Can I Use Car Insurance for Repairs | In-Depth Guide by Expert

Most people think that you cannot use car insurance for repairs. However, there are a few exceptions, for example, if you’re required to have car insurance by law and have a policy that offers this coverage. Then, your insurance company is allowed to the contributor scheme. This means that you get paid by the policyholder who gives you information about their business, including their beginning and end businesses. 

So, your insurance company gets a percentage of the check you hand in rather than the total amount you would pay through bankruptcy. This allows them to be more responsible with your coverage and helps them to cover your repairs even if you’re not physically at the business at which they are employed.

Can I Use Car Insurance for Repairs

Can I Use Car Insurance for Repairs

If the problem appears by a collision or other insured events, such as theft or fire, the cost of the repair might be covered by your auto insurance. However, repairs caused by everyday wear and tear or mechanical failure are usually not covered by your auto insurance.

Find out how and when auto insurance can help you – from accidents to engine damage. Consider getting auto repair insurance if you need to repair a mechanical problem after your vehicle’s original warranty expires.

Major insurance companies offer this type of coverage and can save you from paying thousands of dollars in repair costs. Note that you don’t need this in any state, and it is not part of your regular auto insurance policy.

It does cover the following:

  • Driving
  • Engine
  • Transmission
  • Brakes
  • Exhaust system
  • Drive System
  • Steering system
  • Air conditioning system
  • Fuel system

This is similar to service contracts or extended warranties offered by car dealers and manufacturers, as it covers the same aspects. Insurance may expire as your vehicle ages. You may need to cancel this coverage after 100,000 miles or seven years.

What kind of repairs does car insurance cover?

In states that require it, usually, you only need a minimal amount of coverage for specific insurance policies. Usually, this is just liability insurance (which covers damage caused by your car to other people and their property).

It is not always necessary to have comprehensive and breakdown coverage, as both cover the cost of repairing your vehicle. Auto insurance doesn’t cover routine repairs, but it does cover repairs you need to make following an accident.

Damage or certain weather conditions, as long as you have comprehensive and collision insurance. If you are concerned about how you will afford these repairs, you should consider adding comprehensive coverage to your policy.

What Is Not Covered by Car Repair Insurance?

What Is Not Covered by Car Repair Insurance

The list of items and damages not covered by roadside assistance insurance varies from insurer to insurer but generally excludes the following.

Damage caused in a car accident

Routine maintenance, such as a general engine overhaul, oil change, suspension adjustment, tire replacement, and wheel balancing, Damage caused by poor maintenance, such as irregular oil changes or using the wrong fuel type.

  • Non-mechanical items, such as vehicle panels.
  • Components or parts affected by a recall.
  • The manufacturer’s voluntary repair program covers Parts or components.
  • Corrosion and rust

Is My Vehicle Eligible for Car Repair Insurance?

Eligibility for roadside assistance insurance is usually based on the age and mileage of your vehicle.

For example, National Comprehensive Insurance policies typically provide mechanical breakdown coverage for vehicles with less than 72,001 miles and seven years of in-service life.

However, there is a catch: if your vehicle exceeds 72,001 miles or you expect to exceed those miles, then the breakdown cover does not apply at renewal.

The National Comprehensive policy also has an exciting mileage rule:

If you exceed 90,000 miles during the policy period, your policy won’t cover corresponding damages, and roadside assistance coverage will be deducted from your policy.

For example, suppose you have roadside assistance insurance for a car with 65,000 miles and accumulate 25,000 miles during the policy period. In that case, you will lose coverage for repairs to your vehicle if you exceed 90,000 miles.

Your insurer may have different eligibility requirements.

For example, on the National General Insurance policy we reviewed, your vehicle must have comprehensive coverage for auto repairs.

Some types of vehicles may be out from roadside assistance. Your insurer will have a list of cars that are eligible or excluded from coverage.

Is Car Repair Insurance Worth It?

Is Car Repair Insurance Worth It

The potential cost can be worth it, depending on what is broken.

  • For example, repairing your vehicle’s air conditioning can cost anywhere from $100 to $1,000. However, other items can be more expensive.
  • Replacing a transmission can cost between $1,500 and $5,000.

Can you pay for it out of pocket if your vehicle has a significant technical defect?

If not, auto repair insurance may be worth it if your vehicle is no longer under warranty. Remember that you will have a deductible in the event of a claim.

It would be best to consider these factors before taking auto repair insurance.

Do you have a choice of your repair shop?

Auto insurance companies usually require you to take your vehicle to an authorized repair shop, but some companies may limit your choice of repair shops.

It’s a good idea to find out where you can have your car repaired before taking out an insurance policy.

Do auto repair insurance policies include additional benefits?

Some policies may include additional benefits such as roadside assistance, trip-interruption compensation, and car rental.

Can insurance coverage be transferred to a new owner?

Some auto repair policies allow you to transfer coverage to a new owner if you sell or give away your car.

You may already be covered under a new car warranty or extended warranty. In this case, taking out auto repair insurance would be an unnecessary overlap of coverage.

How to Choose the Right Auto Insurance?

Rates can vary considerably from one insurer to another, so be sure to shop around before choosing a policy.

  • Coverage: Ensure the policy you choose offers the different types of coverage you need.
  • Policy limits: The minimum policy limits may not be enough to protect your assets in the event of a severe accident.
  • Make sure the limits you choose are high enough to protect your financial situation.
  • You don’t know: Most people buy auto insurance to help pay for repairs and medical expenses in an accident.
  • If you carry comprehensive insurance, it will cover damage caused by weather, wild animals, falling objects, and vandalism.
  • If you have comprehensive collision insurance, your insurer will cover the cost of hitting into something that isn’t a car, like a telephone pole, a curb, or a deer, or if you damage your vehicle by driving into a pothole.

What is mechanical breakdown insurance?

What is mechanical breakdown insurance

Some insurance companies offer breakdown coverage (MBI) for general repairs. It is not part of your regular auto insurance and is not required in any state.

The few insurance companies that offer MBI coverage, often called “auto repair coverage,” only cover new vehicles and vehicles with mileage under a specific limit. You can also purchase MBI as an add-on to your regular auto insurance, which will increase your premium.

Breakdown coverage can pay for new brakes, interior parts, or engine parts. It can be used to repair a damaged transmission or faulty alternator. As with traditional auto insurance, costs vary depending on the vehicle and its features.

But purchasing MBI can add hundreds of dollars to your annual premium expense.

MBI Coverage vs Extended Warranty

Many new cars are now available with extended warranties. You may be wondering if you need MBI insurance. Some similarities and differences may lead you to choose one option or the other. If your vehicle must be repaired at a repair shop of your choice, you should consider MBI insurance.

Extended warranties usually require you to take your vehicle to a repair shop for repairs.

MBI policies usually cover a more comprehensive range of repairs than extended warranties. However, this coverage only extends to certain parts, such as the transmission or engine.

Please read the fine print in the MBI policy and the extended warranty to understand what is not covered. MBI policies don’t require a large down payment, saving you money. Instead, you pay them over a set period along with your auto insurance. Overall, MBI policies cost less than extended warranties.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the types of Car Insurance?

A typical auto insurance policy usually includes up to five basic types of coverage that can cover you in the event of an apartment accident, theft of your vehicle, or damage to your car from another insured event.

The main types of insurance

  • Liability
  • Medical benefits and personal injury protection
  • Collision
  • Comprehensive insurance
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance.
  • Classic Motor.

However, you can add other types of insurance to your standard policy to provide additional protection, for example.

Protect classic and antique cars with unique insurance options that may not be included in the standard policy.

Rental car insurance: If you have an accident while removing hail or snow, or if a dump truck hits our vehicle, you’ll need to have your car repaired. 

What Alternatives Exist for Car Repair Insurance?

If you worry about expensive repairs and want extra protection, consider purchasing an auto insurance policy. These perform for inevitable mechanical failures, according to specialists.

They are usually of limited duration or until your vehicle reaches a particular mileage. Another option is roadside assistance. With this option, you can get towing service if your vehicle breaks down, get help with a flat tire, and start the engine when the battery is dead.

Can you claim your car insurance for repairs?

If you have comprehensive or hull insurance, you can claim the cost of repairs, but only if an insured event caused the damage.

Your comprehensive insurance will cover the damage because the dropped object is a covered event (you must pay the deductible upfront). However, if your car’s hood rusts, your insurance will not cover this repair.

How do I get insurance to cover a blown motor?

In general, auto insurance will not cover engine damage or other mechanical damage unless you can link the cause to an accident. Otherwise, the best way to ensure your engine is to use roadside assistance insurance or your new car warranty.

How Does Car Repair Insurance Work?

If you have a problem with your car, such as a mechanical failure, you can file a claim with your auto repair insurance company.

A claims representative will determine if the policy covers the problem. For example, if your vehicle’s electrical system fails due to a defect, the policy will cover you. If your car’s electrical system was damaged because you cut the wrong wire while installing a replacement radio, you are likely not covered.

If your insurance covers the problem with your car, you can take it to a repair shop to fix it. Some auto insurance policies limit the garages you can go to for repairs.

Bottom line

If you want extra protection from expensive repairs, consider a warranty for your vehicle. According to Edmunds, these warranties usually come with new vehicles and are designed to fix certain mechanical defects.

The warranty usually covers specific parts or other defects for a certain time or until the vehicle have reached a particular mileage.

Another option to consider is roadside assistance.

These options usually provide:

  • Towing services after a breakdown.
  • Starting a dead battery.
  • Replacing a flat tire.
  • Other services.

Roadside assistance services come as part of a subscription, as part of your car insurance, or even on an as-needed basis. While most vehicle coverages exclude technical and basic upkeep, they do provide broad service coverage.

It covers a wide range of conditions, from hail storms to automobile accident restorations. Examine your plan to see what protection you have, and if you have any queries, consult your broker.



Adam Grabois is an expert in all aspects of Insurance and Property with 20 years of experience. He is a licensed broker of all lines including property, casualty, life, and health. As a licensed adjuster, he is well-versed in all aspects of insurance, and he owns All Needs Insurance agency in Florida.

He attended Tufts University where he earned his undergraduate degree, followed by a Master's degree from Columbia University.

Adam shares his breadth of experience by helping many businesses and individuals manage risk and protect themselves financially. He now shares this with the audience of the "Pro Insurance Info" website.

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