A full-coverage car insurance policy does not cover your car’s transmission unless it is related to an auto accident or other covered peril.
While many people refer to having the physical damage coverages of collision and comprehensive on top of state liability insurance as carrying full coverage, there really is no such thing as complete and full coverage for your car.
No auto insurance policy covers every known peril or potential problem your car could have. What full coverage does, as defined above, is cover damages you do to others under your bodily injury liability and property damage liability coverage and damages to your car caused by certain incidents under your physical damage coverages.
So, if you were in a car accident and the mechanic found that the transmission was damaged from the incident, it could be covered by your car insurance policy. But, if you were merely driving down the freeway and your transmission gave out on you, no type of car insurance would cover that situation since it was mechanical and not a covered peril.
A car insurance policy normally lists the perils that it will cover. If your damage isn’t listed, then it’s not covered. And some policies even specifically list that mechanical breakdown is not covered, which is why your transmission going out on its own would be considered.
Your transmission could be covered, though, if you have a car warranty or mechanical breakdown insurance. If your car is still under a manufacturer’s warranty or you purchased an extended warranty, check to see if your transmission’s issue would be covered by this coverage.
Car insurance companies may offer mechanical breakdown insurance (MBI), but unlike car insurance physical damage coverages, it will cover your car’s mechanical parts that break due to events not related to a car accident.
If you want coverage for your car’s mechanical parts, MBI might be for you.
The cost of MBI varies from a few hundred dollars to thousands, based on factors such as the type of vehicle you have, the number of miles to be covered, and the length of the MBI contract, as well as how much protection you choose. Some companies offer various levels of coverage and of course, the more items covered, the more you will pay.
With this type of coverage, there may be a deductible, but it is low (in the range of $50 to $250 usually) and much less than paying for the repairs to your transmission yourself in full.
— Penny Gusner contributed to this story.