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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 05-26-2010, 09:03 AM   #1
blablac
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Unhappy Body shop in NOVA ?

My car got hit while parked (only bent metal no harm) (new driver backing out of driveway...)in the driver door. A new door and she will be okay but, where to go.

I'm hesitating between BMW of Fairfax Collision Center and WagonWork Collision.

Any reviews / experience / people working there ?
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Old 05-26-2010, 09:17 AM   #2
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As for WagonWorks in Arlington, they are fantastic but expect to pay 2 or 3 times what you will pay anywhere else. I was quoted by them 5000 to paint skirts, bumper, front lip, mirrors, and a rear bumper. I don't see how anyone could justify that type of premium for body work on an e46.
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:03 AM   #3
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insurance will be paying for it so i don't mind the premium
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:04 AM   #4
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http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=377038 this doesn't look like good news. Once good systems are in place tho no reasons they wouldnt do a good job.
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:36 AM   #5
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Old 05-27-2010, 07:27 PM   #6
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Alright so I'm going to start somewhat of a what happens when you car gets hit while parked but first a little about me:

I'm an aerospace engineer, I deal with F15, F18, F4, SH60, SH3 parts and troubleshooting all day long. I have done quality inspections on items for these aircraft ranging from wing spares to hinges or indicator, helped manufacturers get the parts done right, explained to customers why they want one part and not the other, helped customers troubleshoot reason for failures or what failed... I do quality work because if not things don't fly or turn into useless maned rocks 10,000ft above dirt. Yes I am anal but that's because I understand how things work, how they age, how they break and what happens when someone is half assing his job.

5/25/2010:
So car gets hit a little after I get back from work, call both insurance. Other party insurance agrees that since the car was parked they will pay for everything.

5/26/2010:
Wake up early, can't make it to work, I can't drive my car the driver door won't open, not very safe. Call Wagonwork to get a tow. I am told someone will call me back. Call Statefarm, spend an hour giving out details and figuring out what to do. I will be dropping my car at Wagonwork, and getting a rental.
12pm: damn no call back from Wagonwork, give them a call, I'll just drive my car over I'm flexible enough to make it to the driver sit from the passenger side.
Drop the car off at Wagonwork, speak with some guy wearing a red shirt. He pulls a pen out makes a couple notes on my window. Wagonwork's employee gives me a ride to the rental company. He has an aversion for used and non oem parts. "They just never fit right".
Rental car company gives me the last car they have available. A dodge Nitro V8. Makes a lot of noise, slow and thirsty on gas. I need to get that changed. The empty passenger seat vibrating back and forth is driving me nuts.
3pm: just got to work, looks like I'm going to be staying late tonight... what a pain.

5/27/2010:
Statefarm agent checked the car out today, they are only willing to pay for used parts when possible but state that they will warranty the parts for the rest of my vehicle ownership. Get in an argument with the guy, no point really he probably has no idea what a .005 tolerance is. So it looks like I have a fight ahead of me for that. Not putting used stuff on there when I pay a premium for quality parts all year long.

Called Wagonwork and asked if they could email me the estimate ("we will get that to you shortly") as well as provide me their own estimate (with new and used parts). I ask when that would happen and was told: "you need to speak with xxx, he just stepped out he'll give you a call back before the end of the day."

5pm:
On my way to the gym change car to a Chevy Cobalt. Much better ride, I should just drive this all year long and not have anything to worry about.

8pm:
End of the day +1 hour for Wagonwork:
No emails with estimate from Statefarm
No call back.


I hope things get better.

Last edited by blablac; 05-27-2010 at 07:39 PM.
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Old 05-27-2010, 10:41 PM   #7
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If it went to wagonworks, expect it to be there for a while. They are notoriously slow, and their quality has dropped off sharply in recent years. You won't get a call from wagonworks, don't even hold your breath.

I've seen cars go in there for $1000 estimates, no parts, all labor, and still take 5 weeks to get done. BMW Fairfax would have been a much better place to go.

Also, I would have highly recommended Koon's Ford Body Shop in Falls Church, Ray's or Spectrum Auto Body in Arlington, or Tyson's Corner Collision/HBL in Tyson's. Mastercraft (big chain, shops all over the area) also does great work, all of the shops. Heck, you would have gotten a hell of a lot better (and faster) repair driving further south on Rte 1 to Action Auto Body. Although, honestly, you sound like the kind of customer that's going to make an adjuster and a shop rep's day nothing but a headache. So maybe Wagonworks is the place for you to go. Give 'em hell.

And Wagonworks doesn't have an aversion to used/non-oe parts, they have an attraction to finding the part with the highest profit margin. If they can find a used part and mark it up 100%, they'll use that over a new part. They'll also be a pain in the ass for you and your insurance company. Used parts are fine on these cars, as are aftermarket. A/M BMW bumpers actually fit incredibly well.

My experiences with wagonworks has shown to me that they are extremely difficult to work with, both during and after repair. I've had customers go back to wagonworks with issues they say are from the repair, only to have wagonworks turn them away. When pressed (a lot), they finally agree to look at the car again, but will take their usual slow time, and refuse to cover a rental car while the car is back in the shop for things they did wrong. All around, a terrible place to take a car. They still have a reputation with some of the higher end marques simply because they're more expensive and they take a long time. This hasn't been a sign of a quality repair, though, just a sign of a shop that has no interest in getting work done in a reasonable amount of time. I can't tell you how many customers I've had call me and ask me why I didn't tell them all of ^^^ this before they took their car in to that shop. If I say anything more than a cursory "don't expect your car back any time soon," Mike Anderson (owner of WW) will most likely sue me and/or my company for illegal steering practices, even if I'm only telling a customer the truth.

If you have a problem, though, don't expect to see Mike. He's most likely travelling to some conference or another telling everyone in attendence how bad insurance companies are, and how amazing his shop has always been. A man that's lost in his own image, and too busy to take care of his own business. If you do see him, and he starts bashing the insurance company, ask him how many times Mike Smith has turned him down for a direct repair program in his shop (really).

Cliff notes: don't take a car to Wagonworks. Not worth the hassle
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