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Home / Articles / Columnists / Happy Motoring /  Do I really need auto repair insurance?
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Thursday, April 4,2019

Do I really need auto repair insurance?

By Teresa Aquila  
Owning a car offers us freedom and the ability to be very mobile. Along with owning that vehicle comes a responsibility for repairs and maintenance. In order to get those wheels turning on the road, one must purchase automotive insurance. What about auto repair insurance?

 

One of the big advantages of having the right auto repair insurance policy is that it covers the total cost of some major repairs. When customers are paying out of their pocket, some mechanic shops have no problem charging endless amounts of money for their services. With the right auto repair insurance, the insurance company not only picks up the tab, but it also regulates the costs and lets a customer or policyholders know if the mechanic’s charge is excessive.

Do You Need Bumper-to-Bumper?

Bumper-to-bumper car insurance means that most of the components needed to operate your vehicle safely are included in the policy. This includes, but is not limited to, the engine, drive train, transmission, exhaust, brakes, and electrical com ponents.

However, things like body repair, broken lights, windows, and interior fixes are not covered. Bumper-to-bumper coverage will keep you from having to spend large amounts of money for repairs.

When you purchase a bumper-tobumper auto repair insurance policy, always pay attention to the fine print. This usually means hidden fees, penalties and limited coverage. One example is restrictions on what is paid to the service center. If they charge $75 per hour for labor, some policies only pay out $55 per hour. Check to make sure you are aware of these limits and restrictions before they happen.

Auto repair insurance policies are “a la carte,” in that a driver can purchase an insurance policy for specific parts or systems, from the engine and transmission to different auto parts systems, such as an electrical system or brake system. A customized auto repair insurance policy can cover just what the driver is worried about, providing precise, effective coverage for specific mechanical breakdown situations.

Despite the benefits of car repair insurance, a huge number of drivers prefer to take their chances without it. Why? Here are a few reasons why car repair insurance is not a universally applauded product:

Partial coverage

Car repair insurance is customizable. That is, there are different options for insuring the transmission, the engine, the fuel system and all other kinds of parts. The problem is that these add up. Drivers generally don’t know which part of their car is going to break first, nor can they really predict which parts of the car will be most troublesome over its lifetime. That’s one problem with signing up for car repair insurance that only covers certain parts systems.

The insurance burden

Drivers already pay a good bit of insurance, just to get a car on the street. Since today’s basic liability insurance doesn’t cover at-fault damages, many drivers go with comprehensive insurance, which incurs additional costs. Many drivers are happy just to get all of the required insurance for dealing with the costs of a wreck or collision. Car repair insurance puts even more of an insurance burden on the driver’s wallet.

Claims handling

Those who routinely deal with any kind of insurance know the game that insurers often play: an insurer will enthusiastically endorse an insurance product and sign up new customers. Where it gets tricky is when the insurer is asked to actually pay a claim. Insurance buyers know that fine print can “void” much of the insurer’s obligation. In the minds of many drivers, there’s no point in paying for theoretical breakdown situations, only to find that in the rare chance they do occur, some clause in the policy lets the insurer off the hook.

The waiting game

When insurers do pay out, it may take months for the payment to reach the customer. That’s the time that a driver may not have to balance his or her checkbook against the financial liability of the vehicle breakdown. Again, a large number of drivers choose instead to keep money on hand for use in the event of a parts malfunction or breakdown of the car or truck they depend on for daily transportation. Happy Motoring.

 

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