Driver's side door got hit . . . what I can expect at body shop?

I was in a parking lot and was backing up out of the parking space. As I was straghtening the wheel to face the direct I needed to go, another vehicle backed up (from parking spot directly opposite mine) and back bumper crushed in my driver’s side door.

So no matter who’s at fault (don’t know yet), I’m gonna have to get this door fixed. It’s a 2008 mazdaspeed 3 (mazda 3 body) with just over 1600 miles on it. Do I have a right to ‘demand’ a new door be put on since it’s a brand new car? Or is that probably going to happen anyway? It’s crushed in enough that the window won’t go down because it will scrape against the bent side. Just wondering what to look forward to and what I’m entitled to at the body shop. It was certainly in PERFECT condition before the accident and I want to make sure that it is in PERFECT condition after repair.

Also, is there anything else that should be looked at? Would alignment need to be checked after a 5mph accident to the driver’s side door or anything like that? Thank you.


If it’s a comparatively minor dent they may want to just pull it out and repair the door. If the damage is pretty heavy, and considering the car only has 1600 miles on it, I would want a new door if the car were mine for the simple fact you never really know just how deep somebody at the body shop is going to slather the Bondo on.

It’s not likely any suspension damage or alignment problems occurred since the damage was not hard enough to break the door glass.
Sounds like the other party’s fault since their bumper got your door.

I’m likely going to post too much here, but anyway…

If you were in the laneway of the parking lot and someone backed out into you, they’re at fault for failing to yield.

In minor collisions (under $1K and no PI (personal injury)) the police won’t even show up let alone write it up. (In Ontario,Canada)

Now, considering the cost of repairs of TODAYS vehicles, you don’t need much of a hit to add up a grand.

Also, due to the light materials used in todays autos, there may be more damage than just the door itself.
Check alignment of the door hinges and door frame, door latch, rocker panel and roof line above the door. The buckled door may have pushed upwards.

Unforeseen damage may result in water leaks and unwanted rust in the near future.
For sure there are more points to consider than what I have mentioned.

I trust you at least got his/her license number/insurance number, etc.

Being a brand new vehicle, you would hope to get a new door, for sure, but that’s up to the insurance co.

Get at least three estimates for repair in writing.

At that speed, I doubt any damage other than the door skin and internal window damage (bent window tracks, damaged power door lock mechanism, etc) would be done.

If you don’t get a new door and that one gets repaired, there is a very good chance (given the repair shop knows how to paint properly) the paint will match.

FWIW, for this reason alone I’ve make it a long time habit of backing into a parking space.

Backing out of a parking space is hazardous at the best of times as you usually can NOT see what’s coming.

Move the vehicle very SLOWLY out of the space as there just may be someones child running loose right behind you. ESPECIALLY at this time of the year.

The door is two parts not one-The inner door frame and the outside skin. It is a very quick job to replace a door skin and with any amount of damage, this will be the course of action. They grind off the welds or epoxy holding the old skin on and weld and epoxy the new sheet metal on and paint. If the door frame itself is damaged, they may be able to straighten it or may need the new frame. It just depends on the damage. All of it depends on the quality of the workmanship and the shop involved so make sure you deal with a good shop. Proper rust proofing, painting that matches, a door that fits the space again without wind leaks and so on. Just make sure the shop knows your expectation but no need to get anal about it. Accidents happen and the dents can be fixed.

It’s pretty significant indentation in the door. I’ll see if I can attach the two JPEGS I took of it. I had to drive my car to work today and it was certainly acting up a little (some thumping while driving and the wheel was jerking a little left and right, almost like it was ‘overcorrecting’ when I tried to turn it slightly). I’ll make sure they drive it and check that out.

On a slightly off-topic (but not really) question, if after the body shop fixes it, I still find something wierd about it running or find that the alignment is off, should that be covered under my manufacturer warranty even if it was accident related? Or would I have to bring it back to the shop that repaired the vehicle and somehow get THEM to ‘finish’ fixing the car correctly?

The way you describe it, the other driver is at fault. If this is an insurance job, just take it in and have them evaluate it. The shop is used to finding hidden damage and will likely find it if it exists. Make sure that you understand what they will do and why. That will help you feel better about the experience with the body shop. Their willingness to discuss the issue and make sure you understand it will help you trust them. I’ve used 2 body shops in about 15 years and they are both very good. Of course, I didn’t choose them, my insurer did. They know what they’re doing, too.

The damage shown is only concentrated in the door so it won’t affect the rest of the car. However it will affect the operation of the power window. My guess is your entire door will be replaced as the window track is probably bent beyond the damage to the door.

You will start to feel things you never notice, sort of like when people are sick around you and you feel sick.

Good luck, its a total PITA.

ok you will not need a complete door they can put a new skin or just the outer shell on. if there any damage to window arms this maybe another repair but I bet once it is open you will find any binding is just the arm rubing against the outer skin. I would say $600. could fix this no need to get the ins company on this or your ins will go up.

That door was whacked pretty good. It’s not worth repairing and the trick is going to be if you can actually get a door skin for that car. It may be available as a complete door only so you should call the dealer parts dept. and ask about this.
When my son got his 12 year old Camaro door whacked like this a few years back the dealer price was 1100 dollars and it was available as an assembly only, less the door internals (latch, window reg., glass, etc.)

Keep in mind that the factory warranty is not going to cover anything at all related to this accident, be it body damage, window or latch operation, etc. Any complaints you have about anything are going to have to be resolved between you and the insurance company; the dealer and the factory are completely out of the equation.