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General BMW Questions
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  #1  
Old 05-01-2017, 06:13 PM
adilakif adilakif is offline
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Dealer damaged my car. I need your advice.

Hi everyone,

I took my car to a authorized BMW Dealer in California. They accidentally opened a hole in each side of my car (lower rocker panels- picture attached) when they lift the car for oil change. They said they are ordering the parts and will replace the parts of my car this week. I want to know my rights in this situation. I want to make sure they use original parts from BMW. They said a local body shop will paint the parts. Can they match the factory color? I am really concerned about this.

Please advise me on what I should do if there is anything I can do.

Thank you for your help.

Edit: Some of you ask how it happened. They said this "My technician just informed me that when he was lifting the vehicle up, he had 2 wheel bolts on the lift arms and damaged the lower rocker panels."
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Last edited by adilakif; 05-02-2017 at 11:10 AM.
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  #2  
Old 05-01-2017, 07:30 PM
Autoputzer Autoputzer is offline
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Make sure they paint the new part off the car, and clear coat the part. They might need your car to match the paint. The procedure in a reputable shop is to mix three or four slight variations of the factory color and see which one matches best suing a broad spectrum light (e.g. 3M Sun Gun).

You just reminded me why I do my own oil changes even when I could get free ones at the dealership.
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  #3  
Old 05-01-2017, 09:00 PM
crabu2 crabu2 is offline
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SOrry I can't answer your question, but how in the world does that happen? The hole looks like it was drilled.
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  #4  
Old 05-02-2017, 01:29 AM
Norm37 Norm37 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabu2 View Post
SOrry I can't answer your question, but how in the world does that happen? The hole looks like it was drilled.
I would like to see the hole on the other side. To see if it looks like an exit hole. This one looks like it could be a bullet entrance hole.
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  #5  
Old 05-02-2017, 04:33 AM
PlatinumV8 PlatinumV8 is offline
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Lower rocker panel or part of the integral unit body structure? I'd bet money they will weld in a patch and grind it down and throw body filler over it if it cannot be easily removed. Demand, don't ask for all the old parts they remove down to panel clips that break. That and say you want to look at what is behind those holes before they do the repairs. Any BMW shop has a borescope for looking inside engines and you need to find out what other damage is in there.

Looks like a bullet hole to me too. It has lots of push, so I'd say subsonic, maybe .45 ACP?
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  #6  
Old 05-02-2017, 05:35 AM
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Rusty34 Rusty34 is offline
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Not only looks like it was drilled but looks drilled AND tapped. There are no parts to replace, the hole is in a part which is integral with the unibody structure. They will weld a patch over each hole and refinish in the usual manner with aftermarket surfacers and paint. It can be made to look OK though.
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  #7  
Old 05-02-2017, 06:40 AM
PlatinumV8 PlatinumV8 is offline
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I just looked on a full size screen and I agree that was no bullet. Why the deformation though? That half moon ridge leads me to think pressure from below like the car was indeed damaged via a lift or something left under it as it was dropped down to the ground. Maybe the small hole is them drilling it out to hide what really happened hoping you leave and blame it on something else. It's on both sides in the same area?

I've got my own small opening to deal with. New lower radiator hose temperature sensor is leaking and car has not even been started yet. At least I saved the old one and noticed clear silicone sealant over the o-ring and at the base of the sensor. Looks like I'm going to have to drain the system dry and siicone the new one too. I've never understood why BMW o rings are so undersized on each part I've seen. The o rings are barely taller than the edge of the race they are seated in. No wonder all these leaks and expensive BMW coolant loss. I'm tempted to invest in a shop supply of various size green o-rings. What is the use of a quick disconnect sensor if it's just going to leak if you don't drain down the system and silicone seal it.
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  #8  
Old 05-02-2017, 06:47 AM
Norm37 Norm37 is online now
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Just had another thought, maybe the repair shop is experimenting with new ways to lift cars.

A giant is hook hanging from the ceiling.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ANTIQUE-LARG...-/112390948157
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  #9  
Old 05-02-2017, 06:48 AM
Norm37 Norm37 is online now
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Delete double post

Last edited by Norm37; 05-02-2017 at 10:16 AM. Reason: Double Post
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  #10  
Old 05-02-2017, 06:55 AM
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Rusty34 Rusty34 is offline
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I believe I would also get the general manager involved because he needs to be aware of this so he can follow how his service department handles it.

Can you ask the service manager how the car was punctured on both sides so we can watch out for something like that?
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  #11  
Old 05-02-2017, 07:07 AM
PlatinumV8 PlatinumV8 is offline
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Norm that's funny. Good find!

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  #12  
Old 05-02-2017, 10:20 AM
imtjm imtjm is offline
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First you need to get documentation they are accepting liability, which is sounds like they are since they are ordering parts and getting it painted. They should be doing this through their affiliated BMW body shop. I don't know how they would be using anything but BMW parts, since I don't know of any company that makes BMW rocker panels. Yes, they can match the factory color. I would want to know how they made those holes. If they accidentally lifted the car in the wrong place, I would be concerned with additional damage, especially structural damage. So, determine what caused the holes, and go from there. The lower rocker panel is plastic, so it is no big woop to get it replaced and painted. Make sure the door wasn't impacted somehow either.
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  #13  
Old 05-02-2017, 11:07 AM
adilakif adilakif is offline
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I added the other side in the original post.
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  #14  
Old 05-02-2017, 11:12 AM
adilakif adilakif is offline
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They said this "My technician just informed me that when he was lifting the vehicle up, he had 2 wheel bolts on the lift arms and damaged the lower rocker panels."
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  #15  
Old 05-02-2017, 11:28 AM
PlatinumV8 PlatinumV8 is offline
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Vandalism

It looks like a deliberate act to me. It also looks like a circle punch not a wheel bolt as to have them BOTH do the same kind of damage with the second picture look like the punch was repositioned after a test hit, makes me think vandalism or revenge. Ask him to replicate the set up at a lift and say if he can't showait how it happened it must have been intentional. I'd be driving to the cops. One side maybe. These were placed to do the most damage in and place people aren't going to notice until later, IMO. A bolt would tear through, not leave a clean cut, like a circle punch does.
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  #16  
Old 05-02-2017, 11:56 AM
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Now it makes sense, I wondered why those round holes looked like they were drilled and tapped. The four adjustable lift arms make a convenient place to put tools and parts during the operation. I can see now how bolts or things with bolts sticking up could punch through the rocker panels when the lift is going up to make contact with the car's frame. If you look closely you can see impressions of threads in the holes made by bolts when they punched through. There may be some plastic parts nearby but the rocker panels are not removable or replaceable. They are an integral part of the unitized body structure. They cannot be replaced, they will have to be patched.


Last edited by Rusty34; 05-02-2017 at 11:58 AM.
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  #17  
Old 05-02-2017, 01:00 PM
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Viperbeemer Viperbeemer is offline
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That part of the car is fiberglass. It looks drilled and threaded because the bolts are threaded. I have seen this happen before.
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  #18  
Old 05-02-2017, 01:10 PM
PlatinumV8 PlatinumV8 is offline
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Why would there be bolts or hole punches on lift arms when starting a job? I bet I could line it up perfect if someone gave me a measuring tape, prepped bolts tack welded after a few tries/lifts. Both sides the same by accident? No. The bolt would slide out or tear a hole not make threads. Maybe crap ones when it was backed out. No marks from the wheel bolt heads? This looks more like a custom punch mounted into the lift arm holes and punishment for something. In this political climate I wouldn't put it past someone. We have cars here in Michigan getting vandalized just for displaying American flag stickers or decals. The flag is seen as racist by left leaning groups after Trump won. I'm not picking sides it's just what law enforcement here has stated and advised people to remove flag decals and Trump campaign bumper stickers. People are using bricks to break windows of cars suspected as Trump supporters and when addresses are known they are throwing them in peoples house windows, proudly on social media. Facebook today was outed as saying these posts are o.k. even if they recommend using bricks agaisnt suspected Trump supporters. They've already used bike locks and fireworks bombs. BMW is perceived as a rich capitalists automobile and the leftists are self identifying as wanting communism through resistance and violent revolt. If I were you I'd ask to meet all the techs that had access to your car.

Last edited by PlatinumV8; 05-02-2017 at 01:12 PM.
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  #19  
Old 05-02-2017, 01:43 PM
Glaird Glaird is offline
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I agree with Rusty34, that looks like damage to the integral box structure (commonly called the 'rocker panel'), that basically forms the entire structure of the car. I just went out and examined my 5 series. I have plastic M-sport covers, fastened over that same structure.
Rusty34 is right. There is no part to replace. They will likely weld a patch over the hole, sand to shape, paint to match. That is not a compromise repair. Your car will be as good as new, structurally and visually, if the job is done by a competent body shop. Since I don't see a serious crease in the area that was punched, I seriously doubt that you have to worry about hidden damage. Box structures like that area, have, relatively speaking, large empty space inside. Unless the bolt(?) that punched that hole was longer than say 3", it is not likely that it hit anything critical.
To double check, shine a bright but narrow beam flashlight into the hole. Look for a wire loom. If you don't see one, then they definitely didn't puncture anything else.

It is a sad feeling though. It is kind of like the first door ding on a brand new car. Once done, you can't go back. But, it most certainly will happen sooner or later.
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  #20  
Old 05-02-2017, 02:35 PM
imtjm imtjm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty34 View Post
There may be some plastic parts nearby but the rocker panels are not removable or replaceable. They are an integral part of the unitized body structure. They cannot be replaced, they will have to be patched.
Wrong. The rocker trim panels shown are removable and replaceable. They are plastic.

Last edited by imtjm; 05-02-2017 at 02:42 PM.
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  #21  
Old 05-02-2017, 02:42 PM
imtjm imtjm is offline
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Originally Posted by adilakif View Post
They said this "My technician just informed me that when he was lifting the vehicle up, he had 2 wheel bolts on the lift arms and damaged the lower rocker panels."
I presume he meant the rocker panel trim, not the side member or side member reinforcement. The pictures look like the bolts just went through the rocker panel trim and didn't go into the support ledges. Ensure they check the support ledges to make sure those weren't pierced.

At the end of the day, it's a simple fix: non M primed rocker trim panels are 51777312751 and 51777312752 for your vehicle. They will just paint them and pop them back on. It's really not a big issue, unless they damaged something else; however, it doesn't look like they did.

Since it was in the shop, I don't believe they will report it as an accident on carfax or at all. If the damage was reported as an accident, you could also claim diminished value through that dealership's insurance company, since California is a diminished value state.

Last edited by imtjm; 05-02-2017 at 02:51 PM.
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  #22  
Old 05-02-2017, 04:19 PM
Glaird Glaird is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imtjm View Post
I presume he meant the rocker panel trim, not the side member or side member reinforcement. The pictures look like the bolts just went through the rocker panel trim and didn't go into the support ledges. Ensure they check the support ledges to make sure those weren't pierced.

At the end of the day, it's a simple fix: non M primed rocker trim panels are 51777312751 and 51777312752 for your vehicle. They will just paint them and pop them back on. It's really not a big issue, unless they damaged something else; however, it doesn't look like they did.
I suspect you are looking at a BMW parts catalog. Ergo, you have superior information to the rest of us. So I magnified the image on my monitor.
If it were metal, the paint would fleck at the top of that dimple on the 1st image, where the end of the protrusion stopped.
If it were classic plastic, such as the molding for my M-sport side trim, it would crack with that much deformation. Plus, the there would not be thread like debris around the hole, nor grainy thread like edges on the edge of the trim piece. In fact, it has to be trim, because the edge of it is visible, instead of a spot welded or solid welded seam. Of course, neither would the edge of a metal piece appear that way.
Ultimately, this must be constructed of some composite. Perhaps fiberglas, carbon fiber (not likely, because I don't see the characteristic cross weave), or what we use to call in the day; masonite. But composites don't usually retain their deformed shape after the load is removed.

In the end, I do see a very distinct straight bottom edge to the punctured piece, that is ragged. Ergo, it is an attachment. Under magnification, I do not see any shadows inside the hole. Ergo, no wire looms or such. Easy peasy, lemon squeezie.
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  #23  
Old 05-03-2017, 01:22 PM
imtjm imtjm is offline
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ooops
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  #24  
Old 05-03-2017, 01:22 PM
imtjm imtjm is offline
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Originally Posted by Glaird View Post
I suspect you are looking at a BMW parts catalog. Ergo, you have superior information to the rest of us. So I magnified the image on my monitor.
no, realoem.com is available to everyone

Quote:
Originally Posted by Glaird View Post
If it were metal, the paint would fleck at the top of that dimple on the 1st image, where the end of the protrusion stopped.
If it were classic plastic, such as the molding for my M-sport side trim, it would crack with that much deformation. Plus, the there would not be thread like debris around the hole, nor grainy thread like edges on the edge of the trim piece. In fact, it has to be trim, because the edge of it is visible, instead of a spot welded or solid welded seam. Of course, neither would the edge of a metal piece appear that way.
Ultimately, this must be constructed of some composite. Perhaps fiberglas, carbon fiber (not likely, because I don't see the characteristic cross weave), or what we use to call in the day; masonite. But composites don't usually retain their deformed shape after the load is removed.
No, the regular and M-sport rocker panel trim are made out of PP+EPDM, which is stamped inside the trim pieces, not some sort of composite like fiberglass or carbon fiber. How many bumper covers have you seen in your lifetime or just today that have been completely deformed and dented in without cracking? Look, there goes another car. No, the rocker panel trim won't necessarily crack with that much deformation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Glaird View Post
In the end, I do see a very distinct straight bottom edge to the punctured piece, that is ragged. Ergo, it is an attachment. Under magnification, I do not see any shadows inside the hole. Ergo, no wire looms or such. Easy peasy, lemon squeezie.

anyway, all photo sleuthing aside, it is a simple fix for a body shop to order trim pieces, paint, and replace.
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  #25  
Old 05-03-2017, 01:46 PM
Glaird Glaird is offline
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Originally Posted by imtjm View Post
How many bumper covers have you seen in your lifetime or just today that have been completely deformed and dented in without cracking?
Quite frankly, none. Every bumper that has been (Admittedly that I could tell.) touched, scraped, or depressed has flecked off paint or at the very least shown severe abrasion/spider web cracking. My brand new 99 Lexus, popped off a quarter sized circle of paint, when I bumped it while sliding a ramp under the front wheel.

Curiously, the window tint installer parked my 550, in contact with the cement curb. That is when I realized the bumper covert was not polyurethane, but simple plastic, painted to match. I had simple linear scratches, where it dragged across the concrete block. I have no doubt that if it had been deformed, it would cracked like a plastic toy.
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