Does Car Insurance Cover Non-Accident Repairs?

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You'll be covered for some non-accident repairs under comprehensive insurance, but your insurance won't kick in for regular wear-and-tear repairs.
When you get in a car accident or a natural disaster causes unexpected damage to your car, it’s nice knowing your car insurance company is there to help you out.
However, not all the damage to our cars are caused by collisions or unexpected disasters. Our vehicles are machines with parts that eventually wear down or wear out completely. Things go wrong and need to be fixed or replaced.
So what happens when your dependable car sputters to a stop and won’t restart, or when a warning light flashes on the dash? And what about when you don't hit a car, but hail damages your car?
Car insurance broker Jerry is here to explain when your car is and isn't covered based on your coverage options.
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What non-accident repairs does car insurance cover?

There are some instances when your car insurance policy will protect you from non-accident repairs. However, this is only the case if you opt to buy comprehensive coverage, and it won't cover regular maintenance repairs.
Basically, comprehensive coverage covers unexpected incidents not involving a collision with another vehicle or object. Some common things comprehensive coverage will cover include:
  • Hitting a deer
  • Hail damage
  • Theft or vandalism
  • Fire
Keep in mind that you'll have to pay a deductible for your comprehensive insurance before the rest of your coverage kicks in.

Does car insurance cover wear and tear?

You're covered for many non-accident repairs if you have comprehensive coverage, but even that car insurance won't cover wear and tear repairs.
Wear and tear repairs are any repairs that need to be done as a result of regular maintenance on your vehicle. Simply put, cars break down over time on their own and need fixing. So, does your car insurance cover wear and tear repairs when your Check Engine light comes on?
Unfortunately, the money will probably be coming out of your own pocket for whatever is wrong with your vehicle. Normal insurance policies, such as the basic liability required by law or even more elaborate ones like collision or comprehensive, don’t cover regular maintenance or "wear and tear" related expenses.
We are expected to be able to pay for these as they are considered "expected expenses" in the insurance realm. After all, insurance companies are technically there to help when the unexpected happens, not the expected.

How do I get covered for repairs?

Of course, if you still have a warranty on the car or whatever part is malfunctioning, then you’re good to go. If your warranty has expired, there are other options you can consider ahead of time to help you out in times like these so you’re not alone.
Extended warranties are an option from various places that act just like your original warranty, covering repairs for certain parts of the car. These can go out several years past your factory warranty and be a big help when something goes wrong.
Also, some insurances companies like Progressive and Geico offer a "mechanical breakdown insurance" (MBI) or something of a similar name. It’s important to remember, however, that even these options won’t cover all regular wear and tear. Some items on your vehicle are just expected to wear out and be replaced by you, the car owner.
Other examples of insurance companies who offer some type of MBI include USAA, which will only cover vehicles up to 10 years old and 115,000 miles, and AAA, which actually has no limit on the vehicle’s age or mileage and comes with many additional perks like car rental coverage and free battery replacement.

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