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As much as we appreciate a rain shower in the scorching heat of the middle east, excessive rainfall often leads to waterlogging in a lot of areas. Flooded roads in rainy season aren’t particularly delightful when it comes to driving. Flooded roads can also damage your vehicles. This is where car flood insurance comes in handy. If your car insurance plan covers damages caused due to flood, then you may save a lot of repair expenses. Water is notoriously known to damage engine and interiors including upholstery and entertainment system. Let’s take a look at all you need to know about car insurance coverage for floods in UAE and how to make the best of these covers. 

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*Above mentioned prices are for Honda City EX 1.5L, 2017 model.
*Above mentioned prices are for Honda City EX 1.5L, 2017 model.

Does Car Insurance Cover Flood Damage?

In theory, yes, car insurance plans do cover flood or water damage caused to your vehicle. However, this entirely depends on your provider as well as the plan that you have chosen. Mandatory car insurance plans do not offer flood damage coverage, whether in the UAE or any other country. Only comprehensive car insurance plans are meant to cover damages caused due to flood damage. Car flood insurance coverage also depends on the level of comprehensiveness of the plans you opted for. Some comprehensive plans offer basic, own damage cover and hence may not cover damages caused due to flooding. It is all really about what’s included in your car insurance policy. The right thing to do here is to read the policy documents in detail and find out the types of calamities covered by your plan. Even if the flood damage is covered, check if the car flood insurance has any special conditions attached to it.

Which Car Insurance Covers Flood Damages?

Only a comprehensive car insurance plan is meant to offer car flood insurance coverage. However, not all comprehensive car insurance plans come with a car flood insurance cover. This particular benefit is generally included as a part of the natural calamities damages coverage. If a comprehensive plan does not include natural calamities cover at all, flood damages may also not be covered. However, such plans are generally accompanied by an option to get an add-on for natural calamities related damage cover. This cover costs additionally but will come in handy if you live in a flood-prone area.

Types of Flood Damages

  • Engine: The engine is one of the most important and first to get damaged car parts. Engine damages can be partial or total depending on the amount of water that has entered. Partial damages can be recovered with an engine breakdown cover. Cars with completely damaged engines are generally declared totalled. An engine breakdown cover can also come in handy for people living in flood-prone areas.
  • Gearbox: These damages are generally repairable but may render the car useless in some cases. Flood damage car insurance plans often cover these damages.
  • Electrical: Electrical parts of the cars like the lights on the dashboard and circuits inside the bonnet are also prone to getting damaged due to water.
  • Upholstery: If your car was submerged in water, there is a high possibility of upholstery damage especially if materials like leather have been used for the interiors. Many car flood insurance plans cover damages caused to upholstery as well.

What Will My Car Flood Insurance Cover?

Here is a list of this that your car insurance coverage for flood in UAE will offer:

  • Damages caused to mechanical and electrical parts of the car.
  • Damages caused to upholstery and other elements in the interior of the car like entertainment systems.
  • Damaged caused to personal belongings.

Avoidable and Unavoidable Car Flood Damage

Even if flood damage car insurance is there to protect your financial interest, there are a few things that are not covered. Let’s take a look at those. Car flood damages can be divided into two broad categories – avoidable damages and unavoidable damages. One of these two types of damages is not covered by flood damage car insurance plans. Let’s understand these two types in detail:

  • Avoidable Damages: Any kind of damage that can be anticipated and thus avoided is categorised as avoidable damage. Damages that have been caused due to owner’s negligence also fall under this category.
  • Unavoidable Damages: On the other hand, any kind of uncertain, immediate and unsuspected damage is categorised as unavoidable damage.

Unavoidable damages are always covered by flood damage car insurance covers. For example, if you have parked your car in your garage and it gets submerged in water due to heavy rain overnight, the damage will be categorised as unavoidable and hence it will be covered by car flood insurance. However, if you left your car parked in a low lying area and it gets submerged overnight due to heaving flooding in that area, your damages will be considered avoidable. Low-lying areas get flooded even with minimal rain. Here, you are not entitled to receive any coverage from your car flood insurance provider.

The same concept applies when you are driving. If you choose to drive through a water-logged road and your car gets damaged, the damages may be considered as avoidable. Make sure that you take extra care of your car as far as damages caused due to flood damage are concerned. Damages caused due to inflow of water lead to a high repair costs.

Add-Ons That Can Help Here

A few add-on covers can help make your car flood insurance coverage better and more comprehensive. For example, engine breakdown cover, consumables cover, roadside assistance, etc. Engine breakdown cover is an expensive add-on but it is also one of the most important ones as well. Repairing a broken engine can cost a lot, almost as much as the car itself. If you have this add-on with flood damage car insurance, you can hope to save a lot here. Consumables cover deals with covering parts and things like the gearbox, lubricants, grease, engine oil etc. Finally, the roadside assistance facilitates towing if your car is rendered immovable due to water logging.

Car Insurance Addons
Personal Accident Cover Agency Repair
Engine Protection Cover IDV-Insured Declared Value
No Claim Bouns Passenger Cover

What to Do If Your Car Has Submerged in Water?

Consider these steps if your car gets submerged in water:

  • Try not to start your submerged car. This increases the chances of more damages.
  • Disconnect the battery to avoid electric fires.
  • Refrain from starting the car even if the water level is still rising. The damage might have already been done and starting the car will only make it worse.
  • Check brakes, lines, disks, pads and other similar parts once the water recedes.

How to Overcome Flood Damage?

Taking precautions is the first step to preventing a lot of flood related damages – whether it’s avoidable or unavoidable. Even if flood damage insurance covers the damages that your car sustains, repairs won’t make it as good as new. It is best to avoid the damages as much as possible. Here are a few things you can do for the same:

  • Park on Higher Ground: If you live in a flood-prone area, try and find a new parking spot for your car, one that is located on a higher ground. This will significantly reduce the risk of water logging in your car.
  • Keep the Doors Closed & Windows Rolled-Up: Make sure that all the windows and doors are properly closed. Open windows and doors not only increase the chances of water-related damages but theft as well. If you leave the windows open, car flood insurance will not cover the damage repair expenses. 
  • Disconnect the Battery: Remember to disconnect battery if you live in a flood prone area. This will help avoid any short circuits if water happens to enter the car even after taking all precautions.

Can I Get My Car Totalled Due to Flood Damage?

Yes, it is possible to have your car totalled due to water logging. If the damage was unavoidable indeed, your car flood insurance plan combined with the basic car insurance coverage will offer you compensation as per the current value of the car. Flood-damaged cars are categorised as CAT N cars which means non-structural damages. Such cars can be put back on the road after repairs. Garages also buy flood-damaged cars and replace the damaged parts with the generic ones available in the market instead of genuine parts. This lowers the value of car but can make it driveable again.

How to File Car Flood Damage Insurance Claim?

  • Do not start the car if it is damaged due to water. 
  • Call your insurance provider and inform them about the incident.
  • The provider will send an approved inspector to examine the damages incurred. If the damage is repairable, you will be required to transfer your car to a nearby garage. The repair expenses will be examined and a final quote will be given. 
  • Once you settle the deductibles applicable in this case, the garage will begin the repairs and the insurance company the rest of the due amount. 
  • If the car has been totalled, the provider will make arrangements to examine the current value of the car, the assured sum of your car flood insurance plan and the compensation you can get in this situation. 
  • Once the calculations are done, you will get your compensation and the car will be transferred to the provider’s warehouse. 

Things to Remember Before Filing Car Flood Damage Insurance Claim

  • Always be clear and honest while reporting the extent of damage sustained due to flooding. Be specific whether the damage is limited to the engine or has spread out to other parts of the car as well. 
  • Keep in mind that you will be liable to pay any deductibles applicable to your car flood insurance plan.
  • Do not assume that the car has been totalled just because it has incurred heavy damage from the flood. Your car flood insurance inspector will examine that for you and give you a realistic picture about the same. 
  • Clear all your doubts about the damage that your vehicle has incurred. Your provider will most definitely send a very qualified technician to inspect the car.
  • Don’t tamper with the car’s systems or try to dry them out on your own. Let the professionals approved by your provider handle this for you. Any additional damages caused in an attempt of recovery will not be covered by your car flood insurance cover. 

Latest News - UAE Floods: Car Damage, Repair Costs above AED 40,000

Key Takeaways

Living in a flood-prone area can be quite risky for your car. However, if your car insurance covers flood caused damages, you can be rest assured that your financial interest will be safe in case of damages caused due to flooding. The only thing you need to take care of here is – reading the fine print. Ensure that you understand the terms of the plan thoroughly and take care of all precautionary measures to keep your car safe. Be a responsible car owner and leave it to your car flood insurance to deal with the damages. 

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