Does Car Insurance Cover Hail Damage?

Comprehensive car insurance typically covers hail damage — find out how to get the right coverage.

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Car insurance and hail


Depending on the size of the storm, hail damage can range from a few dents on the hood to a total loss. Rest assured: if your vehicle is damaged by hail, your comprehensive coverage will cover the damages. This policy feature — usually paired with collision coverage — is designed to protect against weather-related threats. Let’s explore the ins and outs of hail damage and car insurance as well as how to ensure you have the best rate after filing a claim.


How insurance covers hail damage
  1. Is hail damage covered by comprehensive coverage?
  2. How much does comprehensive coverage cost?
  3. Should you file a car insurance claim for hail damage?
  4. Does a hail damage car insurance claim raise rates?
  5. Methodology




Hail and comprehensive coverage


Comprehensive coverage will cover costs from hail damage, as long as the policy was valid prior the damage occurring. Comprehensive coverage is designed to fill the coverage gaps left by and collision coverage. While liability insurance protects other people and property from damage you cause, and collision protects your vehicle, comprehensive covers damage that occurs outside of collision, including:

  • Damage caused by animals
  • Lightning
  • Weather-related events such as flooding and fire
  • Hail

These rules don't vary much by car insurance company or by state. If you carry an insurance policy with GEICO in California and your cousin has Allstate in Texas, you both would have the same coverage against hail (as long as you both have comprehensive coverage).

Like collision coverage, comprehensive coverage has a deductible. The deductible amount may depend on your individual circumstances.





How much does car insurance for hail cost?


The price of comprehensive coverage will depend on the value of your vehicle, as that is what your insurance company would need to pay to replace. We created estimates based on generic insurance rates to provide some directional guidance when shopping for hail coverage.


Insurer Average Annual Premium
Nationwide $1,273
Allstate $1,902
Farmers $1,237
GEICO $1,091
Liberty Mutual $1,520
Progressive $1,793
USAA $967
State Farm $1,769

With a standard $500 deductible, comprehensive coverage would set you back an average of $1,445 annually. If you qualify, USAA offers the cheapest premium for our user profile.





Should you file a car insurance claim for hail damage?


This can be a tricky question to answer. Before taking this step, ask yourself the following questions.


1. Does the value of the damage exceed your deductible?

This one is pretty straightforward. In order to file a claim for hail damage, the damage must be greater than your deductible. Sometimes, it will be quite obvious but if you’re unsure, get an estimate for the repairs at a body shop.


2. Are you planning on re-selling your vehicle?

If you own your vehicle and are planning to resell it down the line in order to purchase another vehicle, it might be in your interest to repair the hail damage.


3. Are you leasing or financing?

If you’re leasing the vehicle, you’re absolutely going to have to get the damage repaired. A lease is basically a long-term rental agreement, in which you’re required by your lease to return the vehicle in near-perfect condition. If you’re financing the car, you also might be required to keep the vehicle in good condition. Check your financing agreement to be sure.


Will a hail claim increase your insurance rates?

Most insurance companies tend to treat weather incidents such as hail as not-at-fault accidents. While a collision claim is generally seen as the fault of the driver and can be very costly, a comprehensive claim probably won't be as expensive.

A comprehensive claim will increase car insurance premiums by an average of $98 per year.


Year After Accident Average Annual Premium
No Accident $1,427
1 Year Later $1,525
2 Years Later $1,623
3 Years Later $1,721

A car insurance company will typically raise rates for a three-year period following a violation or claim.

It's also worth considering rate revisions. Rate revisions occur when an insurance company uses the previous year’s loss report to price its future premiums. If the previous year had a substantial number of claims payouts — common after storms — you can expect future premiums to be higher to account for the loss.

If you experience an unusually high rate spike after filing a hail car insurance claim, consider that a good opportunity to assess other insurance options. If you didn’t file a hail claim but are experiencing the negative effects of a rate revision, this is another good time to shop around. While nearly every insurance company does rate revisions, the amount varies. Enter your zip code below to see how much you could be saving.



Find affordable comprehensive coverage today.

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Methodology


Between September and December 2017, The Zebra conducted comprehensive auto insurance pricing analysis using its proprietary quote engine, comprising data from insurance rating platforms and public rate filings. The Zebra examined nearly 53 million rates to explore trends for specific auto insurance rating factors across all United States zip codes, averaged by state, including Washington, DC.

Analysis used a consistent base profile for the insured driver: a 30-year-old single male driving a 2013 Honda Accord EX with a good driving history and coverage limits of $50,000 bodily injury liability per person/$100,000 bodily injury liability per accident/$50,000 property damage liability per accident with a $500 deductible for comprehensive and collision. For coverage level data, optional coverage (that must be rejected in writing) is included where applicable, including uninsured motorist coverage and personal injury protection.

National property and casualty losses information is from the Insurance Information Institute and the NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information U.S. Billion-Dollar Weather and Climate Disasters report.

For vehicle make and model data, analysis referenced the most popular vehicles in the U.S. by 2016 year-end sales according to Goodcarbadcar.net’s automakers’ data.

Finally, some rate data may vary slightly throughout report based on rounding.

Ava Lynch
Ava LynchSenior Analyst

Ava worked in the insurance industry as an agent for four-plus years.

Ava currently provides insights and data analysis as one of The Zebra's property and casualty insurance experts. Her work has been featured in publications such as U.S. News & World Report, GasBuddy, Car and Driver, and Yahoo! Finance.

About The Zebra

The Zebra is not an insurance company. We publish data-backed, expert-reviewed resources to help consumers make more informed insurance decisions.

  • The Zebra’s insurance content is written and reviewed for accuracy by licensed insurance agents.

  • The Zebra’s insurance content is not subject to review or alteration by insurance companies or partners.

  • The Zebra’s editorial team operates independently of the company’s partnerships and commercialization interests, publishing unbiased information for consumer benefit.

  • The auto insurance rates published on The Zebra’s pages are based on a comprehensive analysis of car insurance pricing data, evaluating more than 83 million insurance rates from across the United States.