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Replacement Parts and Warranty Void after accident

I had an accident where the vehicle went into the ditch and water damaged the engine and transmission on a dodge ram 1500 pick up 4 X 4. The accident was not my fault nor was I cited by Police. I had attempted to avoid being struck at high speed from behind, and was pulled into the ditch via a muddy shoulder of the roadway (flooded area)

My question involves engine replacement. I have 40,000 miles on my engine and I do all the maintenance, oil changes, etc, at the Dodge dealership and they are on record. I usually keep my vehicles for many years and maintain them well.

I need to replace the engine and transmission. The Insurance rep wants to put in a used engine and transmission. The difference is about $860 dollars for the motor, which is the sticking point between me, the insurance rep, and the dealership. The rep will not spend the money and quotes a cheaper price than the dealership.

I have an extended warranty and it will be void if "used" salvage parts are installed and I personally have a problem with used parts for these areas (engine and transmission) as I don't know how well they were maintained, used, and cared for and there is only a 90 day warranty on them!

I've already paid for an extended warranty that now would not cover these two primary items if the insurance company has their way.

Question; Considering my concerns of warranty, resale issues, past maintenance concerns (no records) can the insurance company force a used engine as a repair? and if I do have to pay the difference between the used engine and a new one, do I have to accept their cheapest price mentality when paying that difference over what dodge says it costs ?



You have two different questions here

1. What are your rights regarding the insurance company putting salvage on your car (taking into account warranty and no records) and
2. If you do have to take them, do you have to take the lowest price?

Let me explain approach both separately:

1. You do have rights and insurance companies will look on the other direction. You have stronger rights against the insurance company of the person who is at fault for this accident. Your insurance company has a policy which likely disclaimed new parts and/or warranties (read your policy for more information about that issue.

However, your rights against the person that hit you are this: THEY MUST (NOT OPTIONAL) put you back on the position you were prior the accident. You had a dodge ram 1500 with a good Dodge transmission and engine, and you should get that. You also had a Dodge truck with full warranty on it, you should get that back. Insurance companies will tell you that they do no have to do that, but the bottom line is that the person that hit you owe you this and either the insurance pays or you find a lawyer.

The issues for you will be pressuring the insurance company to pay for the warranty and the diminished value of your truck. This is truly your best claim. Remember that this information is now part of the CARFAX of your truck, so you will have to disclose when you sell, which will make you take a hit. To learn how to document and argue this type of claim, please visit:

2. Do you have to take the lowest price for parts? The answer is no. You have to take comparable parts. However, you are not entitled to new or even dodge parts. I know this is very unfair, but insurance companies have litigated these issues. As I believe it stands, the insurance company has been successful arguing that using Used parts is “reasonable,” and getting dealership parts is not “reasonable or necessary” as they are the most expensive.

Again, you might want to check with an attorney on this one. For now, review the diminished value claim link about and put some pressure on them.

Good Luck

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