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Discussion Starter #1
I guess I shouldn' be off roading, at night, in the dark, on a corner, and in reverse.

Here's a pic of the damage and one from summer of vaguely where it happened. I was backing up in the dark inspecting the tractor work I'd done fixing the "gutter" on my driveway. The E's backup light are dim, but I knew that. I am so bummer.

Any thoughts on insurance? I haven't had a claim since the 70's and my parents handled that. What should I look for in a body shop? Any other typical damage I should be aware of that E's suffer with this kind of strike?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thats what I told my little girl, that the E got a boo boo. So she made me a card.
 

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try and get a rear quarter plastic from the junkyard so the fading will match better than new. same with the tailight. doesnt look that bad. gl
 

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Well, I wouldn't use the term "off roading" to your insurance company. You were at a friends farm, or camping.

Other than that, just let them fix it, a police report should not be required on private property, and no other vehicle was involved, less your deductible of course.

Good luck on it.

:-( :023:
 

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Rather than filing an insurance claim, think about this...
You have a 2003. Value with carfax accident documented vs. fender dent... maybe a coin toss either way.
New tail light = $120... Clean up plastic = $20 for chemicals... Painless dent pull = $200(?) vs. deductible PLUS higher premiums in future? ... Might not be worth fixing beyond DIY Repairs.

Just sayin. Think about it.
 

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I would go get some estimates (your insurance company would have you go do this anyway) and emphasize to the repair places that you will be paying out of pocket and it's not an insurance claim and see how much you're looking at. Some body shops are set up to be insurance claim machines and that's what they love as they are lucrative, but you can also find body shops that will cut you a better deal when they know you are paying yourself. Get multiple bids - you might be shocked how much they may vary.

Once you have a sense of cost, compare to the cost of if you do submit a claim. In this case, you'll pay your deductible, as well as consider any additional insurance costs when they increase your rates as a result (typically they will do so for a three-year period after a submitted claim in which you are at fault). Also, as noted, you'll get a carfax ding which could decrease what you can sell the car for in the future, if you think that may be a possibility at some point.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for all the helpful tips!

Got an estimate today. Anybody wanna guess how much it was for? I'll post the number tomorrow, along with my pre-estimate guess.
 

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Sarcasm...

Is this where I'm supposes to type: "Oh, that will buff out".??

Just kidding... I know that is no fun at all. Hope it doesn't cost too much!!
 

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You posted @ 12:20 am , so are we waiting for this morning or tomorrow morning , cause that would be tomorrow morning , I'm confused 8-/ ....

I say , free , you knew the guy who was a friend of a friend , who had an element laying around , the dent popped itself out when you went over a bump , the taillight was a free payback for all the good your friend has done and upon further inspection the scratches wiped off .....

Don't call me crazy , I wasn't the one driving around backwards and hit a tree !

Just a little fun today , for me the best part was the card you received from your daughter , good luck with the fix ........
 

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I had a front fender replaced on my E a year of so ago and you can't tell a difference in the old and new fenders, no fading at all.

My incident involved a new front fender, a new passenger door and some minor body work behind the fender and it was under $2500 so I am guessing less than that ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
And the first estimate is... thbth bthbthbthbthbt hbthbthbt thbthbthbthb (drum roll)

$2975.


My guess was between $1000 and $2000.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Oh, and congratulations to Rob Dobbs for the closest guess without going over!
You win a pair of tickets to the Arnold Fitness Expo, March 2,3,4 in Columbus. I'm actually not kidding, I've got a pair of tickets I can't use.
 

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Damn ......
This summer , I almost bought a 04 with 200k for 4k , it really , really doesn't look that bad .........
I say buy a used taillight , pull the quarter to match the rear bumper and live with the dent .......

PS . I was surprised you didn't break the glass , above the driver quarter either .
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Good thought, I will consider that after a couple more estimates.

But, couple things... I've only got 80k on it, my deductable is only $250, I haven't had a claim so this one will not raise my rates, I planned to drive this for 200,000 miles. And, I love this ride.

Oh, and they're not makin' any more of these Element things.
 

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Yep , she's a keeper . Just saying , when I was looking for another E , I found quite a few that were cheap , so my recommendation . I found my current E so cheap "it fell in my lap" .....

Just a word of caution , insurance companies like stories of two vehicle accidents , yours being a single vehicle , will be deemed suspicious and reckless (unless you claim it was hit while parked) spend the 250 on doing the repair yourself ......
 
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