New vehicle technologies can tack on an extra $3,000 to repair
Vehicles equipped with advanced driver assistance systems such as blind-spot monitoring and automatic emergency braking help drivers be safer on the roads, according to new research from AAA.
But do you know how expensive they are to repair, even if your car is in a minor accident?
Robert Sinclair, junior manager of media relations for AAA Northeast, said advanced safety systems are very common in cars, with many now coming as standard equipment — so it's critical that drivers understand what technologies their vehicles have.
These technologies can in some cases cost anywhere from $3,000 to $5,000 to fix, Sinclair said. So, for example, if you hit a bumper, normally that wouldn't be a big deal, right? But there are lots of sensors in the bumpers that are used to activate the cross traffic alert or the blind spot warning systems. And repairing those sensors is pricey.
Adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assist technology usually use cameras that are mounted behind windshields. Sinclair said. Every year, 14.5 million cracked windshields need to be replaced and repaired. Again, normally that would not be a big sticker shock — but fixing the camera system drives the prices up.
One in three Americans is unable to afford an unexpected repair bill of just $500, according to a Federal Reserve report Sincalir noted.
Blind spot monitoring usually includes technology that's built into the side mirrors that shows some type of warning, said Sinclair. Either an icon or a light would pop up. Every day, side mirrors get ripped off in accidents. If these mirrors have wiring to connect sensors, such as heat sensors, that's a much more expensive repair.
Sinclair advises drivers with ADAS issues to take their vehicles to their dealers, despite the cost. Or ask around. Find out from people who a reputable mechanic might be, who deals with these specific ADAS problems. A good, qualified mechanic may be able to make the repairs at a reasonable price.
More at New Jersey 101.5: