Does car insurance cover paint jobs?

Car insurance will cover paint jobs when you make legitimate claims on your collision or comprehensive insurance policy. For collision and comprehensive auto insurance to cover a paint job, the paint job must have been affected by the incident in the claim, and covered incidents will be explicitly laid out in your policy. If you need insurance to cover a paint job, find the right policy with our quote comparison tool below.

Compare Cheap Car Insurance Quotes

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

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.

Full Bio →

Written by

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.

Full Bio →

Reviewed by Brad Larsen
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent Brad Larsen

UPDATED: Apr 1, 2021

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right cheap car insurance coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident car insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We are not affiliated with any one car insurance company and cannot guarantee quotes from any single company.

Our insurance industry partnerships don’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own. To compare cheap car insurance quotes from many different companies please enter your ZIP code on this page to use the free quote tool. The more quotes you compare, the more chances to save.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about car insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything car insurance-related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by car insurance experts.

Things to know...

  • Insurance companies may pay for paint jobs and body work through legitimate collision and comprehensive claims
  • Insurance companies won’t pay for paint jobs intended to fix natural fading
  • Auto liability claims against at-fault drivers could cover paint jobs after an accident
  • Review numerous policies and coverage options to maximize available protections from losses

Car owners never like to look at fading or scratched paint. A nice paint job contributes to a vehicle’s overall look. Anything diminishing a paint job also detracts from more than the vehicle. The impression of the driver diminishes as well.

Paint jobs can be expensive, which is why some drivers choose to put off the work. Quite a few drivers lament the notion an insurance company won’t cover the costs of a new paint job. Automatically assuming all paint jobs are outside the scope of an insurance policy might be premature. Under certain circumstances, auto insurance companies may pay for the work.

Learn more about auto insurance coverage below and make sure to compare rates above with our free insurance comparison tool! 

When Auto Insurance Won’t Cover Paint Jobs


A shiny paint job, like the parts inside a vehicle, may not last the life of the car. In time, the paint might fade and lose its luster due to exposure to the sun and other elements. While the scenario is unfortunate, it doesn’t reflect a legitimate loss. Insurance only pays for covered losses. Insurance policies won’t cover a new paint job just because the owner wants cosmetic improvements.

Paint can be damaged in a number of ways outside of fading opening the door to insurance payments.

While the number of legitimate claims for paint damage may be narrow, circumstances do exist in which an insurance company may cover the loss. The right coverage does need to be in place, though. Comprehensive and collision coverage would the two areas of coverage to file most claims under.

Compare quotes from the top car insurance companies and save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Comprehensive Coverage Paint Claims

Not all losses entail being involved in an accident. A car can be parked and suffer a loss. For non-accident losses, the vehicle protections fall under comprehensive coverage.

Filing a claim on a paint-related damage could involve, say, an incident occurring due to snow.

A car parked on the street could end up being covered not only in snow, but corrosive road salt sprayed by a salt truck.

The comprehensive claim may or may not be settled depending on how the insurance company examines the owner’s contribution to the damage. Was the driver warned not to park on the road? If so, then his/her negligence contributed to the loss and this may or may not harm the claim.

In the event, lightning struck a tree branch and the branch scratched the paint, this type of unexpected event has a greater chance of being covered. So would instances of deliberate vandalism.

Collision Coverage

A collision may not necessarily entail two cars crashing into one another. A vehicle could hit an object. The collision might not even cause severe damage. Cutting a turn too close to a parking garage wall could lead to paint scratches.

Filing a claim under collision insurance makes sense in this situation since collision coverage addresses losses drivers cause to their own cars.

As is the case with comprehensive insurance, collision insurance claims are subject to an investigation and review process. The claim may be approved or denied depending on the outcome of the investigation.

Compare Cheap Car Insurance Quotes

Compare quotes from the top car insurance companies and save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Concerns to Be Aware of with Collision and Comprehensive Insurance

Damage exclusively to the paint of a vehicle probably would be rare. Damage to the vehicle’s body may be present due to vandalism, weather incidents, or a collision. Body damage repairs like would be covered under comprehensive and collision. So, the both more extensive repair work and the new paint job may be covered. Take that as a good reason to seriously consider purchasing comprehensive and collision insurance.

Customers should, however, take two things into consideration when buying optional comprehensive and collision insurance:

Paying the Out of Pocket Deductible


Collision and comprehensive insurance may both provide a means of partially paying for what may be costly repairs. Partially does not mean totally. Collision and comprehensive coverage usually come with a deductible.

No-deductible plans would come with very high premiums. With the common $500 deductible plan, the policyholder has to pay $500 out of pocket and the insurance company pays the rest. A paint job might only cost $300 so the insurance company contributes nothing. If costly paint and body damage are present, the insurance company could pay the full amount of repair expenses beyond the deductible amount.

Resale Value Limitations

A used car with a very low resale value may suffer more damage than it is worth. The insurance company would not cover any losses beyond the car’s value. So, drivers with older cars might not find comprehensive or collision coverage useful outside of total loss or theft situations.

That said, collision and comprehensive insurance can be very financially helpful to a driver. Comparison shopping for excellent rates on these optional coverages might make acquiring both even more beneficial.

Compare quotes from the top car insurance companies and save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Other Coverage Options

If someone else hits a driver’s car, then the claim would normally go against the other driver’s insurance policy. Specifically, when someone else causes the damage, a claim against the at-fault party’s auto liability coverage would be appropriate.

If the other driver has no insurance, this creates a potential problem unless the injured party carries uninsured/underinsured driver coverage. In some states, this coverage is optional. Regardless, the coverage has value to drivers in all states since uninsured drivers pose risks in all localities.

Study the Insurance Market

Researching and comparing auto insurance policies entails more than just looking at the prices. Always look at what an insurance company covers, under what circumstances coverage exists, and what exclusions apply. Those not thrilled with a current policy or treatment from an insurance company can also consider making a change.

Compare Cheap Car Insurance Quotes

Compare quotes from the top car insurance companies and save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption