Collision repair can be an incredibly rewarding career for those who enjoy hands-on work and tinkering with cars. After an accident or collision, vehicles can be in a state of disrepair and require the expertise of a skilled collision repair professional. Depending on your skills and efficiency, there is the potential for very good pay. There are limited opportunities for advancement, as the industry is typically composed of technicians, estimators, managers, and owners in a store environment.
However, this doesn't mean that there is no room for salary increases and bonuses. This is hard work, and the stress level can vary depending on the store. Some stores are laid-back and take things day by day, while others can be chaotic and deadlines are often overlooked. This all comes down to store management. The job can be hazardous if proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) guidelines are not followed.
Many industry veterans who have been ignoring PPE for 25 years will tell you that it is bad for your health. I have seen many of the old-school mechanics who smoke two packs of cigarettes a day while sanding and spraying without a respirator, coughing all day long and saying that it is bad for you. Working with cars can be incredibly therapeutic, especially when you can appreciate the results of your labor. Even if you don't want to pursue this as a full-time job, you can still use these skills to keep your own car in good condition. An added bonus for those in auto body repair careers is that there is a lot to love about the automotive industry.