In an effort to give passengers excellent car performance while meeting government regulations on fuel efficiency, automotive manufacturers have turned to aluminum use. The material is lighter, thus making it easier to mold and economical in energy consumption without sacrificing speed.
Aluminum is a low-density and light material. It’s highly malleable, tensile, and resistant to corrosion. It’s even a good conductor and also recyclable. Although aluminum is ideal for cars, there are still challenges that accompany this material. Because they are lighter and thinner, heat absorption is faster which is riskier for vehicles under hot and dry season. Because it’s malleable, it’s more prone to wear and tear, folds, and breakage. For drivers, these shortcomings meant extra care. For auto shops, these meant higher skills and better tools.
What Auto Shops Can Do
Auto shops, small or big, have to adapt to the changes in the automotive industry. Aluminum auto body repair requires different techniques and tools because of the distinct qualities of the material. Technicians have to be trained about the right power settings and melting points when welding aluminum. Knowledge and trainings, needless to say, are the best interventions an auto shop can do besides investing in tools.
Tools also have to vary because again, aluminum is relatively thinner and sensitive to heat and breakage. Tools and machines have to be specifically designed for aluminum, such as those with Pulsed MIG welding capabilities and with minimum 230 volts. Failure to invest in these machines can result to quality issues, damaging not just the customer’s cars but also the shop’s credibility.
The cleaning system is also totally different. There’s an extra care needed when handling aluminum materials, such as the application of solvent on the surface prior to welding. The cleaning gets even more critical and challenging when the vehicle has been exposed to impurities like oil and dirt. All boils down then to having technicians equipped with skills and knowledge in handling aluminum auto body repair.
That is how critical it is to choose the right auto shop for your car, especially that aluminum is increasingly becoming common in the industry.