Does car insurance cover slashed tires?

Car insurance does cover slashed tires if you have a comprehensive policy. Basic liability and collision policies do not cover vandalism, so drivers need comprehensive coverage in place to cover slashed tires and other vandalous acts. Get cheap comprehensive auto insurance quotes here to find the best price for auto insurance that covers slashed tires and more.

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Tonya Sisler has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of South Carolina in Journalism and has worked for 15+ years in management. She has also completed a proofreading certification and is currently a professional writer.

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Brad Larson has been in the insurance industry for more than a dozen years. He started out as a claims adjuster for a national carrier. He has since switched to the agency side of the business. Brad is licensed in all P&C lines.

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Reviewed by Brad Larsen
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent Brad Larsen

UPDATED: Apr 1, 2021

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Things to know...

  • Car insurance policies pay someone else when your negligence leads to damages to property or injuries
  • If someone else damages your property and you can’t identify them, you need physical damage coverage
  • When someone intentionally slashes your tires or keys your car, your comprehensive coverage pays
  • Unlike some of the coverage on your policy, you must pay a deductible for comprehensive before coverage applies
  • The coverage won’t pay for expensive aftermarket tires that you didn’t specifically list on your insurance policy

You can lock your car’s doors and arm your vehicle alarm every night, but that doesn’t mean that your vehicle is safe from motivated vandals who have the intentions to damage what you own.

In the blink of an eye, a vandal could sneak up beside your vehicle and ruin your paint job, your car panels, or even your car glass. What’s even worse is if they disable the vehicle by slashing your tires.

Since it’s not reasonable to assume that you could keep an eye on your vehicle at all times, you have to have some sort of protection that helps you repair damage after it’s already been done. You must also make sure to compare rates with our free comparison tool above! 

You can’t erase the fact that you’ve fallen victim to a delinquent, but you can take the proper steps before something ever happens so that you can effortlessly pick up the pieces. If you’re looking for protection for these incidents, here’s how your insurance works:

Basic Insurance Won’t Provide Comprehensive Protection


A basic auto insurance policy provides you with basic protection. If you know anything about a basic package, it’s a nice way to say that you’ll receive a bare minimum level of protection in exchange for a low premium. When you buy a basic policy, which affords you all of the coverage that’s required in your state, there will be limitations as to how much coverage you have. You will, however, be in compliance with state laws.

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Coverage Requirements Don’t Include Coverage For Your Car

State officials are very specific about coverage requirements. If the legal requirements in the states weren’t clearly defined, it’d be easy for drivers to claim that they didn’t grasp the rules when violated the law. This is why drivers have to pass a written test, that includes information on insurance laws before they’re licensed.

It’s ordinary for officials in charge of the insurance department to make third-party coverage mandatory. If it’s a tort state with compulsory insurance laws, you’ll simply have to carry motor vehicle liability insurance to avoid fines and penalties. There may also be other minimal requirements for coverage against uninsured drivers. No law in any state laws that you have to safeguard your own car with your own first-party coverage.

What is first-party physical damage coverage?

Simply said, first-party physical damage coverage is an optional type of coverage that safeguards you from having to pay for damage to your own vehicle. It’s not required by the state but it may be required by your lender when you’re paying a car note still.

On an auto policy, physical damage coverage consists of comprehensive and collision protection. You may not have to have both, but if you want collision protection, you’ll have to carry comprehensive. When you carry both forms of coverage, the following types of losses will be covered:

  • Comprehensive – will repair the car after damages caused by perils like flood, falling objects, glass damage, hail, lightning, fire, theft, vandalism, and contact by a live animal
  • Collision – will repair the car or replace it after damages caused when the car collides with an object

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How much will the damage coverage pay?

When you have auto insurance, you need to know how much that plan is going to pay you when your car is destroyed. If the plan were to pay you half of what you thought it was worth, you might reconsider paying the added premiums. Luckily, the insurer is required to pay you what the car would sell for on the fair market when the car is wrecked.

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Does your insurance pay for tires?


If you get a flat tire because you run over a tire or you’re going down a really bumpy road, you can’t call your insurer and ask for a payment. Insurance policies pay for the sudden and accidental damage but not wear and tear issues.

You might have a warranty on your tires that covers patch jobs or balancing services, but you don’t have protection under your insurance.

Your tires could be covered sometimes under the right circumstances. When you get into a crash, the tires being damaged is covered under a collision claim. If the tires were slashed, the incident would then be covered under comprehensive. As long as the event was caused by someone else’s intentional act, you have the right to file a comprehensive claim.

How much will your new tires cost?

New tires don’t come cheap. One thing that you do need to know is that the insurer will only pay for the part of the set that is damaged. If someone only slashes two of your tires, the insurer will only pay for two tires out of the set.

If you want to replace all of the tires at the same time, you’ll have to come out of pocket for the rest.

How much your tires will wind up costing really depends on your car. On average, it costs around $637 to replace a set of four tires. For SUV’s and trucks, it might cost you around $1000 to replace the set because the vehicle will require 20-inch tires instead of 16 or 18-inch sets. As long as you don’t have specialty tires that don’t require special coverage, the entire cost will be covered.

You Must Pay a Deductible

You can file a comprehensive claim for your defaced tires but you still have to pay a deductible. One thing about physical damage claims is that you’ll be asked to select a deductible so that you can pay for some of the repairs.

Comprehensive deductibles tend to be low, but if they are high you might have to pay for everything yourself.

You don’t want to get stuck paying for everything out of your own savings when you’re already paying for insurance. That’s why you need to have adequate coverage, especially when you’re in an area where vandalism rates are higher. To find out how much comprehensive premiums will cost you, get a free online quote and then choose a plan.



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