(Phoenix, AZ -October 15, 2010)  After last week’s storms many Valley dealers are advertising “hail sale” inventory to those looking to get a deal on a new or used car. BBB offers advice for consumers browsing the lots this weekend.

“It’s unlikely that most local residents have experience with hail damaged vehicles. So to help build more trust in the process, our office worked with BBB’s across the country to find out what consumers need to know when making a purchase,” BBB President/CEO Matthew Fehling said.

Consumers should consider the following when purchasing a hail damaged car:

• Test drives. When practical, make your insurance agent's office part of your test drive route and get the agent's assessment of the damages to the vehicle.

• Future Repairs.  If you are interested in a ‘hail sale’ car, but can’t live with the damage, research exactly what it will cost to have repairs done by talking to a local auto body shop you trust. Then you can determine if the discount on the car is comparable to the repair work needed.

• Temporary repair shops. In some states, hail damage repair stations pop up in empty gas station lots, offering to make quick repairs.  Nearly all of them generate some complaints to BBB.  Consumers are advised to use dependable, permanent auto body and repair shops they have checked out with the BBB.

• Insurance. Determine if your insurance company will pay for damages done to the vehicle before it was purchased. Consumers should also be aware of temporary repair shops that claim to ‘eat’ the deductible so that there's no apparent out of pocket cost to their customers.  However, that could come back to haunt the customer when their insurance companies figure out that they haven't contributed to the repairs.

To hire a company you can trust for any hail related need, find BBB Accredited Businesses at arizonabbb.org or call 602-264-1721.

About BBB Serving Central, Northern & Western Arizona

BBB is an unbiased organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. Businesses that earn BBB accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization’s high standards of ethical business behavior. Incorporated locally in 1938, today your BBB serves communities in Central, Northern and Western Arizona, supported by over 9500 BBB Accredited Businesses. BBB provides objective advice, free business and charity reviews, and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust.

Felicia N. Thompson | Vice President of Communications

Tel: 602-212-2237