Polygon, the UK’s market leader in property damage restoration services for over forty years, has been awarded a patent for its ground breaking process of restoring water damaged vehicles. The process covered by this new patent recognises Polygon’s innovative solution to recover the best possible value from a vehicle after it has sustained substantial damage due to water or smoke.

It is common place for vehicles that have suffered damage from water or smoke to be written off by insurers and sold for little more than the value of their parts. Vehicles may be damaged in a flood event that also affects property, but also by everyday occurrences such as the sun roof being left open in heavy rain or by a vehicle driving through a ford. The cost to insurers can be enormous.

Polygon’s patented vehicle restoration process uses in depth knowledge and leading technology to ensure that the vehicle’s value is maximised, whilst minimising the cost of restoration. Polygon’s specialist technicians triage and inspect each vehicle individually to create a bespoke restoration plan. Due to the extensive damage that is often evident as a result of water or smoke, almost all of the vehicle’s interior is usually disassembled and removed. This includes the carpets, upholstery and trim, door panels and mouldings, to ensure that all dangerous moulds and contaminants can be thoroughly eliminated from the vehicle. The restoration programme will vary for different components and is dependent upon the extent of the damage found, however the seats are often subjected to an ultrasonic cleaning process, whilst odours are removed using an ozone treatment that sends pure ozone into every cavity of the car, destroying odorous compounds.

Polygon not only restores the occupant areas of the vehicle but also cleans the ductwork (heating/cooling system) when necessary, to ensure the vehicle is free from lingering contaminants. This enables insurers to recover as much of the vehicle’s pre incident value as possible. In order to prevent metal fatigue and bacteria growth, the vehicles are placed in a controlled temperature environment which has dedicated dehumidified and heated areas.

Upon completion, the vehicle is subjected to strict quality and bacteria tests. The quality of the restoration is assured through a rigorous testing process, which is comparable to the standards that are in place for analysing food hygiene. The vehicle is then issued with a project file that contains a bacteria certificate and outlines the restoration programme that has been completed. It is then safe to be returned to a garage for confirmation of its roadworthiness.

Polygon has partnered with leading international salvage and auction specialists Copart for a number of years to deliver a fully joined up vehicle recovery, restoration and resale service for insurers. This successful co-operation ensures that the damaged vehicle is picked up from its location by Copart, delivered to Polygon for restoration and then taken through to its sale at auction by Copart, or returned to the customer, whichever is desired.

Polygon’s Managing Director for UK and Ireland, Jeremy Sykes, commented, “Our patented process was inspired by the innovative and market leading solutions we deliver to insurers in property damage restoration. We saw a need for a solution to the problem when the damage was not to a house but to a water or smoke damaged vehicle. Since designing and developing this innovative process, we have returned over £2million in additional value to insurers, as this process allows much of a vehicle’s pre incident value to be recovered. The development of this process is a testament to Polygon’s continued commitment to provide market leading solutions for our customers.”

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