R&R on the New Ford F-150

Recently, I had two separate readers send me a section of the new 2015 Ford F150 Service Manual with a question that peaked my curiosity.

On page two of the 501-11 Glass, Frames and Mechanisms, General Procedures, Revised Date 10/29/14, it states:

“Note: Fixed glass must be discarded once removed. A new fixed glass is required.”

Now this is interesting. Does this mean we no longer have the option to remove and reinstall the fixed glass for the new Ford F-150? R&Rs have been used for years to save money when a vehicle needs structural repair. If Ford has chosen to take that option off the table and require new replacement glass whenever the old glass is removed, it will have a big impact on the businesses that make the repairs and the insurance companies that pay for them.

I found this directive by Ford to be curious, so I decided to do some research. After calling and emailing some people who might know the motivation for this new requirement, I discovered an answer of sorts.

First of all, this directive covers not just the 2015 F-150, but all of Ford’s new model introductions starting in 2013. The original reason for the directive was a study done by Ford of three installations completed by different glass companies at a Ford facility. They found the glass was “rarely” saved while doing an R&R. They noticed, especially, that the underside mouldings along the “A” pillar were damaged after the removal attempt.

I asked what removal method was used and I was told that various tools were tried, including power tools, cold knifes and wire. In their study only one of the fixed parts was salvaged. Therefore Ford decided that to better serve their vehicle buyers and to protect themselves from further repair costs under warranty, they would make this directive for all new Ford vehicles.

My next voiced concern was the ramifications of this Ford requirement when it comes to dealing with insurance adjusters. What are the odds that adjusters are going to accept the glass shop’s reason for why the part needs to be replaced? “Because Ford Motor Co. says so” may be a good enough reason for some, but my fear is that most adjustors will find someone who is willing to R&R the part to save some money.

What I heard from my sources was that insurance companies should not be involved because fixed glass leaks are a warranty issue. However, this directive was printed not in a service bulletin or a recall notice, as a “fix once and you’re done” issue, it was printed in Ford’s “General Procedures” service manuals, which direct all repair procedures recommended by the vehicle manufacturer.

This puts the good glass shops that want to follow Ford’s directives between a rock and a hard place. Do we follow the vehicle manufacturer’s requirements and possibly lose the job to those that don’t care, or ignore the Ford directive and place ourselves in a negative liability situation because the procedures manual says to discard the glass and replace with a new one?

If removal of the fixed glass in new Fords is necessary to correct a warranty issue, then we have no problem. Warranty issues are fixed according to the instructions given and then they are over. However this instruction was written in the general procedures service manual as a directive we all must follow. That means if a dealer or collision center contacts us to pull an undamaged fixed glass part from a 2013 or newer Ford vehicle, we, according to our AGRSS™ Standard, will have to either decline the job or require the glass to be removed, discarded and then replaced with a new OEM part.