Does Auto Insurance Cover Fire Damage?
Car fires can be really scary. Many people have seen the sight of a car on the side of the highway, fully engulfed in flames or witnessed a neighbor’s burned down garage that had a car inside of it. Fire can do major damage to cars, far beyond just paint and seats. Vehicles today have many sophisticated computers and other components that can be totally destroyed by a fire. Cars that catch on fire are sometimes deemed to be total losses, so it’s very important that you have adequate protection for your vehicle.
Comprehensive Coverage – The Key to Fire Protection
If you are concerned about protecting your car against losses from a fire, then you will want to carry comprehensive coverage. This type of insurance is also sometimes referred to as “full coverage”, as it protects not only people injured and property that is damaged outside of your car (liability), but also your car too. Full Coverage will basically cover anything that happens to your car from collision, hitting an animal, vandalism or any other kind of damage. This policy will even provide some medical payments to injured parties that were in your car during an accident. Some people have liability only insurance, which is required by law, but this policy will not cover your car for fire damage.
What Kinds Of Fire Damage Does My Full Coverage Insurance Cover?
Here are some typical causes of car fires and how your comprehensive insurance coverage would respond:
- Arson – Arson is defined as the intentional or deliberate setting of a car on fire. This is of course a criminal act and punishable by law. If somebody starts your car on fire intentionally, your comprehensive policy will pay for the damages. Arson activity will always be investigated by the police and the arsonists will be prosecuted. There is no coverage if an insured starts his own car on fire.
- Fire Caused By A Car Accident – Sometimes cars do start on fire as a result of a collision. If the impact from an accident damages the gas tank or fuel lines, a fire could occur. The newer electric or hybrid vehicles can also catch fire in an accident. Your car would be covered in this kind of situation.
- Engine Fires – Cars can catch on fire from within the engine compartment. Fires of this nature normally happen due to a mechanical malfunction in the car’s fuel or electrical systems. Regardless of the reason for an unintentional engine fire, your comprehensive policy will cover you for loss.
- Garage Fires – Most people believe that if your car starts on fire in a garage, your homeowner’s insurance will pay for the damages. Actually, homeowner policies never pay for automobiles. If your car gets destroyed by fire while in a garage, your auto policy will cover it.
- Total Losses – There will be times when a car is declared a total loss as a result of a fire. A total loss means that it would cost more to repair a vehicle than it is worth. In this type of situation, your comprehensive policy would pay you the actual cash value of your car, which is the maximum amount the insurance company will compensate you. In most cases, after your insurance company pays for the value of the car, they will take possession of the vehicle and sell it for scrap.
What Have We Learned About Insurance & Fire Damage
Car fires are serious and you should never try to put out a fire by yourself. If this unfortunate scenario ever happens to you, be sure to call the fire department right away and let them take charge of the situation. Should your car every start on fire and you want to protect it against loss, then a comprehensive or “full coverage” policy is for you. If you are looking for more information regarding comprehensive car or auto insurance in Chicago or the suburbs, visit Insure on the Spot today. Free Quotes in just two minutes!