Auto Hail Damage Insurance Claims 101
Vehicle hail damage claims are one of the top types of claims reported to insurance companies. In fact, in the last few years, hail claims have risen approximately 45% nationwide. As hail occurrences don’t happen every year and some are worse than others, hail storms and the damage they cause to personal property can be a huge aggravation and major time sucker.
There are basically two directions you can take when a hail catastrophe affects your personal property. You can choose to get the auto hail damage repaired or live with it. Vehicle owners with comprehensive insurance coverage have the advantage of 100% coverage on damage caused by Mother Nature. Damage caused by hail, wind, flooding, and fire is covered but unless the damage far exceeds the cost of the deductible, some vehicle owners decide it just isn’t worth it.
In this article, we will cover some of our auto hail damage customers most frequently asked questions, including: Should I get hail damage fixed on my car? Can you keep your car if it’s totaled? Do insurance rates go up after hail damage? And more.
If we have not answered your question, please send it to us and we will make sure it is addressed.
Should I get hail damage fixed on my car?
If you still owe money on the vehicle and if the vehicle is still relatively new. If you have a new vehicle, yes – you should get the hail damage repaired. If you don’t and you decide to sell the vehicle, later on, the value of your car will be greatly reduced. If you have an older vehicle that you plan on keeping around, It really depends on if you can live with it. Many people with older vehicles will ultimately keep and spend the insurance company check.
One thing to keep in mind: If in the future, the car is involved in an automobile accident or another hail storm — whether it’s your fault or not — the pre-existing hail damage will be deducted from any settlement. Insurance companies will not pay on a claim twice.
Can you keep your car if it’s totaled?
Really, the choice is yours. If you decide to accept the “totaled” decision made by your insurance company but still want to keep the vehicle, your insurance company will issue a check worth the cash value of the vehicle, minus your deductible. Essentially, the amount of money your vehicle could have been sold for to a salvage yard.
Do insurance rates go up after hail damage?
No. Hail damage is considered an “Act of God” or “Mother Nature.” Damage of this kind to your vehicle or home is completely covered by your insurance policy if you have comprehensive insurance taken out on your vehicle. The only financial obligation you will have is the deductible.
At The Hail Shop USA, we cover your deductible so the cost to get your hail damage repaired is $0.
How to file a hail damage claim?
Filing a hail damage claim with your insurance claim is the first step to take if your vehicle was exposed to a hail storm. The number to call can be found on the back of your insurance card or you can visit our blog that lists common insurance company phone numbers and online filing links. The process is easy and only takes about 5 minutes.
Tip: Have your insurance card, paper, and pen ready. You will be given a claim number and an agent name.
How long do you have to claim hail damage on a car?
The deadline is typically 12 months from the date of the hail storm. The reasoning here is because if you live in an area that is frequently hit by hail storms, it is probably going to happen again. Insurance companies prefer to deal with one storm at a time. Hail from a singular storm is easier to identify and repair than layers of hail damage.
How do you repair hail damage on a car?
If you search the internet for “How do you repair hail damage on a car?” you will get google results pages full of DIY hail damage dent repair methods. Questionable methods to say the least. Our advice to you is if you plan on reselling your vehicle in the future, leave the auto hail repair to the professionals. One mistake can be costly and potentially cause permanent damage to your vehicle. If you accidentally overextend a dent while trying a DIY method you found online, the results could mean a complete panel replacement.
So, put down the plunger, leave the hair dryer in the bathroom, and only use dried ice on Halloween. We promise you will thank us later.
In conclusion, hail storms and everything that comes with them, including hail claims, can be frustrating. Our job here at The Hail Shop USA is to make the process a little smoother.