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Wondering if anybody had some insight to help me with a problem. My Ridgeline was involved in an accident in Oct 2014. Prius decided to merge into my lane and collided with the drivers side front. Hit the wheel, fender, bumper. the collision damaged some part of the steering. My steering wheel was now 90 degrees turned the the left with the wheels/car pointing straight. Took truck to body shop, two weeks later it was ready, body damage fixed and they aligned it said all was good. Got in to drive away and the steering wheel was still 90 degrees left. Left truck 2nd time, picked it up and steering wheel seemed straight for a few days then moved to 12 degrees right with Ridgeline pointed straight.. I took the truck to another shop. Shop owner tells me the frame is straight and he aligned it again. Steering wheel is straight. Few weeks go by and i notice steering wheel is now moved 12 degrees right with Truck pointed straight down the road. Now i start to hear some weird sounds while parking truck like shudder and vibrating in the steering wheel. Truck now tracks left if i hold steering wheel in perfect 0 degrees position, (where it should be). I reviewed all three alignments after the accident including the alignment figures pre-accident that i had from July of 2014. I took the measurements from the pre-repair specs and pre-accident put them into an online conversion calc to convert from degrees to inches/mm and found the alignment was off by about 2 inches after the wheel was hit. I having difficulty getting anybody to fix this issue. Body shop does not have experience. second shop, i think just took my $200 bucks and did an alignment. I'm told if it aligns it's good. Now I have to take it to the dealer or somebody to tear it down and figure out the cause. Insurance company is playing games with me, does not want to pay for any more work. What do you guys think? Here are my questions/concerns?

1. Steering wheel was perfectly straight before accident,post accident not. Is this normal?
2. parking lot steering noises shudder/vibrating noise normal?
3. Did something bend/break when wheel was hit by prius?
4. Where do i take the truck to get diagnosed and fixed by an expert? (I live in Ashburn, VA)
5. Do I need a lawyer to sue the other driver and insurance company to get them to pay and make me whole for my loss of value?
 

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Wondering if anybody had some insight to help me with a problem. My Ridgeline was involved in an accident in Oct 2014. Prius decided to merge into my lane and collided with the drivers side front. Hit the wheel, fender, bumper. the collision damaged some part of the steering. My steering wheel was now 90 degrees turned the the left with the wheels/car pointing straight. Took truck to body shop, two weeks later it was ready, body damage fixed and they aligned it said all was good. Got in to drive away and the steering wheel was still 90 degrees left. Left truck 2nd time, picked it up and steering wheel seemed straight for a few days then moved to 12 degrees right with Ridgeline pointed straight.. I took the truck to another shop. Shop owner tells me the frame is straight and he aligned it again. Steering wheel is straight. Few weeks go by and i notice steering wheel is now moved 12 degrees right with Truck pointed straight down the road. Now i start to hear some weird sounds while parking truck like shudder and vibrating in the steering wheel. Truck now tracks left if i hold steering wheel in perfect 0 degrees position, (where it should be). I reviewed all three alignments after the accident including the alignment figures pre-accident that i had from July of 2014. I took the measurements from the pre-repair specs and pre-accident put them into an online conversion calc to convert from degrees to inches/mm and found the alignment was off by about 2 inches after the wheel was hit. I having difficulty getting anybody to fix this issue. Body shop does not have experience. second shop, i think just took my $200 bucks and did an alignment. I'm told if it aligns it's good. Now I have to take it to the dealer or somebody to tear it down and figure out the cause. Insurance company is playing games with me, does not want to pay for any more work. What do you guys think? Here are my questions/concerns?

1. Steering wheel was perfectly straight before accident,post accident not. Is this normal?
2. parking lot steering noises shudder/vibrating noise normal?
3. Did something bend/break when wheel was hit by prius?
4. Where do i take the truck to get diagnosed and fixed by an expert? (I live in Ashburn, VA)
5. Do I need a lawyer to sue the other driver and insurance company to get them to pay and make me whole for my loss of value?
YES to #3 above. I suspect your steering rack is damaged/slipping (sheered teeth?). It is also possible, but I believe less likely, that the "spline" (if there is a spline on our RLs... I'm really not sure of the connection type) that connects the end of your steering column to the steering rack is stripped & slipping. One of these components is trashed & is actually unsafe (use those words when talking with your insurance company). Your dealer will easily be able to diagnose what's broken when you explain clearly what's been happening.... be sure to emphasize that the steering wheel ends up significantly "off angle" after you have driven it for a while.... that it is migrating rotationally. Then make sure they know that your insurance company will need a thorough description of the damage & that it was caused by collision at front wheel area. Be SURE to explain to the service guys about the accident prior to the 'drifting' steering wheel dilemma you now have. This is what I SUSPECT..... I suppose it's also possible that there is some means that this "breakage" could be at the steering wheel itself... but again I'm not aware of it's attachment method to the steering column... so can't really speculate. SOMEWHERE in that chain you've got damage... let the experts sort it out.

Below are dealers in your area with service depts that should be able to help you with this. First link is closest.... second link is list of alternatives not too far away.

Regarding legal action, most insurance companies 'bluff' their resistance to claims because lots of people simply give up thinking they are stuck. If you press them, they will pay... you won't have to go to court unless it's really a fly-by-night outfit. Just get the documentation from dealer (get a quote for repairs first if you want to try to get insurance company to pay them directly). Hopefully, this accident was not too long ago, correct? 'Might be a Pain, but you should get covered w/o issue. If it is the "other guy" paying (his insurance company), you are even in better shape than if it was your own insurance paying. You won't have any restrictions in that case (other guy at fault), and he / his insurance is required to "make you whole"... which means they get you back to where you were prior to the accident. This ALSO includes a diminished value claim (diminution of value, as it's called). Once your vehicle has been in a significant accident, it won't qualify for "Certified Pre-owned" and in fact has lost some value technically, relative to other non-accident vehicles. Because of this, you may be able to recover moneys that represent this lost value. It costs a few hundred dollars to companies that specialize in these types of claims, but you may get a few thousand in return. I think I got about 6 thousand cash (beyond repairs) for such a claim when my S2000 was seriously rear-ended years ago... it was only about a year old, so the value was still high. But you should check it out. Just look up companies that do this kind of thing on Google. I used a company called Collision Claims Associates out of Georgia - they service the US where permitted. Depending on what state you live in, some places do not allow diminished value claims. Worked out great for me. FYI, they do all the work... extensive research on before & after values, write up thorough appraisals, and final reports. Then they literally walk you through a fairly drawn out process as the insurance company does their "dodge-dance" prior to paying you. Good luck with all of this. Don't sit on any of this... time is of the essence... and once you get started, be patient as it all unfolds.

https://www.google.com/webhp?source...=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=honda dealer ashburn, va
http://www.edmunds.com/dealerships/Honda/Virginia/Ashburn.html
 

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First and foremost kudos to you your post has lots of good information. You clearly are an educated customer. The best kind. :cheerleader:


1. Steering wheel was perfectly straight before accident,post accident not. Is this normal?
No. Not at all. A correct and proper repair will return the vehicle to pre accident condition in three aspects.
1) Appearance
2) Corrosion protection
3) Safety and collision performance.
Clearly you are missing two of those. ( I suspect all three though )

2. parking lot steering noises shudder/vibrating noise normal?
No. Unless it was like that pre accident, which I dont think it was.


3. Did something bend/break when wheel was hit by prius?
I agree with Dinic. ( he is a smart fellow ) I am thinking you have some steering rack funk.
On ANY of the work orders, were there ANY suspension parts replaced?
Did the use new OEM or did they use A/M ( after market ) or L.K.Q. ( Like kind and quality ie. used ) Tell me what parts were replaced.
Also tell me if there is any thing on the work order like " Set up" and "Pull" and of so, how many labor hours associated with those processes.


4. Where do i take the truck to get diagnosed and fixed by an expert? (I live in Ashburn, VA)
First things first I would take it back to the initial shop. Give them the benefit of the doubt. MOST shops have integrity and really want to do the job right and will work hard to make the customer happy. Most shops....
Tell them to treat it as a supplemental claim. They will directly deal with the insurance company. Realize though insurance companies hate to get up off of money. Simply remind them, in a polite and professional manner that their client put you in this position and it is their obligation to restore your vehicle to pre accident condition in the three phases I listed above. If you get no where with that shop, find a shop that has I-CAR trained technicians. ( www.I-CAR.com ) Explain your situation to them. If they decide to look at it, you might have some initial out of pocket expense, but you would have a legal right to get reimbursed from the insurance company.
Unfortunately, you have quite a bit of work ahead of you. But you are completely justified in your complaint.


5. Do I need a lawyer to sue the other driver and insurance company to get them to pay and make me whole for my loss of value?
Possibly eventually. Lawyers are SUPER expensive. You should also get your insurance company in on this as well. ( I should have said that earlier )
They will be a big help to you to making things right. ( or at least they should be ) ( this is what you pay them a crap ton of money for )

Let me ask you this.....
When you filed a claim with the owner of the Prius's insurance company did they tell you where to take your truck for repairs ?

Is the steering wheel your ONLY complaint with the repair ?
( color match, even and consistent gaps, fit and finish )
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the information, really good info here from both posts. I'm sure there is something wrong with the steering. The body shop just did an alignment,nothing else. I'm going to call the diminished value company to get that claim started.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I agree with Dinic. ( he is a smart fellow ) I am thinking you have some steering rack funk.
On ANY of the work orders, were there ANY suspension parts replaced?

Only part replaced was the left front wheel.

Did the use new OEM or did they use A/M ( after market ) or L.K.Q. ( Like kind and quality ie. used ) Tell me what parts were replaced.
OEM parts only, just the wheel, headlamp.

Also tell me if there is any thing on the work order like " Set up" and "Pull" and of so, how many labor hours associated with those processes. No Setup and Pull, just two alignments.


Let me ask you this.....
When you filed a claim with the owner of the Prius's insurance company did they tell you where to take your truck for repairs ?
No, I used my insurance company. I didn't want the hassle, since the other driver would not admit fault. That was a good decision on my part since the other driver refused to contact/speak my insurer and the his company refuses to assume liability. My insurer is USAA, and so far they placed blame on the other driver. The claim is going to arbitration so my insurer can hopefully get some payment from them.

Is the steering wheel your ONLY complaint with the repair ?
( color match, even and consistent gaps, fit and finish )[/QUOTE]

Pretty much just the steering, the paint and color match was pretty awesome job. Really good info here too, thanks, appreciate all the info.
 

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It will be easier to get the Diminished Value claim through via the other guy's insurance. Your own policy may exclude this, but if he's at fault, he is liable to "make you whole". Be sure to discuss this with the folks at D.V. company you contact to be sure you don't start down a road that is a non-starter & get stuck with a processing fee for no good reason. If you thoroughly explain your situation, they will advise you on likelihood of success going in (depends on state, insurance companies involved, who's policy, who's liable, etc.). They don't want to process bad prospects either.... it hurts their success rate. Good Luck with that. It can be time well spent.
BTW, this is completely separate from your collision claim.
 

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Hmmmm.
Interesting.

NO suspension replaced, passes alignment, frame measurements are accurate.....

WAIT, there is NO time on the work order for "SET UP"
SOMETHING is really wrong here.
you said
bmwbadboy said:
the alignment was off by about 2 inches after the wheel was hit.
There is NO PLACE on your suspension where you have two inches of adjustment. A part would either have to be replaced or the unibody would have to be pulled.

Do you have ANY pre repair pictures of the damage ?
A new wheel but no tire ?

Did the second shop just use an alignment machine or did thay take measurements of the unibody ?

Something is not adding up here....
 

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DO NOT SELL IT until this problem is resolved. That would be completely and totally irresponsible and putting the buyer at risk.
 

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I agree with Dinic. ( he is a smart fellow ) I am thinking you have some steering rack funk.
On ANY of the work orders, were there ANY suspension parts replaced?

Only part replaced was the left front wheel.

Did the use new OEM or did they use A/M ( after market ) or L.K.Q. ( Like kind and quality ie. used ) Tell me what parts were replaced.
OEM parts only, just the wheel, headlamp.

Also tell me if there is any thing on the work order like " Set up" and "Pull" and of so, how many labor hours associated with those processes. No Setup and Pull, just two alignments.


Let me ask you this.....
When you filed a claim with the owner of the Prius's insurance company did they tell you where to take your truck for repairs ?
No, I used my insurance company. I didn't want the hassle, since the other driver would not admit fault. That was a good decision on my part since the other driver refused to contact/speak my insurer and the his company refuses to assume liability. My insurer is USAA, and so far they placed blame on the other driver. The claim is going to arbitration so my insurer can hopefully get some payment from them.

Is the steering wheel your ONLY complaint with the repair ?
( color match, even and consistent gaps, fit and finish )
Pretty much just the steering, the paint and color match was pretty awesome job. Really good info here too, thanks, appreciate all the info.[/QUOTE]

You can take the at fault party to small claims court for the extra cost/diminished value. When the other party gets served they will press their insurance company to satisfy the claim.

Good luck.
 

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"There is NO PLACE on your suspension where you have two inches of adjustment. A part would either have to be replaced or the unibody would have to be pulled."

I am not a body guy, but I can say that if a tech told me one wheel was out by 2 inches, I would not have driven it from the shop. I had an RX-7 once that had a bent cradle that pushed one of the front tires about an inch, and that car was barely driveable. I thought it was just badly out of alignment. Once we found the problem, the car was on a trailer to a body shop to get the frame pulled.
I hope you get your problems corrected and can get back to feeling confident that the vehicle you are driving is safe.
Rob
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
You can take the at fault party to small claims court for the extra cost/diminished value. When the other party gets served they will press their insurance company to satisfy the claim.
>> I like this info. I may need to do this since the other driver refuses to cooperate and his insurer (Elephant) refused claim. My insurer agreed that other driver was at fault. Now mine (USAA) and Elephant are going to arbitration to try to resolve.

I have an appointment with the Auto Nation Honda Dealer on Friday. My insurance company (who i have the claim with) is sending an adjuster out too. Hope to get to the bottom and resolve these issues.

I gave my claim and accident info to a DV appraiser and so far they said i can't claim much <$1000. But i will resubmit and eval once i figure out how much more in damages i have.
Thanks for the info.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
The toe diff was .454 inches the before alignment and after accident before repair. My mistake on the 2 inches. that is incorrect. the alignment on the right was taken July 2014. 45k on same tires. No front alignment needed.

http://robrobinette.com/ConvertToeDegreesToInches.htm
 

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2008 Ridgeline RTS in Billet Silver Metallic
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At least with USAA you have a well respected insurance company to help you out. That in itself may be worth something.

Here's a question for you insurance guys: if someone does a hit and run on your vehicle, what coverage do you have to have to cover that sort of damage?
 

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Ouch ravill. Sorry to see/hear that. Makes you sick doesn't it?

So no comporehensive, no hit and run coverage? Hmm.
 

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Wondering if anybody had some insight to help me with a problem. My Ridgeline was involved in an accident in Oct 2014. Prius decided to merge into my lane and collided with the drivers side front. Hit the wheel, fender, bumper. the collision damaged some part of the steering. My steering wheel was now 90 degrees turned the the left with the wheels/car pointing straight. Took truck to body shop, two weeks later it was ready, body damage fixed and they aligned it said all was good. Got in to drive away and the steering wheel was still 90 degrees left. Left truck 2nd time, picked it up and steering wheel seemed straight for a few days then moved to 12 degrees right with Ridgeline pointed straight.. I took the truck to another shop. Shop owner tells me the frame is straight and he aligned it again. Steering wheel is straight. Few weeks go by and i notice steering wheel is now moved 12 degrees right with Truck pointed straight down the road. Now i start to hear some weird sounds while parking truck like shudder and vibrating in the steering wheel. Truck now tracks left if i hold steering wheel in perfect 0 degrees position, (where it should be). I reviewed all three alignments after the accident including the alignment figures pre-accident that i had from July of 2014. I took the measurements from the pre-repair specs and pre-accident put them into an online conversion calc to convert from degrees to inches/mm and found the alignment was off by about 2 inches after the wheel was hit. I having difficulty getting anybody to fix this issue. Body shop does not have experience. second shop, i think just took my $200 bucks and did an alignment. I'm told if it aligns it's good. Now I have to take it to the dealer or somebody to tear it down and figure out the cause. Insurance company is playing games with me, does not want to pay for any more work. What do you guys think? Here are my questions/concerns?

1. Steering wheel was perfectly straight before accident,post accident not. Is this normal?
2. parking lot steering noises shudder/vibrating noise normal?
3. Did something bend/break when wheel was hit by prius?
4. Where do i take the truck to get diagnosed and fixed by an expert? (I live in Ashburn, VA)
5. Do I need a lawyer to sue the other driver and insurance company to get them to pay and make me whole for my loss of value?
If the steering wheel angle keeps changing, this is a good indication something is either bent, left loose during the repair, one of the steering components completely broken off or about to break off, a severely damaged rack or suspension component.

Suspension damage may also include a bent strut, broken strut spring, drive axle, upper and or lower control arms, tie rod ends, rotor, brake caliper, ect.

Because the steering is so critical, and a SAFETY HAZARD to you and anyone else in the vehicle. I would call your own insurance company asking them for help in dealing with this issue.
 
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