Auto Detailing Insurance

Though not legally required, you should consider auto detailing insurance for your car detailing shop to protect your business, employees, and customers.
Written by Mariza Morin
Reviewed by Brittni Brinn
Thinking about starting a car detailing business? You’ll need auto detailing business insurance to financially protect your small business with coverage options such as general liability insurance, commercial auto insurance, and more.
  • Auto detailing business insurance is not required by law.
  • There are many types of auto detailing business insurance policies to choose from based on your specific business needs.
  • Auto detailing insurance should be seriously considered to protect your business against third-party claims or potential property damage.

What is auto detailing business insurance?

As the name suggests, auto detailing business insurance is a type of insurance coverage for small businesses in the auto detailing industry.
While detailing shops are not legally required to purchase small business insurance coverage, you’re potentially putting your car detailing business at a huge financial risk if you operate without it. For instance, if you accidentally damage a customer’s vehicle while on the job, they could sue you for property damage—leaving you with out-of-pocket costs that could set you back thousands of dollars or more depending on the circumstances.
Thankfully, there are plenty of top insurance companies these days that offer business insurance policies, including
State Farm
, and
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Types of insurance for a car detailing business

As a high-risk business, it’s essential to choose the right small business insurance for your car detailing shop. But there are many types of insurance coverages to consider based on your business needs. Let’s take a look at some of the most common small business insurance options.

General liability insurance

Due to the high number of customers detailing shops (and even car wash businesses) see on a daily basis, general liability insurance is recommended in order to protect your business against the most commonly occurring third-party claims, such as bodily injury and property damage.
Also known as business liability insurance, a general liability policy typically covers:
  • Bodily injury liability
  • Property damage liability
  • Medical bills
  • Personal and advertising injury
  • Legal defense
  • Damage to premises rented to you
Let’s say a customer drops off their vehicle at your detailing shop, but slips and falls on a wet floor on the way out—sustaining a critical head injury. Your general liability insurance policy would cover the customer’s medical expenses and your legal fees if they decide to sue your business.
That’s why it’s a great idea to carry liability insurance at the very least to avoid paying any high out-of-pocket costs related to any customer injuries or property damage on your premises. But you don’t have to have a brick-and-mortar detailing shop to qualify for this type of insurance—mobile detailing businesses should also consider general liability coverage as you run the risk of an accident on your customer’s property.

Commercial auto insurance

As liability and physical damage protection, commercial auto insurance covers work vehicles—whether they are owned or leased.
Commercial auto insurance isn’t just for commercial vehicles, such as semi-trailer trucks or cargo vans—it even protects employees who use their own personal vehicles for work-related matters! So if one of your employees gets into a car accident while running an errand for your detailing shop, commercial auto insurance will cover their medical bills and property damages.
Based on your businesses insurance needs, a commercial auto insurance policy may provide coverage for:
  • Physical damages
  • Medical expenses
  • Uninsured motorist
  • Hired Auto
  • Non-owner coverage

Business owner’s policy

A business owner’s policy (BOP) combines both general liability insurance and commercial property insurance coverage in one manageable package.
So what does a business owner’s policy cover exactly? BOP insurance includes:
  • Liability coverage: As mentioned above, general liability insurance covers third-party bodily injuries and property damage, along with protections for your detailing business.
  • Property coverage: If you have a brick-and-mortar detailing shop, commercial property insurance will cover physical damages to your business property, along with repair or replacement costs for company equipment, machinery, tools, and other affected property in the event of a fire, theft, natural disasters, or vandalism.
Business interruption insurance is also optional in a business owner’s policy. If your business suffers a great catastrophe, such as a devastating fire that leaves your auto detailing shop in complete ruins, business interruption insurance may cover some of your lost revues for a certain length of time after a major disaster.
Keep in mind that BOP insurance doesn’t cover employees, you’ll need a separate workers’ compensation insurance policy—which we’ll go into more detail about below.

Workers’ compensation insurance

Workers’ compensation insurance, also known as workers’ comp, covers your employee’s lost wages and medical bills in the event of a work-related injury, illness, or death.
An employee can only receive workers’ comp benefits if they are injured on the job. Workers’ compensation insurance may cover employee injuries caused by fires or explosions or lifting heavy equipment, along with common accidents like slips and falls.
Workers’ compensation insurance is required in most states, though the laws vary from state to state. Depending on your business location, your car detailing shop could face harsh penalties and hefty fines if you don’t follow your state guidelines for workers’ comp.

How much does auto detailing insurance cost?

Auto detailing insurance costs vary depending on a number of important factors, including your insurance policy, business location, and the number of employees your auto detailing business employs.
On average, car detailing shops may pay between $450 and $1,000 per year for general liability coverage. You’ll need to consult with your insurance company to verify how much your business will pay based on your insurance needs.

Who needs an auto detailing insurance policy?

If you own an auto detailing business, whether you have many employees or even if you’re a one-person operation—you’ll need an auto detailing insurance policy! 
While auto detailing insurance is not legally required, car detailing business owners should seriously consider this type of insurance coverage to give you peace of mind on the job—not only to protect your business and personal assets but your employees and customers as well.
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Yes—auto detailing is at a higher risk of general liability claims due to the high volume of customers this type of business receives. Your auto detailing business will be held liable if a customer accidentally injures themselves or their property is damaged on your premises.
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