Pothole season is coming! While most potholes are just annoying and don’t actually cause damage to your car or tires, now and then a real whopper comes along that may damage your suspension or alignment or ruin a tire. Read on to find what options you have to get reimbursed for damage caused by potholes.
The Basics: Collision Coverage
The first thing to understand is that not all coverage is the same. Hitting a pothole is considered a one-car collision with an object. If you don’t have collision coverage, you are likely out of luck for reimbursement for damages from your insurance company.
Collision coverage is an add-on to a standard auto insurance policy but is a requirement if your car is under a loan or lease. There is also a deductible associated with collision coverage. This is the amount you will have to pay out-of-pocket before the insurance coverage will kick in.
What is Covered?
While every insurance company has their own criteria for determining whether a claim is valid or not, here are a few examples of the type of coverage you can expect for damage caused by potholes. Of course, you must have collision coverage in the place first.
Damage to tires and rims: This can be tricky. If your rims are damaged, you have a good shot of being covered, if not by your insurance company than by the municipality where the pothole is located.
Damage to the suspension, axle or body of the car: This is a more serious situation in which the safety of your vehicle is affected. While you’ll likely be covered for the damage to your car, some insurance companies won’t cover your tires and rims.
Damage to your tires: You can pretty safely assume that your car insurance policy is not going to cover you for tire damage due to a pothole. This can be a problem if you have expensive tires.
If you have expensive tires and custom rims, you may want to consider specialized tire and rim insurance to protect you should they be damaged by impact with a pothole. This is extra, add-on coverage provided by some insurance companies and manufacturers. Be sure to read the details of this type of policy as they vary widely. It’s smart to understand what is and what is not covered before you buy.
Compare Rates and Get Covered
Whether your looking for specialized tire and rim coverage or you want to add collision coverage, its always a good idea to start by shopping around. Comparing quotes from several car insurance companies is the best way to know you are getting a good rate.
The InsuranceWins form can help you out. Just provide some basic information and we’ll do the work for you. You’ll receive quotes from companies you know and can use this information to get yourself a rate that you can afford for coverage that protects you from potholes and other hazards of the road.