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E36 /7 Z3 (1996-2002)
E36/7 Z3 roadster and coupe talk with our gurus here.

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  #1  
Old 06-13-2011, 07:14 PM
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KevinC KevinC is offline
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Windshield replacement - biggest scam on the planet?

I'm curious if this happens elsewhere, or is endemic to Arizona? We have all kinds of shady glass dealers out here, advertising stuff like "we'll pay you $200 to replace your windshield!", various offers for free stuff, coupons, etc.. one joint, about 7 years ago when I moved here, was advertising 24 or 48 or some crazy number of free dinners at a local Mexican restaurant (probably the owner's brother-in-law's joint or something). A shady repair company that fixed a couple of chips for me years ago calls me periodically, wanting to replace the windshield and hand me $100 for the privilege. WTH??!!

I have full glass coverage, which means I pay no deductible for either a repair, or if deemed necessary (long crack, damage in driver's direct field of vision, etc), a replacement. If these scheisters are willing to fork over $200 in cash, they are obviously ripping off the insurance companies, no?

So I finally took a shot in my direct view. I just happened to be visiting my State Farm agent a couple of days later and inquired about a replacement, since this damage was directly in front of me. He said it shouldn't be a problem and handed me a business card of a local family-owned glass shop. I contacted the guy and told him I wanted an OEM windshield, if it could be done with minimal out-of-pocket from me. He called me back the next day and said that the cost was such that State Farm would cover it in full - no out-of-pocket to me. (And never any BS about kicking me back some money, or pressure to use a generic windshield). Cool.

So today the deed was done. The work looks fine, though the piece of tape they put on both sides and over onto the roof baked into the paint on a 100-degree afternoon and was a PITA to remove completely. The bill shows a list price of $958.60 for the windshield, with a "net" price of $814.81 (discount to the carrier?), plus $90 for adhesive, and another $45.34 for a new seal (BMW p/n 51 31 7 017 021). Total cost to State Farm, tax included: $1,136.61.

How the heck can they cover this? I'm ASSuming a generic windshield would have been a fair amount cheaper. And what's with the shady guys overbilling to the extent that they're willing to give cash and prizes to the car owner? We all know who pays - you and I, through higher premiums. Pisses me off.
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  #2  
Old 06-13-2011, 08:13 PM
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kostverloren kostverloren is offline
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Outrageous!
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  #3  
Old 06-13-2011, 11:30 PM
WestCDA WestCDA is offline
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I had my 2006 Z4 windshield replaced (with rain sensor) here in Calgary, Alberta about a month ago.

I had full glass insurance on it, with a 250 deductible, and called the insurance company to inquire about getting it replaced. She told me that while they had recommended shops, I could get it replaced wherever I wanted - but they would cover 985 dollars or thereabouts. I called a local glass company to inquire how much it would cost for a replacement and was told 395 (or something just south of 400 dollars). When I told her it was insurance they quickly said that price was if I replaced it out of pocket, not for insurance claims.

Ended up costing me 100 dollars - the glass company paid the rest of the deductible. Glass was PGW, which is the new name of PPG. The original windshield was PPG with a BMW logo. The glass company told me the replacement windshield would be PGW, and might or might not have a BMW logo on it (it didn't). Installation was fine, windshield and rain sensor are working well - but it does make me wonder about that 600 dollar differential ....
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  #4  
Old 06-13-2011, 11:44 PM
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KevinC KevinC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WestCDA View Post
When I told her it was insurance they quickly said that price was if I replaced it out of pocket, not for insurance claims.
And therein lies the problem - how can it be legit to charge one price if out of pocket (and we can rest assured they're making a reasonable profit at that price - these guys aren't in business to be charitable) - but another, way-jacked up price if insurance is paying? That should be criminal. I'm shocked that the insurance industry lets this go on, as powerful as they tend to be politically.

I was told that I'd get a PGW too if it were a generic. What I wound up with is identical to the original - BMW logo, and still marked PPG. Probably been sitting somewhere for a few years.
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Last edited by KevinC; 06-13-2011 at 11:46 PM.
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  #5  
Old 06-14-2011, 06:06 AM
dougmcintyre dougmcintyre is offline
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Couple of months ago my wife had a hysterectomy. Stated on the hospital bill, the "normal" charge was $24,000. And the amount charged to my insurance was $12,000.
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  #6  
Old 06-14-2011, 06:53 AM
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Had the windshield in my 7 Series replaced last year due to a crack that radiated out from a "star". SC requires full coverage on windshield replacement thank goodness. My ins. agent recommended a regional shop and I demanded that they use OEM BMW glass. They did and the bill was just over $1500 (my BMW dealer quoted $1900). The glass is BMW complete with the LOGO, heating strips and rain sensor prism.
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  #7  
Old 06-14-2011, 07:22 AM
Living Dead Living Dead is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougmcintyre View Post
Couple of months ago my wife had a hysterectomy. Stated on the hospital bill, the "normal" charge was $24,000. And the amount charged to my insurance was $12,000.
Last summer I was out of work and not insured, I had to go to the doctor and since I didn't have insurance I thought I was going to be hit with a big bill, I was instead charged $40 which is $10 less than my co-pay was. Previously when I had insurance the doctor billed $150 for the visit, was paid $120 from the insurance and took $50 from me.

Sorry for the non BMW rant but it seems to me all insurance if full of corruption and stupidity, I can only imagine what car insurance would be like if the government provided it.

When the consumer is taken out of the picture and a 3rd party is paying all sorts of problems ensue.

Last edited by Living Dead; 06-14-2011 at 07:23 AM.
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  #8  
Old 06-14-2011, 07:25 AM
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Ron Stygar Ron Stygar is offline
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Windshield

http://www.penskeparts.com/DiagramsR...iagram=51_6051
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  #9  
Old 06-14-2011, 06:40 PM
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aestheticstorm aestheticstorm is offline
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Back when I lived in South Dakota, a popular windshield shop offered a nice prime rib for your patronage.
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  #10  
Old 06-16-2011, 06:55 PM
bion bion is offline
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I had no comprehinsive on my sons car and I bought the glass myself. 145 out the door. LAbor was 45 and material 30. I bought the best two part eurothane as it cures faster. Many insurance companies will waive the deductable on non oem Windshields. When I worked for Mercedes I was priveliged to see the sost on a 1500 back glass and it was 215. lot of mark up there . Also a lot of breakage in shipping that results in 100% loss to someone. We had a windshiel made for a rare gt40 Roadster that got broken bt Ford. The first one from england was 15,000 .THe next two spares where 250 each and that was shipped from the UK. Its just sand and heat. Some of the tinted and rain sensor are pricey and non oem do not work.The guy giving you money back is charging your insurance company a premium price and still makes a bundle. But in the long run it costs us all in higher premiums.
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  #11  
Old 06-16-2011, 07:17 PM
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Kamdog Kamdog is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Living Dead View Post
Last summer I was out of work and not insured, I had to go to the doctor and since I didn't have insurance I thought I was going to be hit with a big bill, I was instead charged $40 which is $10 less than my co-pay was. Previously when I had insurance the doctor billed $150 for the visit, was paid $120 from the insurance and took $50 from me.

Sorry for the non BMW rant but it seems to me all insurance if full of corruption and stupidity, I can only imagine what car insurance would be like if the government provided it.

When the consumer is taken out of the picture and a 3rd party is paying all sorts of problems ensue.

I wonder if it is a coincidence that the insurance industry is a huge contributor to Washington?
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  #12  
Old 06-16-2011, 07:24 PM
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Mpire Mpire is offline
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You guys are totally missing the point.

You have to PAY SOMEONE TO DEAL WITH THE INSURANCE COMPANY.

So yes, it SHOULD be cheaper when you pay cash.

On average, there are 3 medical billing people for each physician. If you pay cash, those people don't have to do anything.

So yes, things are cheaper when you don't have to fight with the insurance company and wait around for them to pay you.
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  #13  
Old 06-16-2011, 07:26 PM
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Mpire Mpire is offline
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Is there any aftermarket glass that is not PPG or BMW that is HARDER than stock?

BMW windshields are so soft and they pit too easily if you ask me.
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  #14  
Old 06-16-2011, 10:46 PM
Roundelnoob Roundelnoob is offline
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I have used Safelight/Elite for windshields for four cars. The insurance company covers glass repairs with a low deductable for replacement. I think they are nationwide and not so shady, and they fixed everything right, including the Jeep which whistled with the crap job done by a lazy installer the previous time. The Z3 job was perfect, and they did great with my 325Ci a few years back.

Profiting off the insurance company just will drive up costs for everyone eventually. Hopefully personal ethics of the larger population will win over the quick buck for scammers.
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  #15  
Old 06-17-2011, 05:18 AM
touring intl touring intl is offline
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When we first got a used Z3 the windshield needed to be replaced (among other things) cost for eveything was like $250 cash (non oem).
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  #16  
Old 06-17-2011, 05:50 AM
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Mpire Mpire is offline
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Florida requires the insurance company to replace the windshield.

No deductible, no questions asked.

Its usually south of $400 for everything, even with BMW glass.

Regardless, who else makes BMW Z3 windshields other than PPG?
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  #17  
Old 06-17-2011, 06:48 AM
WestCDA WestCDA is offline
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Quote:
You guys are totally missing the point.

You have to PAY SOMEONE TO DEAL WITH THE INSURANCE COMPANY.
No, I don't think I'm missing the point. I'm not disputing the fact that third party billing means additional work for the glass shop, vs. simply collecting the bill from the owner at the time the car is done. The labor and material costs for the windshield are exactly the same.

What I don't find reasonable is that this 'service' seems to be several hundred dollars additional. In my case I contacted my insurance company and they faxed all the paperwork to the glass shop I specified. The glass shop would then have to invoice the insurance company and probably wait 30 days or more for their money - how much is that worth?
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  #18  
Old 06-17-2011, 07:09 AM
JLORE JLORE is offline
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Had a '63 Austin Healey windshield replaced as part of a resto and it cost $450 total for WS and labor. No insurance. I'm sure it's more now. Thank goodness more people have insurance than not, that way we can all get things cheaper.
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  #19  
Old 06-17-2011, 07:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WestCDA View Post
No, I don't think I'm missing the point. I'm not disputing the fact that third party billing means additional work for the glass shop, vs. simply collecting the bill from the owner at the time the car is done. The labor and material costs for the windshield are exactly the same.

What I don't find reasonable is that this 'service' seems to be several hundred dollars additional. In my case I contacted my insurance company and they faxed all the paperwork to the glass shop I specified. The glass shop would then have to invoice the insurance company and probably wait 30 days or more for their money - how much is that worth?
Someone originally asked why doctor's visits were so expensive when using insurance vs paying cash.

I am sure its not the exact same when it comes to the windshield business, but our insurance is subsidizing the whole thing I am sure.

I think I need to get a rock chip this weekend and get a new windshield installed.

Thanks for the reminder.
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  #20  
Old 06-17-2011, 10:12 AM
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Randy Forbes Randy Forbes is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mpire View Post
You guys are totally missing the point.

You have to PAY SOMEONE TO DEAL WITH THE INSURANCE COMPANY.

So yes, it SHOULD be cheaper when you pay cash.

On average, there are 3 medical billing people for each physician. If you pay cash, those people don't have to do anything.

So yes, things are cheaper when you don't have to fight with the insurance company and wait around for them to pay you.
I learned that while working in the oil field; The Big Oil Companies took 120 days to pay (4 mos.) so the little Mom & pop supporting businesses charged triple or quaudruple to them, compared to if you walked in to buy the same items or service with cash. The Little Guy had to carry them on their backs, and wanted compensation.

The way Sue talks about getting insurance payments in her practice, it sounds like much of the same, only difference in her case, is that there's just one (1) price list (she will discount to cash vs credit card, that much I know).

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLORE View Post
Had a '63 Austin Healey windshield replaced as part of a resto and it cost $450 total for WS and labor. No insurance. I'm sure it's more now. Thank goodness more people have insurance than not, that way we can all get things cheaper.
Hi Johnny, I forgot that you were over here now too! Things must be going pretty good with your German sportscar, as I don't see too many questions about service or problems. Big difference compared to the Healey!

I'll have to drive mine up to a major benefit car show tomorrow (exhibiting on Sunday). The weather is threatening (and my back already hates me) but I'm still excited to have been invited to attend. Mine will be one of, I'm told, only three (3) Big Healeys representing Post-World War II British sportscar design. See: https://www.facebook.com/pages/EyesO...816050?sk=wall
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Last edited by Randy Forbes; 06-17-2011 at 10:14 AM.
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  #21  
Old 06-17-2011, 10:47 AM
dougmcintyre dougmcintyre is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mpire View Post
Someone originally asked why doctor's visits were so expensive when using insurance vs paying cash.
Except when it isn't. Go back to my post. The hospital billed the insurance company for only half of the "normal" charge. The non-insured pay full tab.
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  #22  
Old 06-17-2011, 01:06 PM
2.3z3 2.3z3 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougmcintyre View Post
Except when it isn't. Go back to my post. The hospital billed the insurance company for only half of the "normal" charge. The non-insured pay full tab.
+1
I have worked in Radiology for over 20 years if we charge $12,000.00 for a test the
insurance company pays us approx. $2,000.00 the poor guy w/o insurance will only get 20%
off if he pays the day of service. If you don't have insurance and go to a Imaging
Center instead of a hospital you can get the same test for approx $1,200.00.
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