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A crack to the windshield is often heartbreaking and frustrating. When a crack occurs, people often through up their hands and simply drive their vehicles as if the crack was not there. Of course, this is not a safe way to drive, but many people are afraid of the cost and the process involved to replace a windshield. Even with a good insurance company and fair coverage, people seem to believe that the out of pocket expense involved with windshield replacement is going to be exorbitantly high. The truth is that this is a fairly routine process for automotive insurance companies and body shops that specialize in windshield replacement. It is an easy process and often fairly quick and painless.
The first thing that a driver has to determine when looking at a windshield replacement is their deductible. The deductible sounds like algebra, but it is simply the amount that a driver must pay before their automobile insurance company will cover a cost. Drivers often have some leeway between their deductibles and their premiums, which is the overall cost of their insurance for a given time period. Sometimes drivers will elect to have a lower premium cost at the expense of having a higher deductible, either hoping that an accident will never occur, or simply to save a little on the monthly expense if a premium is billed monthly. Luckily for some drivers, many states like Arizona now require auto insurance companies to provide the option of a zero deductible for windshield replacements, however this must occur with comprehensive coverage, and not simply liability coverage. In states like West Virginia on the hand, there is no statewide mandate for a zero deductible on windshield replacements, so states vary in terms of their coverage requirements. The other drawback to having a high deductible is that if the deductible is higher than the cost of the windshield replacement, then the insurance company will not be able to help the driver. It helps to have a look at the insurance policy.
From there the process is fairly straight forward and painless. If the driver does need to replace a windshield, they can contact a shop of their choice. The people at the shop will want to know what insurance company covers the driver and what the policy number is for the driver. From there, the auto body shop will contact the insurance company to begin processing the claim. Usually at this point the insurance company will contact the driver to verify their identity and claim, but that is the extent of the involvement with the insurance company. The shop takes care of the payments, the billing, the paperwork, and the installation. The installation generally takes an hour or two to complete.
One of the reasons many drivers fear making a claim for windshield replacement is the increase in rates that an insurance company may impose. Cracked windshields are generally treated as no fault claims, and aside from the driver taking a bat to their windshield, normal wear and tear is the culprit. A windshield replacement is an easy process no one should avoid should it become necessary.