Protect Your Car’s Paint Job

A red chrome vehicle with an extended vehicle life

It may feel like summer in Arizona, but it’s still spring and there are plenty of things the season brings that can do damage to your car’s precious paint job. Yes, cars are tough. But that colorful coat of paint? Not so much. Here are four things to watch for right now.

Pollen.

Pollen doesn’t help those with springtime allergies, and it doesn’t help your car either. Tiny pollen particles can sneak into the small pores in your car’s paint job and release acid. If this happens enough, the acid can cause permanent staining, fading, and oxidation (decay). Flying pollen is inevitable, but what you can do is give your car a thorough wash with soapy water, which will block out the acids.

Bugs.

Not only is acid found in pollen, it’s also found in bugs. We’ve all found bug splatters on our windshields or bumpers. Acids found in bug blood can permanently damage your car’s paint, so cleaning up all of those bug guts as soon as possible is the best thing to do.

Bird waste.

Birds become more active in the spring and can leave surprises on our vehicles, especially when we park under that only tree in the parking lot. In Arizona, the sun’s powerful rays can bake those bird droppings right into your paint finish, leaving ugly stains and uric acid that can eat into the paint coat. Remove the droppings with a damp cloth to prevent permanent damage.

Tar.

On those hot spring (and summer) days here in the Valley, other cars can fling up tar from the asphalt onto your vehicle. Tar is difficult to get off and can take your car’s paint right with it if removed the wrong way. Removing tar from your vehicle requires a special product to separate it from the paint.

Ric’s Body & Paint has been the Valley’s leading shop for collision and vehicle body repair for more than 40 years. We love our customers and know how important it is to have a functioning vehicle. We want to get you back on the road as quickly and painlessly as possible. Contact us for more information on our services and how to best protect your car this season.

Getting Your Ride Ready for Summer

A model Mini Cooper car that is ride ready

Right now, we’re in that “sweet” period when it comes to Valley weather. After record-setting snowfall (1.5 inches on the ground in Cave Creek!), flooding, and nights when we needed to cover our outdoor plants to ward off freezing, we are finally back to Chamber of Commerce weather, with spring training temps and brag-worthy views of trails clogged with shorts-clad hikers. But we all know that hotter temps are just around the corner – again. It won’t be long before the heat, dust, and-stop-and-go traffic in 110-degree heat is the norm. That means it’s time again to think about making sure your car or truck is ready for another Arizona summer. Here are a few tips from Ric’s Body & Paint to make your ride ready to go, whether you’ll be spending your summer driving around town or taking a road trip to escape the heat.

Check your air conditioning.

This one’s pretty self-explanatory. Have a skilled technician look your system over, checking to make sure it’s in fighting shape after several months of non-use. Make sure the coolant level is good and that your cabin air filter is working correctly.

The cooling system needs to be ready for the heat.

The leading cause of summer breakdowns is overheating. Your cooling system should be completely flushed and refilled at least every 24 months. Your overflow or radiator tank should be full, as well.

Make sure your tires are ready to roll.

Proper inflation assures the best possible contact between your tires and the road, so make sure you check your air pressure on a monthly basis. Examine your tires for uneven wearing, cupping, and tread life. Check the sidewalls for nicks and cuts.  

Inspect your brakes.

Make sure the brake fluid is topped off, and tell your mechanic if you notice pulsations, grabbing, noises, or longer stopping distance. It’s vital to your safety that you correct minor brake problems promptly, so they don’t become major issues.

Make sure your oil is up to the task.

Change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual and more often if you make frequent short trips or are planning a summer road trip, especially if you’ll be towing a trailer.

Check your wipers.

Inspect the blades and wiper fluid, especially if your wipers got a lot of use this past winter. Replace worn blades and make sure you have plenty of washer solvent.

Do an under-the-hood check of filters, belts, clamps, and hoses.

Make sure everything is tight and replace items which are showing signs of excessive wearing.  

Batteries need to be ready for the summer.

They can fail any time of year, but you definitely don’t want to be on the side of the road under a beating sun with a battery that’s not cranking. Make sure to remove all corrosion from posts and cable connections, clean all surfaces and re-tighten all connections. Don’t forget to check your battery’s fluid level.

Make sure your vehicle is looking its best.

If your car or truck got dinged up this winter or its paint looks the worse for wear, bring it to Ric’s for a no-obligation estimate. After all, now that you’ve made sure it’s ready for the summer on the inside, you want to have it looking ride ready.

Since 1976, Ric’s Body & Paint has been the Valley’s leading shop for collision and vehicle body repair. We’ve earned our reputation for treating customers the way we want to be treated and making getting you back on the road as painless as possible.  

Automotive Trends to Watch for in 2019

We’re only a couple of months into the new year and we’ve already spotted a few automotive trends to keep your eye on in 2019.

Ride-hailing services won’t be going away anytime soon.

Last year, the top five companies in this sector – Uber, Lyft, DiDi, Grab and Go-Jek – were estimated to be worth more than $230 billion. This year, look for blockbuster IPOs (initial public offerings) from Uber, Lyft and DiDi, as they join the list of publicly-traded companies. This signals a seismic shift in the way we look at transportation, as the valuations are more than those of well-established automobile companies that have been around for more than 75 years.

Don’t buy or lease: subscribe.

Thanks to Millenials and Gen Zers (those born between the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s) the number of drivers who’d rather subscribe to a vehicle (think of it as a short-term lease) is increasing. Researchers estimate that by 2025 (just a few years from now) 10% of new vehicle sales will be subscription-based; that’s more than 16 million new and used vehicles.  

Silicon Valley meets Detroit.

Software technology companies are making further inroads into the automotive sector through services like basing insurance on vehicle usage and new finance and leasing services. Cars and the way we drive them are changing: redundant braking and steering systems are becoming more and more commonplace, and diagnostics and vehicle health monitoring are changing as well. The Internet Of Things (IoT, which is the network of devices like vehicles and home appliances that contain electronics that connect, interact and exchange data) – and AI (artificial intelligence) – are transforming the automotive sector, leading to way to self-driving cars and other things that seemed unimaginable just a generation ago.

Changes in the world stage have an impact.

After a decade of growth, the automotive market in China stumbled in 2018. This year, expect a slowing economy, the continued popularity of public transportation, and an increasingly saturated SUV market to slow things down even more. The uncertainties caused by Brexit and the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement are likely to add to an unstable automotive market around the world, which might be offset by marginal growth in new car sales in emerging markets such as Mexico, India, and Brazil.

Whatever happens this year, automotive-wise, there’s still only one place to go if you’ve been involved in a collision or your vehicle needs general auto body repair. Since 1976, Ric’s Body & Paint has been the Valley’s leader in getting your ride back on track after a mishap. Contact Ric’s today!

This Valentine’s Day, Show Your Ride Some Love

February 14 is almost here, and you know what that means: expressing your love to that special someone in your life. Ric’s Body & Paint reminds you that cars and trucks need love, too. If your significant other has a special place in their hearts for their car or truck, we have some suggestions on sharing the love this Valentine’s Day.

Get your ride looking like a million bucks without dropping that kind of dough.

Give your partner a gift certificate for a complete auto detail. Driving a ride that looks refreshed and rejuvenated will make them look – or at least – feel years younger.

A car wash kit will help keep their vehicle looking good on a consistent basis.

You can also give a gift certificate to your favorite local car wash, to help your loved one’s car or truck sparkle between professional details.

Make sure their interior looks its best.

A portable vacuum will help your significant other keep their vehicle looking sharp inside.

A car cover will help protect your partner’s vehicle.

What’s more romantic than keeping their prized possession looking its best?  

A set of jumper cables shows you care.

Making sure your partner is self-reliant and will never be stranded by a dead battery is a great way to express your love.

Cut down on distracted driving with a phone mount.

This will allow your partner to focus on the road and not their phone while driving.

A radar detector will help them avoid costly tickets.

Help your loved one avoid speed traps, especially if they have a lead foot. Make sure it’s legal in your state to use a radar detector (it is in almost all states, including Arizona.)

If you need other suggestions for an auto-themed Valentine’s Day, contact Ric’s, and have a lovely February 14!   

Ric’s Receives Prestigious Certification as the Best of the Best

A father and child stand in the sunset next to their truck certification

It’s now official: Ric’s Body & Paint in Scottsdale is part of the world’s most advanced network of collision repair facilities. Ric’s was officially certified by Assured Performance, a prestigious,  nonprofit consumer advocacy organization that evaluates shops, using a rigorous set of standards to ensure they have the proper tools, equipment, training, and facilities to repair vehicles to manufacturer specifications. Assured Performance is the world’s largest Certified Business Network in the automotive industry, dedicated to making sure the next generation of vehicles are properly repaired and to ensure their fit, finish, durability, value, and safety. Needless to say, we’re proud of our certification.

Assured Performance partners with some of the world’s top auto manufacturers (like Nissan, Infiniti, Fiat/Chrysler, Hyundai, and Kia) to certify collision repair shops, and only one-in-ten makes the cut. In order to become and remain certified, collision repair shops must meet requirements established by the auto manufacturers and pass an annual on-site inspection-audit.

Ric’s Body & Paint doesn’t take this prestigious designation lightly. “Our business has been built on a foundation of excellence and ethical business practices. We strive to provide the highest- quality repair for our customers. Our state-of-the-art facility and certified technicians give us the ability to achieve this Certified status,” says owner Dean Slaughter. Because certification criteria are based on auto manufacturer requirements, he recognizes the value to consumers of this best-of-the-best designation. “Consumers need the confidence and peace of mind to know their vehicle is being repaired by a shop that has what it takes to ensure the vehicle safety. Ric’s Body & Paint is officially a Collision Care Provider™,” said Scott Biggs, CEO of Assured Performance Collision Care™,” adding, “they represent the standard by which all other body shops are measured.”  

From the moment you walk into Ric’s, you can sense the difference. Our friendly, knowledgeable customer service team takes care of you from the time you come in for an estimate until you drive away in your newly repaired car. We help arrange transportation and work through any issues with your insurance company. We are in communication throughout the repair process and are always happy to answer any questions. Our experienced repair technicians continually update their training to meet I-CAR Gold Class and Automotive Service Association (ASA) certification standards. When your car comes in, they follow a careful process to ensure that all work is done correctly and efficiently. Once repairs are complete, our technicians use a 3-D measuring system to check the vehicle against manufacturer specifications. They don’t stop working until your car is repaired perfectly.

We invite you to contact Ric’s to learn more about our certification from Assured Performance, and why Ric’s has earned its stellar reputation as the Valley’s go-to collision repair facility.

Common Causes of Car Paint Chipping

A close up of the a red car's wheel with paint chipping

At Ric’s Body and Paint, we want your car to last as long as possible and look taken care of when driving around here in the Valley. Car paint protects the body of the vehicle from external factors. Some examples of that are weather, road debris, and sharp objects. You must protect it from paint chipping.

If your car has paint chipping damage, it’s important that you get it fixed by a reputable auto body shop. Here at Ric’s Body and Paint, we use various techniques to accurately match your car’s color. We use a meticulous sanding, masking, and painting process to help ensure a perfect surface quality. Contact us if you are in need of a fresh and high-quality paint job.

Make Sure You’re Winter-Ready

Get your car road ready at Ric's body and paint

You may not have to deal with harsh midwestern winter (let’s face it, many of us moved to the desert to escape that kind of harsh weather, and aren’t above gloating about our fantastic skies this time of year to friends on Facebook) but it does get cold here in the Valley, and that means you need to make sure your vehicle is ready for nighttime temps in the 30s and 40s, and for the occasional trek to Flagstaff or the White Mountains to play in the snow.

Ric’s has some tips to get your ride winter-ready:

  • Make sure your fluids are good to go. Check your motor oil and antifreeze and make sure they can handle the colder temps.
  • Inspect your wiper blades and windshield solvent, to be ready for heavy rains and snow.
  • Ensure your lights are in working order, all around your vehicle: headlights, taillights, brake lights and turn signals all need to be in tip-top shape this time of year and can be seen by other drivers when visibility is low.
  • Check your thermostat, heater, defroster, battery, ignition, brakes and exhaust system, Make sure belts and hoses are in good working order, as well, especially after working overtime this past summer.
  • If you do head to the high country, make sure you use snow tires, chains or studded tires as recommended for driving on snowy, icy roads. Studded tires are permitted on Arizona highways from Oct. 1 to May 1. Go to ADOT’s website to learn more about how to handle winter weather.
  • If you do head north, play it smart. Plan your route in advance, notify someone of those plans and expected arrival time, make sure your gas tank is topped off and keep it three-quarters full. Log onto az511.gov or call 511 for updated road and weather conditions.

Of course, Ric’s wishes you safe travels, but if you do find yourself in a fender bender this winter, contact us to learn more about how our pros can get your vehicle back on the road again, better than ever.

Preventing Car Theft

A person is standing in front of a car looking to car theft

Did you know in the U.S. alone, there is a car break-in every 44 seconds? 50% of these car thefts could’ve been prevented by the car owner taking simple precautions. It’s good to be reminded of some easy ways you can prevent falling victim to car theft because it’s always a possibility. Here are some helpful hints:

  1. Do not leave any types of keys visible from the window.
  2. Avoid having a hide-a-key on your vehicle. That is the oldest trick in the book and thieves are very aware of them.
  3. If you have a high-end car, invest in a kill-switch. They may be pricey but it will be worth it to prevent damage to a nice car that may require expensive repairs.
  4. Lock your car when getting gas. Carjackers are good at stealing items from the passenger seat while car owners are filling up with gas.
  5. Park in lit areas at night. A car is less likely to get broken into if it’s in an area that is lit up instead of in a dark area.
  6. If there any damages to your car from a theft, find a credible auto body shop with top-quality repairs and excellent service to make getting back on the road as painless as possible.

Here at Ric’s Body and Paint, we want to help you prevent carjackers from breaking into your car.

However, if you fall victim to a car theft and there are damages, Ric’s Body and Paint is here to help. Your safety and satisfaction is our goal here. Our friendly, experienced customer service team takes care of you from the time you come in for a free estimate until you drive away with your newly repaired car. Contact us if you would like to learn more about our services.

Assured Performance Certifications

a mans arm holding a wrench in front of wheels assured performance

Recently, Ric’s Body and Paint has been Certified by the Assured Performance Network as an official auto repair for certain brand vehicles according to the manufacturer’s specifications. We are proud to say that we have been officially recognized by Assured Performance, FCA, Nissan, Infiniti, Hyundai, and Kia.

The Assured Performance Network is a non-profit organization to ensure consumers that auto shops are supplying the right tools, equipment, training, and facilities to repair participating brand vehicles, according to the manufacturer’s specifications.

Our Certification means that we ensure proper and safe repair to the new generation of advanced vehicles. Fewer than 5% of body shops across the U.S. are able to meet the requirements to become recognized.

Here at Ric’s Body and Paint, we are happy to provide the Valley with the most advanced auto repair capabilities since 1976. We provide top-quality repairs and excellent service.

Contact us today to learn how Ric’s Body and Paint can help with your collision repair.

Tips for a Longer Lasting Car

A younger driver behind the wheel of their longer lasting car

Most of us here in Arizona are highly dependent on our cars for transportation. With this summer heat, you’ll want to make sure you are keeping our cars in top shape for longer lasting car. There are many things you can do to keep your car in shape for long life. Some of the most important things include:

Keep it Clean


Being in the hot sun makes cars more vulnerable to paint oxidation. This can diminish the car value as it is expensive to remove and fix. Waxing your car several times a year and keeping it in the garage can prevent oxidation from happening. Also, washing your car regularly can help the exterior last longer with the removal of paint damaging debris from the outdoors.

Maintain Regular Service


Your car’s oil is the heart of its engine. Servicing your car every 4000-5000 miles or every 6 months is critical in ensuring that your car is running smoothly. Making sure you let your car warm up to let the oil pump will help your car perform better on the road and last longer.

Maintain Regular Service


Your car’s oil is the heart of its engine. Servicing your car every 4000-5000 miles or every 6 months is critical in ensuring that your car is running smoothly. Making sure you let your car warm up to let the oil pump will help your car perform better on the road and last longer.

Stay on Top of Repairs


Having a reliable body shop in mind is important in the event of a minor fender bender. The slightest of accidents can have a big effect on your car long term. Ric’s Body and Paint is a certified collision repair shop that gives you the best quality for repairs and customer service. Keep your car lasting!

Contact us today to learn more!