There is nothing more frustrating than a broken windshield.
Maybe it is a rock. Maybe it is a baseball. It could be some kids.
Is your windshield covered?
You will hear a lot of people refer to it as “full coverage“. While we’re being honest with each other, there is no such thing as “full coverage“. There is Collision Coverage and Comprehensive Coverage.
For the sake of this post we’re going to talk specifically about Comprehensive Coverage.
Some people refer to Comprehensive auto insurance coverage as Comp. You will notice some insurance companies will have it in your policy as Other Than Collision.
What Does Comprehensive Auto Insurance Cover?
Whatever you want to call it, Comprehensive coverage provides coverage for your auto if you run into an animal, experience a hail storm, theft, vandalism, fire, even a broken windshield.
A couple of years ago, while driving down the road, I had a rock chip my windshield. The chip then splintered across my windshield. I carry a $500 Comp Deductible. The cost to replace the windshield was $250. I had to pay for the windshield out of my pocket.
With auto insurance you are responsible for the first dollar amount up to the Deductible. In my scenario, I was responsible for the first $500. Anything beyond that the insurance company would pay for.
Can I Repair or Replace My Windshield Without a Deductible?
Some insurance companies offer a Full Glass endorsement you can add to your auto policy.
This endorsement allows you to repair or replace your windshield without being responsible for your Deductible.
Looking back at my situation above, if I would have had a Full Glass endorsement on my auto policy, the insurance company would have paid $250 to replace my windshield. I would have been out of pocket $0.
The Full Glass endorsement is not automatic to your auto policy. You have to add it. It does cost extra. You must have Comprehensive coverage to add the Full Glass endorsement.
It seems like everyone has to deal with a broken or chipped windshield at some point. I can’t stress enough, if you want coverage you have to carry Comprehensive. And if the repair or replacement of your windshield is less than your Deductible then you will be responsible for it. If that bothers you, you need to add the Full Glass endorsement (if your insurance company offers it).
One little nugget to keep in mind. I say this loosely because I cannot promise all insurance companies will offer this…
If you have a rock chip or a tiny crack in your windshield (smaller than a credit card). Some insurance companies will reimburse you to repair the chip/crack.
You would have to have Comprehensive coverage for the insurance company to consider this.
How to Choose a Deductible?
You get to choose your Deductible. Not the insurance company.
The most common Deductibles seem to be $250, $500, and $1,000.
Keep in mind, the higher your Deductible is your premium will decrease a little.
The key to picking the right Deductible is choosing what you are comfortable with. At any given time, do you have $250 or $500 in an account easily accessible? Remember, you are responsible for this amount. You need to be comfortable with it.
Auto Insurance versus Health Insurance Deductibles
Auto Insurance Deductibles work different than Health Insurance Deductibles.
Over the course of a year, if you have a few auto accidents that require you to fix damage to your vehicle, each accident you will be responsible for the Deductible. If you have a $500 Deductible, you will be responsible for the first $500 in each accident.
When it comes to Health Insurance, once you have met your Deductible you are no longer responsible for it. Let’s say you have several visits to your doctor throughout the year. You have a $5,000 Deductible. Once you have met that Deductible, you are no longer responsible for it.
Music Credit: That Day by Joakim Karud