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The good wrecks

Bruce Smith November 15, 2012


How to make front-end collision damage work to your benefit; insurance companies help defray cost of performance upgrades


By Bruce W. Smith

Company owners and fleet mangers cringe when one of their heavy-duty diesel pickups comes into the shop on the bed of a rollback with the front bumper rolled up and fenders caved in.

Wrecks are nothing but lost revenue through vehicle downtime, paying the insurance deductible, and the potential bump in annual insurance rates.

Not good for small business or large.

But there’s a bright side to front-end collisions: It’s a great opportunity to add diesel performance upgrades because the insurance company pays for the installation labor and a healthy portion of the parts.

Front-end collisions make way for some great diesel engine performance upgrades that greatly improve towing and hauling efficiency.

Usually when a company truck is in a big accident the insurance company is Johnny on the spot, working quickly to get the estimate of repairs handled with the auto body shop.

The list of replacement parts to bring the truck back to “pre-accident condition” is usually long and includes aftermarket or “refurbished” parts equivalent to OEM.

“Wrecks like this are typical of what I see every week, “says Warren Spears, the owner of Spears Auto Repair, in Long Beach, Mississippi.

“The insurance adjuster and I go over every inch of the vehicle to see what’s damaged. Then the adjuster will write it up, print out the parts list (with prices) and labor involved to fix it up. The owner pays the deductible and the insurance company covers the rest.”

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