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Minnesota Auto Shops Swamped with Hail-Damage Repairs

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. (WCCO) - Thousands of Minnesotans spent Friday talking with insurance agents. Thursday's hailstorm caused major damage to homes, cars, and boats. But getting the repairs done at the auto shop may take longer than people would hope.

The hail only lasted a few minutes but left lasting damage.

"Reach out and connect with your insurance agent as soon as you can and get the process started. One of the things people forget to do when they walk out and see the damage to their home and car, they forget to take photos and that can be an important piece in the claims process," State Farm Spokesperson Heather Paul said.

As of Friday morning, State Farm had received 2,400 home and auto claims in Minnesota. With many auto shops backlogged due to supply issues, appointments could take a while.

"Right now, we are about a week and a half out so it's not too bad yet but everyday it's going to probably grow," Dent Heads shop manager Chopper Moone said.

Moone said cars made from aluminum hold up better against hail damage than steel. Some hail damage can be hard to see, he said.

"You could be walking by it the next day and the sun is different and it will jump out at you, so you definitely want to get it repaired under the lights not in your driveway," Moone said.

Auto experts also said it's important to watch out for scammers looking to take advantage after the storm, especially when it comes to debris removal and roofing.

"Do not sign any paperwork before talking to your insurance adjuster or state farm agent. Certainly, don't give a deposit or any money in advance. Do a little homework to help relieve any of those issues that may come up with contractor fraud," Paul said.

State Farm said the most claim reports came from Washington, Ramsey, Olmsted, and Hennepin counties.

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