crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

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turbo_m5
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crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby turbo_m5 » Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:23 pm

Crashed my 02 Path today on a patch of black ice in a curve on the highway. Few other cars wiped out too. I hit a car that was sideways across two lanes pretty hard (50mph).

Figures I just took collision coverage off the insurance for it because it was getting old.

Now I can either sell it for parts, take it to a scrapper or fix it?

Engine still runs and it drove up the drive way, but steering is limited. It's also leaking coolant, and some orange fluid (tranny?). Doesn't look too crumpled, given the impact speed, but I guess the bush guard saved the front from looking really crumpled. Air bags somehow didnt deploy!

Can it be fixed to at least use for as a beater for the winter? Doesn't need to be cosmetically perfect. Thoughts? Suggestions?
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:cry: :cry: :cry:
Last edited by turbo_m5 on Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.


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Towncivilian
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby Towncivilian » Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:30 pm

Ouch, that looks bad. Glad you're okay, though. It's sad to see another Pathfinder damaged, especially one that's the same color as mine.

Was your Pathfinder inspected for the strut housing corrosion recall? If not, that may have something to do with your crash.

Tranny fluid should not be orange unless perhaps it has mixed with another fluid, possibly the green coolant if the radiator was damaged and the two fluids mixed.

You might be able to get by with a new radiator, steering rack or individual damaged components, and maybe headlight housings. You can just get rid of the lower front bumper assembly.

Welcome to NICO, I just wish it was under better circumstances. :)

turbo_m5
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby turbo_m5 » Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:46 pm

Yes it was checked, dealer said it was fine. I managed to avoid the first set of cars that were stopped and hit the last car that was sideways. Thankfully for the the driver they got out of the car and into the median. The highway was shut down for 2 hours after to de-ice it. I'd like to make it an off road only truck at minimum if I can fix it to be drivable again, even if it doesn't' has some creases in the body work. But it may be too much for a unibody :(

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zach7685
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby zach7685 » Sat Feb 09, 2013 9:59 pm

IMHO would have been beter off W/o Brush guard But that aside it looks fixable... but totaled. that brush guard did a number though ... Glad your OK Cars can be replaced.

mega4ce
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby mega4ce » Sun Feb 10, 2013 12:26 am

Im pretty sure that sans brush guard he would probably be in just as bad a position if not worse then with it. I think if you are planning on going off road only and there is no frame damage you should be fine. creases give it character :)

turbo_m5
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby turbo_m5 » Sun Feb 10, 2013 8:24 am

The impact was on the driver side left corner with the the saturn I hit. I was sliding sideways towards her at moment of impact after dodging two other cars.

I'm too debating if the brush guard helped or made the damage worse. It was flexible and bent and I believe it dispersed the damage from the driver front corner to the entire front end. So I think it did help stop it from crunching alot more on the front left. Looking under the hood the radiator and support all seem pretty fine just bent a little closer to the engine. The leaking appears to be coming from the coolers mounted in front of the radiator.

I am planning on getting it in the garage and taking the brush guard off and bumper off to make a better assessment.

turbo_m5
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby turbo_m5 » Sun Feb 10, 2013 8:25 am

mega4ce wrote:Im pretty sure that sans brush guard he would probably be in just as bad a position if not worse then with it. I think if you are planning on going off road only and there is no frame damage you should be fine. creases give it character :)
hahaha... i hear ya brother
Last edited by turbo_m5 on Sun Feb 10, 2013 11:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

turbo_m5
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby turbo_m5 » Sun Feb 10, 2013 11:02 am

i got it in the garage no problem. Found one of the connectors for the transmission oil cooler got unplugged which resulted in leaking. As well the coolant resevoir is broken which was also leaking and mixed with the red transmission fluid resulting in orange fluid on the road.

I drove it up the driveway into the garage without a problem, steering seems to work fine, just the plastic wheel well was touching the right tire. Engine sounds good.

I took off the brush guard and bumper cover, to take a closer look. What do you guys think? What would you do with your smashed pathfinder?

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zach7685
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby zach7685 » Sun Feb 10, 2013 12:51 pm

Like i thought the brush guard acted as a ram into the radiator support and the bumper beam did nothing. you can see where the brush guard hit the bumper but i has to do with surface area. the front end looks OK but that means nothing. if it drives straight you should be ok but the cost to fix could outweigh the cost to replace.

turbo_m5
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby turbo_m5 » Sun Feb 10, 2013 1:54 pm

Yes I agree, but it appears the frame rails on the unibody were not damaged or mangled at all, because the brush guard got bent instead. You are right that the brush guard came into the rad support above the re-bar in the bumper, but as a result there is excessive damage to the rad support instead of the re-bar which is attached to the frame. However rad support can be replaced, straightening the unibody frame would be a b****.

The radiator still works without leaks, its just mangled. The oil cooler also survived without much other than getting bent. I've confirmed the fluid leaking was from the: coolant reservoir tank (broken) and a hose at the bottom being disconnected.

A new rad support is only $62 LINK:http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/x,carco ... ype,812.Im finding alot of the parts are pretty cheap, including new fenders, hood, bumper cover, re-bar bumper bar, headlights, etc.


Here's were I'm at now:
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skiski329
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby skiski329 » Sun Feb 10, 2013 6:25 pm

Wow! glad your ok! it looked really bad with the tin's on. But after you took them off, it looks reasonable. aslong as your not having major mechanical issues then it shouldn't be that bad. Especially if you check the junk yard and get lucky with a pathy that was junked because of the strut corrosion recall, then you would get good mechanically sound parts and nice tins.

turbo_m5
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby turbo_m5 » Sun Feb 10, 2013 7:18 pm

skiski329 wrote:Wow! glad your ok! it looked really bad with the tin's on. But after you took them off, it looks reasonable. As long as your not having major mechanical issues then it shouldn't be that bad. Especially if you check the junk yard and get lucky with a pathy that was junked because of the strut corrosion recall, then you would get good mechanically sound parts and nice tins.

Thanks - its the brush guard that crumpled all the sheet metal so much making it look worse than it is. The brush guard at the same time damaged the sheet metal and rad support more, and evenly distributed the load across the front, and... bent itself (flexible) which resulted in less damage to the unibody frame which didnt even get bent somehow!

My game plan now is to remove the oil cooler - tow it to a body shop to have them straighten anything that may be required, put a new rad support in, new fenders and to tow it back to my place using aaa.

I'm then going to order the rest of the replacement parts online and change them myself, much like I removed the damaged ones today. I am going to find a used door at a scrap yard and will hope that it will just fit in place of the damaged one.
Not planning on paying for painting, due to the added cost, but will try to find colour matched parts from a scrap yard.

Thanks for the heads up, I hope there is some of them to find as OEM is always better than cheap aftermarket parts.

I only plan on having it last another couple years so I don't really want to spend a fortune on it.


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In this picture you can see that the grey line that runs at the bottom of the support is crimped on the right side in one part. Is that a coolant line or an ac line ? Anyone know? Where could I get a new one ?

Thanks

DAiNiUS
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby DAiNiUS » Mon Feb 11, 2013 8:55 am

You could even paint the parts yourself, especially since they won't be on the vehicle.Just rig some sort of contraption to hold the parts in place while you paint. Use some clear with hardener and you should get pretty decent results.

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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby 370Z/28 » Mon Feb 11, 2013 9:37 am

When my daughter wrecked her Honda and didn't have any insurance, I went to a place called Certi-Fit. We have one in Memphis, not sure if you have one where you are. The parts are dirt cheap. I got a fender and both side mirrors for like $80. I'm sure they were'nt the best quality, but the fit was good. You might want to check into that.

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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby Towncivilian » Mon Feb 11, 2013 10:54 am

I don't know what exactly that line is, but if I recall correctly it's something to do with the A/C. I can't find a mention of it in the service manual after a few minutes of looking, I'll look again later.

Painting yourself is an option. I did for my back door:

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New rear door from junkyard for $50, repainted with a couple buddies, a Bondo job at MAACO and it looks decent now. Just needs some more paint.

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The paint looks darker, but we did get the mixture ratio wrong, so that probably explains part of it.

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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby fueler » Tue Feb 12, 2013 5:52 pm

i would replace the front end with JDM R50 Terrano parts or even a R50 terrano regulus front end conversion. Thats just me though!


everything except the bumper.

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turbo_m5
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby turbo_m5 » Thu Feb 14, 2013 5:20 pm

Thanks guys

I noticed the body between the doors compressed a little and I also noticed that the damage to the body/structure may be harder to fix than I thought.

I spoke with a body shop that I have dealt with before. They advised that the best thing to do is to buy a front end from a scrap yard complete and to try and acquire it for $500. Then they could weld in the new inner fender, and radiator support from the donor car. They said they would do that and align all the panels for me for about $800-$1000. I would then get the car back in order to put the rest of the parts back together and to the door from a scrap yard.
However they advised that they would have to see it in person to determine if that is a viable option.

So i just left it for a few days to think about it.

I did a bit more work to it, and straightened the door frame of the door so it seals with the body. I also adjusted both doors so they now open and close easily without effort. I also pulled the radiator support out a little and readjusted the hood to line up with the fenders and the latch to lock it. I put the radiator back in and the battery and fired it up. it runs fine, drives fine and everything seems to work. The radiator does leak and after about 10 minutes ran out of water and the temp gauge started rising.

It appears all I need to make it an offroad/driveable car is a new radiator and a coolant reservoir.

UPDATE: PHOTOS: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/qt4mkasjjjmm1zn/-uRLTl0SYN

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Towncivilian
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Re: crashed on the highway today - salvagable? (pics)

Postby Towncivilian » Thu Feb 14, 2013 6:38 pm

Top off the trans fluid if you haven't yet too.


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