RAV4 Headlights - what happened

Several weeks ago someone backed into my '97 RAV4 in a parking lot. Body shop charged around $900 for the repair (estimate indicates labor for both headlights, but doesn’t look like they replaced them). This afternoon one of the low beam headlights burned out. I went to change both sides just to be safe. On both headlight assemblies, grasping the wire assemblies to the low beam bulbs, the headlight assembly on both the left and right side is loose within its housing. I’ve changed the bulbs in the past, this is something new. Take it back to the body shop? What happened???

The headlight assemblies should not be loose. Take the RAV4 back to the body shop so they can make it right. Sounds like something was missed during the repair.

Also, if insurance was involved with the repair; and the shop states: “that’s normal/ way it is…” etc. talk to the insurance. They will pull payment, etc. They guarantee the joy done correctly & to your satisfaction.

Well, this has been a royal pain. I went back to the shop, they looked at the headlights. I was told they would contact the insurance company and if the insurance wouldn’t pay for it, they (the shop) would make it right. The insurance company was contacted, since the casings to the headlights the insurance company refused to pay. At one point the insurance adjuster stated “I’m having trouble visualizing the problem”. No problem I said, I’ll bring the car over for you to look at it. He didn’t want to see it, stating he’s been in the business for 25 years and never heard of this problem before. He admitted that he googled the problem and it wasn’t a know issue with the RAV4. I told him I had done likewise, which should indicate to him this wasn’t normal wear and tear. He won’t budge.

Then the shop tells me that since the insurance company won’t pay, they won’t pay. I remind them of what they said and was told “you’re trying to paint me into a corner”. Finally after me not relenting I’m brining the car in Thursday for them to replace the headlights…

The insurance adjusted faxed me a denial, stating in part “Both headlamps have the same internal damage. This indicated that the problem is likely with the construction of the headlamps themselves. It is possible its a common manufacturer’s defect: failure of the adhesive that holds the internal parts to the headlamp housing.” Any thoughts?

Is the insurance company in question State Farm by any chance?

I ask that question because I became aware a few months ago that this company, which used to be one of the most accomodating insurance companies, now seems to specialize in denying coverage on both auto and home policies.

As but one example, in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, I received a $7,000 settlement from my insurance company (NOT State Farm) for a complete tear-off and reshingling job. My next door neighbor, who suffered more roof damage than I did, was told by State Farm that they would only pay for patching his roof.

Another woman whom I know was driven to tears when State Farm gave her a check for $66 for roof repair. Obviously, she can’t find anyone who is willing to do roof repairs for $66, when the lowest estimate that she received was for more than $2k.


I’m beginning to see a pattern here. Those similar names Allstate and State Farm. I’m wondering if Nationwide fits into the same bracket as the other two deniers. I’ve never heard a good thing about Allstate or State Farm. A guy in Connecticut had a sign on his damaged car about Allstate refusing to pay. That was in 1970. My company has antlers.