When I moved to Colorado, I knew hail storms were common, but I didn’t know just how harmful they were. Coming from Oregon, I’ve experienced hail a few times before, but it was always light and short-lasting. I had no idea hail could actually damage your car — which is exactly why I didn’t bother to cover up my car during the last storm.
Fortunately, my damages weren’t too extensive, and I was able to get my repairs completely covered by insurance. During the process, I learned a lot about how insurance works with hail damage. Keep reading to learn the answers to five common questions about what your insurance can cover the next time your car gets caught in a storm.
Does Car Insurance Cover Hail Damage?
Like many insurance questions, there’s no clear-cut answer to this. It depends on your insurance provider, your insurance plan, and, in some cases, the type of damage you have. But if you want the short answer, it’s yes… as long as you have everything set up correctly.
If you have standard liability coverage, you’ll be covered when you get into collisions with other vehicles where you’re not at fault. If you have collision insurance, you’ll be covered no matter who’s at fault. But, neither of these two plans covers hail damage, which is considered an “act of nature”.
What Type of Car Insurance Covers Hail Damage?
Acts of nature, vandalism, fires, theft and damage from falling objects like tree branches are all covered under “comprehensive coverage”. If you want to have your hail damage repairs completely covered, this is the only type of insurance that will guarantee it.
Comprehensive coverage is one of the highest tiers of insurance, and is, therefore, more expensive than liability or collision coverage. However, if you live in an area like Texas or Colorado that’s prone to hail (or any other natural event that can cause damage), it may be a smart idea to get it. I opted for a comprehensive coverage plan before I even moved to Colorado, so luckily, my hail damage was covered.
How Much Does Insurance Pay For Hail Damage?
This is another question with an unclear answer because it depends on the insurance company and their specific hail damage policy. If your car only has minor to moderate damages, you can generally get around 70% of the cost of the repair covered, with some insurance companies willing to cover the entire cost. Some auto hail repair companies will even absorb the extra cost themselves.
The best way to know exactly how much your insurance company will cover is to give them a call and ask. They should be able to tell you what’s included in your specific plan.
How Is Hail Damage Repaired?
Hail damage is usually repaired using a technique known as paintless dent repair, or PDR. This is a process in which the dents are gently pushed out from the inside using specialized tools. In some cases, auto body shops will have to retouch the paint of your car after repairing hail damage, but this isn’t common.
PDR is relatively quick and easy, and most auto hail repair companies can have your car back to you within a few days.
How Much Does It Cost To Repair Hail Damage?
The cost of auto hail repair varies depending on the size and severity of the damage, with estimates ranging anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars. This cost is usually calculated on a dent-by-dent basis, in addition to any extra repairs that are needed, like window replacements.
Small dents can cost around $30 each, while medium-sized ones can be around $50, and large ones can be $80.
If your car gets caught in a hail storm, don’t panic. As long as you have comprehensive coverage, you’ll be able to get most of the repair costs covered and be back on the road in no time.
And if you don’t have comprehensive coverage, just remember that while auto hail repair can be costly, it’s usually much cheaper than having to replace your entire car.
But above all, the next time a storm is heading your way, cover your car so you can avoid it all in the first place!