A mechanic crashed my car. Now talking about brake problem!


#1

Hi,

I got a 2008 Lincoln Navigator which got a regular service about a week and half ago.
Then there was a check-engine light-on situation. So I brought my car to a dealer.
At the dealer, one of the repair guys crashed mine to a tool box by accidentally hitting a gas pedal. So they gave me a loaner car. After two weeks, a guy from the dealer notified me my brake was too soft, and it was all the way at the bottom. Some kind of hydraulic failure. So it’d better be fixed, and will cost me almost $2,000.00!
In my opinion, the brake pedal was ok until the accident. Furthermore there was no problem at the time of regular checkup which was done just 10 days ago. I think the guy who crashed my car hit the brake so hard at the time of accident.
What will be the best way to resolve this nightmare?
Any idea/suggestion will be appreciated.

Warren


#2

Someone here may be able to give better answers but…

I’d contest this with the dealership. It just sounds way too excessive to me.
If you get no satisfactory answers go to the Ford district rep.
I just cannot see what would cost that much to repair.

They should have insurance to cover this for damage to your car and the tool box.

Questions for the dealership;
What part is the problem that it is so expensive?
Why was the mechanic going so fast in the shop that it crashed into a tool box and not just bump into a tool box?

You would think that he’d be easing your car into his work area pretty slowly.

Sound like $2000.00 is just about right for a new snapon set of boxes!!!


#3

They need to give you a detailed evaluation of the problem in writing, including a list of parts and labor for the job. It is possible the car ran over something that damaged the brakes during the accident.

Once you have the evaluation and estimate, post back and tell us what it says.


#4

It seems like it is your word vs theirs. You’d have to admit it is at least possible that the brakes were about to fail, and it just happened to happen while it was in their shop. And the shop did fess up about the accident and fixed the damage when the car hit the toolbox, presumably only cosmetic damage only, right?

On the other hand, you could argue they should have been more careful and not crashed into the tool box in the first place. And that there is also a possibility the tool box crash caused or contributed to the brake problem.

It’s hard to say. This one will take the wisdom of Solomon to resolve. I think unless some objective data is discovered, some compromise is in order. You pay 1/2 the price to fix your brakes. And they absorb the rest. Or you pay for the parts, and at the wholesale cost, not the retail cost, and they supply the labor for free. Something like that. To grease the skids on this negotiation, remind them you will be in the market for a new car soon, and you like your Lincoln, and doing business with them up 'til now, and would like to be able to consider buying from them again. Provided you are treated well.

And remember you always have another option, tow the car to a different shop.


#5

“you always have another option, tow the car to a different shop.”

That is what I would recommend.
Even if the dealership is being totally honest–which I somehow doubt–the cost of the necessary brake repairs will almost surely cost less money at an independent mechanic’s shop, if brake repairs are actually needed.
If nothing else, it should be very interesting to compare the dealer’s diagnosis with the diagnosis of another shop, regarding exactly what type of brake work is necessary.

By the way…you didn’t mention whether the dealership paid for the necessary body repairs on your car.
Did they?


#6

“Sound like $2000.00 is just about right for a new snapon set of boxes!!!”

Don’t we wish that were the case

My Snap on box lists for about 10K nowadays, and it’s not even top of the line


#7

A tool box system costs $10,000 these days? Wow. Must be a good one.


#8

The MEs bought a Snap-On tool box with computer security and tool recognition for about $15,000 IIRC.


#9

How should I explain this?

It’s the box that most guys have after they’ve been at it for awhile

Believe me, I didn’t start off with that box

Unfortunately, it’s now full and I am exploring my options . . . top box, second box, etc.

Expensive options, sadly

Tools and the toolbox are tax deductible, but that’s small consolation

I just looked on the website . . . it’s over 11K by now


#10

Basically, the guy at the dealer told me this story.
The dealer sent my car to a body shop to fix the bodily damage.
At the body shop, somebody said the brake pedal was soft( I don’t know what it means)and it went all the way to the bottom. So after repair the body, they sent my car back to the dealer(Advantage Ford Lincoln. They found its hydraulic system was in trouble.(Again, I do not know what it means). And it’s dangerous to drive. If I say ok, then the dealer will fix it with $1,800 + price tag.

My argument was, I’ve never experienced any brake (break pedal) problem before I brought the car to the dealer. And if there was a problem with my car, how come the mechanic at the dealer didn’t notice when he brought my car to the repair area?

Thank you for all the idea/information.


#11

As suggested, have it towed to another mechanic. This dealer is too “invested” in the outcome.


#12

This is why you don’t take your vehicles to the dealership to get repaired. Have you driven the vehicle to experience the “soft pedal” story they are selling you? You need to take it to a competent independent shop for diagnosis if it actually has a problem. I’m thinking worst case senerio would be a new master cylinder. $1800? I think not.


#13

You need an independent evaluation, complete with details in writing and photos. Have it towed to a reputable independent shop. If there evaluation determines that the brake system was damaged in the accident, contact your insurance about a formal accident claim. They might assist you in getting the damage covered by the dealer’s insurance.

You might file a formal complaint with the consumer protection division of your state’s attorney general’s office also. If there are other complaints, they might initiate an investigation. Believe me, if you have evidence of wrongdoing and your state attorney general’s office contacts them, they’ll bend over backwards to correct the situation to your satisfaction.


#14

First of all, I was so frustrated, angry, and wanted to fight back. But didn’t know how.
Thanks God! So many kind souls out there! Really appreciated!!!
I’ll try to gather all necessary documents and follow your advice. Thank you again!!!
God Bless You Guys!


#15

My vote is for having that car towed to another shop for an objective opinion; something the shop behind this incident is not likely to have.

Assume for the sake of discussion the pedal was soft when the mechanic went out to the lot and brought the car in. The mechanic should have been more careful driving it into the stall.

This is a little too coincidental and gambling odds are that someone just screwed up. It could also be that the mechanic could end up in a little hot water from management over an incident like this and he’s looking for an out to shift the blame.


#16

For $11,000 that tool box should not only recognize your tools, but go fetch them from another mechanic that borrowed that tool while you were out test driving a costomers car.
Remember “Thing” from the Adams Family…a hand in every drawer to slap and paw that in doesn’t recognize!!!
And it should let you know when your fly is open.

Back to the case at hand.
I’m all for having it towed and inspected by an independent shop.This just all sounds too convienient to me for the dealer and the mechanic.

I can understand the mechanic being hurried, but didn’t he slow down coming into the main shop door, in case someone was going to cross his path. It all blind spots and he can’t see thru walls. Then turning into his bay I’d think he’d tap the brakes at least once to ease into the area.

I think the brake actuator is the most expensive part in the whole system, but I still doubt it would cost 1800.


#17

We know he had to put the brakes on at least once before entering the shop…when he took it out of PARK.


#18

“should not only recognize your tools, but go fetch them from another mechanic that borrowed that tool while you were out test driving a costomers car.”

That’s known as a . . .

apprentice
helper
gopher
etc.


#19

Is the car currently in the same condition it was in when you dropped it off? I would ask to be able to come and test drive the car yourself. If the brakes feel like they did when you dropped it off take the car. If they don’t, tow the car to your local garage.

My current toolbox was bought new almost 15 years ago. At that time the list price was about $12,000. It was delivered by semi as it was too big for the tool truck. Before that every Snap-On toolbox I had was bought used, and traded up as I outgrew them. 2 grand won’t buy you any kind of tool box for a professional these days. All those expensive tools and equipment we use have to be stored somewhere!