Will car insurance cover damage to a sun roof?
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UPDATED: Mar 13, 2020
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Many vehicles come equipped with a sun roof or moon roof. This is a stylish way to let some natural light into a vehicle or enjoy the benefits of fresh air without owning a full convertible. Unfortunately, these glass panels are often easily damaged by collisions, vandalism, falling objects or other perils. Luckily, auto insurance does cover damage to a sun roof if the policy includes the appropriate coverage.
All glass on a vehicle is covered through the auto policy’s comprehensive coverage. This includes the windshield, side windows and sun roof. It does not include damage to mirrors or headlights, even if those parts are made from glass. Glass damage is always covered under comprehensive coverage regardless of what caused the damage. This means that if the car is damaged in a collision accident, the vehicle itself would be covered under collision coverage but the glass damage would be handled through comprehensive coverage.
The comprehensive coverage only applies to damaged glass, not the body of the vehicle. Some sun roofs have mechanical parts or metal frames holding them in place. If these are damaged in addition to the glass itself, they would be covered by whatever coverage applies to the loss type.
For example, if the sun roof and its mechanical parts was damaged by hail, the entire claim would be handled under comprehensive coverage. If, however, the sun roof and surrounding area was damaged in a roll-over auto accident, the body damage would be handled under collision and the glass would be paid under comprehensive.
What does it cost to replace a sun roof?
If you have comprehensive coverage, you will only need to pay the amount of the comprehensive deductible in order to have the glass replaced. Many people maintain comprehensive deductibles that are the same as the collision deductible, but many policies have a lower deductible for comprehensive coverage since that coverage is usually cheaper to add to a policy.
Some states allow drivers to purchase full-glass coverage. This is a special type of comprehensive that replaces glass for free with no deductible. This applies to sun roofs as well as windshields and side windows. Additionally, even if you have regular comprehensive coverage, the insurance company will waive the deductible if the glass is repairable rather than needing to be replaced.
If your sun roof is damaged in a collision accident, you only need to pay the collision deductible. In other words, if your collision causes glass damage, it’s unnecessary to file a separate claim for the glass. Instead, the insurance company will code a portion of the loss to comprehensive and the rest to collision while only charging you a single deductible.
How do I file a claim for a damaged sun roof?
A glass claim should be filed with the claims department, either at the agent’s office or over the phone. Some insurance companies have an option for glass-only damage when you call. If the sun roof is damaged, do not select this option. Instead, opt to speak with a representative and file the claim directly with them.
The reason for this is that glass-only claims departments are usually outsourced to a neutral third-party dispatcher. Rather than handling the claim through your usual insurer, the glass claim is handled directly by Safelite or another similar company that will then bill the insurer. While this works smoothly and efficiently for windshields, this process is not designed for sun roofs.
Sun roofs are specialty parts that may need to be ordered directly from the manufacturer. Additionally, the glass claims dispatcher will not be able to assist you with repairs to any of the mechanical parts of the damaged sun roof. This means that the call will be re-directed to the insurance company’s main claims department. It will save you some time to call the claims department directly to file the claim.
Once the claim has been established, your vehicle may need to be inspected by a licensed adjuster. The adjuster will examine the damage and determine if the glass is the only thing that needs to be repaired or if there are any other mechanical issues or body damage to deal with. They will then provide you with a settlement check for the damage less any deductibles; this money can be used to repair the vehicle at the shop of your choice.
Glass claims will usually not affect a person’s insurance rates if there is no accompanying body damage to the vehicle. If you’re concerned about the possible effect on your premiums, be sure to ask your agent or customer service representative if the claim will count against your rates.