How Does Trailers Covered by Auto Insurance?

While most people are familiar with insuring their cars, the topic of insuring trailers can be less understood. Trailer coverage varies depending on the type of trailer, insurer and coverage required. Often your vehicle insurance policy may provide liability coverage for towing a trailer and this coverage may be offered automatically without the need to inform the insurer that you are pulling a trailer but this may exclude rented trailers. Physical damage coverage for the trailer itself may not be as straightforward. Let’s discuss this topic further.

Liability Coverage for Trailers:

Liability coverage protects you financially if you are responsible for causing injury or property damage to others. Here are some key points to consider:

Trailers you own: Liability coverage from your auto insurance policy often extends to the trailer you own automatically, as long as it is being towed by your insured vehicle. Your car insurance policy may also provide liability coverage while you are pulling a borrowed trailer with your car. Some policies have limitations on the number of trailers covered automatically, typically one or two. Beyond this limit, you may need to add coverage for additional trailers. It is very important to note that your vehicle insurance policy provides liability coverage for a trailer only when it is attached to your vehicle.

Trailers you rent: When renting a trailer, your auto insurance liability coverage may not automatically extend to the rented trailer. In such cases, you can often purchase temporary coverage from the rental company.

Collision and Comprehensive Coverage:

While liability coverage focuses on damages caused to others, collision and comprehensive coverage protect your trailer from various risks. Here’s what you need to know:

Trailers you own: Some companies may allow policyholders add Collision and Comprehensive coverage for their trailers on their car insurance policies by having an endorsement on their policies and paying the additional premium. This may be a good solution for small utility trailers. Collision coverage covers repairs or replacement costs if your trailer is damaged due to a collision with another object, regardless of fault. Comprehensive Coverage protects your trailer from non-collision incidents like theft, vandalism, fire, or natural disasters.

However, you may need a separate physical damages coverage for valuable trailers, cargo or travel trailers to make sure they are covered all the time. And insurers may not allow you to add them to your standard auto insurance policy. Furthermore, separate policies may offer more comprehensive coverage for your trailer including its content.

Trailers you rent: When renting a trailer, the rental company usually offers collision and comprehensive coverage options. Your automobile Insurer may not offer coverage for rental trailers.

Coverage for Trailer Contents:

Auto insurance typically does not cover the contents of a trailer. To protect your belongings, you may need separate travel trailer insurance or specialized coverage for personal items.

Insuring a Trailer under Auto Insurance:

When insuring a trailer under your auto insurance policy, consider the following:

  1. Coverage for trailer: If you want to insure the trailer for physical damages, you may be able to add coverage within your auto insurance.
  2. Consider separate coverage: If you own high-value or specialty trailers, you may need a separate policy to adequately protect them.
  3. Review policy limits: Check your policy limits to ensure they meet your needs. Adjusting coverage amounts can help you avoid potential gaps in protection.

Conclusion: Insuring trailers under your auto insurance policy involves understanding the various types of trailers, coverage options, and potential limitations. Liability coverage often extends to trailers you own. Collision and comprehensive coverage provide protection for physical damage, while coverage for trailer contents may require separate insurance. To ensure comprehensive protection, it’s crucial to discuss your specific trailer insurance needs with your insurance provider and consider additional coverage options if necessary.