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Auto insurance does cover towing a trailer under most circumstances, but coverage is relatively limited. It’s common for drivers to consider additional coverage on top of the liability insurance that comes standard for trailers with most policies.
Our team reviewed the best auto insurance companies and identified the top overall options. We’ll run through those choices along with explaining some ways to protect both your vehicle and your trailer while out on the road.
Does Liability Insurance Cover a Trailer Being Towed?
In most cases, your car coverage will include bodily injury and property damage liability insurance for a trailer that’s actively being towed. The majority of policies mention that the trailer must be connected to the covered vehicle during the incident to receive insurance coverage.
While most auto insurance policies will extend liability coverage to trailers, that’s not always the case. Always read the fine print of your policy before assuming that your trailer will receive liability insurance.
Times When Your Trailer Will Likely Be Covered
Three key requirements are needed for towing a trailer to be covered by your car insurance policy:
- You own it
- It’s connected to an insured towing vehicle
- It’s a covered type of trailer
Car insurance coverage plans often vary in terms of which trailers are permitted and protected. Don’t assume that the same types of coverage are available for travel trailers and campers as for utility trailers or horse trailers. Also be aware that all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and recreational vehicles (RVs) being towed often won’t qualify for your liability coverage.
It’s never a good idea to assume that you’ll get trailer coverage. Speak to an insurance agent about your policy or check your contract’s declarations page to make sure you’ll actually receive the protection you expect.
Times When Your Trailer Likely Won’t Be Covered
Most insurance policies will list out excluded trailers instead of the included trailers. If you’re towing any of the following, it is unlikely that your regular auto insurance policy covers it:
- Rental trailers
- Wagons that carry people
- Trailers used for most business purposes
- Top carriers on your car
- Other towed vehicles
Your insurance policy may include a disclaimer saying that it won’t cover trailers unless they are considered roadworthy. Another situation where it won’t be covered is if your insured car is not suitable for towing a trailer. For example, your insurance provider may deny a claim if you overload a small car with a trailer that is too large.
You may notice that trailers towed for business purposes are not covered by your regular auto insurance policy. You would need commercial trailer insurance for this, and should add business car or truck insurance for any motor vehicles used mainly for your company.
Do Collision and Comprehensive Insurance Cover a Trailer Being Towed?
Liability auto insurance usually does cover towing a trailer, but it’s a different story for both comprehensive and collision insurance. Most auto policies won’t cover physical damages to the trailer itself, let alone anything it is holding. You also won’t have coverage after natural disasters or instances of theft or vandalism.
Keep in mind that liability insurance only covers damages to others and their property after an at-fault accident. In other words, you’ll receive no protection for your own trailer unless you opt for comprehensive or collision insurance. You also won’t receive payouts for personal injuries that occur due to at-fault accidents involving your trailer.
Check your insurance policy before buying additional collision or comprehensive coverage. Some policies automatically extend full coverage auto insurance to attached trailers, though most don’t.
Reasons To Consider Trailer Insurance
There are many instances when auto insurance for towing a trailer may be the right coverage option. You’ll only have liability coverage unless you purchase extra protection, and this leaves you financially responsible for any repairs your trailer needs.
You Want Coverage All the Time
Your trailer’s liability coverage will only apply when it is hooked up and connected to your insured vehicle. If your trailer spends a lot of time in storage or just sitting on your property, it’s not covered. Your home insurance may possibly cover it when not in use, but there’s no guarantee on that.
More importantly, your trailer won’t be covered if you travel, park it and disconnect it from your car at your destination. If an accident occurs, neither your homeowners insurance nor your auto insurance policy will cover the trailer. That’s when an additional trailer policy could be helpful.
Your Lender May Require a Policy
Trailers can be expensive, and many people finance them rather than buying a model outright. If your trailer still has a loan on it, your lender will likely require trailer insurance on your contract. Ways to find cheap car insurance or trailer coverage include increasing your deductible and comparing quotes from various providers.
You Are Renting the Trailer
Remember that your standard auto insurance policy will only cover trailers that you own. If you’re renting a trailer, your standard policy will not cover it. Instead, ask the company that your trailer is being rented from to walk you through their insurance policies. You should be able to purchase additional coverage through most trailer rental providers.
Our Recommendations for Auto Insurance
Whether you need extra coverage or want to make sure that towing a trailer is included, the best way to get multiple auto insurance insurance quotes is by using a comparison tool. It would be smart to consider options from GEICO, USAA and Progressive to insure both your vehicle and trailer.
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GEICO: Best Overall
It’s easy to find exceptional rates from GEICO, as the company is known for its customizable plans that come at affordable costs. You’ll also find easily accessible discounts for safety features such as anti-theft systems, anti-lock brakes and air bags.
USAA: Best Military Provider
USAA is an excellent choice for military members, their families and veterans. The company regularly comes with cheap prices, and it’s known for exceptional customer service. For extra savings, USAA offers discounts for students with good grades, those with a clean driving record and those who garage their cars on military bases.
Progressive: Best for High-Risk Drivers
If your driving history isn’t spotless, Progressive might be the right insurer to turn to. High-risk drivers such as those with speeding tickets, DUIs and at-fault accidents often get accepted by Progressive. The company offers the Name Your PriceⓇ tool for those who aren’t sure exactly how much coverage they can afford.
Read our Progressive insurance review to learn whether the company could work well for your vehicle and trailer.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Does car insurance cover towing?
Towing in auto insurance policies usually refers to instances when you need service from a tow truck. Your car insurance may include this service if it offers roadside assistance, but drivers typically have to pay extra for the service.
When does auto insurance cover towing?
You will typically have to opt in for roadside assistance for towing to be covered by insurance. While this will increase your monthly premium, the service is worth it for many drivers who want extra peace of mind on the road.
Do I need a separate trailer insurance policy?
Most trailers intended for personal use are covered by your car’s liability insurance when they’re attached to your car. You may need a separate insurance policy depending on the type of trailer you own or if you prefer comprehensive or collision coverage.
Does homeowners insurance cover a trailer?
In most cases, your homeowners insurance will cover your trailer while it’s stored or parked on your property. It is unlikely to be covered, though, while you are towing the trailer. Once you connect your trailer to your vehicle, it will be covered by your auto insurance policy.
Does car insurance cover trailers?
Yes, liability car insurance usually does cover trailers that are attached to your insured vehicle at the time of the accident. Check with your specific provider to make sure of this, though.
The Detroit Bureau collects data from every major car insurance provider to formulate rankings of the best insurers. Our in-depth rating system takes into account market share, coverage, auto insurance rate estimates generated by Quadrant Information Services, customer satisfaction and ratings from industry experts. Each insurer is given a weighted score in four categories, as well as an overall score out of 10.0.
We recommend auto insurance companies based on these rankings, but we also encourage you to perform your own research and compare quotes to find the best coverage.