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Will Insurance Pay to Fix Your Broken Windshield?

Auto glass damage must never be ignored. If you notice cracks, chips, or pitting on your windshield, it’s vital to take action immediately. Even minor damages can weaken the windshield, making it more susceptible to shattering in an accident.

A fully intact windshield does more than provide clear visibility; it plays a crucial role in the structural integrity of your vehicle. It helps to support the roof and can prevent it from collapsing in a rollover accident. Additionally, it also ensures that your vehicle's airbags are properly deployed when a major accident occurs.

The importance of immediately getting your windshield repaired or replaced could not be overstated. Unfortunately, some car owners tend to overlook or ignore minor damages due to budget concerns, which can lead to more costly auto glass replacements.

If you are a car owner on a budget and need a windshield replacement but lack the funds, it's important to understand how your insurance coverage can help.

Is A Windshield Crack Covered By Insurance?

A cracked windshield can be covered by car insurance, depending on how it was damaged. If the damage is caused by another driver, their liability insurance is responsible for covering the repairs.

For non-collision incidents like theft, vandalism, or weather damage, your comprehensive insurance policy would typically cover the costs. In cases where the damage results from an accident, your collision insurance would apply.

That said, basic auto insurance in the U.S. and Canada often excludes windshield replacement unless you have comprehensive coverage, which generally covers windshield damage.

Comprehensive policies often include protection against windshield damage and provide reimbursement for repairs or replacements. It’s crucial to review your policy details to understand any deductibles and limits. Some insurers also offer optional windshield coverage for additional protection.

How Much Can an Auto Glass Repair or Replacement Cost Without Insurance?

The cost of auto glass repair or replacement without insurance can vary significantly based on several factors, including the type of vehicle, the extent of the damage, and the specific glass that needs to be repaired or replaced.

For minor damage, such as small chips and cracks, the repair cost typically ranges from $60 to $100. This type of repair is often quick and can prevent the damage from spreading.

Cracked windshields and more severe auto glass damage often require a full windshield replacement, which can cost anywhere between $200 and $400. The price can go higher for luxury or specialty vehicles, often exceeding $1.000, due to the need for specialized glass and advanced calibration for built-in technologies like rain sensors and ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems).

The Difference Between Comprehensive Coverage & Full Glass Coverage

Understanding the difference between full glass coverage and comprehensive coverage allows you to make informed decisions about your insurance policy, ensuring you select the best coverage for your specific needs.

Comprehensive Coverage

As mentioned earlier, comprehensive auto glass insurance coverage typically protects your vehicle against non-collision-related damages. It covers damages from events such as fire, theft, vandalism, and natural disasters like hail, floods, or hurricanes. It also includes damage caused by hitting an animal or falling objects, such as tree branches.

If your vehicle has minor chips and cracks, it is often covered without a deductible. However, for a full windshield replacement, you may need to pay a deductible before the insurance covers the remaining cost.

This type of windshield insurance coverage is often recommended for car owners who live in areas prone to extreme weather or high theft rates. It is also advisable for those who frequently drive on gravel roads or in construction zones, where the risk of glass damage is higher.

Full Glass Coverage

Full glass coverage is an optional add-on that provides specific protection for all the glass parts of your vehicle, such as the windshield, side windows, rear windows, and sunroofs. This type of coverage is more targeted than comprehensive insurance, as it deals solely with glass damage.

Full glass coverage eliminates deductibles for any glass repairs or replacements on your vehicle. This means you won’t have to pay any out-of-pocket expenses for glass repairs, regardless of the severity of the damage.

It covers everything from minor chips to major replacements, including the windshield, side windows, rear window, and sunroof.

Full glass coverage is especially useful for drivers who often drive in areas with loose gravel or high debris. It ensures that any chips, cracks, or shattered glass are quickly and fully repaired or replaced without any out-of-pocket costs.

When Should You File an Insurance Claim for Your Damaged Windshield?

Before consulting an auto glass professional, it’s important to know when to file an insurance claim for your damaged windshield as this will allow you to make informed decisions when it comes to managing your finances and insurance premiums.

Generally, you should consider filing a claim if the cost of the repair or replacement exceeds your deductible. This is often the case for significant damage, such as large cracks or shattered glass, where the expenses can be substantial.

On the other hand, it is not recommended that you go through the trouble of filing a claim for minor chips and cracks as it is often better to handle the costs out of pocket, especially if the repair cost is less than your deductible. Additionally, assess the frequency of your claims; frequent claims can potentially raise your insurance premiums.

Always Consult with Your Insurer

It’s always best to ask your insurer directly if you have any questions or concerns regarding your insurance coverage, claim process, or deductible details. Speaking with your insurance representative can offer personalized advice and clarity, ensuring you fully understand your policy and can make informed decisions when it comes to repairs or claims.

When choosing a vendor for your auto glass needs, keep in mind that you often have the right to select the auto glass company of your choice, even if your insurance company’s third-party claims administrators suggest specific providers.

This choice enables you to ensure that the service quality meets your standards. Evaluate different vendors by checking reviews, comparing prices, and considering any additional benefits they may offer, such as warranties and mobile repair services.