Comprehensive coverage for your car: we answer your questions

You’re hunting for a good deal on car insurance and you’ve come across several websites suggesting you should look into comprehensive coverage.

You lean back in your chair, wondering to yourself…what the heck is that? And how is it different from regular old car insurance?

Well, it can be pretty straight forward!

Comprehensive coverage protects your vehicle against incidents, not accidents. You can remember this pretty easily by calling it “other than collision” coverage, like the cool kids do.

What counts as an incident? They can include pretty much everything but the kitchen sink, but you can see a more detailed list below.

What does comprehensive auto insurance cover?

Comprehensive coverage includes a much longer list of potential incidents that collision coverage doesn’t. Remember that collision coverage covers damage due to contact between your vehicle and another vehicle, or (depending on your policy) it could cover a collision with other objects like street lights, fences, trees, or buildings.

Comprehensive coverage, on the other hand, covers other kinds of perils:

  • Theft
  • Fire
  • Vandalism
  • Natural Disasters
  • Falling objects (think trees in a snow storm)
  • Weather damage (like hail that cracks your windshield)
  • Damage done by animals (watch out for deer and moose!)
  • Damage from riots, strikes, demonstrations, and other forms of civil disorder.

It’s important to remember that medical expenses, legal fees, and lost income due to an accident are all not covered by comprehensive coverage.

What’s the difference between collision and comprehensive auto insurance?

Got into a car accident? That’s where your collision coverage comes in. The main difference between these two types of auto insurance is what they cover.

Collision and comprehensive are similar in other ways, so it’s easy to get them mixed up. They both have coverage limits, they both have deductibles, and they are both optional when you own your car outright. Depending on your policy, the policy could be paid either based on your vehicle’s actual cash value or the repair cost (it’ll be decided when the policy is made, so read it carefully!).

Can you have collision coverage without comprehensive?

If you own your own vehicle, you can choose whether you want collision coverage or comprehensive coverage. You do not need to have both of them unless you are leasing or financing—that’s when you typically need both.

What is the comprehensive coverage deductible?

Your deductible is an amount that you pay out of pocket during a claim, usually the first $500 or the first $1,000. Some insurers let you choose a $0 deductible, too. You’ll choose it when you purchase your comprehensive coverage, which works pretty much the same as with other types of insurance: the lower your deductible, the higher your premiums.

Increments like $500, $1000, and $1,500 are typical options.

Is there a limit to your coverage?

Glad you asked! Yes there is a limit, and it’s usually the cash value or replacement cost of your vehicle (different policies would use one or the other). Keep in mind that although your comprehensive coverage limit and deductible are separate from your collision coverage, “coverage limits” tend to cover the whole policy. That means that reaching the coverage limit through the collision limit or the comprehensive coverage limit would effectively be the same.

Is comprehensive coverage in Ontario mandatory?

Comprehensive coverage is not part of the mandatory car insurance for Canadians, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good idea! We do have a lot of snow, trees, and deer.

What’s the difference between liability and comprehensive insurance?

Liability auto insurance is mandatory in Canada as it covers damage to others and their vehicles. Comprehensive and collision are usually added on to your policy.

Should I get comprehensive coverage?

Having extra peace of mind (and money) when things go wrong is never a bad thing, but you should really think about getting comprehensive coverage if:

  • You have a newer vehicle with a pricey blue book value that would be difficult to replace out-of-pocket.
  • You live in an area that is prone to natural disasters like tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, flooding, and ice storms.
  • You drive in the country where the likelihood of hitting an animal is much higher.
  • You live in a neighbourhood where theft and vandalism are common.
  • You have many mature trees on your property which could come down in a wind storm.
  • You are not a high risk driver making the coverage even more wallet-friendly (lucky you!)

Didn’t see your question here?

You can chat with one of our team members to get the right car insurance option for you (and your wallet.)

You’re hunting for a good deal on car insurance and you’ve come across several websites suggesting you should look into comprehensive coverage.

You lean back in your chair, wondering to yourself…what the heck is that? And how is it different from regular old car insurance?

Well, it can be pretty straight forward!

Comprehensive coverage protects your vehicle against incidents, not accidents. You can remember this pretty easily by calling it “other than collision” coverage, like the cool kids do.

What counts as an incident? They can include pretty much everything but the kitchen sink, but you can see a more detailed list below.

"100% less insurancey. Low guaranteed car insurance rates!" Beside an image of two pink lawn flamingos above the aha insurance logo.

What does comprehensive auto insurance cover?

Comprehensive coverage includes a much longer list of potential incidents that collision coverage doesn’t. Remember that collision coverage covers damage due to contact between your vehicle and another vehicle, or (depending on your policy) it could cover a collision with other objects like street lights, fences, trees, or buildings.

Comprehensive coverage, on the other hand, covers other kinds of perils:

  • Theft
  • Fire
  • Vandalism
  • Natural Disasters
  • Falling objects (think trees in a snow storm)
  • Weather damage (like hail that cracks your windshield)
  • Damage done by animals (watch out for deer and moose!)
  • Damage from riots, strikes, demonstrations, and other forms of civil disorder.

It’s important to remember that medical expenses, legal fees, and lost income due to an accident are all not covered by comprehensive coverage.

What’s the difference between collision and comprehensive auto insurance?

Got into a car accident? That’s where your collision coverage comes in. The main difference between these two types of auto insurance is what they cover.

Collision and comprehensive are similar in other ways, so it’s easy to get them mixed up. They both have coverage limits, they both have deductibles, and they are both optional when you own your car outright. Depending on your policy, the policy could be paid either based on your vehicle’s actual cash value or the repair cost (it’ll be decided when the policy is made, so read it carefully!).

"You'll be done in 3 minutes. It's easy! Get low car insurance rates" beside a hand holding a pocket watch, above the aha insurance logo with icons for car and home insurance.

Can you have collision coverage without comprehensive?

If you own your own vehicle, you can choose whether you want collision coverage or comprehensive coverage. You do not need to have both of them unless you are leasing or financing—that’s when you typically need both.

What is the comprehensive coverage deductible?

Your deductible is an amount that you pay out of pocket during a claim, usually the first $500 or the first $1,000. Some insurers let you choose a $0 deductible, too. You’ll choose it when you purchase your comprehensive coverage, which works pretty much the same as with other types of insurance: the lower your deductible, the higher your premiums.

Increments like $500, $1000, and $1,500 are typical options.

Is there a limit to your coverage?

Glad you asked! Yes there is a limit, and it’s usually the cash value or replacement cost of your vehicle (different policies would use one or the other). Keep in mind that although your comprehensive coverage limit and deductible are separate from your collision coverage, “coverage limits” tend to cover the whole policy. That means that reaching the coverage limit through the collision limit or the comprehensive coverage limit would effectively be the same.

Is comprehensive coverage in Ontario mandatory?

Comprehensive coverage is not part of the mandatory car insurance for Canadians, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good idea! We do have a lot of snow, trees, and deer.

What’s the difference between liability and comprehensive insurance?

Liability auto insurance is mandatory in Canada as it covers damage to others and their vehicles. Comprehensive and collision are usually added on to your policy.

"We ditched the bait and switch before we began. Don't get tricked!" Beside a carrot on a stick above the aha insurance logo.

Should I get comprehensive coverage?

Having extra peace of mind (and money) when things go wrong is never a bad thing, but you should really think about getting comprehensive coverage if:

  • You have a newer vehicle with a pricey blue book value that would be difficult to replace out-of-pocket.
  • You live in an area that is prone to natural disasters like tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, flooding, and ice storms.
  • You drive in the country where the likelihood of hitting an animal is much higher.
  • You live in a neighbourhood where theft and vandalism are common.
  • You have many mature trees on your property which could come down in a wind storm.
  • You are not a high risk driver making the coverage even more wallet-friendly (lucky you!)

Didn’t see your question here?

You can chat with one of our team members to get the right car insurance option for you (and your wallet.)

Seriously, what else can you do in 3 minutes?

Boil half an egg?

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