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Body Shop Terms Explained

Updated: Mar 5

Body shop terms are an entirely different language for people not familiar with them. They can be confusing to understand for customers trying to figure out what they mean on their insurance details, and even more so in the case of an accident when they need to understand what’s happening with their car. That's why we’re happy to provide definitions for some of the most used and most misunderstood terms thrown around at body shops.


OEM: Stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, means new, original manufacturer parts


Aftermarket: New, non-original manufacturer parts


LKQ: Meaning Like Kind and Quality used, these are recycled or used parts


Betterment: Replacement of an item that has some wear by a new item. This generally applies to batteries, exhaust and tires. For example, if your battery has used up three quarters of its life, but must be replaced, insurance companies may adjust the amount they pay to a quarter of the cost of the new battery, leaving the owner or insured person to be responsible for paying the difference. Basically, insurance companies are only obligated to return your vehicle to its pre-accident condition, leaving the owner to pay the bill on anything better.


For more body shop terminology explained please check out the extended post in ‘Articles.’ It provides information about more used and misunderstood terms that body shops use when repairing cars.


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