A former insurance producer, Laura understands that education is key when it comes to buying insurance. She has happily dedicated many hours to helping her clients understand how the insurance marketplace works so they can find the best car, home, and life insurance products for their needs.

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products, including home, life, auto, and commercial, and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, mainly in the insuranc...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers Insurance CSR 4 Years Leslie Kasperowicz

UPDATED: Apr 29, 2022

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Important facts to know...

  • The reason for the rust developing will determine whether insurance covers the repairs
  • Rust that occurs as a result of improper maintenance is not covered
  • Comprehensive coverage will be needed for most claims that are not related to an accident

Rust happens on cars and trucks for a variety of reasons. Much of it has to do with the oxidation of metal and exposure to water. If you experience rust, you will want to get it repaired as quickly as possible as it will impact not only aesthetics but also vehicle structure.

Auto insurance may or may not accept a claim, so you need to learn about the various scenarios where you would be covered.

Rust damage is typically not covered by car insurance because it results from normal wear and tear. This type of damage is not included in standard insurance policies. However, in certain circumstances, your car insurance company may cover rust damage due to environmental damage or faulty repairs. Though it’s unlikely for insurance companies to cover rust damage, there are some situations where rust may be covered in a car insurance policy.

If you have comprehensive insurance, it’s possible that rust damage to your car might be covered, however, the normal wear and tear damage is excluded. Comprehensive insurance will cover your vehicle if it sustains damage in incidents that don’t include another vehicle or a fixed object.

So, for example, if a car is damaged by flooding, rust damage may be covered under your policy.

Read on below to find out if rust damage is covered and under what circumstances.

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Will car insurance cover repairs because of poor maintenance?

As a car owner, you are expected to care for your vehicle throughout the life of it. This care includes following a maintenance schedule for oil changes, transmission flushes, and more.

Rust is something that has the potential to ruin a car. It might show up on the undercarriage, on the door panels, and elsewhere. If the rust continues to go without a repair, it has the potential to eat through the metal, affecting the structure of your car’s frame.

There are ways for you to maintain your car so that you don’t encounter rust. Some of the ways to provide the needed care include:

  • Wash your car regularly
  • Wax your vehicle at least twice a year
  • Neutralize road salt with baking soda

Providing the care will prevent the paint from coming off. When the paint comes off, you expose the metal to the elements, including oxygen and water. These conditions are when rust has the chance to form.

If you are negligent in the care of your car to the point that rust forms, insurance is not going to cover any kind of claim that you file.

Many people are concerned about submitting claims to the insurance company because they are worried that their auto insurance policy will go up. However, if you were to file a claim when it isn’t covered, most insurance companies will simply let you know that such a thing isn’t covered.

You can choose to repair rust damage yourself. The body shop you go to will update that you have had rust repair because all repairs are attached to your VIN.

If you ever go to sell your car, future owners and dealerships will know that parts might have been repaired because of rust damage in the past.

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Will car insurance cover repairs because of accidents?

There are some instances where you could get into an accident and rust occurs. When this rust happens, insurance will look at the coverage that you have on your policy.

If you have the coverage, they will often accept the claim and pay for the repairs. You will simply have to follow protocol with filing the claim and pay the insurance deductible.

Some repairs that would involve rust include damage related to the following:

If you are reporting accidents to your insurance company as they happen, rust shouldn’t have a chance to form. However, all insurance companies have a limit in terms of how long you have to file a report.

How to find the right comprehensive insurance coverage?

Comprehensive coverage is going to be what you need to add on to your policy for rust repair coverage. Every type of insurance serves a different purpose.

The liability insurance required by the state will cover bodily injury and property damage to the other party if you’re at fault in a crash. Then, you get to choose additional coverage for your vehicle.

Comprehensive coverage is generally not required by the state. However, it might be required by a lienholder if you are buying or leasing a vehicle.

Adding comprehensive coverage to a policy is generally not a large expense. You can add it to the insurance quotes you get online and see what it will cost from several different insurance companies.

Rust repair is something that has to be addressed to keep your car in good condition. The question you have to determine is whether it’s covered by insurance or if you have to pay for the cost of repairs out-of-pocket.

Determine how the rust formed and from there, you will be able to determine if you can file a claim with insurance or not.

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