Insurance help?
April 26, 2011 5:52 PM   Subscribe

Deer hunting with my BMW was expensive! Insurance question from a former insurance agent who has forgotten the rules...

I hit a deer last week with my pretty car causing about 3K in repairs. My wonderful insurance has covered everything including a rental for the last 10 days minus 100$ comprehensive deductible. This accident is considered "not at fault".

My concern is that my right head lighting unit was totally replaced and now make the left side cover look... faded and slightly dingy... being that the car is 5 years old so the origional part is older.

I understand the left side unit was not damaged and so not replaced but now my car looks uneven. For me to replace the headlight cover on my own is about 400$.

Any experience or advice on how to proceed?
posted by kiwi-epitome to Grab Bag (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You're probably stuck with that one. I'm not aware of any personal auto policy which provides coverage for replacing undamaged parts just because they don't match the newly replaced ones.

posted by valkyryn at 6:15 PM on April 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

Is the cover plastic? They make plastic restoration kits that you can find at the auto parts store for around $25 dollars. It won't restore it to looking new, but it will help. Otherwise I think you're either going to have to buy a new headlight cover or get over it. No one is really going to notice unmatching headlight covers.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 6:23 PM on April 26, 2011 [2 favorites]

I bet you can find a replacement on eBay for much cheaper, or spend a weekend hunting around your local Pick and Pull.
posted by padraigin at 6:31 PM on April 26, 2011

Best answer: seconding restoration before replacement...

some brands of metal polish can be used to restore transparent plastics. a tube will run you between seven and ten dollars. you will need to supply your own elbow grease.

i've been using simichrome for some metal restoration projects. it came highly recommended. i highly recommend it. others will recommend mother's mag or autosol.

posted by One Thousand and One at 7:54 PM on April 26, 2011

Best answer: Here is a link to a BMW forum describing how to restore the other head light cover. (Scroll down just a bit.)

He's using a 3M product, which is exactly what I recommend.
posted by snsranch at 7:59 PM on April 26, 2011

That'll teach you to keep a baseball bat around to finish the other side of the job next time, eh?

In all seriousness, those restoration kits are some sort of black magic. They're abrasive the right amount and the plastic typically responds really well to them.
posted by disillusioned at 10:47 PM on April 26, 2011

Or you could just distress the new one a bit with an abrasive kitchen cleaner.
posted by flabdablet at 12:54 AM on April 27, 2011

Take it to an auto detailer, most can polish your headlight to new for about $60.

It's fairly hard to do on your own, you will need to wetsand with multiple grits then use a liquid polish. Also it's best to apply a UV protectant afterward to prevent yellowing
posted by wongcorgi at 7:54 AM on April 27, 2011

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