It’s really about the total damage expense. If the battery is damaged by a collision, sure, it would normally be a total. To some extent there are guidelines like “damage exceeding 80% of ACV”, but it is totally possible to total out at lower damage values. Diminished value claims of 10-15% of actual cash value (so $6k-$9k) are common. So that is an added expense. Once the damage and other expenses start creeping to 50% of the value of the car, the car might not survive it because of high salvage value, and these other costs the insurance company would have to pay. In this case, my guess is it is not a total loss though. But @Garlan Garner should definitely do the DOV claim when all is done. There are different rules for how it is done in different states. Anyway, back to this car...sounds like he needs a proper tear down done ASAP with a proper shop estimate, and the liable party’s insurance adjuster needs to get down to the shop to sign off on that estimate. I would be really careful about signing any repair contract until I know that the liable insurance company is ok with the chosen shop and agrees to pay their rates and pick up any supplementals - and will pay for the cost of storage.