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Thread: Carwash damage

  1. #1
    peanut308 Guest

    Carwash damage

    i went to a carwash yesterday with my windshield intact, but unfortunately left with a large crack from top to bottom. after speaking with the manager of the brand new Chevron facility and showing him the damage, I was told he would "review the (video) tape" and call me today. Since customer service doesn't exist anymore in California, I assume that they will refuse to pay for the damage. In my efforts to be prepared when/if he does call, I am asking what, if any, liability does a car wash have for damage done to vehicles while under their service? Additionally, would a surveillance camera be able to spot a fine detail such as this crack?

    (There was a previous post re:damage in a carwash last year, but no one could clarify what, if any, laws pertain to carwash establishments for damage. She was just told to take them to small claims court.)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Catatonic State
    Post when you get the response from the manager.

  3. #3
    peanut308 Guest

    carwash damage

    i didn't want to ignore your post, but i have not really gotten a straight answer yet from the manager. We have spoken a number of times, once to tell me his accounting department would call, then when they didn't, he took my car year/make/model which i am hoping is for them to determine estimates of cost. while waiting for their response, i did my own serach and found that the cost to replace it is actually $920 ($720 cost glass+$200 labor). eeeekk! i hope they don't change their mind after they find out! i will keep you updated. thanks for the interest.

  4. #4
    happy&lucky Guest
    NOW this is why you get FULL GLASS coverage on your car....

    It wont cost you a dime to replace the winshield.

  5. #5
    peanut308 Guest

    carwash damage

    ...this is why you wash your own car.

    after initiating all the follow-up, I finally spoke with some accounting manager who stated that he called some Souther California Car Wash place that would tell him if there was any recalled car wash machinery that would cause the windshield to crack. Then he proceeded to tell me that he "didn't know how the windshield would crack" and that the car wash was not going to pay for a $100 windshield. He then talked about the heat of the window against the cold water. He had not reviewed the existing surveillance cameras to find out when/how it cracked. I then called the manager again to get the owner's name and phone number, which he stated he did not know that information and would call me back today with it.

    I am filing a complaint with Chevron today as the carwash facility is apparently a partner with Chevron. They told me to file a complaint with them if I did not get satisfaction when I explained the situation to them on Monday.

    Any other recommendations?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Los Angeles, California
    My response:

    They are not liable or responsible for your damages.

    It's basic physics.

    Extremely hot day, mixed with colder water = cracked glass.


    You can sue until the cows come home on this one, but a judge is going to tell you the same thing. This is especially true when you can't prove to the judge - - as is your burden to do - - that there was any mechanical defect with the carwash. In the absense of you paying for a favorable expert witness, and since it will be your burden of proof, and since an expert witness' fee is not reimburseable to you (win or lose), you'll only wind up losing, and paying more than this is worth.

    Go to a junkyard, buy the windshield, have it installed, move on with your life.


  7. #7
    peanut308 Guest
    thank you for your response...

    however, since I really don't have $500 to pay for even a reduced-price windshield at a junkyard, I will likely try to exhaust my customer service options first. It would be nice to have this extra cash, but I really barely make my house payment each month.

    Additionally, had it been posted that this hot window-cold water phenomena could crack the windshield, I certainly would have washed it myself.

    I am sure you are not interested by the tone of your post, but I (and others may) find it interesting that the crack just happend to eminate from the point where the convertible latch is located. What makes this interesting is that the employees put the top down and dried the car out in the hot sun. Then after about 30 minutes, they moved it into the shade. When they were almost done, they put the top back up and locked it.

    By the way, how did you know that the car wash has no liabilty for damage to cars? I couldn't find any legal information on these types of establishments...

  8. #8
    happy&lucky Guest
    so when are you going to get full glass coverage on your car insurance?????

    convertables, they are not cheap cars.....and with a lot less support to prevent damage to the glass....

    Last edited by happy&lucky; 08-22-2001 at 10:31 PM.
  9. #9
    peanut308 Guest

    carwash damage

    ...FYI: there is a car wash just down the street that has a large, professionally done sign that warns customers about such potential car damage on hot days.

    Well, after I was told "no", I asked for the name of the owner as I would be seeking legal recourse. Of course no one returned my call until my boyfriend called (what a suprise). Not 30 minutes later, I get a call from the same a--hole who had laughed at my situation, and proceeded to tell me how much they appreciate me as a customer (blah,blah,blah)... and that they will pay for my new windshield.

    Funny (sarcastic) how things change when a deeper voice gets on the line. How pathetic.

    Either way, I got what I wanted, and I will go back to handwashing my baby from this point on. Buyer beware!

  10. #10
    Smithy Guest
    That's crazy. It's a sad day for us women who lack masculine voices. (And, seeing as how I'm often mistaken for IAAL, I guess that doesn't include me after all....)

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Los Angeles, California
    Computers - the great equalizers - voicewise.

  12. #12
    happy&lucky Guest
    SO are you going to get FULL gals coverage on your car?

    Who are you going to blame NEXT TIME if someone smashes the back window sometime between 2 and 7 am because they were drunk and fighting on the street..

    It happened to me $650 for the back winshield and defroster (station wagon) my cost $0

    My Full Glass insurance cost $12 every 6 months!

  13. #13
    peanut308 Guest


    H&L: You should've left the wagon to get stolen (oh, that's right, no one would steal a stationwagon...)

    SO, when are YOU going to realize I am ignoring you and GET A CLUE?

    FYI: this means, don't respond with your salespitch again

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