Does car insurance cover hail damage?
Last updated: January 1
If your car was damaged by hail, you may be wondering if your car insurance will cover it. If you have comprehensive coverage, it may help pay to repair auto body, windshield and interior damage caused by hail. If you only have auto liability coverage, the damage to your car is not covered.
What does comprehensive insurance cover?
If you purchased comprehensive coverage on your car insurance policy, you're likely covered for hail damage. Comprehensive coverage helps pay to repair or replace your vehicle if it's damaged in an accident that's not a collision. Comprehensive helps cover storm damage, animal damage and falling objects —including hail. Hail damage could mean dents and dings in your car's body, cracked or shattered glass, and even interior water damage.
If you notice damage to your car after a hailstorm, report the claim to your insurer as soon as possible. Your insurer can walk you through the steps you'll need to take to get an estimate and get your car repaired.
What does auto liability insurance cover?
Auto liability coverage does not cover hail damage, but it is required in most states. If you cause a car accident, it helps pay for the other driver's medical bills or property damage. Liability insurance does not cover damage to your vehicle (or your medical bills).
Do you have to pay a deductible for hail damage?
Comprehensive coverage usually comes with a deductible, the amount you'll pay out of pocket when you make a claim. The Insurance Information Institute (III) says having a higher deductible on your policy may help lower your premium. However, if you live in an area where hailstorms occur more often, you may want to consider whether you can afford the out-of-pocket deductible after a hail claim.
It's also helpful to know that, under some circumstances, your insurer may waive the deductible on the glass portion of your comprehensive coverage. For instance, if the glass is repaired, rather than replaced, your insurer may waive the deductible. Additionally, you may be able to buy full glass coverage as part of your policy, which typically means you won't have to pay a deductible on glass claims. Check with your agent to see if these options are available on your policy.
Will filing a hail damage claim affect my car insurance premium?
If you make a hail damage claim on your auto insurance policy, that claim would go on your insurance record. According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, claim frequency may affect what you pay for car insurance.
Can you fix hail damage on a car?
When you file a car insurance claim for hail damage, you will work with your claim adjuster and an auto body shop to get a repair estimate. The adjuster will determine whether your insurer will pay for repairs or if your car is totaled. A car is considered totaled if repair costs exceed its depreciated value. If your car is totaled and you have comprehensive coverage, your insurer would cut you a check for the car's actual cash value, which you could use to help buy a replacement vehicle.
Help protect your car from hail damage
Each year, thousands of hailstorms damage property across the United States, according to the III. If you're looking for ways to help protect your car from hail damage, consider investing in a padded car cover (also called a hail protection blanket).
When it comes to hailstorms and the potential damage they can cause to your car, it's better to be safe than sorry. Speak with your insurance provider to help decide whether comprehensive coverage might be right for you.