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Broke a Customer’s Car? Here’s How to Deal with It

Automobile repair shops handle routine maintenance and repairs for their customers. However, in certain cases, damage may occur while the car is still on the premises of an auto repair shop.You can help your client using your body shop invoice software.

Such an incident may become stressful for the clients, and dealerships and it is necessary to address it.

Let’s say a client picks up his car from the shop and discovers a damaged rear light. 

Such incidents may likely irritate the customer and they might want a refund.

The four most common events where such incidents may occur are 

  1. The client brought an undamaged car, which got damaged during the repair process.
  2. The car that your client brought was damaged, but they want to blame it on the dealership.
  3. The car your client brought was undamaged, but it got damaged in your parking lot.
  4. The car arrived damaged, but your client was legitimately unaware of this damage.

The dealership is only responsible for the car in one of these scenarios. 

So what do you do when this happens?

Ideally, the dealership would fix the car or monetize the client in such a situation. 

When companies ignore their legitimate obligations and drive off dissatisfied clients, they gain nothing and only lose.

Dealerships do not damage the vehicles on purpose. 

Customers are typically aware that errors might occur.

After all, we’re all human. 

Most dealerships have an internal policy that prohibits staff employees from being monetarily penalized or disciplined for causing damage to a customer’s car.

It’s a different story if another client damages a vehicle. 

Customers in this situation are prone to blaming the dealership, which is unjust. 

It’s like asking a shopping center to fix your automobile if it gets damaged in the parking lot. 

It is rarely if ever, repaid by the mall.

Now let’s see what happens if something similar happens in an auto repair shop:

Assume someone hits your car while it is in the dealership. 

If that person reports the accident to the police, the problem is between you and the responsible party to resolve. 

The dealership will assist you with any accident repairs (paid for by a mix of you, the guilty party, and the insurance company). 

It will act as a liaison between you and the insurance companies. 

However, the dealership is not liable for any resulting damage.

For security concerns, many dealerships install on-site video cameras. 

These cameras assist in curbing theft, but sometimes their purpose is to track car damage.

Considering most new car dealerships employ 25 to 200 workers, and hundreds of vehicles move on-site daily, it is easy to see how accidents occur.

My greatest advice to a consumer whose vehicle was damaged at a dealership is to avoid jumping to conclusions. 

When discussing these concerns with dealership workers or management, be polite and professional.

Collaborate with staff and management to determine how the harm occurred in the first place. 

If the dealership is to blame, they will accept responsibility and perform the necessary repairs at no cost to the consumer.

What do we do after the vehicle’s broken/damaged?

Step One:

Analyze what the issue is? 

Analyze the problem using your body shop invoice software.

What part did you damage?

Is it a tiny little clip?

Can we just replace the clip?

Or do we need to open the whole panel just to fix one clip?

You need to evaluate what’s going on.

Step two:

Don’t try to cover up your mistake by blaming it on someone else or ignoring it.

When working in an auto repair shop, you will come across many situations where it was not your fault; still, something broke.

So, the best thing to do in such a situation is to come clean and inform both your manager and client about the incident. 

Get your team involved, talk to your seniors and show them what happened.

Ask your seniors for advice; they have been working longer than you have.

They must have found themselves in similar situations, and they’ll probably know how to tackle this situation best. 

And they can help you convey this problem to your client in a professional way.

You can offer them a discount on the whole job.

This will show your customers that you’re sorry for what happened and that you’re willing to work with them to get their car fixed.

Step Three: 

Figure out how you can solve this issue using your body shop invoice software.

What are the possible solutions?

Do you need to order a new part?

Can you replace the part with another one you already have in your shop?

Will the change affect the performance of the car?

If yes, then what will be the change? Will it be a positive change or a negative change?

If the damage is big, you probably need to replace that part with a new one or another one that’s working perfectly.

If not, you can simply fix that part and restore it to its original condition.

Step Four:

Execute your plans accordingly. 

Make necessary changes to facilitate your customer.

Fix the car for free. 

This may be your best option to keep your customer happy. 

It may not be the most profitable thing for you, but it’s the right thing to do.

Customer’s satisfaction is important

You need to remember that your customer is the most important thing no matter what you do.

You need to do whatever you can to make them happy and keep them returning. 

If you lose them, you lose more than just one customer – you lose the chance to build a relationship with them. 

And that’s something that can be hard to replace.

So, if you find yourself in a situation where you break your customer’s car, don’t panic! 

There are ways to make things right, and your customer will appreciate your efforts. 

Just remember to stay calm and think things through, and you’ll be able to fix the situation.


According to everything mentioned above, it is clear how you should react if you find yourself in a situation where you accidentally broke your customer’s car.

All you have to do is use your body shop invoice software to figure out a solution and not panic because such accidents occur in auto repair shops all the time.

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