Surprising Things your Car Insurance Covers – Even though auto insurance is so common, there are still many people who don’t entirely know all the things their car insurance policy might cover. We all know that liability insurance, which is mandatory to have in all the states except New Hampshire and Virginia, is a coverage that will pay for the cost of repairs and medical bills for the other person that you injure in an accident.
Other than that, you have collision insurance that covers the damages to your car in an accident that’s your fault. Comprehensive car insurance covers the cost of repairs from damages to your car that are not your fault. While most of us know the overall coverage in very broad terms, it is the fine print that might surprise you. Here are some surprising things your car insurance covers that you might have had no idea about.
Coverage Against Meteor Damage
Yes, you read that right, your insurance company will pay for all the damage, even when your car gets totaled in a meteor strike. It might sound absurd, and illogical, but there is a very slight hint that your car might get hit by a meteor. What are the odds of that happening?
The latest incident was in 1992 when a meteor hit a parked car, totaling it. But do not panic. The chances of your car or you getting hit by a meteor are one in 840,000,000, which can be considered almost impossible. But if you wake up and see a space rock over your car, you can go and make a claim, only if you have comprehensive insurance coverage.
It might be something too good to be true, but it is. If you have collision damage insurance coverage, then pothole damage will be covered by the insurance company, unless specifically stated in their terms and conditions. But there are some caveats to know. First, the pothole damage must be serious enough to be considered damage. Collision coverage covers all the damage to your cars in an accident that’s your fault. So a minor patch of bad roads won’t do.
The other thing is deductible. If your car was seriously damaged due to a pothole, you need to know the cost of repairs. If it is lower than your deductibles, then it is better not to make an insurance claim and increase your rates. Pay it yourself and keep enjoying lower rates of car insurance.
Let’s say that you kept your car in an open space and due to a violent hailstorm, or just some hard projectile the windshield cracked. It might seem like a helpless situation but if you have comprehensive coverage, you can make a claim and succeed. Comprehensive coverage policies cover windshield damage due to hailstorms or projectiles.
But you have to be cautious of the deductible dilemma here as well. Most of the windshield damage can be fixed if the crack is under six inches. So if the cost of repair is below your deductible, then skip the claim and pay it from your pocket.
Rodents like rats and mice are truly a curse. Not only do they spread diseases, but they might cause you damage worth thousands of dollars. You never know when rats or mice might consider your car’s interior as their “home sweet home”. The problem with this is that there are intricate wiring and expensive components that control the major functions of your car.
So from getting a wire damaged that will make the fuel gauge stop to damaging the internal wiring that stops your car from starting, damage from rodents can cost thousands of dollars to repair. So it is better to have comprehensive coverage that protects your car from rodent damage, or you can also have a rat repellent to do the job.
Let’s say that you bought a car that’s worth $30,000 when you got it. If you lease the car or decide to take a loan from the bank. With interest, you need to pay the bank a total of $35,000 over five years. You also get an insurance policy that will pay the total value of the car if it gets totaled.
But what happens if you total the car in an unfortunate accident? The insurance company might pay the total value of the car, which is $30,000 if you are lucky. But you owe the bank $35,000. Are you going to pay $5,000 more for a car that you don’t have?
This is where Gap insurance comes in. If you have a Gap insurance coverage policy, the insurance company will pay the extra amount that you owe to the bank.
If you get in an accident and cannot go to work for some time, let’s say 2 months. The insurance company will compensate for the lost wages during this period. You can claim lost wages against the liability coverage of the other driver who is at fault, or you can claim your injury protection coverage (sometimes even medicare insurance).
Flat Tire and Gas Refill
Some insurance companies might cover flat tires and refill the gas as well! This coverage does not come as standard in any insurance policy, but you have to opt for an add-on called roadside assistance. So in case your car breaks down in the middle of the road, or gets a flat tire, or runs out of gas, just give a call to the insurance company and they will send someone to change the tire, fill the gas or just tow your car to the nearest mechanic.
There are some conditions to consider. For example, gas will be refilled only once or twice in the policy period and some insurance companies might not cover flat tires. So before you get a roadside assistance add-on, go through the coverage details.
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