: Need Advice: Insurance may want to total my '87 Brougham because of broken window.



Slacker
04-20-13, 04:40 PM
I need some advice. Last Saturday night someone broke my back window of my '87 while I was sleeping. I noticed it in the morning and called my insurance company because I have glass coverage.

At first they gave me the number to a shop that didn't exist so I had to call them back. The next shop they gave me was terrible. They never called me back and in the end just said that they can't find the glass and go call my insurance company to find someone else. That was after 4 days. (I'm not even joking...)

I call my insurance company for a third time and they take down the car information and the lady says "No problem. We'll source the glass for you and get you hooked up with a shop". I think "Great! This is exactly what I was hoping to hear." She calls back and says that she has bad news. Not only is she having problems getting the glass but she says the vinyl top needs to probably be replaced to change the glass (I was fearing this.). She then continues to say that this could be expensive and be more than the car is worth and if that's the case they will consider the car a total loss. She asked to send out a person to determine the vehicles worth.

I agreed to have the guy come look at the car. He was suppose to call to make an appointment but then I find out when I call him that he was already at my apartment earlier looking for my car. (I wasn't home). I don't know if it is, but that seemed shadey to me.

So, long story short, I don't want to have my insurance company "junk" my car because some jerk broke my window. I have glass insurance, I would have assumed that this would be a non-issue. When I signed up with my insurance company and they suggested glass coverage I was driving a beat up '84 Celebrity. I said to them, "Are you just saying to put glass coverage on so if I get a broken window you junk my car?" They replied "No sir, we wouldn't do that. That's not how it works". Well it's looking like it is...

Anyone know the round about cost of replacing a back window on one of these cars or has a decent shop in the Long Island area that I can get it fixed at?

Thanks for reading.

Here are some pics of the damage:
http://i.imgur.com/wDZ4AFx.jpg?1
http://i.imgur.com/YpgXRAk.jpg?1
http://i.imgur.com/6T5eMXd.jpg?1
http://i.imgur.com/KeIPz9t.jpg?1

cadillac kevin
04-20-13, 05:36 PM
At the very most, I'd say the new top and glass would cost 2k. (and according to (either 1980 coupe or ape man, don't recall which), you do not have to replace the top when you do the back glass. You cut the panel that goes around the window at the side seams and peel it back.
BTW, your car should blue book at 4k minimum if it's in good shape, so they shouldn't be able to total it out for broken glass.

creeker
04-20-13, 05:52 PM
Nice looking car, dont let the insurance company win,it's the agents job to not pay out on claims,they will hassle you till you give up.

MoistCabbage
04-20-13, 06:11 PM
Take it to a good body shop that knows how to do the job, and can deal with the roof. Have them deal with insurance.

SafariOne
04-20-13, 07:15 PM
You could ask them to just do a cash settlement and then you look after everything yourself. If they do total the car then ask to have first dibs to buy it back. Then you might make out alright.

csbuckn
04-20-13, 08:05 PM
I have a back glass with rear defrost if you cant find one. It looks like it was tinted and the tint was peeled off cause there is a clear film on it. Let me know. Not sure what needs to be done to get the window replaced, maybe an upholstery shop would know. Here is a pic of whats back there(not the glass I have for sale).

http://i935.photobucket.com/albums/ad196/csbuckn/20130324_202657.jpg (http://s935.photobucket.com/user/csbuckn/media/20130324_202657.jpg.html)

jayoldschool
04-20-13, 08:51 PM
Just pick up a used rear window, and pay to get it replaced yourself. You could also peel back the top, let insurance pay for the glass re/re, and pay to get the top done.

Yes, I know that it is frustrating that the insurance is screwing you. The only way around this is to get your car appraised and carry special classic vehicle insurance (and deal with the usage/driving restrictions that come with it).

Ranger
04-20-13, 11:07 PM
Is it possible the glass gets replaced from inside? :noidea: Call a glass company. They'll give you an estimate.

brougham
04-20-13, 11:36 PM
You'll probably end up having to deal with the roof. The window goes beyond the edge of the vinyl and I think there's a shell around it that you can see in that other picture. Old vinyl usually doesn't peel back that well for such a big area and by the time they get done it'll probably look like hell. Id fight the insurance company for the repair. If they want to write it off either take the money they give you and fix it yourself. Or once you know how much the repair will actually cost see if you can just pay the difference for the amount they dont' want to cover.

cadillac kevin
04-20-13, 11:37 PM
Is it possible the glass gets replaced from inside? :noidea: Call a glass company. They'll give you an estimate.

Unfortunately, no. The window is a full size piece of glass with a lip on the back side (the formal opera window is the same size as the hardtop rear window despite appearing to be half the size due to being covered in vinyl)

77CDV
04-20-13, 11:52 PM
I'd just take the payout and fix the car myself. You should be able to get a rear window from the junkyards, then take it to a glass shop for installation, then an interior shop to have the roof redone. Whole thing should not cost you more than a few hundred dollars, and your car is easily worth 3K.

BTW, who's your insurance company so I can make sure I never sign up with them?

TopherS
04-21-13, 02:08 AM
...and your car is easily worth 3K.

BTW, who's your insurance company so I can make sure I never sign up with them?

I'll chime in with some info I've learned this week...

On Wednesday, I was hit on the side by a guy who changed lanes without looking...damaged my driver-side front fender and front door. The 2 estimates I got were $1941 and $1306. I was concerned that the insurance would total out my 1987 Brougham, as well.

My insurance company (Ameriprise/IDS) said they could not tell me how much my car is worth without an appraisal, but said that they would look at totaling out my car if the damage reaches 70% or more of the value of the car. The other driver has Allstate. They took responsibility because their insured was at-fault...and they said they would look at totaling out my car if the damage was 80% or more of the value of the car. I don't know if they're taking into account "diminished value" + cost of rental + ??? or what...but I've always believed that "totaled" meant "more than the value". Perhaps insurance companies have changed their definitions???

At any rate, Allstate didn't bat an eye...just said they'd pay to get it fixed and pay for the rental and "not to worry". They, too, couldn't tell me the value of my car without an appraisal, but they didn't even bother. I was rather impressed. My Brougham goes into the shop on Monday.

Hearing that a 1987 Brougham in good condition is worth $3-4K is good to hear. Cheers for that.

brougham
04-21-13, 05:48 AM
Totalled was was always over a certain percent, not over the value of the car. It's good to hear they paid out. It seems a lot of the time you see a car that was totalled that only has minor damage, especially older ones.

Mark 78 Coupe
04-21-13, 12:19 PM
I can't imagine that a used rear window would be more than $50-100. The top, I would have to guess would be $500-100, and that is just a guess. Any half way experienced adjuster would quote the used window, price to install it plus markup (profit) for the shop, and then the cost of the top. They may charge you betterment for the new top. Betterment is like the word says- your new top is better than the old one it is replacing, so the insurance company may ask you to pay a portion of its replacement cost. If the new top costs $1000 say for example,and they charge you %50 betterment, then you would pay $500 towards the top. Lets say you have a $100 deductible, plus the $500 betterment, then what ever the cost of the repairs are, the insurance company would deduct $600 from your total payout check. If they go this route, you can certainly try to negotiate a lower betterment amount. Or, if you are lucky, they won't even use betterment. Betterment is a concept which varies by insurance company, and local insurance law. Good luck, and stay on top of the adjuster.

JimMLINY
04-21-13, 06:50 PM
In Glen Cove, at end of Forest Avenue, make a left turn, there is an auto place on left hand side of road. I can't remember their name but they did rear glass replacement on my 70 Riv where the vinyl roof had been removed nd it came out excellent. Father and son team who do restoration glass work on classics. Very reasonable. Think it cost around $700.00 for hard to find rear glass with deicer and trim to fit a former vinyl roof.

Take a cruise and check out if they are still there. If not, Hans Auto is there too, and can do same; but, I have never used them and can't comment on quality or pricing.

j2rossit
04-22-13, 09:10 AM
I'll chime in with some info I've learned this week...
My insurance company (Ameriprise/IDS) said they could not tell me how much my car is worth without an appraisal, but said that they would look at totaling out my car if the damage reaches 70% or more of the value of the car. The other driver has Allstate. They took responsibility because their insured was at-fault...and they said they would look at totaling out my car if the damage was 80% or more of the value of the car. I don't know if they're taking into account "diminished value" + cost of rental + ??? or what...but I've always believed that "totaled" meant "more than the value". Perhaps insurance companies have changed their definitions???


They do this because of assumed risk. If they say they are going to fix your car, then they are opening the door for unexpected costs during the repair as well as an "unsatisfied" owner when the job is done who demands rework. If the estimate gets too close to the value of the car, they'd rather cut the check and move on then risk what it could turn into.

Slacker
04-22-13, 05:36 PM
Hey Guys. Thanks for the great replies. The appraiser is outside my office now working out the numbers.

So far he's saying it's $900 to replace the roof and it needs to be replaced to change the window. (That's what the shops are telling him he's called).
He's saying the glass and labor is going to be another couple hundred bringing the total repair to $1600. He's thinking the car will be worth maybe $2000 and thus they'll consider it a total loss. I'm still waiting on that number. He said anything over 75% of total worth is totaled.

He's also saying that if it's a total loss they'll pay out the worth of the car minus the salvage value and deductible. (So about $1000 off the appraised value).

Still not sure what to do. $1600 is an insane amount of money to get the glass fixed IMO.

outsider
04-22-13, 05:45 PM
unfortunately that's one of the major downsides to these vinyl roofs...Sucks! Hopefully they won't total it. obviously they're going to try to low ball you on the appraisal so they'll have to pay out significantly less money so maybe you can get your own appraisal done?

cadillac kevin
04-22-13, 06:27 PM
unfortunately that's one of the major downsides to these vinyl roofs...Sucks! Hopefully they won't total it. obviously they're going to try to low ball you on the appraisal so they'll have to pay out significantly less money so maybe you can get your own appraisal done?

That's what I was thinking.....if push comes to shove, get the car appraised (not sure of mileage, but it's worth 3-4k if it's pretty clean.)

Slacker
04-22-13, 07:16 PM
Good news! Car was appraised for close to $4000! The insurance company is going to cover the work to get the top replaced as well as the window! (Just have to pay deductible) :D

I'm guessing, as others have said in this thread, that they were trying to get me do drop out from filing a claim so that they didn't have to pay out for the repair.

Mileage is at 93k. Not rolled over.

austingta
04-22-13, 09:02 PM
In insurance parlance, a car would be totaled if the repairs and the salvage value equal 80% of ACV.

csbuckn
04-22-13, 09:40 PM
Nice. Lesson learned.

brougham
04-23-13, 03:54 AM
Im surprised they came up with the $4,000 price but they usually come up with numbers higher then you think. Congrats on getting it paid for like they should have to begin with :)

outsider
04-23-13, 09:40 AM
that's awesome! Congrats! Another great Cadillac will be preserved!

j2rossit
04-23-13, 02:01 PM
Sweet!

Slacker
04-23-13, 07:48 PM
Thanks!

My insurance company called back again today. Apparently because the roof is required to be removed to replace the window it is covered by the glass policy so there is no deductible I have to pay. So the whole repair won't cost me a penny out of pocket! Woohoo! :D

MoistCabbage
04-23-13, 08:10 PM
Yeah, I was going to mention that. Partially removing the roof from my Town Car for windshield replacement was covered under by the glass coverage.

silverfox103
04-24-13, 08:41 AM
Thanks!

My insurance company called back again today. Apparently because the roof is required to be removed to replace the window it is covered by the glass policy so there is no deductible I have to pay. So the whole repair won't cost me a penny out of pocket! Woohoo! :D

Such a deal, and you get a new top. Being that old that top may look ok but it is brittle, I'm sure.

Tom C.

1980coupe
04-26-13, 07:56 PM
good to hear.
I was the one who mentioned that the top does not have to be replaced. I had my rear window busted and the rock was still inside car. It left a gaping hole. At the time, I did not have insurance, so I found a replacement window with defrost for $30. I asked around the cost to install and like yourself, I was told that the vinyl top had to be removed and redone to replace window.
Screw that, I said, so between me and my fine neighbor, lol we were able to replace it by peeling back the vinyl, removing plastic frame and what was left of glass. Installed new sealer and rear galss reconnected wires, put trim and foam and layed down some adhesive, stretch the vinyl down and presto, good as new...
post some pics when it's done...

Aron9000
05-02-13, 12:45 AM
Im surprised they came up with the $4,000 price but they usually come up with numbers higher then you think. Congrats on getting it paid for like they should have to begin with :)

I know on my old 1998 Z28 rag-top, when it was totaled out in a wreck, they appraised it for $10,500. I paid $7800 for it. I knew I got a good deal on it, but damn.