Flood Victims Are Asking, What Is My Insurance Coverage?
Many of your frequently asked questions regarding vehicle flood and hail damage have been researched, gathered, and posted below.*
In a catastrophe situation, taking measures to ensure your safety is imperative. Do not drive your vehicle through standing water.
The first question would be, “Do you have a comprehensive insurance policy on your vehicle?”
If yes, this is what State Farm says about comprehensive coverage.
“Comprehensive coverage pays to repair or replace a covered vehicle that’s stolen or damaged by something other than collision or rolling over. For example, damage caused by fire, wind, hail, flood, theft, vandalism and hitting an animal is covered.” – Sited from the State Farm’s website.
If no, for auto hail damage, we suggest getting an inspection from a local paintless dent repair company. For vehicle flood damage, get an estimate from your insurance adjuster.
What do I do if my car or truck has extensive flood damage?
Calling your insurance agency and filing a claim is your first step. Most auto insurance agencies have a claim line. In the case of a catastrophe, such as the flooding, time is probably not going to be on your side. There might be longer than usual wait times for adjuster assignment.
The best thing you can do is get your vehicle out of the water. Before you attempt to move your vehicle from high water, please consider the following.
Vehicle Flood Damage Checklist
- Check for damage. If your vehicle is mostly submerged in flood waters, do not attempt to start your vehicle. If there is water in the engine, starting it will damage it more. If your vehicle is mostly submerged, call a towing company or find a friend that has a tow kit and remove the vehicle (if accessible and safe) from the water. If you know for certain there is NO water damage to the engine, move on to step 2. If you are not sure, move to step 1(a-c).
- (a) Check engine fluids. If your transmission fluid or motor oil appears milky, the engine has water damage.
- (b) Check the air filter. Is it wet or damp? If yes, you have engine water damage.
- (c) Still not sure? Contact a mechanic or someone that does vehicle engine work. It is not worth putting yourself at risk to save your vehicle.
- Salt Water or Fresh Water Submersion. Salt water submersion is much more damaging than fresh water.
- (a) Salt water. If the water is salt water, contact a towing company or find a friend with a towing kit to help you get your vehicle out of the salt water. Salt water can increase chances of corrosion. Once the vehicle is out of the water, dry it off as quickly as possible.
- (b) Fresh water. Start drying the vehicle.
- Clean the vehicle’s interior. Pull anything and everything out of the vehicle that is not attached and put in the sun to dry. If your vehicle’s seats are removable, pull them out. Don’t forget the trunk.
- Remove the moisture. Use a wet/dry vacuum to collect standing water. Use towels to remove moisture from seats and carpet. Using fans to further dry the interior is suggested.
- Check the fuel tank and line. Use a store-bought siphon pump to remove some fuel. If you note any water (which would naturally separate from the fuel), you’ll want to empty the tank completely.
If the adjuster declares the vehicle “totaled,” there is no reason to file a claim for auto hail damage. If the vehicles IS repairable, you can then have them provide an estimate for the cost to remove the hail damage. This can be done by the same adjuster and put on the same claim.
Make sure the damaged vehicle is checked by a mechanic before attempting to drive the vehicle.
* The resourced used this article was partially obtained from various sources not associated with The Hail Shop USA. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information.