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Old 11-02-2015, 07:15 PM   #1
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Hail damage: repair, total, or buy back?

Our 2011 Airstream 23FB sustained hail damage - all top panels, not structural failure but certainly "peppered". A repair quote is close enough to value that the insurance company will total it - our choice. We have the option of buying it back, so could use it and/or sell it. We would do OK financially if it were totaled, or if we bought it back. There is one insurance company willing to insure it.

What would you do? Or, would you be interested in the trailer as-is?
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Old 11-02-2015, 07:31 PM   #2
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If the numbers worked out, I would let them total it, buy it back and use it as is.
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Old 11-02-2015, 08:04 PM   #3
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Tough call, I think if you have a really good Airstream in every other way and you have no desire for anything larger of different, buy it back. That is, if you don't mind the dents.

Otherwise it's an opportunity to go shopping for something else you have been thinking about, or to get rid of some nagging problems with it.
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Old 11-02-2015, 08:53 PM   #4
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Years ago (early 90's) I had a 25' which got too close to a flatbed truck and got scratched both above and below the beltline so all the upper and lower panels on one side were slightly damaged. Mostly it was long scratches about 1/16" deep. The repair cost was more than the used selling price of the trailer, so the insurance company totaled it out and sold it back to me for $1500. A while later someone offered me $4500 for it, but I kept it and sold it to a good friend for $3000.

I would take the hail damaged trailer for the salvage value and live with it.
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Old 11-03-2015, 12:14 PM   #5
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You just got me to thinking-
My trailer has hail damage- maybe hundreds of dimples on the roof-
I've done absolutely nothing. It received the damage a year and a half ago. It has been to Jackson Center since then. Everyone says to live with it.
Maybe I should have made a claim and bought the trailer back.
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Old 11-03-2015, 12:19 PM   #6
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One of the members in our unit has a 16' Bambi with hail damage on all sides. It literally looks like a golf ball. Everything works just fine, he's happy with it, and it always draws attention and fun conversation when ever he shows up at a rally.
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Old 11-03-2015, 12:23 PM   #7
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golf balls have dimples to help them get through the air better. It may improve your gas mileage....

It shouldn't impact your ability to drive it at all. you may be able to use a slide hammer on it, or fill the whole thing with bondo and paint it.
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Old 11-03-2015, 12:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidmenges View Post
Our 2011 Airstream 23FB sustained hail damage - all top panels, not structural failure but certainly "peppered". A repair quote is close enough to value that the insurance company will total it - our choice. We have the option of buying it back, so could use it and/or sell it. We would do OK financially if it were totaled, or if we bought it back. There is one insurance company willing to insure it.
What would you do? Or, would you be interested in the trailer as-is?
Definitely total and buy back..
Only down side is you will have a salvage title but still can sell the unit when you are ready.
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Old 11-03-2015, 01:08 PM   #9
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Buy back. I did. Now I don't have to worry about more damage.
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Old 11-03-2015, 01:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidmenges View Post
Our 2011 Airstream 23FB sustained hail damage - all top panels, not structural failure but certainly "peppered". A repair quote is close enough to value that the insurance company will total it - our choice. We have the option of buying it back, so could use it and/or sell it. We would do OK financially if it were totaled, or if we bought it back. There is one insurance company willing to insure it.

What would you do? Or, would you be interested in the trailer as-is?
I was the only field "special representative" of Caravanner insurance many years ago.

I settled over 1000 (one thousand) hail loss claims, of which only 1 (one) was a total loss.

We replaced everything on the exterior, except the sheet metal. The hail damage, to the sheet metal, in time, when exposed to the sun, will simply disappear. Back then, owners would say "no way". The mid west, if you wish, back then, was "hail loss country". What we did was take the photo's of their previous loss from the previous year or years, and inspected the coach with the owner. In every case, most of the hail dent simply disappeared.

With the value of today's Airstreams being many times higher than 3 to 4 decades ago, it would seem almost impossible for an Airstream trailer or motorhome be totalled because of hail damage.

Simple exposure to the sun, usually from the first summer, the majority of the hail dents, will disappear.

Caravanner insurance paid the owners a "loss of value" and itemized the amount of damage to each panel. Should any of those panels be damaged from a collision, then the amount that was paid for that specific panel would be deducted, on the basis that you cannot have two losses for the same panel.

A hail damaged Airstream product indeed looks terrible, but given time, most of those dents, and sometimes all of those dents, at least in the side sheets, will just "go away".

Remember the old TV program "believe it or not", then in the case of hail damage to an Airstream product, BELIEVE IT that most of the dents will disappear.

Let the insurance company total the coach, then buy it back, SUPER CHEAP. You will be the wise one, and they will be out smarted every time.

Andy
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Old 11-03-2015, 05:53 PM   #11
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Some of my hail dings disappeared, but there are still hundreds a year and a half later-
No e of them are big enough to stop camping-
The ones that simply disappeared were the dings in the rear end cap. The last time I washed and waxed the trailer (last month) there were only a couple, down from 17!
There are still hundreds on the roof, but I only see them when I wash it. They're not visible from the ground, only from a ladder.


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Old 11-04-2015, 07:36 PM   #12
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OP,

got pictures?
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Old 11-12-2015, 08:56 PM   #13
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Would the buy back result in a "salvage title"? If so what would that do to the value of the trailer?
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Old 11-12-2015, 11:00 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by sgschwend View Post
Would the buy back result in a "salvage title"? If so what would that do to the value of the trailer?
On the one I bought back from State Farm, they never got the title and changed anything, they simply deducted the buy back cost from my final check. As I recall the value was $6200 and they wanted $1500 for it if I kept it, so I got a check for $4700. I kept the trailer and the original title.

This was in the early 90's in Washington State. I don't even know if all states have a "salvage title". Some may not, just guessing.
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