Does Car Insurance Policy Protect You From Windshield Damage?
When a car meets with an accident, it can either get damaged partially or completely. Different kinds of adversities can cause varying damages to a car. At times, a mishap can lead to a crack or shattering of the car’s windshield. For example, if someone hits your car’s windshield while vandalising your car. Or if a plant pot drops on your windshield when the car was parked below an apartment building.
A car’s windshield is an important component of the vehicle and driving your car with a damaged windshield can be very dangerous. A small crack in the windshield can grow into multiple cracks if the vehicle is used regularly. The cracked or shattered windshield can hamper your visibility while driving the car. The reduced visibility can result in a major accident and fatally injure the people travelling in the car. Thus, you should get the windshield of your car repaired or replaced as soon as it gets damaged, no matter how small the damage may be.
But before you show up at a garage to get your car’s windshield repaired, you should know whether or not your 4 wheeler insurance policy covers windshield damages.
Does Car Insurance Cover Windshield Damages?
All car insurance policies cover damages to a car’s windshield, provided the policyholder holds a comprehensive coverage. Only if you have a comprehensive car insurance policy, your motor insurance company will bear the cost of replacing your vehicle’s damaged windshield. This happens because comprehensive car insurance covers any loss or damages sustained by a four wheeler due to unforeseen events along with policyholder’s third party accidental liabilities.
Thus, any damages caused to your car’s front or back windshield due to an accident, natural or manmade calamities will be covered by your motor insurance company. But if you have only third party insurance cover, even the best car insurance policy will not provide coverage for damages caused to the windshield of your car. This happens because third party car insurance is designed to cover only third party liabilities and not the own damages of a car.
However, if your car’s windshield was damaged in an accident caused by another car, then that person will be responsible to pay for its repair. The motor insurance provider of the person at fault will cover your windshield damages and pay for its repairs or replacement. Do remember to raise a third party insurance claim against the car owner who was responsible for causing the accident.
When Is Windshield Damage Covered Under Car Insurance?
If the windshield of your car gets cracked or shattered due to the following reasons, your motor insurance company will cover its repair or replacement costs:
- When your car collides with another car or third party property
- If a tree or the branch of a tree falls on your car
- When hails fall on your car during a hailstorm
- If an animal collides with your car’s windshield
- When rocks or heavy items, such as plant pots, coconuts fall on the windscreen
- If a ball hits your car’s windshield shattering it
- During acts of vandalism. For eg: when someone hits your car’s windshield with a stick
- Debris or pebbles hitting the windshield while driving
Deductibles Under Windshield Damage Claims
Most motor insurance companies charge a deductible to car owners when they raise a claim against their car’s windscreen damages. In the insurance terminology, a deductible is the part of the claim amount that you agree to pay during claim settlement and share the liability of the insurer. If the terms and conditions of your car insurance policy require you to pay a deductible, your insurer will be legally liable to pay only the remaining claim amount to you.
If you need to pay a deductible for raising a claim against windshield damages under your comprehensive car insurance policy, you should first get an estimate of the repair work from the garage. You must compare the cost of repairing or replacing the windshield with the deductible that you need to pay before filing the claim.
|Read More: What Does Car Insurance Cover?|
When to Not Raise a Windshield Damage Claim?
If the estimated cost of repairing or replacing your car’s windshield is less than the deductible amount which you have to pay, there is no point of raising a claim with your insurer. This is because you will not receive any money from your insurer as the deductible will cover repair or replacement cost. However, you will end up losing your accumulated No Claim Bonus (NCB).
Moreover, if the estimated repair or replacement cost of the windshield is less than the NCB, even then you should avoid raising a claim with your motor insurance company. By filing a claim, you would lose your NCB eliminating the chances of getting a bigger discount on your renewal premium than the claim amount paid by the insurer. But if you had purchased No Claim Bonus Protect add-on cover, you can raise a claim against your car’s windshield damages without worrying about losing your NCB.
Speaking of add-on covers, did you know that some of the best car insurance plans come with windscreen add-on cover? Know everything about windscreen add-on cover below.
What Is Windscreen Add-On Cover?
A windscreen cover is an add-on cover that allows car owners to get the damages to their car’s windshield glass covered without losing their No Claim Bonus. It protects your NCB even if you raise a claim against your car’s damaged windshield under your comprehensive car insurance policy. In other words, this add-on cover enables you to get your car’s windshield glass repaired or replaced without affecting your accumulated No Claim Bonus.
Things to Know When Buying a Windscreen Cover
The windscreen cover comes with a few terms and conditions that you should know before buying it. Take a look at the things to know when buying the windscreen cover:
- The windscreen cover is an add-on cover and thus, you will have to purchase it by paying a higher premium amount.
- This cover is only applicable when the windshield of your car is solely damaged and no damages have been caused to the remaining parts of the vehicle.
- Since it is an add-on cover, you can buy the windscreen cover only if you have a comprehensive car insurance policy. This is because third party car insurance does not come with the option of buying add-on covers.
- It is only applicable if the car’s windshield is being repaired or replaced at one of the approved garages of your motor insurance company. If the repair or replacement work is undertaken at a non-network garage, your insurer will consider it as the claim outside the scope of windscreen cover and your NCB will be affected.
- The windscreen cover allows for only one claim per policy tenure. This means your NCB will remain safe only for the first time you make a windshield damage claim under your comprehensive car insurance policy. Any subsequent claim will result in the loss of the No Claim Bonus.
What Is Not Covered Under Windshield Cover?
Any damage to the windshield of your car due to the following events or situations will not be covered under windshield cover. Take a look:
- Any damages resulting out of the manufacturing defects of your car’s windshield
- It does not cover the deductible amount that you are liable to pay after raising a claim against your vehicle’s windshield damages
- Any depreciation suffered by the windshield of your car
- Any damages resulting out of events or perils which is not covered under your comprehensive car insurance policy
|Read More: Types of Car Insurance Coverage Explained|
Tips to Maintain and Protect Your Car’s Windshield
Here are a few tips to maintain your car’s windshield in good condition and protect it from getting damaged:
- Always park your car in shade as extreme temperatures can weaken the glass and lead to the windshield developing a crack.
- Replace poor windshield wipers if they fail to push all the water away from the glass. Wipers lose their shape over time and lead to reducing the strength of the windscreen glass making it weak.
- Do not slam your car door shut. When you slam your car’s door, it sends shock waves to your car’s windscreen glass and weakens it.
- Maintain a safe distance between your car and the vehicle moving ahead of you. This will prevent your car’s windshield from getting damaged by any heavy object falling out of the vehicle ahead of you as well as the stones flung back by it.
- Don’t wash your car’s windshield with any harsh chemicals as it will remove the protective coating on the windscreen glass and can also lead to discolouration. Instead, use automobile makers approved cleaning products to wash it.
In a Nutshell
A car without its windshield is incomplete and dangerous to drive. Thus, you should follow the tips to maintain your car’s windshield in good condition. The windscreen glass can get damaged due to several reasons, which is why you should buy comprehensive car insurance if you don’t wish to pay for any damages to your windshield. Also, opt for windscreen cover while buying the best car insurance policy to keep your NCB intact even when you raise a claim.
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