6 things you didn’t know your car insurance covered

A new car? A hotel? Yep, car insurance can cover you for those.

It’s important to keep your wheels in good nick as you ride the twists and turns of the road. One unexpected ally in this quest is comprehensive car insurance.

But there’s more to it than you’d probably expect. When you take out comprehensive car insurance, you’ll get a whole lot more than you bargained for - in a good way!

Here are six things you probably didn’t know your comprehensive car insurance would cover you:

1. A new car

new car
Did you know that many car insurance policies will offer you a brand spankin’ new car if yours is written off? This is a special inclusion only found on comprehensive policies and only offered if you bought your car brand new and it’s written off within a certain amount of time - usually within the first two years.

This can save you a lot of money, because the only other way to get a new car out of an insurance policy is to insure your car at an agreed value equal to what a new car would cost. With new car replacement cover, you can insure your car for much cheaper using market value - which under normal circumstances would only pay you what the car was worth just before the accident. But in this case new car replacement cover would override the market value as long as the car is written off within the designated time frame.

2. Child safety seats

car seat
You might already know that comprehensive car insurance usually covers some of your car’s contents, but if you’re a parent, you’ll be happy to find out that they’ll also cover your children's’ safety seats. That means you can get your car seats replaced without that amount being deducted from your contents cover! Just bear in mind that there will be a limit on the amount you get back on car seats per individual claim, so if you have multiple young ‘uns, you might need to ask your insurer if you can increase that limit for a small fee.

3. A hotel

hotel
You wouldn’t usually associate car insurance with hotels but if you’re in an accident far from home, you’ll be glad to have a comprehensive policy that will put you up for the night. This is called emergency accommodation cover and it kicks in if you have an accident outside a certain distance from your home and it’s unsafe to drive your car. It will pay for you and your passengers to stay in a reasonably priced place, up to a certain dollar amount outlined in your policy. Just make sure to keep your receipts or else your claim could be denied.

4. Vandalism

vandalism
When another driver smashes into you on the street, it’s usually not hard to take them to task for it. But when your car is vandalised, who’s going to pay for it then? If you have comprehensive car insurance, you’re in luck because most policies cover damage to your car even when there’s no culprit around to pin it on. Some hooligan keys your car in the stadium parking lot? Covered. A few wannabe gangsters tag your SUV? Covered.

You’ll also be covered for a host of similar situations where getting someone else to pay up can be difficult: hit-and-runs, being hit by an uninsured (and broke) driver and even getting dinged up by those phantom shopping trolleys that like to haunt the shopping centre car parks.

5. Hail damage and storms

storm
If you car is damaged in a storm, it might be difficult to convince mother nature to fork out the cash for repairs. That’s ok, because comprehensive car insurance has your back come rain or shine.

You’re covered against all types of storms including flood, hail and wind. But be forewarned: you usually won’t be covered within the first day or two of buying your policy because they don’t want you waiting until after you hear of an approaching storm to buy your cover.

6. Animals running into your vehicle

cat
Collisions with kangaroos are on the rise throughout Australia. Weighing as much as 90kg, it’s safe to say a roo can do a LOT of damage to a vehicle. But that’s not the only large animal that can do some damage. You’ve got emus, wallabies, wombats, deer, sheep… If you hit any one of them you’re out of luck unless you have comprehensive car insurance.

There is one kicker: windshield protection isn’t always included in comprehensive policies. So if a bird flies into your windscreen and the windscreen is the only thing damaged, you might not be covered unless you bought additional windscreen protection as an add-on to your policy (most insurers offer this).

So what does all this mean?

What this means is that you don’t have to leave your car defenseless against the common risks of the road. In a day and age when people are worried they’ll find out too late that they aren’t covered for something, you’ll have the comfort of knowing you are covered for not only the basics, but for all of these unique tidbits as well.

Most comprehensive policies will include these bits of cover, so there’s no better way to show kindness to your car than by shopping around, pulling up a few quotes and finding a comprehensive policy that works for you.

Picture: Unsplash
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