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What to do if someone keys your car

Keying someone’s car is when someone deliberately scratches a car using a key. Finding out that someone has done this can be very distressing, even more so than if it was accidentally scratched. The thought of someone deliberately scratching your car poses a personal threat, and you can be left wondering whether you had done something to make someone do such a thing. Although this can be a distressing time, we encourage you not to worry, you’re not alone. In fact, deliberate scratches to the bodywork of the car are the most common type of deliberate car damage, accounting for 41% of all car damage offences. 


In this blog, we will discuss who to tell that your car has been keyed, paintwork repair options, how to prevent your car from being keyed and whether you can take action legally. 


Who to tell if your car has been keyed? 


Since keying a car is an act of vandalism, the ball is in your court regarding whether you wish to contact the police or not. If you do wish to contact the police, you can call the 101 non-emergency number. Even if nothing comes of the case, it’s worth noting on a record in case it happens to you again, or if somebody in your area also gets keyed. The police will then provide you with a crime reference number from which you can make an insurance claim.


Some car insurance policies will cover vandalism, while others will not. You will have to get in touch with your insurance provider to find out the verdict. If your insurance provider does protect you against vandalism, you will then have to decide whether you wish to take the insurance or not. You will need to consider how bad the damage is, how much the value of your car is affected by appearance and how much excess you will have to fork out. If your excess costs are more than the repair costs, making a claim will not benefit you. 


How much will it cost to repair the paint? 


If you have some DIY skills up your sleeve, it might be worth seeing if you can repair the damage yourself. Depending on how deep the scratches are, you may be able to buff them out using a DIY scratch repair kit. Bear in mind that DIY doesn’t come without risks, if you want a sleek finish, it’s best to get the professionals in like Scuff Doc


A good way to know whether to get the professionals in is by looking at whether the metal is showing behind the paint. If you can see the metal, it’s probably not worth doing it yourself. Deep scratches can leave the metal exposed and more prone to rust and corrosion, meaning it’s best if someone takes a look at it straight away. Paintwork can be expensive, but this might be covered by your insurance.


How do I prevent my car from being keyed again? 


It’s natural to be worried if someone keys your car, but there are a few tips and tricks to make sure that it doesn’t happen again:


  • If you have a garage, keep your car locked away.
  • Park somewhere busy and well lit.
  • Make sure that your car has an alarm.
  • Leave plenty of space between your car and others as then the vandal has less chance to hide
  • If your car is parked just outside your home, install security cameras that you can control through your phone. 


How do I press charges against the person who did this?

You can press charges, but it all depends on whether you know who the person is who did it. If your car was parked in a busy area, go back to the location in which the vandalism took place and see if there are any security cameras. If you do spot any, there is usually an ID number on the camera, you will then be able to call the council or business number if they have footage of the crime. Alternatively, some councils have maps in which show where security cameras are which you can find on your council’s website. 

Thank you for reading our blog ‘what to do if someone keys your car’. If you would like to repair scratches on your car, get in touch with Scuff Doc today.  

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