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Old 15th December 2015, 13:11   #286
RGK
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Spoke to my relative in a family function today morning and came to know that VW has clearly said that his Vento cannot be serviced. The estimate given by them is 7.5 lakhs and he is moving to process the claim as Total loss.

Period

My car is now parked in an open space (ASC call it as "yard") which is about 4 km from the service center. Surveyor has completed the formalities and the insurance company is waiting for the estimate. I think it will take a week to get the estimate.

Longer the delay more the frustration.

I wrote an email to my car manufacturer suggesting to send vehicles to other service centers outside Chennai. Pasting the crux of the email and their response (a typical marketing one) from them.
  • Vellore, Trichy and Salem are nearer to Chennai (320kms max) and XXXX can plan to distribute the vehicles that are piled up here.
  • This will help to utilize the man power and facility at the outstation locations which will benefit those ASCís also.
  • The turnaround time will drastically reduce and customer will be pleased to note this initiative.
  • XXX can use large trucks for transporting to other service centers and take care of the logistics. The logistics amount can be shared between customers and XXXX. There will be sizeable number of customers who will accept this option instead of their cars being parked in a ground which will increase the chances of Fungus and Rusting due to moisture present inside the cabin.
  • Instead of calling technicians from other centers, transporting cars is a better plan (only the extra shipping cost).
  • This initiative will also reduce the workload of ASC's in Chennai (which they will definitely welcome at this point of time).
  • The non-availability of Insurance surveyors add woes to the problem. This can be avoided when the cars are moved out.
  • Huge load at particular service point may hit quality as well which may lead to bad service reputation.
  • A pilot test (after the concurrence from the respective customers) can be taken up initially and continued in a large scale.
  • When the cars are serviced completely, it can be transported back with the help of call drivers or even many of the owners will be ready to travel to bring their car. (Travel to Vellore just takes 3 hours max by bus/train).
  • A SPOC has to be appointed from XXX side to coordinate this entire operation.
  • If Trichy and Salem (320 kms) are far, then XXX can try with atleast Vellore now...
  • If XXX does this successfully then it will be the first company to do this for the sole benefit of its customers.


Reply from the manufacturer:


Greetings from XXXXX!!!

We thank you and value your patronage for XXXX and appreciate the time you have taken to communicate with us.

we are working on the same in terms of reducing the timelines for repairing and delivering cars , we are leveraging resources and trying to build efficiencies to handle the situation it may not exactly match all of your suggestions but it does exactly match the intention /outcome .

Assuring you of our best services and continuous support at all times.
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Old 15th December 2015, 13:38   #287
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Quite a few suggestions to sell off a submerged car and get good value out of it. Actually, who will buy a submerged (potentially damaged and expensive to repair) car? Are we talking off scrap yard dealers here?
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Old 15th December 2015, 14:41   #288
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Fellow tbhpians

Picture below shows the level upto which water entered my Honda city.

Name:  waterlevel.png
Views: 5781
Size:  427.6 KB

It was NOT fully submerged. Service center has sent a quote for 8 lakhs. Lot of my colleagues have similar experience of 7/8/9 lakh quote for city/jazz/verna. Friends are suggesting to go with total loss as all garages in chennai are overflowing with flooded cars. But just checking is there a hope of getting this car fixed within 1 or 2 lakhs outside chennai and outside ASS? Any advice on whether to go this path or not?

Quote from Capital Honda chennai

Help! Car submerged in flood-honda_quote1.png

Honda's estimate system seems to be based on a brilliant inky/pinky/ponky algorithm which churns out random quotes between 7-9 lakhs. My friends jazz got 8.8 lakhs estimate and my city got 8 lakhs.

Regards
Dev

Last edited by Gannu_1 : 16th December 2015 at 09:23. Reason: Inserting images in the post.
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Old 15th December 2015, 15:16   #289
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

My friend who owns a VW Polo bought in 2012 is in a very tricky situation. Can someone advise what could potentially happen in his case?

He lives in Perumbakkam in an apartment which was totally flooded in the November 16 rains. During this flood, his car was partially submerged & he was in talks with a VW dealer for resolution. Since the water level was quite high for 3-4 days, he was unable to tow the car to the service station at that time. In the meanwhile, the dealer was also delaying sending a recovery vehicle to tow his car saying he was getting plethora of a flooded cars already. Days passed waiting for the car to be towed & the next flood (worse than the previous) hit Chennai on 1st December. Now here comes his issue. His insurance got expired on November 30th which he realised only on 1st Dec. During the 1st Dec floods, his car got fully submerged in water & a week after that, he's finally managed to send it to the dealer for repair estimation. Since his car was already submerged on Nov 16th, can he claim insurance quoting that date or would the insurance companies play a trick saying the insurance expired a day before the second flood?

What could the worst thing than can happen to him?

Wondering how even just a single day of delay in renewing an insurance can turn out to be a big disaster against us when things don't go our way :(

Last edited by vw19d : 15th December 2015 at 15:30.
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Old 15th December 2015, 15:41   #290
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Quote:
Originally Posted by irdevanand View Post
Fellow tbhpians

Picture below shows the level upto which water entered my Honda city.

[IMG]
It was NOT fully submerged.

Honda's estimate system seems to be based on a brilliant inky/pinky/ponky algorithm which churns out random quotes between 7-9 lakhs. My friends jazz got 8.8 lakhs estimate and my city got 8 lakhs.

Regards
Dev
My rough estimate for restoring this car is no more than a lac.

They don't have the time to remove,clean and refix and hence are redefining the word "estimate".

Basis what you've declared as the max water level ,you should be fine with a serviced starter serviced alternator cleaned intake and fresh oil.Does the engine oil look like white emulsion?

Last edited by vigsom : 15th December 2015 at 16:04. Reason: Additions
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Old 15th December 2015, 16:01   #291
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Did your friend register a claim after the first flood AND
has a claim number AND
(the car was surveyed OR at least picture proof was emailed to insurer) BEFORE the second flood?

If yes, then he might be okay else its very tough now and he should be mentally prepared to personally bear the repair cost/total loss. One needs to prove that the incident happened while the car was insured. I'm afraid his communication with the Dealer alone may not count.

Regards,
RS

Quote:
Originally Posted by vw19d View Post
My friend who owns a VW Polo bought in 2012 is in a very tricky situation. Can someone advise what could potentially happen in his case?

He lives in Perumbakkam in an apartment which was totally flooded in the November 16 rains. During this flood, his car was partially submerged & he was in talks with a VW dealer for resolution. Since the water level was quite high for 3-4 days, he was unable to tow the car to the service station at that time. In the meanwhile, the dealer was also delaying sending a recovery vehicle to tow his car saying he was getting plethora of a flooded cars already. Days passed waiting for the car to be towed & the next flood (worse than the previous) hit Chennai on 1st December. Now here comes his issue. His insurance got expired on November 30th which he realised only on 1st Dec. During the 1st Dec floods, his car got fully submerged in water & a week after that, he's finally managed to send it to the dealer for repair estimation. Since his car was already submerged on Nov 16th, can he claim insurance quoting that date or would the insurance companies play a trick saying the insurance expired a day before the second flood?

What could the worst thing than can happen to him?

Wondering how even just a single day of delay in renewing an insurance can turn out to be a big disaster against us when things don't go our way :(
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Old 15th December 2015, 16:45   #292
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Quote:
Originally Posted by ronline View Post
Did your friend register a claim after the first flood AND
has a claim number AND
(the car was surveyed OR at least picture proof was emailed to insurer) BEFORE the second flood?

If yes, then he might be okay else its very tough now and he should be mentally prepared to personally bear the repair cost/total loss. One needs to prove that the incident happened while the car was insured. I'm afraid his communication with the Dealer alone may not count.

Regards,
RS
I'm not sure when he registered the claim. But I understand that he's mentioned the claim date as 16th Nov in the claim submission form and in all his communication with Bajaj Allianz.
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Old 15th December 2015, 19:27   #293
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Quote:
Originally Posted by vw19d View Post
I'm not sure when he registered the claim. But I understand that he's mentioned the claim date as 16th Nov in the claim submission form and in all his communication with Bajaj Allianz.
If he did not lodge the claim/intimate the agency for 15 good days (for whatever reason) then tough luck, no insurance agency is likely to entertain the request. If you miss renewing the policy, you lose. They may consider based on goodwill though if you are a long time customer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vigsom View Post
My rough estimate for restoring this car is no more than a lac.
Basis what you've declared as the max water level ,you should be fine with a serviced starter serviced alternator cleaned intake and fresh oil.Does the engine oil look like white emulsion?
May be few other odds and ends but definitely recoverable. The problem area is the electronics - relays, controllers, sensors. These may or may not work after drying out.

In my opinion definitely worth a shot: As long as the engine was not fired up and after all these days in water, if the engine can be rotated by hand i.e. hasn't jammed.

Bulk of the cars during the 2005 mumbai floods were submerged to the indicated level and most of them got back on the roads. I see a lot more cars being written off as a total loss post the chennai floods, I do wonder why, my guess is the increased level of electronics in recent years.

One word of caution though, the repaired car will never be the same as original again, it will have its share of niggles with electrical parts but in general it will be reliable and roadworthy. If you are ready to live with it, it is a shot which you can take.
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Old 15th December 2015, 21:26   #294
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Quote:
Originally Posted by cyberwhizs View Post
If he did not lodge the claim/intimate the agency for 15 good days (for whatever reason) then tough luck, no insurance agency is likely to entertain the request. If you miss renewing the policy, you lose. They may consider based on goodwill though if you are a long time customer.
I don't think he initiated the claim within 15 days. So, guess he has to be prepared for bearing the entire cost from his pocket I'm suggesting him to sell off the car if possible. Fingers crossed.
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Old 15th December 2015, 22:46   #295
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The surveyor from Chola MS inspected the car at my residence, and took many pictures. He checked the oil level dipstick, and what we saw was enough proof of water in the engine. The dipstick was completely covered from tip till the yellow handle. Completely!

I'll have to get an evaluation done now. MSM is overflowing, and there's chaos there. Went to have a look at what's happening, and to gauge the queue, to see if I can go back and tow the car into the compound. Depressing atmosphere there, with all flood damaged cars. Good thing is, they have removed all the carpets and hung them out to dry on the ramp railings. They've hired two yards, that are already full.

Didn't want to leave my car on the roadside overnight, so may try tomorrow. Storage and evaluation may cost up to 6k. One SA said that I may not get total loss compensation. That the car can be fixed. I know it's repairable, but not advisable.

I had filled the tank only on the weekend preceding the floods. Any way I can salvage the fuel? Is it advisable to siphon the petrol and store it in some plastic jerry cans? Or would it have got contaminated?

I had removed the seat covers, and slightly opened the carpets from the edges below the seat and near the pedals. I'm tempted to take a sharpie and rip off the floor carpets, to hasten the drying process. There's a carpet kind of material behind the dashboard too, which is visible from the sockets for the front speakers. So much of water still left inside :(

Manufacturers should without a second thought mark cars for total loss claim, depending on the level of submersion, and then attend to those cars that can really be serviced. Piling up cars and trying to sort them out later, for 'evaluation bargaining' is only going to worsen the situation, especially when there's a preset repair estimate for a particular make and model, basis the water level during flooding. The cars are going to rust away, and costs will automatically exceed the IDV. This may sound insensitive, but car makers must choose not to service or attend to those vehicles that are actually running and currently roadworthy!
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Old 16th December 2015, 09:12   #296
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

The general level of well-informed pessimism here about recovering of Polo, despite clean engine oil and the possibility of sourcing electronics electronics overseas is turning me off the idea. Also, the insurers are telling us that settlement will not take a long time as I feared.

My mind has been turned one way, then another. Along with the total impact of the flood, it is hard to think at all
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Old 16th December 2015, 10:14   #297
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
The general level of well-informed pessimism here about recovering of Polo, despite clean engine oil and the possibility of sourcing electronics electronics overseas is turning me off the idea. Also, the insurers are telling us that settlement will not take a long time as I feared.

My mind has been turned one way, then another. Along with the total impact of the flood, it is hard to think at all
Hi, just saw your posts. If the car has had water upto the bonnet level, it will never be the same again. Do not believe the mechanic who tells you he can repair it because the after effects of repairing the car could be worse than the flood itself - read - very low reliability, repetitive repairs / costs, time spent haggling with the mechanic for doing a bad job etc. If you can, get rid of it. However, be careful before you pick up your next car from Chennai too. Wait for a bit and avoid cars that have been manufactured upto and before Dec 2015.
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Old 16th December 2015, 12:45   #298
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Quote:
Originally Posted by satanic_dude View Post
I had filled the tank only on the weekend preceding the floods. Any way I can salvage the fuel? Is it advisable to siphon the petrol and store it in some plastic jerry cans? Or would it have got contaminated?

I had removed the seat covers, and slightly opened the carpets from the edges below the seat and near the pedals. I'm tempted to take a sharpie and rip off the floor carpets, to hasten the drying process. There's a carpet kind of material behind the dashboard too, which is visible from the sockets for the front speakers. So much of water still left inside :(
As the surveyor had completed his evaluation, it is good idea to remove the seat covers and dry it. Drain the petrol and separate the water (water will be at the bottom due to high density).

If the car is properly serviced by the Service center (replacement and proper cleaning of all critical electronic components), then I think she will be trouble free. To ensure reliability, it is better to plan for monthly checkups.

I feel the service centers are sowing a seed of doubt in customer's mind and pushing them for new purchase.
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Old 16th December 2015, 13:13   #299
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Default Re: Help! Car submerged in flood

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
The general level of well-informed pessimism here about recovering of Polo, despite clean engine oil and the possibility of sourcing electronics electronics overseas is turning me off the idea. Also, the insurers are telling us that settlement will not take a long time as I feared.

My mind has been turned one way, then another. Along with the total impact of the flood, it is hard to think at all
I'd say let it go - even if you manage to jump through all the hoops and get it running, you'll have to keep it for ages - because you'll be hit again on resale if and when you try to sell it.

Of course, since you are going through a private workshop, there will be no official record of the flood damage, and you can pass it on to an unwitting buyer, but that wouldnt be the right thing to do
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Old 16th December 2015, 15:00   #300
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Default Local Skoda/VW mechanic in Chennai?

Hi,

My both cars have got damaged in Chennai floods, namely - 2006 Santro Xing XL (IDV 1.2L) and 2012 Rapid Ambition Petrol AT (IDV 5L). After waiting for 2 weeks I've given the Santro to a local mechanic as its an easier car to fix and he estimated the repair at 30-40K. He has already fixed few simple (Santro/Zen/Alto etc) hatchbacks in my/nearby apartments.

The company estimate for Rapid is 15L which means they're obviously not in the mood to actually inspect each and every part and fix it only if required. So my question is, are there any good local service garages which can handle cars like Skoda/VW and automatics? It should have full availability of spare parts and skilled technicians for such cars.

Thanks,
RS
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