Yes, you should use insurance to repair or replace your windshield if it would cost more than your deductible to pay out of pocket for the work. If the deductible exceeds the repair or replacement cost, the insurer will not cover any of it and filing a claim would be pointless. A glass repair claim may cause your premium to increase slightly because of the cost to your insurer. But even if your rate does go up, it will only be by about 2%, compared to around 40% for an accident claim.
Glass damage is usually covered by comprehensive insurance, which pays for repairs after damage caused by something other than an accident, such as natural disasters or vandalism. Comprehensive coverage deductibles vary between policies, but they can range from $50 to $2,000. By comparison, fixing a windshield costs between $100 and $400, depending on the extent of the damage.
There are some instances when your glass deductible will be lower than your comprehensive deductible, too. In Florida, South Carolina, and Kentucky, drivers cannot be charged a deductible for windshield repair or replacement. In Arizona, Connecticut, Minnesota, and New York, drivers can choose a lower deductible specifically for glass repair. And some insurance companies, like Geico, will waive the deductible for windshield repair altogether regardless of where you live.
If you do use insurance to repair or replace your windshield, you should file a claim as soon as possible. Even a small chip can become more significant over time, so you should fix the damage before it becomes a safety hazard.
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