Do Custom Vehicle Features Have Auto Insurance?
Car manufacturers often include only a set variety of bells, whistles and features on the vehicles they roll off the assembly line. While many people are perfectly content to keep the factory-included parts on the vehicle they buy, you might want to make your car even more unique to you. However, if you customize your vehicle with special parts and features, you will probably increase its value.
As a result, the risk you pose to your auto insurer will likely change. Therefore, any custom parts you add to your vehicle are unlikely to receive automatic coverage from your insurance policy. However, just because you don’t automatically receive coverage, that doesn’t mean you can’t add it to your policy.
Auto insurers frequently offer custom parts and features coverage, and all you might need to do is ask your agent to add it to your policy. However, these benefits vary, so make sure you get the right plan for you when you sign up for coverage.
Why do auto policies not cover customized parts?
When you modify or customize your car, you affect its value. In the eyes of your insurer, the increased value of your custom vehicle will often have an increased cost risk when compared to a similar but non-customized car. Therefore, any damage to your car could prove very costly if you must make an insurance claim.
To be able to cover you for the damage to these custom items, your insurer will likely need you to buy additional insurance coverage.
Coverage for Custom or Modified Vehicles
Under the terms of your auto policy, your standard physical damage insurance will usually pay for all of the factory-included parts of the car. However, once you add customizations, you will need to add extra coverage to your vehicle.
Generally, this coverage comes in the form of a custom/aftermarket parts coverage endorsement. This specialized policy supplement will pay for the damage to vehicle modifications like:
Special tires or customized wheels
Undercarriage lighting, fog lights, camper shells
Custom chrome, decals, paint work, spoilers or running boards
Stereo or entertainment system customizations
Custom interior upgrades or upholstery
The policy will generally only pay up to a certain amount of money for the combined damage cost of these items. For example, if you have a $5,000 custom parts endorsement, then you can receive $5,000 at most for the damage to all your custom pieces. Deductibles might still apply if they are part of your standard collision or comprehensive insurance.
Please note, if you have an antique, classic or collectible car, then you will need specialty insurance for this vehicle. Though similar to custom parts coverage, this is separate coverage that works a bit differently. Therefore, work with your insurer to deduce which of these modified auto policies are best for you.