Auto Glass Repair and Insurance: A Comprehensive Guide

Auto Glass Repair Covered by Insurance: The Ultimate Guide 2024


Auto glass repair covered by insurance can provide peace of mind when your windshield or other car windows get damaged. If you’re in a hurry for answers:

  • Comprehensive insurance usually covers auto glass repair and replacement, but you may have a deductible.
  • Full glass coverage means no deductible for repair or replacement.

Auto glass damage can be frustrating. Whether it’s a small chip or a big crack, understanding how your insurance handles these situations is crucial. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the ins and outs of auto glass coverage, the types of insurance that cover it, and how to file a claim effectively. By the end, you’ll know exactly what to expect and how to keep your vehicle safe and sound.

auto glass insurance infographic - auto glass repair covered by insurance

Understanding Auto Glass Coverage

Auto glass damage can be a real headache, but having the right coverage can make all the difference. Let’s dive into the two main types of auto glass coverage: comprehensive coverage and full glass coverage. Knowing the difference can save you both time and money.

Comprehensive Coverage

Comprehensive coverage is optional but highly recommended. It protects your vehicle from non-collision-related damages such as fire, theft, and natural events like hail or a tree falling on your car.

  • Fire: If your car catches fire, comprehensive coverage will pay for the damages.
  • Theft: If someone steals your car, this coverage helps replace it.
  • Natural Events: Damage from hail, floods, or falling trees is covered.

One key point to remember: comprehensive coverage includes auto glass repair and replacement. However, there’s a catch. If you need a repair, your deductible is usually waived. But if you need a full replacement, you might have to pay a deductible.

Example: Imagine a hailstorm hits and cracks your windshield. If it’s just a small crack, the repair might be free. But if the entire windshield needs replacing, you could be on the hook for the deductible.

Full Glass Coverage

Full glass coverage is an additional option you can purchase separately. This coverage is all about making your life easier when it comes to auto glass issues.

  • No Deductible: With full glass coverage, you won’t have to pay a deductible for repairs or replacements.
  • Additional Coverage: This covers all types of auto glass damage, making it a very convenient option.

Example: If a rock hits your windshield and it needs replacement, full glass coverage means you won’t pay anything out of pocket.

Key Differences

Here’s a quick comparison to help you understand:

FeatureComprehensive CoverageFull Glass Coverage
Deductible for RepairWaivedNone
Deductible for ReplacementMay ApplyNone
Type of CoverageBroader (fire, theft, natural events)Specific to glass

In summary, comprehensive coverage is broader and includes various types of damage, but you might have to pay a deductible for replacements. On the other hand, full glass coverage specifically focuses on glass and doesn’t require a deductible for any repairs or replacements.

Arming yourself with this knowledge can make dealing with auto glass damage much less stressful. Next, let’s look at whether insurance covers auto glass repair.

Does Insurance Cover Auto Glass Repair?

Auto glass repair covered by insurance can depend on the type of coverage you have. Let’s break it down into three main categories: comprehensive insurance, collision insurance, and liability insurance.

Comprehensive Insurance

Comprehensive insurance covers your vehicle against damage not caused by a collision. This includes:

  • Road debris: If a rock or other debris hits your windshield while driving, comprehensive insurance can cover the repair or replacement.
  • Vandalism: If someone intentionally damages your car windows, comprehensive coverage will often handle the cost.
  • Natural events: Events like hailstorms or a tree falling on your car are also covered.

However, keep in mind that while comprehensive insurance covers these types of damage, you may still have to pay a deductible. For example, if your windshield needs to be replaced, you might have to cover a portion of the cost, depending on your policy.

Collision Insurance

Collision insurance covers damage to your car resulting from an accident with another vehicle or object. Here’s how it works:

  • Car accidents: If you collide with another car or object, collision insurance can cover the repair costs for your vehicle, including any broken glass.
  • Deductible: Similar to comprehensive insurance, you will usually have to pay a deductible before your insurance kicks in.

Collision insurance covers the cost of repairs only if you are at fault. If the other driver is at fault, their liability insurance should cover your repair costs, including auto glass damage.

Liability Insurance

Liability insurance is different. It covers damage you cause to other vehicles and property but does not cover damage to your own car. This means:

  • Other vehicle damage: If you hit another car and break its windows, your liability insurance will cover those costs.
  • No auto glass coverage: If your own car’s windows are damaged, liability insurance will not cover the repair or replacement.

If you only have liability insurance, you’ll need to pay out-of-pocket for any auto glass repairs. However, some repair shops, like Safelite, offer various payment options, including cash, checks, and credit cards.

Understanding the different types of insurance and what they cover can help you better navigate the complexities of auto glass repair. Next, we’ll discuss how to file an auto glass claim.

How to File an Auto Glass Claim

Filing an auto glass claim can seem daunting, but it’s usually straightforward. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you through the process, whether you go through your insurer or a third-party provider like Safelite.

Through Your Insurer

Filing a claim directly with your insurance company is a common route. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Gather Information: Before you contact your insurer, make sure you have all the necessary details. This includes your policy number, contact information, and specifics about the damage (like the date and time it occurred, and how it happened).

  2. Contact Your Insurer: Most insurance companies offer 24-hour claims assistance. You can file a claim by phone, through their website, or via a mobile app. Be prepared to provide all the details you gathered.

  3. Provide Damage Details: Describe the damage to your windshield or other auto glass. Include the diameter, length, and position of any cracks or chips. This helps the insurer decide if the glass needs to be repaired or replaced.

  4. Schedule an Appointment: Once your claim is processed, you can schedule an appointment with a local glass shop or a mobile service. Your insurer will guide you through this step.

Through a Third Party

Many insurance companies partner with third-party claim services, making the process even simpler. Here’s how to proceed with a third-party provider like Safelite:

  1. Check with Your Insurer: Verify which third-party glass shops your insurance provider works with. Some insurers offer a link to file a glass claim directly with the third party.

  2. Contact the Third-Party Provider: Once you have the details, contact the third-party provider. You might need to provide your insurance company name, policy number, deductible amount, vehicle details, and information on how the damage occurred.

  3. Schedule Your Service: After confirming your coverage, the third-party provider will help you schedule a repair or replacement service. Safelite, for example, offers both in-shop and mobile services.

  4. Complete the Service: If you have a deductible, you’ll pay it directly to the shop upon completion of the repair or replacement. The third-party provider will handle the claim submission to your insurer.

By understanding these steps, you can make the process of filing an auto glass claim smooth and hassle-free. Next, let’s explore the costs associated with auto glass repair and replacement.

Cost of Auto Glass Repair and Replacement

Repair Costs

Repairing minor damage to your windshield is often a quick and cost-effective solution. Here are some typical costs you might encounter:

  • Small Chips: Repairing a small chip usually costs between $60 and $100 per chip. These repairs involve injecting a resin into the chip and curing it.
  • Small Cracks: Fixing small cracks costs about the same as small chip repairs, typically ranging from $60 to $100.
  • Large Cracks: Larger crack repairs may cost $125 or more. However, the feasibility of repair depends on the crack’s size and location.

Pro Tip: Repairing a small chip or crack promptly can prevent it from expanding and necessitating a more expensive replacement.

Replacement Costs

Sometimes, repairing a windshield isn’t possible, and replacement is the only option. The cost of replacing a windshield varies significantly based on several factors:

Older Car

Replacing a windshield on an older car is generally less expensive. You can expect to pay between $300 and $500. The cost is lower because these vehicles often lack advanced technology integrated into the windshield.

Newer Vehicle

For newer vehicles equipped with advanced technology, the cost can be much higher. Features like rain-sensing wipers and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) require recalibration during windshield replacement. This can push the cost above $1,000.

Example: A 2019 Volkswagen Tiguan with ADAS might cost around $900 for a windshield replacement, while a 2017 Ford F-150 without ADAS could cost as low as $390.

auto glass repair - auto glass repair covered by insurance

Technology Impact

Modern vehicles often come with sophisticated technology that interacts with the windshield. These systems, such as ADAS, require precise calibration after windshield replacement. This calibration ensures that features like lane-keeping assist and adaptive cruise control function correctly.

Fact: Recalibrating ADAS can add significant cost to the replacement. For instance, recalibrating the systems in a 2019 Volkswagen Tiguan can increase the total cost to $1,322.

ADAS Recalibration

ADAS recalibration is essential to maintain the safety and functionality of your vehicle’s advanced features. It involves aligning the sensors and cameras that interact with the windshield. Failing to recalibrate properly can compromise vehicle safety.

Statistics: According to Forbes, the cost for recalibration can vary widely, adding $100 to $400 to the total replacement cost.

Understanding these costs helps you make informed decisions about auto glass repair and replacement. Next, let’s address some frequently asked questions about auto glass repair covered by insurance.

Frequently Asked Questions about Auto Glass Repair Covered by Insurance

Does Filing a Claim Affect Insurance Premiums?

When it comes to auto glass repair covered by insurance, many people worry about how filing a claim might impact their insurance premiums. The good news is that most insurers do not consider inquiries about your policy coverage and deductibles as a claim. However, the actual filing of an auto glass claim can sometimes affect your rates.

Fact: Insurance companies often do not count auto glass damage as a claim on your policy. But, it’s always best to refer to your specific policy details or contact your insurance provider to be sure.

Example: If you file multiple claims within a short period, insurers might see you as a higher risk, which could lead to increased premiums. But if it’s your first or only claim, you might not see any change in your rates.

Will My Deductible Be Waived for Repairs?

Many insurance companies offer deductible waivers for windshield repairs but not replacements. This means you might not have to pay anything out-of-pocket if the damage is minor and can be fixed without replacing the entire windshield.

Fact: According to Insurance Journal, most insurers waive the comprehensive insurance deductible for glass repair but not for replacement. However, states like Florida, Kentucky, and South Carolina have laws that mandate zero deductible for windshield replacements.

Example: If you have a small chip or crack, your insurance company might cover the repair at 100%, saving you from paying the deductible. But if the damage is extensive and requires a full replacement, you may need to pay your deductible.

What If My Deductible Is Higher Than the Repair Cost?

If your deductible is higher than the cost of the repair, you might consider paying for the repair yourself. This can be more cost-effective and avoids filing a claim that could potentially impact your premiums.

Options: Companies like Safelite offer various payment methods, including cash, checks, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. This flexibility makes it easier to handle smaller repair costs out-of-pocket.

Example: If your deductible is $500 but the repair only costs $200, paying out-of-pocket is the better option. Safelite can assist with this process and ensure you have multiple payment options available.

By understanding these aspects, you can make informed decisions about your auto glass repairs and insurance claims. Next, we’ll discuss how to file an auto glass claim effectively.


At Toth-Felty Insurance, we believe in providing personalized insurance solutions tailored to meet the unique needs of our clients. Whether you’re dealing with a minor chip or a full windshield replacement, our team in Middleburg Heights, Ohio, is here to guide you every step of the way.

Our goal is to ensure you have the best possible coverage for your auto glass repair needs. We work closely with you to understand your situation and help you navigate the complexities of auto insurance. With our expertise, you can drive with confidence knowing that your vehicle is well-protected.

For more information on how we can tailor an auto insurance plan to your needs, or to discuss your current policy, please visit our auto insurance service page.

We’re dedicated to making sure you have the robust protection you need, so you can focus on what matters most—your safety and peace of mind.

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