Hail storm warnings can cause concern, and rightly so. Hail can cause major damage to your vehicle (and leave a dent in your wallet).
So what can you do to prevent, or at least minimize, hail storm damage? Here’s how to protect your car, make an insurance claim due to hail and repair any damage:
Seek Shelter Immediately
If you’re on the road, parking garages, covered gas stations and freeway underpasses are good options. At home, parking in your garage or under your carport is the safest option.
If you don’t have access to any type of shelter for your vehicle, use a padded car cover to reduce potential damage. Blankets, towels or cardboard can be used in a pinch (but will need to be secured with paint-safe tape).
Look at Your Insurance Coverage
A comprehensive insurance policy will typically cover dents and dings to the body, cracked or shattered glass and interior water damage. But coverage must be purchased prior to the date of damage, and many providers place moratoriums on coverage prior to forecasted storms.
A deductible (out-of-pocket cost) is included with most comprehensive policies. In areas where hail storms are common, a policy with a lower deductible could be worth exploring. Zero-deductible policies may be available at an additional cost.
Claims & Repairs
After a claim is filed, an insurance adjuster will assess the damage and estimate repair costs.
If the cost of repair exceeds the value of the vehicle, the vehicle may be totaled. If damage is minor, paintless dent removal may be sufficient. More serious damage could require panel replacement and a new paint job.
Put the insurance company in contact with your body shop to streamline the process. For example, if the estimate is lower than the actual costs, the body shop may be able to work out the difference with the insurer without your direct involvement.
If you have questions or need help with your vehicle, reach out today.