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car repair costs

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Way back in December my brand new car (purchased in June 2004) was hit in a parking lot. I later discovered at my house that there was a huge crack/gash in my rear bumper. No note or anything. At the time I did not feel the need to go get the gash repaired.

This week since I have been off for Spring Break I decided to take my car for an estimate. I knew the entire bumper would have to be replaced. However I just got back from my first estimate and I am so angry. The parts only cost about $200, but then they want to charge me an additional $400 for labor!!!! It just gets to me how the labor is double the parts. I don't feel like what I need repaired should be all that difficult to replace. UGH.

Needless to say, I am taking the car elsewhere for another estimate later today. I hope they can offer me something better. I really don't want to pay more than $400 all in to get this fixed.
post #2 of 15
WOW! I know how you feel!
My husband's BRAND NEW truck was sitting in our drive way when some drunk idiot lost control, took out the speed limit sign, hit our oak tree, the basketball goal and shoved the goal into the truck!

We were sitting in the living room when we heard the crash. We ran outside and the girl and crashed in the ditch accross the street. My husband went to get her out, I called 911 thinking she was hurt. She regained control, backed up, almost hit my husband and some neighbors trying to help and took off. Nobody ever found the little *&$#@!!

We had to fix it out of our pocket. $550!!! (our deductable was $500!)

I hope you get a lower estimate. I know how frustrating it is to have to pay for something that you didn't ruin!
post #3 of 15
I completely understand. If anyone damaged my brand new 2005 Vespa and then took off afterwards, I would track them down and make their life a living HELL!
post #4 of 15
I hate that you have to pay any money at all! That no-good, miserable SOB that hit your car and fled should be held responsible, not innocent ole' you!!!
post #5 of 15
aww beryl!
If we lived closer you could just buy the bumper and ben would put it on for free!!!
since when do they charge 400 for a 2 min job?
post #6 of 15
Repair work on cars is ridicious anymore. I've unfortuantely been rear-ended three times since I got my car and back into once. I only got my car in 2002, and had never had this happen before so I'm not sure what the deal it with this car. The guy at the repair shop teases that I need to take the sign saying, Hey hit me off the back window.

At any rate, everytime I've had my bumper replaced it's $900 +. I have a $500 deductable and have had to pay twice now, once for the person not having insurance and the other time because the person left the scene before I came out of the car. That kind of behavior drives me crazy.
post #7 of 15
Holy moly... good thing I just have a scooter, and overall insurance/maintenance is cheaper.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GrayKittenLove
Repair work on cars is ridicious anymore. I've unfortuantely been rear-ended three times since I got my car and back into once. I only got my car in 2002, and had never had this happen before so I'm not sure what the deal it with this car. The guy at the repair shop teases that I need to take the sign saying, Hey hit me off the back window.

At any rate, everytime I've had my bumper replaced it's $900 +. I have a $500 deductable and have had to pay twice now, once for the person not having insurance and the other time because the person left the scene before I came out of the car. That kind of behavior drives me crazy.
post #8 of 15
I know how you feel. It's crazy how much it costs to have body work done on your car. When I first got my car in 2001 I was in an accident and had my landlord drop a stove on my car. I can't remember how much money it cost to fix the car after the accident, but I know it was alot. There was damage from the drivers side door all the way down the side of the car around to back bumper. There was only a small dent and scratch (about the size of a quarter) from the stove and it was $700 it fix. Then last year I went to Reno and I had the valet park my car at the hotel we were staying at and the hit something and cause some damamge and didn't even tell me. When I seen the damage I called the casino and they won't do anything about it. So I'm stuck paying the deductable.
post #9 of 15
in germany they wont give you your number plates if you dont have any sort of insurance.
The cheapest is the one if you hit another person then you have to pay their damages.

If you dont pay insurance they scratch off that little imprint on your number plates too
post #10 of 15
Get estimates from both the auto manufacturer and independent body shops.
post #11 of 15
One of the reasons body work is so expensive is that often the whole car, or the whole panel where the damage was, needs to be repainted. And paint, especially the newer shinier/cooler colours is very expensive. Seems to me like cars are rolling money. I had to replace my windshield about a week ago, and then get some significant mechanical work on my throttle/fuel system because it got jacked and almost killed Cylinder 1! So much for me getting a digital camera
At least the thing is more safe and has some acceleration now.
Regarding estimates: ALWAYS get at least 3. Back on the windshield, I called several places and had quotes from 200$ to over $300 including installation/chemical charge. I picked the 200$ one, which ended up being a BETTER windshield than one of the more expensive ones. Always good to know someone willing to work on your car....Im thinking my buddy Pete may have a brake job to do sometime this summer
post #12 of 15
My husband hit a deer before Christmas last year - the only damage was body damage to the front end and side front panel. He has a 1996 Volvo and they charged him $3500 for the repairs, plus had his car for over a month (he had to rent a car). Cost us about $900 out of pocket for that little fiasco.

I hate car repairs!!
post #13 of 15
Thread Starter 
thanks for all your stories and venting frustrations with me. I did not want to report this accident to insurance because I was worried that my rates would go up. But I have a fairly low deductible, so I ended up decided to just give in a file an insurance claim.

I am not as angry now. I will have to pay my $200 deductible, and I also have rental coverage in my insurance plan too, so they are letting me rent a car on their dime for this week too!

I am still waiting to hear the outcome of my rates, hopefully they will not go up too much.
post #14 of 15
I'm waiting with bated breath to find out if my rates go up from this last accident as well. I'll find out next month as that's when insurance comes due. Not looking forward to it, I can tell you that much.
post #15 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by berylayn
Way back in December my brand new car (purchased in June 2004) was hit in a parking lot. I later discovered at my house that there was a huge crack/gash in my rear bumper. No note or anything. At the time I did not feel the need to go get the gash repaired.

This week since I have been off for Spring Break I decided to take my car for an estimate. I knew the entire bumper would have to be replaced. However I just got back from my first estimate and I am so angry. The parts only cost about $200, but then they want to charge me an additional $400 for labor!!!! It just gets to me how the labor is double the parts. I don't feel like what I need repaired should be all that difficult to replace. UGH.

Needless to say, I am taking the car elsewhere for another estimate later today. I hope they can offer me something better. I really don't want to pay more than $400 all in to get this fixed.
What kind of car, & what kind of bodyshop did you take it to?
Most of the better ones are going to basically be the same, give or take. They all use the same system for doing estimates. Your bumper might require more labor to remove, refinish & replace. All cars are different.
Ask about aftermarket bumpers, they are cheaper, but might not fit as well. there are also companies that take old plastic bumpers, repair & prime them, & resell them to body shops.
Also ask if the bumper can be repaired, believe it or not, there is a technique called "plastic welding" that is used to repair gashes & such, it all depends on how bad the damage is.
Also, some colors are more expensive than others. A red basecoat can go for well over 100.00 a quart. it depends on the pigments used in the paint. Silvers, whites & simple colors are cheaper.
Alot of people don't realize what goes into repairing & refinishing an automobile.(including some of the techs themselves) These guys just don't pop out of the woodwork & say,"I'm gonna fix someone's car today". It is an art form, a craft that has to be committed to, not a passing thing a person just learns overnight. Thousands of hours are spent learning, thousands spent on tools. Technicians are certified in every way you can imagine, costing the shops they work for thousands too, I'm sure. And they still get paid less than mechanics.
Think about the labor cost on your bumper... a GOOD spraygun can easily cost that much. and a good painter has at least 3.
I love this topic- I was an "Automotive Refinish Technician" for 10 years. Certified in 4 paint systems, ASE certified & I-CAR certified in plastics repair.
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