Fix before returning a leased car?


#1

Do I need to fix minor dents and scratches (paint stuff) on the bumpers before returning a 3 year leased car or should I see what they bill me when I return? Which is cheaper?


#2

There are too many variables for us to know. First, what kind of car is it? If it’s a smaller, fuel efficient, car they are more likely to ignore such things as it will be an easy resale. If it’s a big old gas hog, I’d expect a very picky inspection and charges levied on every possible thing they can find. The other factors are who holds the lease, and what sort of body shops are available to you and at what cost.

In general, it will probably be cheaper to have it fixed first, but by how much, and is it worth the time and trouble?


#3

Check your copy of the lease, it should say in what condition the car must be returned.

Should the dealer bill you for the repairs, though, you can safely bet it’ll be much higher than if you get the repairs done yourself.


#4

IMOO I believe it cheaper to pay the lease company. When I inspected lease turn in’s we did not include items like blending or R&I of items when there was body damage. If you go to a b/s they will include those when repairing since items like that are needed. How detailed the inspections went depended on the lease company and the make of vehicle. Mercedes was the easiest to deal with, they allowed damage up to a credit card size but others wanted damage included when a ding was only 1/4" long.
I feel a bit guilty posting this since you should repair this before turning it in since the car belongs to the lease company and you need to return it in good condition.


#5

If it’s a smaller, fuel efficient, car they are more likely to ignore such things as it will be an easy resale.
Wrong, they want their car back in good condition so they can get top dollar, no matter what size.

If it’s a big old gas hog, I’d expect a very picky inspection
Wrong, they want their car back in good condition so they can get top dollar, no matter what size.

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The dealer that the car is turned in at has the option to buy the car. They don’t want a beater. The lease company will haul it to an auction yard and sell it repaired or not, but they want top dollar, if it gets beat up you will pay.


#6

The best is to get a bottle of Meguiars Scratch X($7) and buff them out. It really works well at making things look better and possibly not damaged.