Car Battery Replacement: Is It Covered By Insurance?
If your car battery is stolen, your comprehensive coverage will pay to replace it and repair any damage to your car related to the theft. However, if your car battery is dead from other causes (i.e. leaving your lights on; reaching the end of the battery life) insurers typically consider the loss as part of routine maintenance, which is not covered. However, if your dead battery just needs a jumpstart, many insurers offer roadside assistance which can help.
Can I Purchase Insurance for My Car Battery?
Car batteries typically live for three to four years. Just as replacing light bulbs is a tenant’s responsibility, so is replacing your car battery. Your car insurance can protect you from theft of the battery if you have comprehensive coverage, but it rarely will pick up the tab for preventative maintenance. The only time your car battery is covered is if it was damaged by a covered event, like an accident. If the accident was the other driver’s fault, their liability coverage would pay for repairs and battery replacement if necessary. If the accident was your fault, your collision coverage would pay to replace it.
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How Does Insurance Work With Car Battery Replacement?
Since car battery replacement isn’t covered by insurance (outside of a covered incident), drivers can invest in purchasing roadside assistance and an extended warranty to help with battery issues as it nears its life’s end. If your battery needs a jump start, roadside assistance will be able to help.
Does Car Insurance Cover a Stolen Battery?
Only comprehensive insurance will cover the cost of a stolen battery. However, if your deductible is higher than the cost of replacing the battery, it may not be worth filing a claim, which will increase your rate at renewal time. The average battery is around $120, and deductibles are usually $500 or more. Comprehensive coverage can also cover other types of theft like catalytic converter theft and gas theft.
Are Dead Batteries Covered by Insurance?
Insurance does not cover dead batteries nor any other issues concerning maintaining your car. If you have roadside assistance, the cost of jumpstarting your battery is included in your premium. If you have a warranty on the battery from a dealership or car service center, they will likely replace it if you bring it in with proof of purchase. If your battery died because of a covered peril, like an accident or vandalism, your comprehensive or collision will cover you if you.
What About Batteries That Aren’t Damaged in an Accident?
If your battery was damaged in a non-accident event, like vandalism, comprehensive coverage would help you replace it. Same goes if a tree branch fell on your car during a windy storm.
Always ask your specific insurer to determine what their specific covered events are in addition to the ones listed above.
How Much Does It Cost To Replace a Car Battery Without Insurance?
Car batteries generally last between three to four years and can range from $50 to $200 for a standard battery and between $90 to $200 for a premium battery, depending on their size, quality and power.
Depending on where you go and how long it takes to install the new battery, it will cost you $10 to $100 for labor. However, many stores and retailers will install it for free as long as you buy their battery from them.
Can Roadside Assistance Help With Car Battery Replacement?
Your roadside assistance coverage will help jump your battery so you can get to the nearest mechanic or store, or give you a tow. They will not give you a new battery.
How Much Does Roadside Assistance Cost?
Roadside assistance can cost anywhere from $5 to more than $100 a year, or it can be included as a perk from your credit card company. They may offer free towing services up to a certain mileage, or even offer fuel delivery as long as you pay for the gas.
AAA and Third Party Roadside Assistance Programs
Roadside assistance can be included as an add-on to a standard car insurance policy, meaning these services come at an additional cost. Roadside assistance can help jumpstart a dead battery, tow a disabled car, change a flat tire and deliver fuel. It will not cover the cost of a new battery, but it can tow your car to a repair shop or jumpstart your battery.
You can find roadside assistance through most major insurers, or you can bundle it with your existing car insurance policy. The yearly cost is typically less than $100. If you anticipate a dead battery in the future, you can call your insurer to see if it offers roadside assistance. Some of the best insurance companies who offer assistance include:
- Liberty Mutual
- State Farm
For example, if you have State Farm roadside assistance, you can contact them if you have a dead car battery. They will then send a technician to jump your battery. If that fails, they will tow your car. Services like AAA will replace your battery when they come out to you. It may even be free if it’s still under warranty.
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How To Add Comprehensive Coverage
The best thing you can do is to select the right car insurance provider and add comprehensive, collision and or roadside assistance coverage to your new car insurance policy, depending on your needs. Let SmartFinancial help you find the most affordable rate. Enter your zip code below and answer a few questions to receive free car insurance quotes in your area.