important When Deciding Whether To Fix Or Scrap The Damaged Bumper
When you have a damaged bumper, you need to estimate the extent of the damage to it. This is to know whether this bumper is savable or scrap. As we said, the bumper consists out of many parts like the bumper cover, bumper retainers, the Styrofoam bumper absorber, the diffuser (if any), and the parking sensors.
You need to inspect all of these pieces manually and see what is savable and what is not. You need to make a good estimate because if you decide to replace all the pieces it can cost you a fortune.
The most obvious reason why a bumper gets scrapped is the damage to the bumper cover. If the bumper cover is mutilated and the plastic is pressed to the inside of the bumper, it’s now broken. The most likely consideration now is the scrapping of the bumper.
The more damage caused to it, the easier it is to scrap the bumper cover and replace it with a new one. Although, small cracks and indentations are fixable. You can fix small cracks by applying heat with a heat gun and then you can pull them out. These pulls do not come out perfect all the time, and you may still have some visual damage.
But if you don’t mind it, you will be satisfied with this repair. If there is some slight cracking, then some heat and glue will be able to fix this issue. Then, a lot of Bondo will bring the bumper back to life, and ensure that it’s going to last you for a long time.
But if the bumper cover is shattered, then you will likely need a new bumper cover and other accessory parts like the bumper absorber, and bumper retainers.
Will Insurance Cover The Damage?
The insurance will cover the damage if the damage was not caused by you. For example, if you were rear-ended in a traffic collision then the insurance is going to cover all of the repairs.
Let’s say you made a mistake while parking or reversing and the bumper happens to get hit. Then you most likely won’t get paid by the insurance and you will have to pay the damage from your own pocket.
This may hurt your wallet, so you should better pay attention next time when you park up. I had gone through a situation like this in the middle of the night when I was going home from work.
I was backing out and I didn’t notice that there was a tree. Unfortunately, I hit the tree at a relatively slow speed, like 1 mph. Yet, there was still cracking on the bumper and I had to repair this. I called the insurance company and they told me that they do not cover this work since it was my fault.
Then, I had to find a used bumper from a scrapyard and replace the cracked bumper with a new one. After that, I had to repaint this bumper and that also cost me a lot. My rear bumper repair cost came at a price of $500 when I was done with it.
Nevertheless, I learned a lot when it comes to bumpers and how to prevent this from happening. When you are driving, you should have your eyes opened all the time and pay close attention to prevent situations that will hurt your wallet.
How To Repair Light Scratches DIY?
If you have some scratches and you want to remove them in a DIY fashion there are plenty of ways how you can perform this work on your car. Starting from simple methods and up to more complex methods that will make a big difference.
The easiest method for removing small scratches is probably the easiest method of removing light scratches. The WD-40 is a lubricant and will clean off the light scratches by filling up the crevices with some of this fluid. Just spray the bumper with it and then do a good rub in a circular motion.
There should be no scratches when finished. Or they should be less pronounced. But know that this method isn’t a permanent way for fixing this type of damage. After a few months, the WD-40 will disappear and you will be left with scratches again.
Soap And Water
This is a good way to clean off the bumper. Soap and water are going to help if someone has rubbed their wheel into your bumper and caused some blackened blemishes or paint marks. Just apply soap and water and rub the place where are scratches. Make sure that you rub until there are no scratches left on the bumper.
After doing this job, your bumper will be 80% better. There will still be some grooves into the clear coat but most of them will be gone. After this, it is a good idea to wax the bumper and protect it. This will improve the condition of the bumper by 95%, and the scratches will be almost invisible when you are done with it.
With these two simple methods, you will minimize the rear bumper repair cost if you have some light marks and scratches. But should there be deeper scratches, these methods will not work. If the paint is damaged, you will have to do some more work. We’re going to explain how in the next chapter.
How To Repair Deep Scratches DIY?
Deep scratches can be more difficult to remove than light scratching. This is because they have deeper grooves that have penetrated and damaged the paint. But there are still some ways to fix these deep scratches. Here, we are going to list some of them.
Touch Up Paint
Touch-up paint is a good idea for this type of damage. It’s relatively light and can be fixed with touch-up paint. Just pay a visit to your local paint store and tell them to make you a color mix with your car’s paint code. If they nail it, it’s going to be a perfect match with your paint.
You don’t need a lot of touch-up paint. A small 2-ounce bottle will be enough. Then you will have to clean off the part where it’s scratched and apply some of this touch-up paint. Next, let it cure for some time.
This touch-up paint is perfect if you have a white or black vehicle. Most people will never spot if there is touch-up paint. Although, some colors can be trickier.
Buff The Paint
Another way to clear any deeper scratches is to buff the paint with a buffer and a polishing compound. You will take one layer out of the clear while doing this, and if the scratch is not that deep you will be able to remove most of it.
Repaint The Bumper
If the grooves and damage are too big you will have to repaint the whole bumper with a fresh coat of paint. This is best done at a paint shop because you might not get the right shade, and if you paint the bumper by hand, it can have dust particles and a lot of “orange peel“. Painting is best done in an isolated paint booth where are no external factors that could ruin the paintwork.
There are some things that you need to do to ready it up for the painting procedure. You will first need to clean the bumper from the damage that was caused to it.
Good sanding will help you out remove the scratches from the paint. A 600 grit sandpaper will do just well for this. Then, you will have to apply some Bondo to cover the hole from the sanding process. This Bondo has to now be sanded down until perfection, and later you’ll need to apply a finishing glaze.
The glaze is like a Bondo but even finer. You will need to give it another sand with 1000 grit to make everything perfect. If you are not sure, you can apply one stage of guide coat that will make you sure that everything is good.
Then you will have to apply the primer. The primer is the first layer that has to be applied to the bumper. Since you applied the bumper, another sanding may be required if there are still some imperfections.
When you are done, you will have to clean the paint with alcohol and make sure that there is no dust. Then, it’s time to give it two or three layers of paint. After the painting process is done. Now it’s time to apply some clear coat. Be sure to add 2 or 3 layers to have some headroom for buffing later.
After painting, you can give it a nice buffing with a polishing compound to improve the paint’s look. Now, it’s reassembly time. But… You might ask, what is the rear bumper repair cost? Well, we are going to see that in the next chapters.
How To Fix A Cracked Bumper?
If you have a cracked bumper, it may be a bit more difficult to fix compared to a scratch. To perform this work, you will be required to get a plastic welder. A plastic welder is an essential tool to achieve the effect you desire. This tool will melt the plastic and bond it together. Also, it is a good idea to add some fiberglass to it to improve its structure. So, how can we do this?
To fix a cracked bumper, you will have to remove the bumper from the car. Then, from the inside of the bumper, you need to weld these cracks. For this, you are going to need a plastic welder. This plastic welder will bond together the broken pieces.
The welder will not be able to make this a permanent fix, and you will need some extra additions to do this the right way. That addition would be fiberglass. You can get fiberglass mesh for a really cheap price. With the fiberglass mesh, you will also need to get an epoxy that will glue the fiberglass layers together.
Apply some of the fiberglass epoxy on the inside of the bumper where you had glued the two broken pieces and apply some of the fiberglass material on it. Do 3-4 layers of the fiberglass material and epoxy. Then let it cure for a day.
After this work is done, you can start doing the bodywork on the bumper.
How To Pull Out A Dent From A Bumper?
If you have a dented bumper, you can pull it out very easily. You just need a heat gun for this work. Remove the bumper from the car first. Then, apply the heat gun to the place which is dented.
Make sure that you apply the heat from the inside to not burn the paint. After the bumper is heated, it will be hot to the touch. So, press the dent out of it with a plastic hammer. The dent should pop out easily.
Just take note that in some cases the bumper will still have some damage to it and it can be hard to repair. But in my opinion, it’s better to pull the dent out than to continue driving like this.
Rear Bumper Repair Cost
So, how much work does your bumper require? If there is a light scratch and the work is simple you will be billed for a few hours. If there is more work to it and requires a full repaint, then you will have to pay a lot more to get it fixed.
For a repaint, it can cost you from $300 – $500 for the whole bumper. If you have more damage to it that needs to be fixed, then the price can be even more expensive.
Rear Bumper Repair Cost – Conclusion
In this article, we have covered a lot when it comes to the rear bumper and rear bumper repair cost. We learned what bumpers are, and what are they made from. We also learned the types of damage that can happen to a bumper, as well as what types of damage are worth repairing, and which don’t.
Then we have discussed some tips on how you can repair some light scuffs and scratches. We also learned how you can repair the more demanding work like cracked bumpers. We also learned about the whole procedure of prepping, sanding, and priming a damaged bumper.
Then we have covered the cost that comes with this sort of work. Remember that this is usually costly since it requires a lot of prepping and painting. So, if your bumper is beyond repair then it’s better to get a new one. If you are lucky, you can find another bumper that had the same paint as yours and you can just bolt it on and enjoy.
These tools have been tried and tested by our team, they are ideal for fixing your car at home.