Does Your Car Insurance Cover Windshield Damage?
A broken tree branch, a hardy coconut, a rock or the debris of a construction site can cause severe damage to the car’s windshield. It is a fragile component of the car and needs some extra care for it to serve its purpose well.
Driving around with a cracked windshield is inadvisable as it can hamper your road vision completely and be the cause of an accident down the road. Interested to know more about an insurance cover for windshield damage? Read on!
Which type of insurance policy covers windshield damage?
Third-party insurance policies do not cover damages to windshields. A comprehensive insurance policy will cover the damage caused to a car’s windshield reducing the out-of-pocket expenditure that one will incur. In case the damage has been caused by virtue of another vehicle, then the windshield can be repaired through the other person’s third-party insurance cover.
What are the deductibles for windshield damage while making a claim?
A deductible can be quantified as the amount of out-of-pocket expenditure that the policyholder has to incur while making an insurance claim. These deductibles can either be compulsory deductibles or voluntary deductibles. One has to consider the deductibles applicable before making the claim. This is due to two main reasons –
- If the deductible amount is higher or close to the quantum of the claim amount, then it is not financially viable to make the claim.
- If the deductible amount is high and the difference between the claim amount and the deductible is smaller than the No Claim Bonus that will be realised at the end of the policy term, then it is better to encash the NCB at a later date than make the claim for windshield damage.
What are the types of windshield damage covered under the policy?
The windshield damage that is covered under each policy will be highlighted clearly in the policy document itself. But the types of damages that are usually covered are as follows –
- Damage caused due to collisions.
- Damage caused due to non-collision.
- Damage caused due to natural calamities such as hailstorms, floods, etc.
- Damage caused due to manmade circumstances such as fire, vandalism, riots, accidents, etc.
In case one wishes to process the claims under either of these headings then it is important that due procedure is followed. For instance, if the windshield was damaged due to vandalism, then an FIR to that effect must have been lodged.
What is the claim process?
An online insurance company will have a shorter, hassle-free claim process that can be completed in a few steps online using their website or mobile application. However, if the claim is to be done offline, then the following steps must be followed -
- Contact the insurer on the toll-free number to initiate the claims process.
- Get the Claim Intimation Number at the earliest. Make a note of the number that is provided by the car insurance company.
- A surveyor will be appointed by the insurer to inspect the car and assess the damage caused.
- Payment will be made by the insurer directly to the workshop or the cashless garage in case you have opted in for a cashless claim settlement process, but the policyholder will have to make the payment and the amount will be reimbursed by the insurance provider in case it is a reimbursement claim.
- All bills, receipts, and documents, in original, have to be submitted to the insurance company itself.
- The insurer will reimburse the amount spent by the insured, if the claim is accepted, within a stipulated period in case it is a reimbursement claim process. If not, the amount will be settled directly with the cashless garage.
Things to keep in mind if your windshield gets damaged
- Do not delay filing the windshield damages claim. Address the issue when it is a small chip on the windscreen rather than a huge crack.
- Do not make a claim if the repair cost of the windshield is lower than the NCB.
- One will lose the NCB in case a claim is raised unless he or she has taken an NCB Protect as an add-on.
- Read the fine print mentioned in the policy document to know the coverage of the policy.
Car windshields are designed to be resilient and withstand varying temperatures and pressure. It is designed in a manner that shatters into tiny pieces rather than big shards to minimise damage caused due to its breaking.
While all these precautions have been taken by the car manufacturer, there is no guarantee that one is completely safe and cushioned in case an untoward accident were to ensue and the windshield where to get damaged.
Therefore, opt-in for a comprehensive insurance policy and undertake all additional safety measures to minimise any loss or injury caused by virtue of a damaged windshield.