What does full coverage car insurance cover?

Full coverage car insurance covers damages to you, your vehicle, and others. Liability, collision, and comprehensive coverages combine to make full coverage insurance. Although most states only require liability coverage, it offers no protection for your vehicle. Add collision and comprehensive coverages to pay for damages to your vehicle from various causes, including accidents, theft, vandalism, and hail.

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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 15, 2022

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Things to Know

  • Full coverage auto insurance is a combination of liability, collision, and comprehensive coverages
  • States don’t require full coverage insurance, but it offers protection for your vehicle
  • Take advantage of discounts to save money on full coverage car insurance

You’ve heard insurance professionals discuss full coverage insurance. But what does full coverage car insurance cover? Does one coverage handle everything?

Full coverage combines liability, collision, and comprehensive coverages to offer the most protection. However, while most states only require liability insurance, this doesn’t protect your vehicle.

Since full coverage car insurance rates are expensive, you should shop around and compare multiple companies to find the best coverage with low rates.

Continue reading to learn more about what full coverage car insurance covers and how to save.

What does full coverage car insurance cover?

As the name implies, full coverage auto insurance offers the most protection for you and your vehicle. But what is full coverage insurance? What are the types of car insurance that comprise full coverage?

Most states require drivers to carry at least a minimum amount of liability coverage. Liability insurance pays for property damage and bodily injuries of others if you cause an accident. Unfortunately, you and your vehicle are not covered at all.

Full coverage combines liability coverage with collision and comprehensive, which offers protection for your vehicle.

Collision coverage pays for damages to your vehicle deriving from an accident. For example, coverage includes damages if you hit another car or an object such as a fence or tree.

On the other hand, comprehensive covers damage to your vehicle that is irrelevant to an accident. This includes fire, vandalism, theft, falling debris like tree limbs, and acts of nature such as hail, floods, and tornadoes.

Without collision and comprehensive coverages, your vehicle is left unprotected. In addition, you will pay for damages out of pocket.

Your state may mandate other coverages, including medical payments, personal injury protection, and uninsured motorist coverages. If other coverages are required, they will be included with full coverage.

Keep in mind that full coverage doesn’t pay for auto racing, off-road driving, and intentional damages.

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How much is full coverage insurance?

Although liability coverage is the most affordable car insurance, it offers very little protection. Full coverage is more expensive, but it protects your vehicle.

This table reveals average annual rates from top companies based on coverage type. Different levels of coverages are included for comparison.

Average Annual Car Insurance Rates Based on Coverage Type
CompanyAverage Annual Rate for Low CoverageAverage Annual Rate for Medium CoverageAverage Annual Rate for High Coverage
American Family$3,368.49$3,544.37$3,416.40
Liberty Mutual$5,805.75$6,058.57$6,356.04
State Farm$3,055.40$3,269.80$3,454.80
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Full coverage car insurance costs approximately $30 a month more than liability-only coverage. However, there are additional ways to save so that full coverage is more affordable.

Is full coverage car insurance worth it?

Consider full coverage if you have a new or expensive vehicle, live in an area with high traffic and theft rates, or live in an area susceptible to tornadoes, hurricanes, or floods.

Full coverage is usually required if you have an auto loan or lease. Lenders want their investment fully protected, so drivers aren’t permitted to select what coverages they carry.

However, if your car is older or worth less than a few thousand dollars, it may be less expensive to opt for lower coverage and save money for repairs.

How can you save on full coverage car insurance?

While full coverage costs more, you can lower rates by making a few changes.

First, add car insurance discounts. Discounts provide significant savings, and multiple types of discounts are available.

This table discloses typical car insurance discounts from top companies. The savings amount is listed if available.

Car Insurance Discounts
Car Insurance DiscountsAllstate (%)American Family (%)Farmers (%)GEICO (%)Liberty Mutual (%)Nationwide (%)Progressive (%)State Farm (%)Travelers (%)USAA (%)
Adaptive Cruise ControlN/AN/AN/AN/A5xxN/AN/AN/A
Adaptive HeadlightsN/AN/AxN/A5xxN/AN/AN/A
Anti-lock Brakesxxx555x5xx
Claim Freexxx26x10x152312
Continuous CoveragexxxxN/AN/AxN/A15N/A
Daytime Running Lightsxxx155xN/Axx
Defensive Driverxxxx105105103
Distant StudentxxxxN/A10xx7x
Driver's Edxxxx10N/A101583
Driving Device/AppxxN/Ax30402050305
Early SigningxxxxN/A8xN/A1012
Electronic Stability ControlxxxN/A5xxN/AN/AN/A
Emergency DeploymentN/AN/AN/A25N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Engaged CoupleN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Family LegacyN/AxN/AxN/AN/AxN/AN/A10
Family PlanN/AxxN/AN/A25N/AN/AN/AN/A
Farm VehiclexN/AxxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Federal EmployeeN/AN/Ax810N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Forward Collision WarningN/AN/AN/AN/A5xxN/AN/AN/A
Full PaymentN/Axxx$5N/AxN/A7.5N/A
Further EducationN/AN/AN/Ax1015N/AN/AxN/A
Good CreditxxN/AN/AN/AxxxN/AN/A
Good Studentxxx1522.510x2583
Green VehiclexN/A5N/A10N/AN/AN/A10N/A
Lane Departure WarningN/AN/AN/AN/AxxxN/AN/AN/A
Life InsurancexN/AN/AN/AN/AxN/AN/AN/AN/A
Low Mileagexxxxxxx30xx
Military GaragingN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A15
Multiple DriversN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Multiple Policies1029x102010121713x
Multiple Vehiclesxxx25102010208x
New Customer/New PlanN/AN/AN/AN/AxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
New GraduateN/AN/AN/AN/A5N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Newer VehiclexN/AxxN/Axx401012
Newly LicensedN/AN/AN/AN/A5N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Occasional OperatorN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/Ax
On-Time PaymentsxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A15N/A
Online ShopperN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A7N/AN/AN/A
Paperless DocumentsxxxN/AN/A5$50N/AN/AN/A
Paperless/Auto BillingxxxN/Ax$30x$233
Passive Restraintxxx40x20x40xx
Recent RetireesN/AN/AN/AN/A4N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Roadside AssistanceN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Safe DriverN/AN/Ax15N/A3531152312
Seat Belt UseN/AN/AN/A15N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Senior DriverxN/AxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/Ax
Stable ResidenceN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AxxN/AN/AN/A
Students & AlumniN/AxN/Ax107N/AN/AN/AN/A
Switching ProviderN/AxxN/A10N/AxN/AN/AN/A
Utility VehiclexN/AxxN/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Vehicle Recoveryxxx153525x5xx
VIN EtchingN/AN/AxN/A5xxN/Axx
Young DriverN/AN/AN/AN/AxN/AxN/AN/A$75
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Most drivers qualify for multiple discounts based on their driving history, their policy, and their vehicle. So bundle available discounts for the most savings.

Next, increase your deductibles. Although your up-front costs are higher, your rates will be much lower, eventually saving you money.

Then, improve your driving record, and increase your credit score. Car insurance companies use various factors to calculate rates, including your driving record and credit score. Improving both decreases your rates.

Finally, shop around for lower rates. Every car insurance company considers your personal factors differently and offers various rates. Therefore, compare multiple companies to find full coverage insurance with the lowest rates for you.

What Full Coverage Car Insurance Covers: The Bottom Line

Liability, collision, and comprehensive combine to create full coverage auto insurance. As a result, rates are higher, as is the amount of coverage provided.

While liability covers property damage and bodily injury to others if you cause an accident, collision and comprehensive cover damages to your vehicle. Liability, collision, and comprehensive insurance combine to offer the most coverage.

Save money on full coverage insurance by adding discounts, raising deductibles, and improving your driving record and credit score.

The best way to find low full coverage car insurance rates is to shop around. Find the lowest rates on the coverage you need by comparing multiple companies.

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