Does Auto Insurance Cover Transmission Repair?
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Your auto insurance covers a myriad of events and repairs in the case of an accident. If you have comprehensive coverage, your car insurance even covers damages that are not from an auto accident, such as hail damage or damage from storms. But does your auto insurance cover transmission repair? That all depends on what the cause of the transmission damage or malfunction might be.
When It’s Not Covered
Transmission repair will not be covered by your auto insurance if it is normal wear on your vehicle, or the transmission simply malfunctions in some way. Even for big ticket repairs like transmission or engine, normal maintenance on your vehicle is not covered by auto insurance. However, there are some instances in which transmission damage may be covered.
In an Accident
Sometimes when you have an auto accident, your vehicle can be damaged in ways that you might not consider. If someone hits the front end of your car hard enough, they could cause transmission damage. In this case, your transmission repair would be covered by the at-fault party’s car insurance policy rather than your own.
If the accident that caused your transmission damage was your fault, then it falls under your responsibility to fix it. If you have collision coverage, your transmission repair may be covered by your policy. Likewise, if the accident was not your fault but the at-fault driver is uninsured, your car insurance could cover the transmission repair if you have uninsured motorist coverage.
There are some events other than a car accident that can cause damage to your transmission, and might be covered depending on your car insurance coverage. If you hit a light pole or tree, your transmission repair could be covered by your auto insurance if you have collision coverage.
Flooding is a common problem in some areas of the country. If your vehicle has been the victim of flooding, it could cause problems with your transmission. If you have comprehensive coverage on your vehicle, your transmission repair could be covered by your auto insurance. This is not always the case, however. It is important to contact your insurance agent as quickly as possible after any natural disaster or event to find out how your coverage applies to the damages.
When Transmission Repair is Covered But Not Feasible
Sometimes when you have extensive damage to your vehicle, regardless of the cause, the car insurance company can decide that the vehicle is totaled and refuse to repair it. Auto insurance companies usually total a vehicle if the repair cost is 50 to 80 percent of the value of the vehicle. Transmission repairs can be very costly, particularly if the transmission cannot be fixed and a new one needs to be installed.
It is entirely possible in these cases for the car insurance company to total the vehicle. If your vehicle is totaled and the incident is covered by your auto insurance policy, you will be provided with a claim check in the amount of the value of the vehicle. This can be used to pay off the auto loan on the vehicle, or to get a new vehicle if you own your car outright.
You cannot use the claim check to repair the transmission on your car in this case. Once a car is totaled it gets a salvage title. Most salvage cars are not legal to drive in most states. You can repair the transmission and get it changed to a rebuilt title, but these can be difficult to insure against future potential damages and accidents. If your car insurance company totals your vehicle due to transmission damage, it is your best option to simply get a new vehicle.
Checking Your Coverage
If you aren’t sure what instances your transmission repair might be covered, contact your insurance agent or check over your car insurance policy documents. Collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, and uninsured motorist coverage are the most common types of coverage used to cover transmission repair when the incident warrants it.
You can also check with your auto insurance agent to discover if transmission repair is covered in these instances. In most cases, it will be covered if the damage is due to an event that you are insured against. However, for some policies and insurance companies, the lines between what is covered and what is not may not be clear. Always contact your car insurance company if you are unsure.