Here are two common types of repairs panel beaters often do for their clients.
Repair of dents and dings
Panel beaters are often hired to repair the dents and dings that can develop on vehicles' panels, as a result of collisions or minor accidents. To do these repairs, these professionals will typically use specialist vehicle body hammers, whose heads have curved and flat surfaces. These hammers are designed to straighten and reshape the indented areas on the contours and curves of a vehicle's body panels. Panel beaters will also use small solid metal tools called dollies when providing this repair service. There are several variations of this tool that panel beaters use; for example, an anvil dolly can be effective at levelling out flat panels that have developed dents, whilst a heel dolly can be used to repair dings and dents on curved sections of body panels.
In instances where a dent is particularly large and deep, and cannot be straightened out with the aforementioned tools, a panel beater may use a product called car body filler to make the dented section level with the areas around it. After using this, the panel beater will sand the filled area to ensure it is smooth and ready to be painted. After levelling out dents or dings using these methods, these experts will then prime and paint the treated parts of the panels and add a clear protective coat of gloss paint that will add shine and help to protect the layers underneath it.
Panel beaters are also often hired to repair rust on vehicles' body panels. Rust can develop if dented or scratched areas, where the vehicle paint has flaked off, are left unrepaired for long periods. This is because the metal layer under the paint can be very susceptible to rusting. When doing this repair work, the panel beater will usually begin by removing loose flecks of rust and paint flakes, as well as any other debris. They may use sandblasting equipment, as well as manual tools like wire-bristle brushes, for this task.
In situations where the rust has damaged the panel metal to the point where it's compromised the panel's structural integrity, these professionals may have to cut out the rusted section and use welding equipment to replace it with new metal. Once all of the rust (or rusted sections) has been removed, the panel beaters will then follow the same priming and painting process they do for dents and dings. If a vehicle is going to be driven in an area that might make it highly susceptible to developing rust again in the future (for example, if the vehicle will be parked or driven near the ocean, the saltwater exposure might make it more prone to rusting), the panel beater might also use a primer that has rust inhibitor properties.
For more information on what panel beaters do, contact a professional near you.