When Should You Drop Full Coverage on Your Car?

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  • Is it necessary?
  • What’s included?
  • The cost?
  • Can I drop some insurances?
  • Cheap insurance
While having full-coverage insurance offers the best protection and is always a good idea, you might feel comfortable dropping full coverage if you’re struggling to pay your premium or you drive an older, high-mileage, or low-value vehicle.
Of course, there are other ways to save money without sacrificing your protection. You can get full coverage at a reasonable price by comparing car insurance quotes online with the car insurance comparison shopping and broker app Jerry.
If you’re wondering what full-coverage car insurance means, if and when you should drop it, how much it costs, and how to save more money on your premiums, here’s what you should know.
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Is full coverage car insurance necessary?

While full-coverage insurance isn’t required by any state, it’s always a good idea.

Yes, it’s necessary

Full coverage is usually required if you’re leasing a car or paying off an auto loan. Lenders typically insist that you keep full coverage until you own the vehicle outright to minimize their risk.

It’s a good idea

Even if you aren’t required to maintain full-coverage insurance, it is definitely the most recommended option because of the added protection it offers you and your vehicle.
State-mandated minimum insurance covers damages to other drivers but won’t cover damage to your car—full coverage will.

You can consider dropping it

You might consider dropping full-coverage insurance if:
  • You rarely drive your car
  • You can’t afford full coverage
  • You drive an older car with high mileage and little value
Even in these situations, having full-coverage insurance is the only way to adequately protect your vehicle (and yourself from potentially expensive repairs).

Do I need full coverage on my used car?

This depends on the value of the car and its replacement parts. It’s important to do your research on the model and consider factors like mileage, vehicle condition, add-ons, and even your location in order to determine the value of your used car.
If the cost to replace the car is less than the cost of your premium, you may be able to go without full coverage.

What is included in full coverage insurance?

To start, full-coverage insurance includes basic coverage, which is the non-negotiable part of your insurance. This differs by state, but you are typically required to have some combination of the following:
CoverageDescription
Bodily injury liabilityHelps cover the other driver’s medical expenses and related costs when you are at fault for an accident.
Property damage liabilityCovers the costs associated with damage to another person’s vehicle or property when you are at fault for an accident.
Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverageHelps pay for lost wages, hospital stays, vehicle repairs, and property damage sustained during an accident where the other driver either does not have car insurance or cannot cover the expenses.
Personal injury protection (PIP)Covers the cost of injuries to you or anyone else in your vehicle during a car accident. This can include expenses like medical bills and lost wages.
With full coverage, you receive all of the above protections plus collision insurance, comprehensive insurance, and sometimes gap insurance.
  • Collision insurance covers damage sustained from a collision with another vehicle or a stationary object, such as a tree, telephone pole, or fire hydrant.
  • Comprehensive insurance helps cover the cost of replacing your car if it’s stolen or repairing your car if it gets damaged by anything other than a collision. This can include things like vandalism, extreme weather conditions, fire, or falling objects.
  • Gap insurance is short for guaranteed asset protection. If you get in an accident and total your car, it covers the difference between the amount you still owe on your car loan and the car’s actual cash value.
Key Takeaway Basic liability insurance protects other people and property if you are at fault for an accident, but it doesn’t cover damage to your car. Full coverage protects your car after a collision or a number of other unexpected incidents.

How much does full coverage cost?

Premiums for full-coverage insurance vary depending on many factors, including your demographics, driving record, age, and location.
Comparison shopping is the best way to ensure you’re getting the best rate for the coverage you need—and a car insurance comparison app like Jerry makes it virtually effortless.
Here’s what drivers pay in various states before and after switching with Jerry.
StatePrice before JerryPrice after Jerry
AZ$3,379$1,844
CA$2,489$2,448
CT$3,380$2,852
GA$2,555$2,386
IA$1,800$972
KY$2,456$2,340
MA$3,316$2,192
MD$3,947$3,430
MI$1,440$1,224
MO$1,718$1,654
NC$2,254$2,210
NY$4,387$3,216
OH$3,388$2,013
OK$2,088$1,764
OR$1,608$1,184
SC$3,475$2,417
TX$2,873$2,221
UT$1,723$1,529
VA$2,586$2,206
WA$1,860$1,284

Can I drop just collision, comprehensive, or gap insurance?

Depending on your individual situation and your desired level of risk, dropping just one of these options might make more sense than dropping full coverage completely.
  • You might feel comfortable enough to go without comprehensive coverage if you regularly park in a garage. If your car is protected from trees, weather damage, and animals, your risk of car theft and non-collision damage will be lower.
  • You might feel comfortable dropping collision coverage if you rarely drive or if your car is worth less than your collision deductible. If you can afford to buy a new car in the event of an accident, you may also be able to go without collision insurance.
  • If you’ve owned your car for more than two or three years, you can probably survive without gap insurance. At that point, the car’s value will usually be greater than what you owe.
Key Takeaway Whether dropping coverage makes sense depends heavily on personal factors, including your financial situation, the age of your car, and your risk level as a driver.
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How to find cheap car insurance

If you want to save money on full-coverage car insurance, Jerry is a good place to start. As a licensed broker, Jerry handles all the hard work of comparison shopping for you—from finding the cheapest quotes from name-brand insurers to finalizing the paperwork to helping you cancel your old policy.
And to ensure you always have the lowest rate, Jerry will send you new quotes every time your policy comes up for renewal, so you’re always getting the coverage you want at the best price. This level of service is why Jerry earned a 4.6/5 rating on the App Store and made it the top insurance app in the country.
“Using Jerry is a super straightforward process, and at each step, you can see exactly what coverage you’re paying for. Thanks to Jerry, I’m paying $900 less each year while keeping full coverage for my new car!” ––Martin H.
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