Hail is a type of precipitation that consists of balls or pieces of ice that fall from the sky during a thunderstorm. Hailstones can range in size from pea-sized to as large as a grapefruit and they can fall at speeds of up to 100 miles per hour.
While hail is a natural phenomenon it can cause a lot of damage to property including cars. In fact hail damage is one of the most frequent types of car insurance claims.
So does hail damage affect a car’s value? The answer is yes it can. How much the value is affected depends on the severity of the damage the age and make of the car and the location where the hailstone(s) hit the vehicle.
For example if a brand new car is damaged by hail the value of the car will likely be decreased by a few thousand dollars. On the other hand if an older car is damaged by hail the value of the car may not be affected much if at all.
Furthermore hail damage is typically more severe in areas where the climate is more severe such as the Midwest or Mountain states. As a result cars in these states that have been damaged by hail may see a bigger decrease in value than cars in other states.
If you’re thinking of selling your car it’s important to get an estimate of the damage from a reputable body shop before listing it for sale. This will give you a better idea of how much the hail damage has affected the value of your car.
Table of Contents
What is hail?
Hail is a form of precipitation that generally consists of ice pellets.
How does hail form?
Hail forms when drops of water are carried up into the atmosphere by strong updrafts in thunderstorms.
The water droplets freeze into ice pellets and the pellets are then carried down by the storm’s downdrafts.
Does hail damage affect a car’s value?
Yes hail damage can affect a car’s value.
If the damage is severe it can significantly reduce the value of the car.
What is the best way to avoid hail damage to my car?
The best way to avoid hail damage to your car is to park it in a garage or under a carport.
If you cannot do this then try to park it in a covered parking lot.
I just had my car damaged by hail.
What should I do?
If your car has been damaged by hail you should take it to a reputable body shop to have the damage repaired.
Will my insurance cover hail damage to my car?
Yes most insurance policies will cover hail damage to your car.
How much will my insurance company pay to repair hail damage to my car?
The amount your insurance company will pay to repair hail damage to your car will depend on your policy.
However most insurance policies will cover the cost of repairs up to the actual cash value of your car.
I have a lease car and it was just damaged by hail.
What should I do?
If your lease car has been damaged by hail you should contact your leasing company to find out their procedures for dealing with hail damage.
I just bought a car and it was damaged by hail.
Can I return it?
No you cannot return a car simply because it was damaged by hail.
However if the hail damage was not disclosed to you before you purchased the car you may be able to file a claim against the seller.
How much does hail damage reduce the value of a car?
The amount that hail damage reduces the value of a car will depend on the severity of the damage.
However even minor hail damage can significantly reduce the value of a car.
I have a car with hail damage.
Can I trade it in for a new car?
Yes you can trade in a car with hail damage.
However the amount you will get for the trade-in will be significantly less than the value of the car without the hail damage.
How do I know if my car has hail damage?
Hail damage is usually easy to spot.
It generally appears as large dents in the car’s body.
Can hail damage be repaired?
Yes hail damage can be repaired.
However the cost of repairs will generally be more than the value of the car.
I just had my car detailed and the hail damage was not removed.
What should I do?
If you had your car detailed and the hail damage was not removed you should contact the company that did the detailing and ask for a refund.
I have full coverage insurance and my car was damaged by hail.
Will my insurance company cover the cost of a rental car?
Yes most full coverage insurance policies will cover the cost of a rental car while your car is being repaired.