When you find a crack or chip embedded into your car’s windshield, panic can ensue. No one wants to have to spend money fixing their car. No one wants to have to spend money fixing a chip that seems to indicate little consequence or danger. It makes sense. Prices for life’s necessities are reaching a blistering high. Tossing a few hundred dollars for an insignificant windshield chip seems like an indulgent decision on paper. These situations are why you have car insurance, after all. So, will your insurance cover a windshield replacement or repair?
As a windshield replacement company, we receive a ton of inquiries in regards to insurance policies. Furthermore, as an automotive glass company that files insurance claims for our clients, we have to know a thing or two about the policies out there. So, we have decided to share our valuable nuggets of insurance wisdom.
Does my insurance cover my windshield replacement in Colorado? Let’s get into it.
Don’t Ignore Chipped or Cracked Windshields
We’ve got to start with the obvious.
If you are researching this topic, there is a problem with your windshield or auto glass. As we noted, rising prices are deflating the air out of an already humid summer. It’s entirely plausible to be attempting to avoid a windshield repair. We aren’t here to judge your decisions.
But we must note that even the smallest crack in your windshield should be addressed as soon as possible. Sure. A tiny blemish on your glass is not an immediate emergency or safety hazard, but it won’t stop there. Eventually, the chip or crack will spread beyond repair, causing you to need an entirely new windshield. This concept becomes a catch-22 of sorts. You want to avoid paying for a small repair, which will eventually result in you needing to spend more money on an entire windshield.
If you see a chip or crack, get on top of it. Biting the bullet for a repair will save you money in the long run. Hopefully, your insurance will cover the windshield replacement or repair.
If you are still on the fence about fixing your auto glass, read deeper into the subject here.
Is it Illegal to Have a Broken Windshield in Colorado?
Fortunately, driving with a cracked-or-broken windshield will not result in a ticket. There are no laws in Colorado specifically stating that driving with a damaged windshield is unlawful.
On the other hand, driving with a visual obstruction on your vehicle is illegal. Colorado Revised Statute Section 42-4-227 prohibits driving a motor vehicle with obstructed windows. Furthermore, law C.R.S. 42-4-201 prohibits driving with windshields tinted darker than 27% and broken windshield wipers.
While cracks aren’t necessarily illegal, obstructions are. So, if a police officer deems your crack to be a vision problem, you may receive an unwanted ticket. Now you’ve spent more money trying to avoid spending money on replacements.
What Insurances Cover Windshield Damage?
Okay, let’s fire up the meat and potatoes. Will your insurance cover your windshield replacement?
Ultimately, there are three types of car insurance policies. While extensive and small details will vary by the insurance agency, the overall policy types go as follows:
- Liability Insurance: The cheapest and base insurance for vehicles. Basically, it will cover damages to other cars if you get into an accident. Overall, it protects you from lawsuits and other claims filed by the other driver(s). Usually, this insurance does not cover damages to your vehicle.
- Collision Coverage: Like liability insurance, this policy covers finances regarding the other party’s charges. Furthermore, it will cover the car repair cost if you are in an accident.
- Comprehensive and Full-Coverage: The most full-scale of the three (hence the name). This policy covers all of the above and most damages to your car outside of accidents.
Firstly, let’s get liability out of the way. Liability insurance will not cover your windshield damage. Basically, it is used to pay for the other party’s repairs if you are the cause of an accident. It’s a baseline, after all.
Collision Will Cover Accident Repairs
Collision coverage will cover windshield repair if the damage is caused and reported through an accident, regardless of who is at fault. If you get into an accident that damages your windshield, then be sure to file a claim immediately. While all policies are different, most collision policies will cover windshield damage caused by an accident.
Collision coverage can involve a deductible. With this, insurance agencies are not required to pay for repairs unless the costs reach a certain point. For example, if your deductible is $500, your windshield repair would need to exceed that amount to be paid. Unfortunately, the average windshield replacement does not stretch past that price point. Therefore, even if a small chip was caused in an accident, it probably won’t be covered.
You Have a Better Chance With Comprehensive
Obviously, having the higher premium policy often leads to a more accessible and more sufficient process when replacing your auto glass.
Typically, comprehensive coverage will cover windshield repair and replacement for the following reasons:
- Collisions with an animal
- Falling debris
The coverage also deals with accidents, regardless of who caused them. Simply put, comprehensive insurance will cover all windshield replacements unless it involves a very strange and unusual circumstance.
Once again, all policies are different. There are always fine lines and stipulations within every insurance claim, but overall, comprehensive should cover you. So, if you live in an area where there are plenty of risks for falling debris and other windshield-cracking dangers (Colorado), then going with comprehensive coverage may save you money in the long run.
Luckily, according to Autoinsurance.org, the average cost for comprehensive insurance in Colorado is only $158.34. That may be worth your investment.
Will an Auto Glass Claim Raise Your Insurance Rates?
Regardless of your coverage, claiming an issue on your insurance can be a nerve-racking experience. Will you end up doubling your insurance cost because of a small windshield chip?
Overall, claiming comprehensive coverage on your auto glass does not affect your insurance rates. After all, rocks or thieves damaging your windshield do not reflect on you as a driver and client.
On the other hand, if your windshield damage was caused by an accident that you are responsible for, your insurance rates may rise. Unfortunately, that’s just the way insurance works. You caused an accident. Therefore, you are seen as more of a financial liability to insurance companies.
Whether you decide to claim your windshield damage is entirely up to you, but if you pay for comprehensive coverage, there is no reason to avoid taking advantage of it.
How to File a Claim?
All insurance agencies have a swift and efficient way to file a claim. Whether by phone or app, you should have a way to contact the company as soon as a problem arises.
It’s crucial to place a claim as soon as you notice an issue. Not only will this look better on you as a responsible client, but it will get the process moving immediately. Insurance claims can end up taking precious time, depending on the circumstances. Kickstart the process as soon as possible before your windshield damage gets out of hand.
Some insurance agencies may require that you get repairs done by specific mechanics or shops. Therefore, it’s crucial to contact your insurance company before attempting to repair your vehicle. If you take it to the shop first, you may just be wasting your time and money.
Does SLP Auto Glass Take Insurance?
We do! In fact, our experienced auto glass technicians will handle the insurance and claim process for you.
Ultimately, we strive to make the windshield-replacement process simple and efficient. We understand how stressful it can be and how important your auto glass is. We will answer any questions and handle any problems you have, including contacting your insurance company.
Reach out to us today!