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 > Totaled vehicles...sometimes surprising.

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Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 08/09/20 10:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I’ve often wondered how the large numbers of “rebuilt” vehicles with “light damage” for sale can be real and not just a line of bs by the seller.
Had one example years ago. Guy at work literally “tapped” another vehicle rear ending it. Virtually no Physical damage to either Vehicle, but his air bags, defectively, went off.
Was a 10year old low mile cherry pickup but they totaled it. Ok airbags, made the determination.
Yesterday, talking with one of the hockey parents, they have like 8 or 9 kids. I lose count.
They had a new bus (van). I complimented it and asked if they didn’t like the old one. Old one was a Nissan NV.
Nope, totaled in an accident he said. Was 1-2 years old and average miles I presume.
No one hurt, probably 5-6 kids in it. Freeway accident. They got rear ended and pushed in to the vehicle in front of them. Said it was fairly light damage. Drove it home and drove it for weeks while insurance figured it out. Minimal front damage, plastic parts and the rear needs new doors and it got into the skin that wraps forward up both sides about half way. And 2 rear doors and a bumper. No frame damage. Doors even still opened in back.
He fought to have it repaired and nonetheless it was totaled and they lost $ on the deal.
Now IMO, either the body shop inflated the repair cost or the value of the van tanked in less than 2 years, but it just didn’t make sense.

Yet I recall crashing my moms new 89 Caprice when I was a kid. Not my fault accident fwiw, lol.
It was “effed up” bad. Without getting into details, I know a lot about bodywork and it was toast.
Repair cost came to just under the retail value and they repaired it rather than totaled.

There is a ton of subjectivity in this industry. But some of those “fender bender” totals must still be good vehicles.


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Old-Biscuit

Verde Valley

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Posted: 08/09/20 11:13am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Had a 1968 Fiat 850 Sedan I bought from my brother in 1969.

Being a 'young, dumb, full of it' teenager I rolled that little car crushed the roof in, blew out both front/rear windshields and dinged up the front end

Took 4 months for parts to be shipped from Italy before repairs could be done
Paid my deductible and went on down the road.

Sold it later that year and bought a 1968 Dodge Charger 'Yellow' with rear stripe.

Now a days.........air bags deploy/totaled, fender bender/totaled, bumper dented-grill broken/totaled

Insurance companies use Total Loss Formula (TLF) which is:

"Cost of Repair + Salvage Value > Actual Cash Value"

Majority of States ---75% is deciding factor


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noteven

Turtle Island

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Posted: 08/09/20 11:44am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Maybe there is another forumla:

If insurance is paying for it...

Kinda like $40 aspirin tablets in hospital?

I duhn know, being a ecomanic dummy...

* This post was edited 08/09/20 11:50am by noteven *

danrclem

Ky.

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Posted: 08/09/20 11:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I wouldn't buy a vehicle that has been rebuilt unless I could see the pictures of it before it was repaired and a list of all damage. I'm sure there are some rebuilt vehicles out there that are worthy of driving but I wouldn't want to take the chance.

JRscooby

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Posted: 08/09/20 12:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I wonder if the issue isn't from the "crush zone" safety feature? If somebody was hurt in a second accident how could anybody prove the repair or first accident didn't weaken or harden that zone?

time2roll

Southern California

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Posted: 08/09/20 12:53pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I think some is problems after the fact. Doors don’t close right, a/c or some accessory is not right. Maybe paint issues. I’ve never got a car back when fixed and it was same as new. Also seems more is often found once the repairs begin.

Once totaled all the escalation risk just stops.


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blt2ski

Kirkland, Wa

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Posted: 08/09/20 12:54pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Scooby,
Good point. Kinda like a motorcycle/bike helmet (s) in general. Hit the ground with one, replace it.
Not saying van in grits case should have been or not totaled. You would think new cars would be reasonably repairable from factory.
Never studied sir bags and how they work, I would think you could get replacements.....

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mich800

Pontiac, MI

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Posted: 08/09/20 12:59pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Insurance companies are not stupid. If it was totaled it was in their best financial interest.

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 08/09/20 01:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JRscooby wrote:

I wonder if the issue isn't from the "crush zone" safety feature? If somebody was hurt in a second accident how could anybody prove the repair or first accident didn't weaken or harden that zone?


This could very well factor into it considerably.
I hadn’t considered that

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 08/09/20 01:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mich800 wrote:

Insurance companies are not stupid. If it was totaled it was in their best financial interest.

Totally. Agreed.
Seems there might be more to it then just repair cost contributing to the decision.

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