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Minor Damage to Tailgate

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by synthetik242, Apr 25, 2013.

  1. synthetik242

    synthetik242 New Member

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    I backed into a parked car last week at a low rate of speed simply trying to park the car. I was trying to get out of the way of another car and hit the "gas" a bit too hard.

    Anyway, the damage is really minimal, just a ding really.

    Estimates are coming in around $2200-$3000, apparently because aluminum is more time consuming to work with. I also think that they see "Tesla" and immediately think they can charge whatever they want. The tailgate is one complete unit, including glass, so total replacement is out of the question.

    Currently my insurance is only $110/month for the 85Kw Model S and a 2008 Volvo XC90. If I run this through the insurance with my $500 deductible, how much is my insurance likely to go up? I'm 43 and can't remember the last time I ran anything through insurance because they always seem to stick it to you afterward. I've paid for repairs in the $1000-2,500 range out of pocket before but the damage was quite a bit more than this.

    Should I just suck it up and pay it? TIA!


    photo.JPG
     
  2. Lloyd

    Lloyd Active Member

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    Put it in the insurance, that is what you have it for.
     
  3. roblab

    roblab Active Member

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    We had a hatch ding that was quite a bit worse: same dent in the hatch edge, but going up into the hatch itself, and into the bumper, which had scratches and a hole. We have custom paint.

    The repair is not seeable / findable. The bumper is perfect, the repaint went up to the chrome bar above the license and below the tail lights. We also had them install the Torq hidden hitch at the same time.

    Total cost was $1700. I think someone is trying to overcharge.

    Unfortunately, my repair was done in Oakland, CA. Just for reference.

    Good luck. Model S dent 003 sm.JPG
     
  4. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    I disagree. I use insurance for catastrophic incidents, not small stuff. The insurance company will just raise your rate to pay for the repair. If insurance in your region is anything like it is here, if you have a second claim your rates will skyrocket.
     
  5. ChadS

    ChadS Petroleum is for sissies

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    I agree insurance is best just for the big stuff; that is why I have a $5,000 deductible. But the OP had a $500 deductible. It seems to me that OP should either use the insurance or raise the deductible.
     
  6. synthetik242

    synthetik242 New Member

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    Thanks for the help guys, i really appreciate it.

    The two places I'd found quotes were in Bellevue, WA and after my post today I got a third quote from a place in Downtown Seattle and the cost was significantly less. They haven't worked on a Tesla before but are familiar with aluminum body automobiles, so fingers crossed.

    The quote came in at $1700, or only $1000 if they repair the tailgate and not the bumper (the bumper has some really minor dents and scratches).

    I'm leaning on the $1,000 because my experience with front and rear bumpers is that it's VERY difficult to keep them blemish-free. Odds are we'd get the bumper fixed and then it'd get dinged up within 6 months anyway. My normal M.O. is to wait a year or two and then clean up all the dings at once vs. one at a time.

    I agree that going the insurance route would be a mistake, even at the $2-3000 level. I once did $2500 in damage to the undercarriage of an 1996 Audi A4. The damn thing came pre-lowered from the dealership and the undercarriage caught on one of those steel grates they use during road construction. I remember my insurance doubling after that.

    The highest quote came from Queen City Auto Rebuild in Bellevue, WA -- $2,830 ($42 in parts and the rest in labor. A labor rate of $120/hour for "Aluminum Repair") -- too rich for my blood, I just spent $100k on an electric car, sorry. :p

    - - - Updated - - -

    Here is the place I'm going to use. I'll report back after the repair is complete assuming others will need body work in the Seattle area at some point.

    Foreign Auto Rebuild, Downtown Seattle WA

    4.5/5 Yelp Stars. Both places that Telsa recommended in Bellevue had a number of bad reviews so I likely dodged a bullet here. We shall see.
     
  7. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    Not only that, I found out the hard way that even one claim can make it hard to switch insurance companies if you ever want to shop around for a better deal. My current carrier didn't raise my rates, but any new company wanted to know about any claims I'd had in the past 7 years... and then the quote skyrocketed! I was locked in to what had become an expensive rate until I finally cleared the 7 year window.
     
  8. ssuresh

    ssuresh New Member

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    Would you mind sharing the name of the repair shop in Oakland? I'm in a similar spot.
     
  9. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    I don't know how common this is, but the difference between a $500 deductible and a $2k deductible on our insurance was just under $40 a year. We figured that was probably worth it, could be a similar situation here.

    I personally wouldn't use insurance on a repair of that size. The increased premiums will almost certainly be greater than the repair - deductible cost. Even if you have accident forgiveness, preventing your rates from increasing with your current company, you'll be prevented from changing insurers for at least 3 years (some want 5 years) without taking a hit.
     
  10. Kbsilver

    Kbsilver Member

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    Would paint less dent repair be able to do this (aka dent wizard)?
     
  11. Seattle

    Seattle Member

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    So how did it work out?
     

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