The one thing you can count on with the weather is that it is continually changing. Storms may cause havoc with your home, car, and city. If a storm unleashes a shower of hail, a car can easily be pelted with unattractive dents.
Because hail damage frequently spreads throughout the entire car, the expense of repair can be surprising. The good news is that hail damage can be covered by your auto insurance.
Coverage for Hail Damage
You would not be insured for hail damage if you simply had liability coverage on your car insurance policy. Liability coverage only protects other people, not you or your automobile, from damage and expenses caused by you.
Hail, storm damage, and other natural disasters are covered under comprehensive coverage on a vehicle’s insurance policy. Before any damage happens, comprehensive coverage must be acquired.
It’s critical to purchase comprehensive coverage far ahead of time, even if you don’t believe you’ll need it. If you do not, it may be too late to avoid having to pay for hail damage. Insurers sometimes make it difficult for people to purchase last-minute automobile insurance coverage just before a severe weather event is expected.
Otherwise, smart people would wait until the last minute to buy the insurance and then cancel it once the storm has passed. The sum that insurance companies would have to pay out on a regular basis would be enormous.
When a storm is expected to make landfall, insurance firms, for example, put a stop, or “moratorium,” on adding comprehensive coverage, despite the fact that hail is uncommon in hurricanes.
You will be responsible for all physical damage to your car if you are unable to obtain comprehensive coverage before the hold is placed.
If you live in an area where hail is common, you might want to consider getting a plan with a smaller deductible to lessen your out-of-pocket costs if you have a car that gets hit by hail several times.
Deductibles in Insurance
Hail damage is covered in the same way as any other claim. Deductibles are determined by providers when you get automobile insurance for your vehicle. Many insurance companies need a deductible with a comprehensive policy, but they may offer a $0 deductible for an additional fee.
If you have hail damage and comprehensive coverage with a deductible, you must pay your deductible when your car is fixed. It’s almost probable that the cost of repairing hail damage will surpass your deductible, regardless of how high your deductible is.
It’s important to remember that deductibles are in place to keep your overall insurance expenses low. If you are stranded in a storm, you should have purchased comprehensive coverage on your vehicle if you are unable to self-insure. Otherwise, you should park as often as possible in a garage or under a cover such as a carport.
Can hail cause my car to be totaled?
Hail damage can cause your car to be totaled. It may not be worth repairing if the damage is substantial and worth more than your vehicle’s current value. An insurance adjuster will check to see if your vehicle has been repaired.
If you do file a claim, keep in mind that your automobile was probably not the only one hit by the hailstorm, so it may take longer than usual for your insurance claim to be processed and your vehicle repaired.
What Factors Go Into Determining Hail Damage?
The insurance company will send an adjuster to inspect your vehicle once you file a claim. Because the brightness of the sun can obscure dents, the National Alliance of Paintless Dent Repair Technicians recommends having your vehicle inspected in a garage or at least a shady location.
The adjuster will look at the amount of the damage and use one of two ways to estimate the cost of repairs:
- Paintless dent removal (PDR) is the process of removing dents from the underside of a vehicle’s body panel without having to repaint it. The cost may be calculated per panel or per dent. The cost of removing and reinstalling any items will also be factored into the estimate.
- The traditional method of This may be necessary for more serious damage, such as when complete body panels must be replaced. Otherwise, fees for repairing and filling dents, as well as repainting, will be estimated.
Inform the insurance company of your preferred body shop or hail repair provider. If there’s a problem with the estimate (for example, if it was written too low), the body shop may be able to resolve it with the insurer without you having to become involved.
Dealing with hail damage can be aggravating. Many people believe the situation was inevitable and that they should not be required to pay for repairs or a deductible. Storm damage is one of those unavoidable life events that everyone must face from time to time.
Hail Damage Repair
Some insurance companies may issue you a check, while others will send you an amount equal to the expected repair cost minus your deductible. You may choose not to repair your car if you own it outright and the damage is only cosmetic.
If you opt to live with your “dimples,” however, you will most likely receive significantly less money for your car if and when you decide to sell it. You will almost certainly be forced to complete the repairs if you have an auto loan.