If you have comprehensive auto insurance chances are you also have auto glass replacement coverage. This can be in the form of a separate rider or included in the comprehensive insurance policy and adding this coverage to your auto insurance policy can add anywhere from $100 to several hundred dollars per year. We will have to dig a little deeper to determine if auto glass replacement coverage is worth the cost.
There are several factors we need to take a look at: deductible, replacement cost, and frequency of replacement. The average cost to replace a glass windshield is between $150-$400 depending on your vehicle make so if your deductible is over $500 you will most likely be paying the entire replacement cost.
Let's assume glass coverage costs $100/year and it is costing you $200 to replace a windshield and $50 to repair chips. A typical scenario might involve repairing a single window chip every 2 years and replacing a windshield every 3 years.
Typical Scenario (4 Years)
Cost of Chip Repairs – $50 x 2 = $100
Cost of Windshield Replacement – $200 x 1 = $200
Cost of Glass Coverage – $100 x 4 = $400
Total glass repair cost over 4 years is $300 versus cost of full glass coverage of $400 so you can save $100 by dropping the glass coverage and paying for the work out of pocket. Of course the savings depends on the make and model of your vehicle and the number of repairs you have over the comparison time period. You can save even more on repair cost by bringing your vehicle to the repair shop and avoid the mobile service fee which is typically $25+.
Insurance provides protection against unforeseen events and if you are not comfortable with assuming the risk of being responsible for the loss, then it may be worth the added cost of insurance premiums to you.