Nothing interrupts a peaceful drive like the dreaded sound of an object hitting your windshield. You might be lucky and have no damage or be on the hook for a repair bill. If you have a chip or crack, two common questions are “Does insurance cover a cracked windshield?” and “How much does it cost to fix or replace a windshield?”
The Cost of Windshield Repair
Suppose you have a chip or crack in your windshield. First, you must decide how to address it. Should you leave it or repair it? How much will it cost to fix it? Does insurance cover a cracked windshield? Leaving a chip or a crack in your windshield can cause problems down the road. A chip can become a crack. Once you have a crack in your windshield, the safety of your windshield could be compromised, which you don’t want.
The cost of a windshield repair
The price to fix your windshield depends on the damage and how the repair is done. Repairing a chipped windshield costs about $65 for the first chip, with each additional chip repair adding to the cost. Small cracks of less than 8 inches can cost about $125, while larger cracks can cost $155 or more. If you use a mobile service, they may charge more to come to you to do the repair.
Windshield replacement cost
A windshield replacement cost varies, but you can expect to shell out a fair bit, even for the least expensive repair. Windshields on older vehicles are usually cheaper to replace. A standard windshield replacement can cost $190-$400. The average cost is $360.
The windshields of many newer luxury models are equipped with Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) technology to assist drivers. These technologies are often built into the windshield and include cameras, blind spot warnings and adaptive cruise control. Unfortunately, these windshields are much more expensive and can cost $1000 or more to replace.
Does insurance cover my cracked windshield?
The answer is… maybe. The type of insurance you have will determine whether or not it covers your broken windshield. Keep reading to find out whether you have coverage with your insurance policy.
Types of Auto Insurance in Canada
Several types of auto insurance policies are available. You must have basic insurance, which won’t cover damage to your windshield in most cases. However, you can upgrade your policy so that your auto insurance will cover the cost to repair or replace your windshield. When shopping for auto insurance, you’ll want to compare car insurance coverage, prices and the terms of different companies to make sure you’re getting the best policy for your needs.
You need basic car insurance to drive on the road in Canada legally. This type of insurance can also be called a standard insurance policy. Basic insurance provides the following coverage:
- Third-party liability provides liability coverage if you injure or kill someone or damage their property. You must have a minimum of $200,000 liability with your car insurance in Ontario and all other provinces except Quebec, where the minimum liability insurance is $50,000.
- Statutory accident benefits provide supplementary coverage if you’re injured in an accident to cover additional medical care, a caregiver, attendance care, income replacement and non-earner benefits.
- Direct Compensation-Property Damage (DCPC) applies if your vehicle or the contents of your car are damaged by someone else. DCPC covers the loss of use of your vehicle and is paid directly to you.
- Uninsured automobile coverage covers you if you are injured or killed by a driver without insurance or if an unknown driver damages your vehicle.
Basic insurance might cover damage to your windshield if it’s caused by another driver, but in most circumstances, it doesn’t.
If you have a collision, you’d think your car has insurance coverage for damage, but this isn’t always true. You can add collision insurance to your policy, but it’s not required. Some drivers don’t because they feel collision insurance isn’t necessary due to the age or state of their vehicle.
So, what does having collision insurance do for you? It covers your vehicle’s repair or replacement cost up to its cash value if you collide with another object, the ground or a vehicle.
If you have collision insurance, insurance will likely cover a cracked windshield if the crack results from a collision.
Comprehensive car insurance is just that – comprehensive. It covers damage to your vehicle due to vandalism, fire, theft, attempted theft, flying objects, riots, civil disobedience and natural disasters.
So, comprehensive insurance usually covers a cracked windshield. It will pay up to the vehicle’s cash value to replace or repair any damages. This type of coverage can include repairing or replacing your windshield.
All perils insurance covers all perils. It combines collision and comprehensive insurance with the added benefit of providing insurance if your vehicle is stolen or damaged by someone who lives with you or someone you hired to fix, service, or drive it.
All perils insurance does cover cracked windshields in almost all circumstances.
Specified perils insurance will cover damage to your car as long as the cause of damage is listed in the policy. Specified perils insurance typically covers damage as a result of:
- Attempted theft or theft, civil disturbances, riots and explosions
- Damage from the forced landing of an aircraft or falling parts from an aircraft
- If you’re transporting your vehicle on land or water and it’s damaged due to collisions, derailment, sinking, burning, or the stranding of the transport method
- Windstorms, hail, rising waters, earthquakes
Suppose you have specified perils insurance, and your windshield is cracked because of an event covered by the policy. In that case, your specified perils policy should cover repairing or replacing your windshield.
Insurance covering the repair or replacement cost would be unlikely if the chip or crack results from an incident not covered by specified perils, such as gravel hitting your windshield.
How much does insurance cover for a cracked windshield?
Assuming your carrier covers your chipped or cracked windshield, you’ll want to know how much is covered before you take your vehicle in for repairs.
Your insurance provider might cover the cost if the damage is a chip. As a result, you won’t have to make a claim that will affect your insurance or pay a deductible. Insurers do this because paying to repair a chip is much cheaper than paying the cost of a windshield replacement.
The process of claiming compensation from your existing insurance policy for a full windshield replacement, which is typically more expensive, will be different compared to claiming for minor damages like chips or cracks. First, you’ll need to make a claim and pay a deductible to have insurance pay for your windshield replacement. Before you make a claim, you should calculate the cost to see if it’s worth it. By the time you pay your deductible and possibly have your premiums increase because of the claim, it could be cheaper to pay out of pocket for the windshield replacement.
Should I Repair or Replace my Cracked Windshield?
If your windshield has a chip or crack, you should repair or replace it. Having a chip or crack in your windshield can compromise its safety. You can also get a fine for driving with a damaged windshield.
The good news is that insurance will cover some or all of the cost of a repair or replacement. As a result, insurance coverage will reduce the amount you have to pay and restore your windshield, preventing further problems.
FAQs About Insurance For Cracked Windshields
It can if you have the right type of car insurance. For example, a basic or standard insurance package is unlikely to cover the cost of a windshield replacement. However, if you have comprehensive or all perils coverage, insurance will cover the replacement cost in most cases.
Before you use your insurance to replace your windshield, check your policy to see if your insurance will cover a windshield replacement. If it does, find out how much replacing your windshield will cost. If it’s almost as much as your deductible, you may be better off to cover the cost yourself. Next, you’ll want to ask your agent or broker if making a claim to replace your windshield will increase your premiums and by how much. Once you know the costs of a claim, you can decide whether to make an insurance claim or pay for the replacement yourself.
You can find out if your insurance covers windshield replacement by reading your policy or calling your agent or broker.
Comprehensive car insurance will cover the cost of windshield replacement in almost all circumstances. Your agent or broker can assess your situation and confirm your coverage.
A windshield claim can increase your premiums, but the amount is usually insignificant. It often only raises your premiums by a few dollars a month.
Auto insurers often pay to repair a windshield chip without you needing to make a claim or pay a deductible. They do this because it will prevent further damage to the windshield. In addition, it’s cheaper for them to pay for a $100 chip repair than to replace a windshield.
Auto insurance often will cover windshield repair without you having to make a claim. However, if there is extensive damage, you should contact your insurer to find out how much they will cover, if you need to pay a deductible and if you need to submit a claim.
The cost of a windshield replacement depends on the type of windshield your vehicle has. Standard windshields can cost between $190-$400, with the average being $360.However, a windshield with cameras, blind spot alerts and other technologies typically cost more than $1000.
Driving with a cracked windshield can be dangerous because the damage can seriously compromise the safety of your windshield. In addition, you can get a fine for driving with a cracked windshield.
The cost to fix a cracked windshield depends on the size of the crack. A small crack can cost about $125, while larger cracks can set you back $155 or more.
When operating your vehicle, your windshield must be in good condition, meaning no chips or cracks. Driving with a chipped or cracked windshield can result in a fine in every province in Canada.
You could save thousands of dollars by comparing prices before you buy permanent or term life insurance
About The Author: Anna Sylvia
Anna is a personal finance writer with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications. She obtained her Personal Financial Planner designation from the Institute of Canadian Bankers while working as a financial advisor for one of Canada’s big banks. Anna’s passionate about helping people better understand their money so they can make the best financial decisions for themselves. When she’s not writing, Anna spends her time with her family, walking her (big!) dog and practicing her flute.
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