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Does Car Insurance Cover Scratches and Dents?

Learn if you are covered if your car has suffered minor damage like scratches or small dents with Savvy's helpful guide.

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, updated on February 16th, 2024       

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Car Insurance Banner - Young woman on the phone to her insurer after scratching the rear of her car

If your car has been scratched or dented, you might be wondering if your car insurance can cover the cost of repairing the damage and whether it would be worthwhile. In this useful guide, we look at what damage your car insurance may cover and when to make a claim.  

What type of damage is covered by my car insurance policy?

In Australia, there are several types of car insurance. Under third-party plans, you have limited cover for damage to your vehicle, with third party fire and theft cover only offering protection against theft and fire damage. However, if you have comprehensive car insurance, you are typically covered for a range of damage, including:

  • Accidents: coverage for damage caused by collisions with other vehicles or objects
  • Theft: protection if your car is stolen or if parts are stolen from your vehicle
  • Vandalism: coverage for damage caused by malicious acts, like graffiti or keying
  • Weather-related damage: compensation for damage caused by hail, storms, floods or falling objects
  • Animal collisions: coverage for damages resulting from collisions with animals

Many of these incidents can result in scratches and dents on your car. However, while you may be covered, you first need to decide whether it would be worth making a claim on your policy.

When should I claim for scratches and dents on my car?

Before making a claim for scratch and dent repair, consider the following:

  • Excess: the excess on your insurance policy refers to the amount you agree to pay when making a claim. Before you make a claim, consider how your excess compares to the cost of repairs. For smaller jobs, your excess might be higher than the cost of making the repairs, so it might be more cost-effective to pay for the repairs out of your pocket rather than making an insurance claim. However, for more serious incidents where the repair costs would be higher than your excess, you might want to make an insurance claim.
  • No-claim bonus: making a claim for minor scratches and dents may impact any no-claim bonus or discounts you have earned. Consider whether the potential increase in premiums outweighs the benefits of making a claim.
  • Severity of damage: if the scratches and dents are minor, you might consider repairing them yourself or seeking a professional repairer without involving your insurance – though you should be cautious about the potential warranty and insurance implications.

Am I covered for hail damage?

Some parts of Australia are prone to hail, which can cause substantial damage to vehicles. From denting your car’s exterior to cracking windows, you could find yourself facing an expensive repair bill or even have your car written off if it is caught in a hailstorm. However, if you have comprehensive coverage, you should be covered for hail damage repairs, subject to your excess and any policy-specific conditions.

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Savvy (ABN 78 660 493 194, ACR 541 339) provides readers with a variety of car insurance policies to compare. Savvy earns a commission from our partnered insurers each time a customer buys a car insurance policy via our website. All purchases are conducted via our partners’ websites. The integrity of our comparison service is unaffected by our partnerships with those businesses and our effort remains to bring further brands that do not already use our comparison service onboard.

Savvy’s comparison service includes selected products from a panel of trusted insurers and does not compare all products in the market. Any advice presented above or on other pages is general in nature and doesn’t consider your personal or business objectives, needs or finances. It’s always important to consider whether advice is suitable for you before purchasing an insurance policy. We always recommend readers to consult the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) of different policies before purchasing your car insurance.

Car Insurance Banner - Young woman on the phone to her insurer after scratching the rear of her car

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