Car Fire and Insurance

Does My Car Insurance Cover Fire?

Automobile on fire in desert (Digital Composite)
Craig van der Lende/Photographer's Choice/Getty Images

Car fires are always a scary situation and can obviously do a lot of damage. Car fires can occur in a couple of different ways. Comprehensive coverage will cover fire damage to your car regardless of what caused the fire. It is important you purchase the coverage on your car insurance before the loss occurs.

Car Fire Scenarios

  • Arson
    It is not too often you hear about cars being set on fire purposefully but if it were it would be considered vandalism. A police report would need to be filed and comprehensive coverage would cover your vehicle.
  • Garage Fire
    A garage fire can cause a whole lot of damage not only to your home and contents but also your vehicles. If your car is parked in the garage and sustains damage from a fire, your car insurance policy is the only place you will be compensated and you must have comprehensive coverage. Home owner's policies never cover automobiles.
  • Engine Fire
    Sometimes vehicle engines can catch on fire due to mechanical problems. While car insurance policies do not typically cover mechanical failure, fire is the exception. For example, if you are driving on the highway and the engine becomes engulfed in flames comprehensive coverage will cover the cost to repair your vehicle. Or, you might have a total loss on your hands. Either way your car insurance policy will pay the actual cash value of your vehicle minus your deductible.
  • Car Accident
    It often takes a severe accident to start a fire, but unfortunately, it does happen. If you were in a collision and a fire started, it is probably a good idea to review the situation with your claims adjuster. Whether the accident will fall under collision or comprehensive will vary according to your exact circumstances and your insurance carrier. If you did not have collision coverage on your insurance policy, there is a good chance you could still be covered as long as you had comprehensive coverage.

    If you do not have any means to put your car fire out, make sure to call the appropriate authorities as soon as possible. Often car fires cause a vehicle to be a total loss. Having comprehensive coverage can make a horrible situation bearable by knowing you will not have to cover the expenses all on your own.

    It is always better to know what your car insurance policy covers before a loss occurs so you are not surprised in a claim situation.