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Laura Berry

Former Insurance Agent

Former Insurance Agent

Joshua Adamson

Joshua is a copywriter at Obrella who for more than 10 years has been creating content about insurance, health care, and more. He helps companies explain complex insurance subjects in simple ways so that customers can make smart buying decisions. He spends way too much time binge-watching Netflix, loves the outdoors and has a cat who tolerates him.

UPDATED: Mar 6, 2024

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Does Car Insurance Cover Repairs?

Basic auto insurance includes a wide range of protection, including collision coverage that pays for your damaged car to be repaired as a result of a car accident. But a basic auto insurance policy doesn't typically cover the cost of mechanical repairs unless they are an immediate result of a collision. In that case, once you've met your insurance deductible, your collision insurance would likely reimburse you for the expense of the mechanical repair. If you need repairs relating to an incident like a natural disaster or a falling tree branch, this should be covered by comprehensive insurance. And remember, if you only have auto liability insurance, repairs to your vehicle won't be covered at all.

Car mechanical repairs can be pricey, and they aren’t getting any cheaper. In fact, according to a driving costs study completed by the American Automobile Association (AAA), the expense associated with maintaining and repairing a vehicle increased by 11 percent from 2012 to 2013. With all these expenses, you may hope to turn to your car insurance to help pay the bills.

But what if your car experiences a mechanical breakdown unrelated to an accident? Let’s say the transmission goes out, your car needs a new engine, or the breaks go bad. That’s where having mechanical breakdown insurance, also referred to as mechanical breakdown protection, can come in handy. This is the type of coverage you will need for your auto insurance company to pay for mechanical repairs.

What’s covered under mechanical breakdown insurance varies from provider to provider. You’ll find that some insurance companies offer tiered mechanical breakdown insurance plans that range from basic to comprehensive. Mechanical breakdown protection is available for new cars as well as pre-owned vehicles and it isn’t uncommon for drivers to forgo the extended warranty coverage offered by their car dealership and opt to cover their car’s repairs with mechanical breakdown coverage.

Car mechanical repairs can be pricey, and they aren’t getting any cheaper.

Some car owners are under the impression that comprehensive coverage will help pay for mechanical repairs, but it won’t. After you meet your deductible, comprehensive coverage may reimburse you for damage caused to your car by something other than an accident, such as a falling object, hail, or vandalism, but it won’t cover the cost of a new Catalytic Converter, or the expense of replacing the engine or fixing the air conditioning.

If you choose to purchase mechanical breakdown coverage, talk to your auto insurer about the details of what is offered. Some policies cover routine maintenance, like replacing spark plugs and break pads, and wheel balancing and tire rotation, while others do not. Regular maintenance is critical to your car’s health and longevity. And remember, this is an optional coverage you will have to ask about and it will increase your insurance premiums. Mechanical breakdown coverage is not included on traditional car insurance policies.

Basic car insurance offers valuable protection, but don’t count on it to pay for the cost of repairs. The good news is, you may be able to purchase additional coverage from your auto insurance company to help cover mechanical expenses so you don’t end up paying thousands of dollars out of pocket. Call and speak with us today to help you find out how to get the protection you want without paying too much.

Read more: Does Car Insurance Cover Hail Damage?


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