Cost of Business: What Aluminum use really means for Body Shops
March 3rd, 2014 by Justin Banner
If you’re going to be working on the 2015 Ford F150 and you’re a body shop, you’ll want to plan on one other item besides the special tools and the specific training to work and shape aluminum. When aluminum and steel dust gets mixed together it creates thermite. Thermite can get hot enough to melt through an engine block, or worse, it can cause an uncontrollable fire hazard as it spreads through the air. Because of the fire and explosion hazard of mixing steel and aluminum dust, Ford Certified Body Shops are going to have to install a containment booth.
I asked a technician from a Ford Certified facility about that, here is what the tech said under anonymity: “Our Service Director met with Ford and the equipment people. To get certified, they have to build a containment booth for work on the new (2015) F150.” How much will that containment booth potentially cost the body shop? “Looks to cost the dealership about $100,000 or more,” said the Service Director.