To some drivers who have not looked at the details of how auto insurance is calculated, all car insurance policies may seem to be written the same, but in fact, issues like car safety have a major role in how much a driver’s final premium cost will be.
The car that you drive has special safety features that the manufacturer has built into the design in order to protect drivers and passengers. Auto makers are constantly coming out with helpful new engineering that lowers the overall risk of getting into a hazardous situation behind the wheel.
Along with better peace of mind for the road ahead, you get an additional bonus by buying more safety features. Insurance companies will value these because they lower the possibility of a claim payout for an accident.
Each safety feature has its own value in terms of risk assessment. For example, the insurance company might look at anti-lock brakes and what they actually do on the road, such as limiting some kinds of collisions on icy roads. Then, the auto insurance company or a third-party company dealing with risk assessment will figure out how much anti-lock brakes are “worth” in deterring accidents.
Other safety features with insurance value include high tech features like stability control for larger vehicles, as well as the tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) that is standard on many new vehicles. The tire pressure monitoring system shows how much air pressure is in a tire at any given time. This prevents under-inflation of tires which can lead to accidents and other roadside emergencies. There’s also sometimes a discount for daytime running lights, which provide for better visibility, restraints and airbags that cushion the body in a collision, and much more. In addition, a driver may get a generally lower premium cost for a more “crashworthy” vehicle, where the body has been engineered to meet specific national safety tests such as those administered by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). All of this can have a very positive effect on how insurance companies look at your risk, and that is why auto makers are careful to highlight the safety gear that they have put into a vehicle.
To get the most out of your car’s safety features, it’s important to have the vehicle properly maintained to be sure that those items are functioning well. Get a certified mechanic to inspect your vehicle on a regular basis. As far as the cost of insurance, a good driving record doesn’t hurt either. Good vehicle maintenance, safe driving, and an eye for finance can help you cut down your auto insurance costs quite a bit.
Most of the discounts and values offered by auto insurance companies are somewhat flexible. Be sure to negotiate with your insurer to get the best deal you can on your policy.