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Car Wash Crashed My Car, Should I Use Their Body Shop?


SeanTX
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I took my car to a new car wash near my office 2 weeks ago, right before flying out of the country. The car wash has conveyor belts to carry your car through the brushless wash, to accomodate low-riding cars, rather than those regular guides.

Apparently, when the employee (actually the manager of the place) got out of my car after driving it onto the belt, he either left the car in drive or accidentally knocked it out of neutral. The car drove right over the 1" guides and into the wall of the car wash. All of this with me watching through the window, which I have to say, was pretty disheartening.

The owner of the car wash also owns a body shop, and they say they want to totally fix up my car, not just the damage done by the crash (there is some bumper damage in the back and highway rock nicks/scratches since I live in NYC and this town beats up cars). They have admitted fault, and say continually that they want to do right by me, although he also seems to be trying to subtly threaten that it will be more of a hassle for me to try to fix it elsewhere.

I gave them an estimate from a body shop my friend knows, that I know deals with higher-ed cars. They felt that estimate was too high and I think may give me a hard time paying it.

On the other hand, I went by their shop today, and although the guy seemed really nice, they didn't appear to work on many higher-end cars. They had a suburban, pathfinder, and I think a Hyundai in the repair area. They did have a large drive-in 'hut' looking thing in which they were baking the paint onto the pathfinder, I think. Not sure what that was.

So my question is - if I let them repair it, they said they would show me all the receipts that they purchased the parts from Lexus, and they will take care to every little detail. But I'm not sure if there is a way for me to really know right away whether or not it was a good job. I just have limited knowledge of body work.

Any advice???

Thanks!

Sean

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Hi Sean,

I am replying to your story about your indecision about letting the car wash/body shop repair your car. Are you listening to yourself? You are not sure if you're going to be happy and you want confirmation from everyone here at this forum that the car wash owner is competent enough to "fix" your car right up. If it were me, I would sue them for the damages no matter where I took it (it was their fault DUH!). It's your right & their dime to get it fixed where-ever you wish. I would definitely take it to the Lexus dealership, at least they have a warranty and satisfaction garantee. What kind of garantee does the "car wash" guy have? Do you really think the car wash guy is the most qualified guy to be fixing YOUR lexus? Isn't your car worth more to you than that? Mine sure is. I have a red "sweet" baby sc430 and I wouldn't dare take a chance of letting someone "try" to fix it when I'm not completely sure of their ability. Maybe if your car were a worn out Ford with 200,000 miles on it? ha ha. Take my advice, Don't chance it. You'll regret it in the end. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt!

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Farmergirl makes a lot of sense. You can add to "been there...", "Fooled me once, shame on you, fooled me twice, shame on me!" Why would you trust someone who has already damaged your car once. Do you know him? Is he a friend? Has he earned your respect? How has he shown you that he knows what he's doing and that you can trust him? You mention the car wash is new, likely so is his body shop. He's prob as unfamilliar with one as the other, and you're going to let him work on your baby?:chairshot:

"The guy seemed nice" .... Of course, he's trying to save his sweet azs! Get an admission in writing (like an estimate from him for doing the work through his body shop) without letting him know you don't intend to let him do it. Otherwise he may dispute that he was at fault. Then go to your favorite dealer/body shop or two and get proper estimates. Let us know what you decide to do and how things turn out. Good luck.:cheers:

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TO SAVE ALL THE HASSLE AND HEADACHE I WOULD JUST CLAIM IT ON YOUR INSURANCE. YOU ARE NOT OBLIGATED TO LET HIM FIX YOUR VEHICLE. YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY WILL FIX YOUR VEHICLE PROPERLY AND THEY WILL SUE HIM OR HIS INSURANCE POLICY DIRECTLY. THE GUY IS ALREADY TRYING TO SAVE A FEW BUCKS BY FIXING IT HIMSELF. IF YOU'RE NOT CONFIDENT IN HIS ABILITIES I'D JUST FIND THE BEST BODY SHOP POSSIBLE AND TAKE IT FROM THERE. I WOULD ACT QUICKLY AS THE MORE TIME THAT PASSES THE MORE COMPLICATED THE SITUATION BECOMES AND PEOPLE MYSTERIOUSLY CATCH AMNESIA.

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