Windshield claims, which are also referred to as comprehensive auto insurance claims, apply to chipped, cracked, or broken windshields. If you carry comprehensive insurance, you can file a windshield claim to cover the repair costs.
But, before filing a claim, you should carefully weigh the following:
- How high is your insurance deductible?
- What is the repair cost for your chipped or cracked windshield?
Thoughtful consideration should always precede filing an insurance claim. Depending on the policies of your insurance provider, any claim, regardless of the cost, may cause your premiums to jump. In insurance circles, this is referred to as a surcharge.
Most auto insurance providers won't apply a surcharge to a windshield claim, but if your insurance provider recognizes a pattern of frequent auto repair claims, you may be reclassified as a high-risk driver and experience a spike in your premiums.
Car Insurance Deductible
Do not file a windshield claim if you have a comprehensive deductible that's $500 or higher. The cost of the repair will not be covered by the deductible. Yet, the claim will still be added to your claims history.
Weigh Repair Costs Against a Low Auto Insurance Deductible
If, for example, you have a $200 deductible and the repair cost is $231, you should think twice about filing a claim. Otherwise, after the $200 deductible is applied to the repair cost, your auto insurance company will pay $31. You then must decide if saving $31 is worth the price of having a claim being added to your insurance record.
How to File a Windshield Claim
If you opt to file a windshield claim, here's what to do:
- Just like a regular insurance claim, file as soon as possible. Be sure to file before taking your vehicle in for repairs.
- Your insurance representative will review your policy with you, making sure you are covered for windshield repair.
- Once cleared, take your vehicle to a repair shop of your choice. After paying the deductible, your insurance provider will cover the remaining cost. Keep in mind that depending on your insurance coverage plan, some providers may pay the entire repair cost if you opt to have the windshield repaired rather than replaced. This, generally, applies to chipped windshields which can be inexpensively repaired.