There may be a lot of things that can damage a car. Most people are not aware of many of them. What some may not have given any thought to is it possible that rodents can damage a vehicle? Or, what kind of damage can they do?

Damage to the Car Engine

car engine

There are many different components to a car. One that is vulnerable to rodent damage is the engine. Rodents tend to go after the engine wiring. When this happens, it can cause several different adverse situations. It could cause the engine to short out. Engine short outs can happen when varmints chew through the insulation on the wiring.

It can even get worse. The engine is a warm and haven for rats and mice to start a family. It is quite convenient for them to use the insulating materials from the wires to build their nests. There are out of the way places surrounding the engine where they can safely do this.

There is a worse case scenario. Rodents could use the car as a storage place for their food. If this happens, it creates a  harmful situation. Small segments of food could end up getting lodged in the braking mechanism of the vehicle. It could interfere with the stopping of the vehicle when necessary. As a result, a bad accident could occur.

Interference with the Car’s Safety Mechanisms

Rodents leave a lot of feces behind. It is in areas where they have been. If these accumulate in the car, they could catch on fire.

Rodent Damage to the Interior of the Car

It is unfortunate enough that these creatures can get into the internal mechanisms of the car. They also can infiltrate the interior of the vehicle. It now gives them the chance to create havoc with the seats. Also the floors and other areas where the material is present. Their scratching and chewing of this can ruin interior portions of the vehicle.

Insurance Coverage for Rodent Damage

Once the damage to the car as a result of rodents is evident there is a need to get, it fixed as quick as possible. Depending on the amount of damage this can be costly. Relying on the Insurance provider makes it possible to get a solution to this problem.

Whether this is possible or not depends on the Insurance Company. Also, the type of coverage they have provided. It will mean that the claim comes under comprehensive damage. It is the section of insurance that covers damage to vehicles. Damage from occurrences other than collisions and this may include rodent damage.

Things to Consider When Using Your Comprehensive Coverage

It is excellent for vehicle owners to have an opportunity to have extra coverage. This is what comprehensive coverage is.  However, it is essential to know what exact coverage there is. Every insurance company is different. Therefore so are the policies they provide.

It is possible that there is an insurance deductible. It means the insured individual will be responsible for a part of the costs. This amount of money owed by the insured gets deducted from the claim they put in. In this case for rodent damage.

How much the deductible is will depend on the policy. Sometimes it is a percentage while others times it is an actual dollar amount. Common deductible amounts are $250. or $500. It will depend on the nature of the claim.

Making Sure There is Proper Coverage

It is not a good idea to make assumptions about what the insurance policy covers.

Every insured person has the responsibility to review their policy in a pr proper manner.  This review is to be sure there are no exclusions, like rodents or animal damage to a vehicle. There could also be specific clauses as just what type of damage caused by the rodents has coverage. Insurance Companies are constantly changing their policies.

It is better to know first hand what coverage is in place. It is better than listening to someone assume that the costs for repair are claimable.

Avoiding the Temptation to Defer from Comprehensive Coverage

It is not uncommon for many car owners to decide not to take out comprehensive coverage. They may feel that even though their vehicle is running right, it is an older vehicle. They may think that there is no real value to the vehicle. With the amount of damage that a rodent can do, the repair costs can mount up. In most cases the damage is repairable. For this reason alone it is worthwhile having comprehensive coverage. Providing rodent damage is part of the coverage.

Others believe that because their vehicle is in an enclosed space, it is safe from rodents.  Rats and mice to infiltrate places like house garages and underground garages. The vehicle may be a prime target if it is unused and perhaps stored for the winter. Many car owners in this situation are horrified when they have uncovered their vehicle.

They soon discover when the vehicle doesn’t start that wire damage is as result of the mice or rats.

Other Types of Rodents

squirrels

The rodents that seemed to get blamed the most for car damage and rightly so is the mice and rats. However, there are others like squirrels, chipmunks, and raccoons capable of this type of destruction.

Prevention is the Best Step

prevention

Having proper insurance that includes rodent damage is the first step. Then the second level is prevention. Learn what risks your vehicle is at for rodent damage. Doing so will allow you to put preventative measures in place.

You may also want to consider covering the cost of the repairs from rodent damage if this is minimal. It is especially true if you have a deduction that you need to deal with. This way you don’t risk an increase in your insurance premiums, especially if there is more than one occasion like this.

The best way to get insurance with the right coverage is to discuss your needs with an Insurance Agent. Professional insurance agents can answer any questions as it pertains to coverage.

Resources:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/rats-damage-cars-1.4312381
https://www.thebalance.com/is-rat-damage-covered-by-car-insurance-4147146
https://www.allstate.com/tools-and-resources/car-insurance/squirrel-chews-wires.aspx