More often than not, when you’re calling for a tow, it’s because something has gone awry. As we move into fall, the roads are going to grow slicker from rain and falling leaves and, as the temperature drops, road conditions will become even more dicey with each freeze. Unfortunately, this often means an increase in the number of people who need towing because they’ve slid off the road or gotten stuck in a snow back. When a collision with another car happens, it follows that your insurance will kick in and pay for the tow as well as the repairs. But who pays for the towing service if the issue wasn’t caused by a collision? Will auto insurance still cover it?
Insurance and Towing Coverage
The short answer is: it depends. In this instance, it depends on your insurance coverage, the reason you need a tow, and whether you have roadside assistance from another source like AAA. So let’s break it down and give you a general guide to who pays when.
To begin with, getting your auto insurance to cover the cost of towing will depend on how much coverage you have. Those who have “state minimums,” meaning liability only, will more than likely not have towing coverage included in the policy whether the cause was a collision or not. Liability covers damage to the other person’s vehicle while comprehensive and collision are what cover your own vehicle. So, if you only carry state minimums, odds are pretty slim that your insurance will cover the cost of a tow.
If, however, you do carry comprehensive and collision coverage on your auto insurance, the odds that your insurance company will pay for your tow increase pretty quickly. Collision is the coverage that provides financial help when your car collides with something, whether that’s another car, a sign, a snowbank, or something else. Comprehensive is what covers your car for things that are considered “acts of nature,” which includes things like hail damage or hitting a deer. The two work in conjunction to provide coverage for basically everything, excluding intentional damage. So, more often than not, it is your comprehensive or collision coverage that provides payment for towing as well as your car’s repairs.
If you need a tow and it’s not from a collision, however, this is where things get a bit more gray. For instance, if your battery dies or your car won’t start, these are scenarios that happen pretty regularly, but they don’t generally fall under either comprehensive or collision coverage. However, many insurance policies have additional roadside assistance coverage built in if you carry both comprehensive and collision, or let you add in roadside assistance for a couple of dollars a month. This way, even if you need a tow but you haven’t actually collided with something, your insurance policy will pay for the cost of a towing service.
The caveat here is that, by and large, insurance companies only pay for the cost of a tow to the nearest repair facility that can work on your type of vehicle. Or, in other cases, there is a limitation on how far they will tow your vehicle, either in excess of the nearest repair shop or, in some cases, distance total. However, most insurance companies will still pay for the majority of the tow service. It will be up to you to cover the difference if you want your vehicle towed to a different shop, for instance. Just note: not all insurance policies automatically add in roadside assistance coverage. It’s up to you to check and see if you have that coverage or if you can add it in, should you want to. If you don’t want to, or can’t, add roadside assistance to an auto insurance policy, there are alternative services like AAA that you can obtain to get this service. More often than not, these services offer a no-questions-asked policy for towing. Which is to say they will come and attempt to help you wherever your car is, and if that doesn’t work, they will cover the cost to tow you.
If you need towing in or around Lyndonville, Vermont, call a towing company you can trust. B&B Towing and Recovery has been serving the area for nearly two decades, and we have the equipment and experience to help you out. We work with insurance companies and AAA to help get your tow costs covered, so call today!