Standard: AA AT4


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One of the inevitable consequences of the use of automobiles is that from time to time accidents will cause damage to a vehicle's body. Knowing how to appraise and repair collision damage correctly is a major responsibility of the collision repair industry. Over the years, as new materials have been introduced to the car body, repair procedures have been developed and accepted by the collision repair industry. Examples include FRP body panels and high strength steels. Aluminum is taking its place as an accepted body panel and structural material and it is the purpose of this publication to high-light those practices that may be used for effective repair of aluminum by describing some of the features of aluminum that are important for repair. This guide will not teach repair. For an introduction to that we, The Aluminum Association, recommend the course "Aluminum Alloy Repair, Replacement, and Welding" offered by I-CAR. All repair personnel should also seek hands on training to develop proficiency.

Steel has been the dominant material for vehicle bodies and to this point most repair practices have focused on it. In many respects practices for aluminum repairs are similar to those for steel but there are important distinctions to be made. Often the similarities lead to a choice of practices and this publication will focus on those preferred by the aluminum industry. There is sometimes a temptation to "make do" with borrowed practices and while we recognize that sometimes this works, it is always better to use practices specific to aluminum.

Since large scale use of aluminum in vehicles is relatively new there is a tendency to assume that it is more difficult to use, both in manufacture and repair. Auto manufacturers are coming to realize that aluminum is practical and economical to manufacture and that the same will be true of repair. There is a certain amount of art to metal working and it requires experience to perfect that art. The aluminum industry has an informal motto that working aluminum is "different, not difficult" and it is hoped this publication will help show the accuracy of that statement.

The Aluminum Association acknowledges the pioneering work in developing repair techniques done by the auto manufacturers, the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Repair (I-CAR)(Footnote *), and many others from the auto insurance and repair equipment supply industries. In the preparation of this guide, much of the material has also been drawn from other related Aluminum Association publications.

Footnote * - I-CAR can de contacted at:

3701 Algonguin Rd.

Suite 400

Rolling Meadows, IL 60008



Organization: The Aluminum Association Inc.
Document Number: aa at4
Publish Date: 1998-01-01
Page Count: 27
Available Languages: EN
DOD Adopted: NO
ANSI Approved: NO
Most Recent Revision: YES
Current Version: YES
Status: Active